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HK1837 Offline
#21 Posted : Tuesday, 15 October 2019 4:39:35 PM(UTC)
HK1837

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It became clear a few years back that unique model codes became the norm in that era. Prior to that there were suggestions about doing that and not using option codes could keep a car under the radar more, which it probably would do, but that is no longer in play.

GMH did not want to be seen to be involved in factory funded racing, in line with the GM clarification of 1963. Hide is probably not the right world, and to be fair it was always an image car first, so not wanting it to be seen as a car for racing would have been desired, nor would they wanted to be seen to break any guidelines like the GTO just had.

L34 was in the HK Engineering Technical specs when first released in August 1967. 81837 was added around April 1968 with pencilled in original option code XT2 against it. Brougham has XS4 and Kingswood ute has XS8 pencilled against them also on the same page but they were already there in August 1967. If you could figure out when the codes around XT2 were added you might get a better idea, although XT2 may have just been recycled. XT1 tube on 185SR14 radial) and XT4 (laminated, tinted windscreen) are close. XS6 (reclining buckets) is not too long before XT2 so that might give a hint. Maybe. Ben would probably have better information on this point.

GMH had to stick to the ban of no racing. Everyone there that mattered in 1963 was told that. The factory EH race plans had to be scrapped. Unfortunately the original memos, Telex or whatever may never surface as you stated. It may turn up one day, but I don't know where it is going to come from.

I had heard the ARDC were good mates with Ford guys and less so with GMH, but don't know what bearing that had on any formation of a Dealer Team. If it did it'd most likely be secondary to the real reason.
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Warren Turnbull Offline
#22 Posted : Tuesday, 15 October 2019 6:03:21 PM(UTC)
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Yes by August 1967, when the engineering manual was released, the Muscle car was embraced by GM and would have drawn no undue attention. As you said before when was L34/XT2 first tabled?

If it was 1964, then maybe not too wise to make it well known internally, but by 1966 it was clear that the GTO and others were the way to go.
Monaro23D Offline
#23 Posted : Tuesday, 15 October 2019 7:24:29 PM(UTC)
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To appreciate the one year only HDRT and shift to HDT there were more significant factors at play than David McKay being "difficult" or his Sydney base.

Scuderia Veloce had been run by David McKay for years with an emphasis on open wheeler racing running various Brabhams and sports cars including Ferrari 250LM and P4. In addition to employing top level Australian drivers this also involved attracting international drivers for the annual Tasman Series. In 1969 Scuderia Veloce was Ferrari's official Tasman Series team and had Chris Amon and Derek Bell doing driving duties. This is where McKay's heart lay and he had appropriate external sponsorship to fund and maintain his team at the highest standard.

The Holden Dealer Racing Team was something of a side show and Scuderia Veloce were not equipped to develop and run touring and rally cars at the level Holden wanted, nor was McKay about to give up his existing sports car and open wheeler programs. Once Holden made a major commitment to involvement in racing Harry Firth was the obvious choice for running their program after Ford dispensed with his services. Firth was well credentialed in the engineering and development of touring and rally cars and a could provide a singular focus and expertise that Scuderia Veloce could not. The development of the London to Sydney rally cars and HDRT Monaros for Bathurst was much more of an in house affair for GMH under Scuderia Veloce than in subsequent years under Firth and HDT.

Edited by user Tuesday, 15 October 2019 7:26:30 PM(UTC)  | Reason: Not specified

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Sandaro Offline
#24 Posted : Tuesday, 15 October 2019 8:19:16 PM(UTC)
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To me it looks like the origin of the GM ban on racing started in 1957 AMA agreement which all major US manufacturers joined. Manufacturers were getting cold feet being directly involved following the Le Mans disaster of 1955 (86 deaths) and US specific oldsmobile nascar crash (6 deaths?) in 1957. Ford and Chrysler pulled out of the agreement in 63, and GM looked like it may follow but for whatever reason (I find reason being antitrust a bit conspiracy theory like, more likely AMA pressure). Observance of the AMA agreement would have effect for all their global brands.
HK1837 Offline
#25 Posted : Wednesday, 16 October 2019 8:05:59 AM(UTC)
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Originally Posted by: Sandaro Go to Quoted Post
To me it looks like the origin of the GM ban on racing started in 1957 AMA agreement which all major US manufacturers joined. Manufacturers were getting cold feet being directly involved following the Le Mans disaster of 1955 (86 deaths) and US specific oldsmobile nascar crash (6 deaths?) in 1957. Ford and Chrysler pulled out of the agreement in 63, and GM looked like it may follow but for whatever reason (I find reason being antitrust a bit conspiracy theory like, more likely AMA pressure). Observance of the AMA agreement would have effect for all their global brands.


That is correct. But GM and others virtually ignored it and went on there way, some more covert than others. The boss of GM clarified in very strong words in 1963 that all GM businesses would cease involvement in motor racing immediately, and this is when all GM businesses were given official notice. A number of things are reported to have been in play and one big one was the US Government's Antitrust measures and another the AMA. I have also read in a number of places that a high ranking GM exec had given his son a high powered GM vehicle either late in 1962 or early in 1963 and he killed someone in it, but cannot find the original source for this. Pontiac and Chevrolet virtually abandoned their really high performance vehicles outside of Corvette overnight. The Pontiac Super Duty program was stopped, the Chevrolet big block mystery motor (essentially a Mark IV 427 BBC) put on ice for a few years. Chevrolet also stopped their Grand Sport program which was a 377ci SBC (3.75" (400) stroke crank in 327 block) for Corvette race duty, although this may have been canned for other reasons as well. Because Pontiac prided themselves on their performance image they really had their tail between their legs, and this is one major factor why they developed the GTO - a performance image car for the street, but NOT a race car.

There appears to be lots of speculation everywhere as to why the 1963 clarification happened, but not much official stuff has ever come to light. The fact remains though that it did happen and every GM businesses reacted in some way to it.

This link (also earlier in the thread) discusses it pretty well. There is an internal Pontiac memo in it where the high power engines were canned.

https://www.pontiacv8.co...mous-racing-ban-of-1963


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