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    Toyota Celica Endurance Race Car

    New adventure time.

    Like every motorsport mad kid in Australia, I’ve always wanted to race at a Bathurst enduro. When a 6 hour event appeared a few years ago my interest was piqued. Because I'm that kind of a dork, a spreadsheet was started of possible cars to run, trying to figure out how to do the event cheaply. And that’s as far as it got, gradually populating the sheet with new cars as something I hadn't considered appeared. Then last year I saw this machine for sale at a bargain price. Some negotiations with the nopics and I became the proud owner of a Group 3E Production Car Toyota Celica. It’s one of the ex Osborne Motorsport cars, originally built by Neal Bates Motorsport.

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    Back in the day, it looked like this. Keen observers will note the name on the door - PF's very own Billzilla who was one of many to have a steer over the years. Osborne built a pair of cars, the number 13 was the lead car, the number 31 the 2nd car.

    When I found it, it didn’t run, and the body was a bit rough, but it had a Motec engine management system and dry break refuelling system in it. It also came with a bunch of spares including a spare engine, built by audineil. After much swearing at the fuel system and a fresh battery, it spluttered into life, didn't blow smoke, and my stress levels lowered significantly.

    Being a production car, modifications are limited, but there are a few cool things. Engine control is free, so it runs a Motec M400. Adjustable MCA shock absorbers keep the wheels in place, LSD and exhaust are also goodly. There's a few learning curves - I've never played Motec before, nor Celica, so a lot to learn there. And the track.. I've driven Bathurst at 6 tenths, but never raced there. I was entered for 2 meetings there last year as a support category with both meetings being cancelled. This made me a little nervous, until I was talking it through with one of the codrivers changed my mindset. The events I was going to run last year would have been cut throat racing, 6 or so laps at a time. With lots of track time, and no real pressure on ultimate lap time, the 6 hour is actually a good way to learn the track.

    The car isn't going to be a class contender - it's in the same class as Toyota 86's - but this is about fulfilling a dream. The mission is to get to the finish. My codrivers will be a good mate and my Dad - who has also never raced a Bathurst enduro so it's ticking off a bucket list item for both of us.
    Attached Files

    #2
    I wholeheartedly agree with everything you've done, bravo. Live the dream.
    " Racing cars don't have doors. Toilets have doors" : Keke Rosberg

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      #3
      After quietly ticking off lots of little jobs, I got the car on the track for a shakedown late last year at Sandown. (Lockdown in Victoria made things a little challenging!) I was expecting something major to be wrong with it, but thankfully, apart from some oil leaks (I grew up with British motor cars, so this kind of felt homely) it behaved quite nicely. Without pushing too hard I was able to get it close to as quick as it has gone at Sandown, so that was a nice win. 3 hours sleep the night before (nervous much?) had meant that 8 tenths was about as hard as I was willing to go.

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      Ace photo from PF’s Nafe. Don’t look too closely at the panel gaps or bodywork..

      Next up is some more testing to get the other drivers familiar with it and a myraid of little jobs and things to organise. They are both experienced racers, but neither have driven a Celica before. Thankfully both have spent time in front wheel drive race cars so that aspect isn’t foreign. The timeline is a bit compressed - this was to be a 2022 or 2023 project as we were expecting a baby early this year. Unfortunately, we lost bubba which opened up the opportunity to do this year’s event. (PSA: These things happen, don’t be afraid to talk about them with your friends when they do. As I talked to more and more people it was amazing how many people have had similar experiences.)

      Part of the charm of the event is the scale of it. It's basically what the Bathurst 1000 used to be, less 90 minutes or so. Long distance class racing where the objective is to get to the finish. Proper pitstops (gotta give Paddington something to do!), strategy and all that good stuff. Daunting and exciting at the same time.

      Comment


        #4
        Originally posted by Roy928tt View Post
        I wholeheartedly agree with everything you've done, bravo. Live the dream.
        Thanks Roy! And likewise - I've been following your thread with great interest - especially the Cossie - amazing engine!

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          #5
          Bathurst would be a daunting track to drive in real life, and I have only driven it in a simulator and even that was tricky , so the real deal requires requires big balls to go 10/10's
          It's all about the dream, not setting the world on fire and that is my reason for my build.

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            #6
            Excellent thread and well done on jumping in
            2017 Ford Ranger XLT (Jeep Wrangler recovery vehicle)
            2007 KTM 250 SX

            Originally posted by Monza
            I've never considered myself the type of guy to eat arse but I am currently reviewing that policy

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              #7
              Nice buy.
              For a car that you just want to get on the track with and have little surprises, this should be a safe bet.


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                #8
                What a great story, living out not only your dream to race at "The Mountain" but also your Dads

                I wish you all the best for your mission, and will follow your progress in this thread.

                Good luck

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                  #9
                  10/10. Go for gold.
                  .... because every driver experiences the destructive potential of the effortless surge of power available through the smallest of body movements.

                  Dr Hoon
                  .

                  DrNick is king!!!! No, Mark Webber is now! Long live the king!... hold on a minute mate, Ricci is in charge now

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                    #10
                    There's a 4hr race at Eastern Creek in a month - I'm assuming a celica can also run 2F. Only problem is, not cheap, but maybe less expensive than hitting walls up there with everyone having near zero familiarity with the car and nothing much in seat time last year. Can't imagine anything particularly special on Toyos to be gleaned, but Ric Shaw prepped these for Osbourne back when, in exchange for drives.

