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  Motul M1 Cosworth
 

  Article Image gallery (39) RSJ009 Specifications  
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Country of origin:Great Britain
Produced in:1973
Numbers built:9
Designed by:Ray Jessop for Rondel Racing
Author:Wouter Melissen
Last updated:March 26, 2018
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Click here to download printer friendly versionAt the end of the 1970, two Brabham engineers and good friends Ron Dennis and Neil Trundle decided to start their own racing team. Dubbed Rondel Racing, a combination of the former's first and the latter's last names, the team started with they knew and fielded a pair of Brabhams in the 1971 Formula 2 season. The following year, they stepped up to a newer model but despite a pair of victories late in the season, Rondel Racing decided to go another way for 1973.

Instead of settling for a customer car from another manufacturer, Dennis and Trundle decided to develop and construct a car of their own, named after their backer, French oil company Motul. Tasked with the design of the new Formula 2 racer was another former Brabham employee, Ray Jessop. The ambitious plan of Dennis and Trundle included a six-car effort in the European Formula 2 Championship with the new Cosworth-engined Motul M1.

Design wise, the new Motul followed convention, using an aluminium monocoque and a separate rear subframe to house the engine, gearbox and rear suspension. The suspension itself was also straightforward with double wishbones at the front and a multi-link layout and in-board disc brakes at the rear. For the engine, the team initially opted to run the Alan Smith developed Cosworth FVD engine but this was ultimately found not be homologated. Instead, the more readily available Cosworth BDG and FVC were used.

Although at least ten cars were built during the 1973 season, the six-car effort never emerged due to funding issues and also because of the search for a competitive engine. Raced by talented drivers like Henri Pescarolo, Jody Scheckter, Bob Wollek and Tim Schenken, the M1 proved competitive. However, it was on the back-foot from the start of the season due the exclusive availability of the superior BMW engine to the March cars. Pescarolo nevertheless won at Thruxton and Schenken scored a 1-2-3-5 victory at the Norisring.

The ever ambitious team already had a Jessop designed Formula 1 car on the drawing board but before the end of the season Dennis and Trundle to sell the cars and new design. The M1s were mostly sold to the United States for Formula B, while the F1 car emerged in 1974 as the Token RJ01 under new ownership. Dennis and Trundle would work together several more times during their long and successful careers, most notably at McLaren from the second half of the 1980s.

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  Article Image gallery (39) RSJ009 Specifications