The legendary F1 six-wheeler is back – for the Masters Historic Festival at Brands!
The iconic Tyrrell P34 will return to the Grand Prix circuits once more, with Masters driver Jonathan Holtzman bringing his freshly built example to Brands Hatch for the Masters Historic Festival on August 22-23. Painstakingly recreated by prominent Masters preparers, Warrington-based CGA Engineering, the six-wheeled Formula 1 car from the seventies will make its track debut in the meeting’s two Masters Historic Formula One races.
The P34 continuation is the result of Jonathan Holtzman vainly trying to source one of the five remaining cars – originally, seven chassis were built, five of which are now in museums or private collections and haven’t been raced for years. The other two tubs were destroyed in period. Holtzman, third generation real estate owner & operator in America, who in recent years raced a Lotus 87B in the FIA Masters Historic Formula One Championship, then commissioned his preparer CGA Engineering to create an exact copy using original drawings.
Built in co-operation with the Tyrrell family, who supplied the original design drawings, the ‘new’ six-wheeler was built in glorious Swedish GP-winning 1976-spec – which makes it the only running P34 on earth in its sleeker first-year blue-and-yellow guise. Former F1 designer John Gentry, who joined Tyrrell mid-1977, oversaw the design and build process at CGA. The car has had a satisfactory first test at Pembrey in Wales, and is now poised to make its race debut at Brands next month which will be the first time a 1976 spec car has raced for over 40 years.
*Bob Tyrrell echoed the family’s sentiments:“This is an exciting development to the Tyrrell P34 story. We are looking forward to seeing a P34, built to the original specification, back on track and making its race debut at the Masters Historic Festival. We wish Jonathan well.” *
“I am absolutely thrilled to see the return of a P34 to our races”, said Ron Maydon, Founder of Masters Historic Racing. “The car is a true legend, and the ultimate dream machine for so many Grand Prix fans who were young in the seventies – including myself. I applaud Jonathan for having the guts to have it recreated from scratch, and all credits to Colin and Alistair Bennett at CGA for doing such a splendid job. I’m sure that seeing the six-wheeler in action again will be a highlight for many in the crowd at Brands.”
The last time P34 six-wheelers raced in Historic Formula One was 2012, when Roger Wills raced one, and before that it was two decades ago, when Martin Stretton and Mauro Pane each drove 1977-spec examples that are now in private collections. Stretton won the championship back in 2000 while Pane claimed the title in 2008.
The Masters Historic Festival on August 22-23 will see the second race opportunity for the Masters Historic Formula One series this year, with two non-FIA races to be run on Saturday and Sunday.
© Photography by Jakob Ebrey
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