Basil van Rooyen GTA

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ZA Perana
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Basil van Rooyen GTA

Post by ZA Perana » Sat 23 Feb 2008, 16:08

I stand under correction with this post, perhaps the more informed.....re more mature members can correct any mistakes I might make... :mrgreen:

From what I understand it was in fact Arnold Chatz that did a lot of developement work on this car, he brought in GTA suspension bits and a few engines pieces after a trip he took to watch the GTA's race in Holland. One of the imported parts was a new light weight flywheel, which promply disintegrated when the car was eventually raced in SA.

Then from what I can gather after a few not so great performance Basil took the car over for the 1970 season I beleive and the engine was further developed by Supeformance to produce around 220 bhp. Unfortunately the 1970 season as we all know was when the Perana destroyed all opposition and as such the Alfa was overshadowed, despite putting in some good performances.

Anyone know anything else about this car?
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Re: Basil van Rooyen GTA

Post by Killarney Racer » Sat 23 Feb 2008, 22:42

Chatz did a lot of the negotiations with Alfa in Europe and managed to get some trick parts for BvR. At the time I believe Alfa were having problems staying with the oppposition overseas with unreliable and not particularly quick cars. Basil built his GTA at Superformance with Chatz and it was so quick that Italy wanted to know what he had done. Chatz if I remember was big on getting sponsorship to fund the project.

Chatz took over the GTA from BvR when the latter moved into F1 with the McLaren M7A. The Alfa however generally played second fiddle to Gough's various Meissner Escorts and finally Bob Olthoff in the Perana V8 came along and sorted everyone out before the SA Saloon Car Championship was disbanded.

Now here is one this forum. What happened the the Superformance GTA? I heard that it was purchased by a Euro Alfa team. But I also heard that it is lying in a secret garage in SA with an unnamed owner who will not let go of it.

Who knows what???

Railway

Re: Basil van Rooyen GTA

Post by Railway » Sat 23 Feb 2008, 22:59

Angola. Car was also raced there if the same car and sold there then the war broke out. Arnold Chatz, BvR, Andre Verwy and others raced there. Andre Verwy's Lola T212 also stayed behind but I think that was smokkled out as well as most of any valuable stuff that was still there in the 90's.

How do I know this ? My dear friend that has since passed on that was involved in the revival or attempt there of, of motorsport in Angola as the tracks are still there but mostly abandoned. He knew where the car was and the chap where this ex-ZA Alfa was. Or what was left of it as many abandoned cars like such saloons became doner parts to keep whatever was running there through the war years.

My friend Carlos I took to Peter Gough's pit-garage when he was visiting and they discussed this too.

The car as far as I understand was sold by who ever had it which I think he said was Arnold Chatz. The place where it was Carlos had seen the car and I had planned to go up the following year with him when he visited again. But that did not happen as tragerdy struck.

It may very well not be the same car I don't know until it can be inspected if it perhaps still existed there as an abandoned shell. But what I find so irritating is the "urban legend" stuff that one can disprove as "urban legend". This urban legend stuff is now so rife amongst the whole classic race car scene that it's almost in line with the rest of Africa like 3rd world standards as far as motoring interest. I blame MSA Historic Race Commision partially for this as they should be managing all the crap that's been flying around for the last few years. It's disrepect for the legends and their crews of those days and this is all driven by CASH. Or wanting to be noticed or feel important. If I have a car that I know is a car as such, like some famous saloon, I will make a point of at least having it verified and shown to reliable sources persons that have credibility and can confirm such a claim. But anyway sometime I will take a ride up there and go check things out amongst my Portugues brothers.

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Re: Basil van Rooyen GTA

Post by Gunter » Sun 24 Feb 2008, 08:22

The Angola story is very interesting....i have also heard various stories about cars just lying around including an ex works Lancia Stratos rally car.
I know that a few years ago an Alfa Tipo 33 was rescued out of Angola and has apparently been fully restored in Europe.
Even Zimbabwe still has a few gems...i have been in contact with an owner of a 240z race car and just recently the ex Ben Morgenrood triple rotor Wesbank car has been found,purchases and brought to SA. The car will undergo a full restoration
be painted in original colours and will be raced.
RACECAR spelt backwards spells RACECAR.....

