Dear Mr Schenker Frank Williams has now had a reply to his
regarding the BT24/3 and BT 26/1 and I attach the reports of
Herd wrote these accounts, having first spoken to Peter Kerr
THompson, as well as John Muller in New Zealand. I hope they
Kind Regards, Serena Sissons Office of Frank Williams
This is the works Brabham-Repco F1 car driven by
Jochen at Spain and Monaco and by Gurney at Zandvoort in the 1968
World Championship. After the introduction of the BT26 at Zandvoort
driven by Jochen, BT 24/3 became the Team Spare Car until sold
(?) to Kurt Ahrens who drove it at Nurburgring on August 4th 1968.
This car was modified by John Muller to take the
2½ litre DFW commissioned by Frank Williams for the 1968/9
Tasman series. The engine is referred to as the DFW presumably
because of the link with Frank Williams.
In this car the sub-frames were retained as on
the Repco installation and my input was confined purely to discussions
with John about the installation procedure since little re-design
was needed. John worked his passage home to New Zealand with the
His second mechanic in the series was Dewar Thomas.
Dewar subsequently built and was the first test-driver (without
my knowledge) of the 712, the monocoque of which I seem to remember
FW becoming acquainted with as hand baggage between Sao Paulo
and London and on return.
BT 24/3 is next recorded as having been driven
by Silvio Moser at Monaco on June 8th 1969 - presumably with a
3 litre DFV. It was subsequently raced by him at Zandvoort, France,
Oulton Park, Monza, Canada, USA and Mexico.
The key point that is relevant is that this is
indeed a Piers Courage DF Brabham, but it is the Tasman car not
the subsequent F1 car. If Beat Schenker bought this BT 24/3 directly
from FW then it is indeed the "true" BT 24/3.
This is the David Bridges 1968 Brabham-Repco F1 car purchased
by Frank Williams for Piers to drive in the 1969 World Championship
- I assume it was BT 26/1. It was modified quite significantly
in the cellar of Keith Leighton's father's garage in Earls Barton
some five miles east of Northampton. John Thompson did the manufacturing
work and I did the design. There was considerable unsolicited
advice that I should not mount the engine solidly but retain the
sub-frame since (it was argued) the Lotus 49 did not handle well
because of its solid mounting of the DFV. Since my M7 McLaren
had won its first two races in 1968 and finished second in the
World Championship I was not inclined to agree and I still remember
the moment when John and I actually took a saw to the sub-frames.
Both BT 24/3 and BT7 26/1 used Hewland DG 300 gearboxes.
The enquiries ask for the design drawings of the
installation and in talking about the car to John T last week
he was adamant that he threw the cigarette packet away. I feel
this is a little unfair, but the bottom line is that the design
drawings no longer exist.
Its first finish was in its second race at Silverstone
and its first World Championship points in its fourth race into
second place at Monaco.
John's recollection of the first race at
Brands Hatch is heightened as much by the memory of FW's request
for him to collect the prize money (about £2,500) - never
having seen so much money in his life before - as it is by his
subsequent delivery of the money to FW in a flat in London.