1972 Mazda RX3 Race Car
To be offered by Silverstone Auctions on Saturday 27th March. For more information about the car and how to bid please call Harry Whale on 07919887374.
Estimate: £26,000 - £30,000
- A very rare 10A Mazda RX3 (not a piston-engined car converted) – ex Production and Modified Saloon race-car
- Last raced in 1981 by Mark Hales and been in storage since
- Recent work to get the car to a level to be able to return to the track again, with some more work to finish the job for the next owner
- Ready to run-in, ‘13b peripheral port’ rebuilt race-spec engine on downdraught 51mm IDA twin-choke carb fully jetted to suit
- Built by rotary guru by Carl Hayward (who owned this very car for 25 years) with an estimated 300bhp.
The current owner of this special little RX3, whilst researching its history, obtained the quote below from one of its former owners and drivers, Mark Hales:
"I built the car somewhere around 1977/8/9. I used most of a shell that had been raced by a guy called Terry Maine who was one of the regular RX3 racers at the time.
Spike Winter built a 13B, I used a Ford Rocket-type gearbox and an English axle, supported on a wacky A-bracket, which may still be there. The front end was Ford Escort struts with very long arms, hence the Jack Knight Hillman Imp steering rack (which may still be there).
I built it for the Modified Saloon Car category, which was reasonably well supported at the time, and the car was always quick, but I’d chosen 13-inch wheels and the tyre supply was becoming limited. The option of used Formula 2 fronts which I’d relied on for years, had dried up. Had lots of poles, and led several races, but I didn’t manage a win. Should have – at Brands, and Silverstone in particular.
Decided then that a big banger was a more likely option to garner sponsorship, so I bought the only works Group 2 Rover Vitesse.”
Our vendor has a picture of Mark Hales in action at Cadwell in the early ‘80s and a pic of the car in the ‘70s in Standard Saloon spec, which the vendor believes is Terry Maine racing it.
The RX3 was then sold to a Mr John Coles in the early ‘80s. The vendor believes that the engine and gearbox were removed by John as it was then purchased by Carl Hayward (rotary guru and engine builder) in the mid-80s and has resided in Carl’s ownership up until recently. He goes on to mention that the car was black when Carl purchased it and sat on its suspension and brakes etc., as Mark had left it complete with the crazy 'A-frames' etc. mentioned above.
As this RX3 has not turned a wheel in anger since 1981, some work has been carried out by Carl Hayward (Hayward Rotary Ltd) in recent years to try and return this interesting car to the track. Our vendor has summarised what work has been done and what work still needs to be done to the car, in his opinion, as he no longer has the time to finish the project himself.
Recap of the recent work:
- Ready to run-in, 13b peripheral-port rebuilt race-spec engine on downdraught 51mm IDA
- Twin-choke carb fully jetted to suit, built by rotary guru by Carl Hayward with an estimated 300bhp. Will need running-in and final dyno set-up.
- It starts up fine and just needs the run-in and dyno for carbs checking but runs pretty sweet as is
- Has an RX7 gearbox with a lightweight flywheel and a new clutch
- New custom race dash with Racetech gauges and all the various switches to operate everything, fuel pump, fan, lights etc. Kill switch inside and outside all new all working.
- New race rad etc.
- Painted and decalled as it was when Mark raced it, some obvious battle scars/light dents on panels from back in the day
- New OEM old stock rear lights
- Ally bonnet and boot with pins etc.
- 3-piece lightweight wheels stripped, refurbed etc. and all excellent
- New seat, harness and wheel
- Dry stored all this time and clearly has not been exposed to elements as it’s all clean and tidy and appears rot free
- Suspension and brakes are all in great visual condition but the original spec and set up as 1981 and would need work to suit whatever series it was going into.
- The A-frames and bars Mark built are still in there and look cool in a retro way but I’m sure better options exist these days!
- Rear diff would need checking, no oil in which is fine for rolling it around but would need checking and refreshed probably
- Clutch is new but not plumbed in, needs master/slave cylinder and plumbing in
- Roll-cage is the original which I suspect would need to be replaced.
- Ally race-tank in the boot all plumbed in etc. May well be out of date
- Hubs are Ford Escort with Ford PCD along with the Hillman Imp steering rack etc. as it was when Mark had it as mentioned in Mark’s notes above. All of the suspension, chassis arms, brakes etc. are as they were when Mark built it.
- Tyres are old, out of date slicks, just for moving around.
Opportunities to acquire a Rotary-engined race car with this history and pedigree are few and far between. Potentially eligible for a variety of high-quality events, depending on what spec the car is finished by the next owner, this is certainly an interesting and very rare proposition.