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                      #11
                      The EnduroChamps series would help immensely with getting to know the car, at a reasonable cost. Choice of tyres etc.
                      It's 4 x 1 Hour races as opposed to a single 4 hour, and open to 3E Production Cars as well as a bunch of others.
                      Im sure I have pics of the car originally, trying to find them from so long ago is the hardest part (backup storage back in 2002/03/04/05 was not my forte!)
                      Nathan

                      Speed Shots Photography
                      Official Photographer 2021 | Shannons Motorsport Australia Championships | Porsche Michelin Sprint Challenge | Hi-Tec Oils Bathurst 6 Hour | Challenge Bathurst | MRF Tyres Australian Production Car Series

                      Comment


                        #12
                        Thanks for the kind words all!

                        Originally posted by MWP View Post
                        Nice buy.
                        For a car that you just want to get on the track with and have little surprises, this should be a safe bet.
                        That was a big consideration. I went through a lot of race results and talking to people before purchasing as reliability was a big factor. The car has done the 24 hour and 12 hour events at Bathurst, and soon to be the 6 hour. I reckon there wont be a lot of cars that have done that. One day when I've got nothing to do I'll see how many there is.

                        Originally posted by gxxr View Post
                        There's a 4hr race at Eastern Creek in a month - I'm assuming a celica can also run 2F. Only problem is, not cheap, but maybe less expensive than hitting walls up there with everyone having near zero familiarity with the car and nothing much in seat time last year. Can't imagine anything particularly special on Toyos to be gleaned, but Ric Shaw prepped these for Osbourne back when, in exchange for drives.
                        Ideally that type of event would be good preparation. But, in this case, it's not long before the 6 hour, so if something went wrong it would be a big job to repair the car. We will keep smashing out test day laps at the tracks down here for seat time. It also has the advantage that it's purely learning the car, not the track. I did notice Ric Shaw on some of the old photos, I've got some dyno sheets from when he did the cars. I think this car was used for that kind of arrangement at times.

                        Originally posted by Dingo745 View Post
                        Bathurst would be a daunting track to drive in real life, and I have only driven it in a simulator and even that was tricky , so the real deal requires requires big balls to go 10/10's
                        It's all about the dream, not setting the world on fire and that is my reason for my build.
                        100% this. If I'd gone Excel racing there as per my original plan, I'd have had to have been at 10/10ths within a handful of laps. (And that's not my forte, I take my time learning new tracks). This event provides a lot more time to learn the track.

                        It's 100% about the dream. The mission is to get to the finish.

                        Comment


                          #13
                          This is awesome and had no idea Bill drove this! Keen to see progress!!
                          Originally posted by The Property Guru
                          don't haemophrodites generally have tiny wangs?
                          Originally posted by oxy
                          No, that's asians
                          A80 Supra
                          80 Landcruiser

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                            #14
                            Nice one, looking forward to updates
                            Originally posted by Jim
                            I feel that rules are important as without rules there is no cheating and cheating is a vital part of drag racing.

                            Originally posted by elfturbomax
                            What has happened to PF? It seems to be diesel love now days. Maybe the name should be changed to Particulate Forums.

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                              #15
                              The wiring/electrical side of the car has been an interesting journey.

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                              This little box had me stumped for ages. It was mounted on the roll bar on the passengers side behind the passengers seat, although I suspect it was on the side window at one stage. (Passengers seat? There was a plan at one stage to use the car for driver training but apparently that never eventuated. Having the passengers seat tucked away in the back of my shed will be handy if I do any sponsor ride days.)

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                              The hint lies in the hole on the front of the box. Turns out it is a receiver for a timing beacon – those things you see on tripods in pit lane. It connects up to the Motec so you can do lap by lap analysis. It was custom made by one of the previous drivers, presumably because the genuine Motec item is pretty expensive. I’ll have a VBox in the car for driver analysis, but this will provide another nice data source if required. (Just what I need, two independent systems to tell me to drive better!)

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                              These were another little mystery. Eventually I tracked down one of the previous drivers and found out it was for some custom lighting at a night race to identify the car from a distance.

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ID:	7223946The wiring is a bit of a mess. It’s got the hallmark of a car that has had a few different people work on it, some of it excellent, some a little less optimal. The grey box contained nothing but loose ends, whatever was there isn’t there anymore. Lots of rerouting and neatening have taken place. Appeals to my OCD. The gold box is worth a small pile of gold. The level of stuff you can do with it frightens me. I do need to do some digging and work out how to raise the idle a fraction as it will stall if you leave it idle for long.


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                              Actual carbon fibre panel for the extra gauges – posh! The blank switch is begging for a suitable label – Rocket Launcher or Nitrous or something. The middle switch I discovered controls the thermo fans - I'm not 100% sure quite what the logic is - it might bypass the normal fan system and let the Motec control it, or perhaps the reverse. Something to suss out at the next test day.


                              Originally posted by Nafe View Post
                              Im sure I have pics of the car originally, trying to find them from so long ago is the hardest part (backup storage back in 2002/03/04/05 was not my forte!)
                              That would be cool! I've enjoyed tracking down the history of the car. One cool thing I've found is this segment from one of the 12 hours: https://youtu.be/TR5UUCcSRvM?t=2166
                              Attached Files

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