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  Riley & Scott Mk III
 

  Article Image gallery (9) 003 Specifications  
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Country of origin:United States
Produced from:1995 - 1998
Numbers built:17
Designed by:Bill and Bob Riley
Author:Wouter Melissen
Last updated:January 23, 2019
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Click here to download printer friendly versionWith 47 outright victories, the Riley & Scott Mk III was the most successful sports prototype of the 1990s. Developed in 1993 for the new IMSA World Sports Car (WSC) regulations that would come into effect in 1994, there initially turned out to be no interest in the new Riley & Scott. So much so that it would take another year before a buyer was found and the Mk III first turned a wheel in anger. It then only took three races before the car was a winner.

The first car built by the company funded by Bill Riley and Mark Scott was a tube-frame Trans-Am racer, and for the new WSC machine this tried and trusted chassis solution was used once again. For added rigidity, carbon-fibre composite panels were bonded to the chassis. Suspension was through double wishbones with a push-rod actuated spring and damper unit on all four corners. A five-speed gearbox was part of the package, while the engine bay was made deliberately spacious to accommodate a wide variety of power units.

For the aerodynamics package, designers Bob Riley and John Roncz relied heavily on Computer Fluid Dynamics (CFD). The initial design featured flanks that were tightly wrapped around the engine, effectively creating open side-pods. The rear mounted radiators were fitted through large openings next to the fenders of the rear wheels. Eventually, Riley and Roncz settled on more conventional side-pods, which made the car more approachable for prospective buyers. What was carried over was the sharply raked nose and the emphasis on reducing drag.

Having found no customers for the Mk III ahead of the 1994 season, Riley & Scott instead worked on the Ferrari engined Spice run by Dyson Racing. It was the start of a successful partnership as it was Dyson Racing, who were the first to buy a pair of Mk IIIs for the 1995 season. Fitted with a Ford V8, chassis 001 was ready in time for the Daytona 24 Hours test. It was fourth fastest behind three Ferraris but ahead of the new Porsche WSC racer. After difficult Daytona and Sebring races, the Mk III won at Atlanta. Later in the year, the second chassis won three in a row and Dyson ended the year with a one-two.

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  Article Image gallery (9) 003 Specifications