Railway

Re: Basil van Rooyen GTA

Post by Railway » Sun 24 Feb 2008, 08:52

Quite right the Tipo 33 Alfa was taken out there still as it had last been raced but weathered as it had been in a yard where the chickens would frolic in and about it. Well known Angolan racer who on ocassions shared cars with Basil Van Rooyen Antonio Peixinho had that car if I remember correctly. It went straight to an auction unrestored and went for a lot of money. There after restored.

With regards other stuff as I said most stuff that still resembled old saloons would have been cannabolised for normal civilian cars to keep them running as the whole infrastructure there collapsed so cars and spares became a luxury commodity if not more of a desperate means of transport. The chances of at least be it abondoned shells maybe with some components is more so than maybe here where horsecarts would have probably carried any piece of metal away by now. The very exotic stuff like the sports cars that there are registers of are likely to have already been taken by many that have been there already looking for stuff.

Tripple rotor Mazda would be the 323 ?

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Re: Basil van Rooyen GTA

Post by Gunter » Sun 24 Feb 2008, 10:15

So sad to think how many very special racecars ended up on the scrapheap....if you do make a trip to Angola you might unearth something....

Yes, it is the 323 triple Rotaty.
RACECAR spelt backwards spells RACECAR.....

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Re: Basil van Rooyen GTA

Post by Killarney Racer » Sun 24 Feb 2008, 20:21

This is interesting stuff!
I wonder if the BvR Alfa story in Angola is true, if it is not one of the Alfas he prepared for the Springbok series. There were a couple of them but neither were the GTA written about here (ie that raced i the SA Saloon Car Champs.) I say this because I don't know why he would have taken the Champ car to Angola when they were not part of our racing scene. But they did have a 3hr international race, so it would be reasonable to assume the car there would be the endurance repared car.

How did Ben's 323 end up there??

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ZA Perana
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Re: Basil van Rooyen GTA

Post by ZA Perana » Sun 24 Feb 2008, 20:36

Killarney Racer wrote: This is interesting stuff!
I wonder if the BvR Alfa story in Angola is true, if it is not one of the Alfas he prepared for the Springbok series. There were a couple of them but neither were the GTA written about here (ie that raced i the SA Saloon Car Champs.) I say this because I don't know why he would have taken the Champ car to Angola when they were not part of our racing scene. But they did have a 3hr international race, so it would be reasonable to assume the car there would be the endurance repared car.

How did Ben's 323 end up there??


Interesting, its becomes confusing as both he and Chatz had Alfa's that looked similar. Agreed would be v interesting to find out how Bens 323 ended up ther considering Angola was already in the midst of a cival war..
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Re: Basil van Rooyen GTA

Post by Killarney Racer » Sun 24 Feb 2008, 21:01

I remember the two Superformance enduro Alfas were driven by BvR, Chatz, Christine Bekkers (German/Belguim I think) and one other whose name slips the old mind right now. I know Keith Berrington-Smith and Tony Woodly also had a very simialr looking Alfa around that time, it may even have been prepared by Superformance. The Alfa always did well in the index of performace results.

Of course BvR later joined up with the Japs and that ridiculously quick little Mazda Rotary M10A with Jody Scheckter and Peter Gough and also Dave Clapham, the first time a rotary was seen on SA tracks, indeed in the country. Gough got his terrible burns in Rhodesia in one of the Mazdas effectively prematurely ending an amazing career.

Railway

Re: Basil van Rooyen GTA

Post by Railway » Sun 24 Feb 2008, 21:25

With regards the Alfa you got to ask Chatz pitmac at the time which I think was Hennie v/d Linde. Or actually he did pit for BvR. I can't remember the conversation now and who else we spoke to that day at Killarney when my friend Carlos was here. But it went something like who ever towed it up that last time flew back. It was a long trip which I think was to Nova Lisboa track which is inland North.

It is a real pity Carlos died tragically before I could get there as in part I was also considering emigrating to Benguela where he was quite high up in his constituency. He was very keen when he came to Killarney, spoke to plenty people as it was a National here. Including Roger MClerey that had raced bikes in Angola too those years. I was hoping to be actively involved in the revival of organised Motorsport in Angola with him, Carlos being on the committtee handling formalities/legal.

This is the track at Benguela which was built early 70's I think and had the most famous of people/cars racing there. Just to the top there seems to have grown a shanty town. The track was still being used at least once a year when racers would trek through the country in convoy, race and move on to the next circuit there after returning to Luanda where the big track is. I was hoping this would have been my hangout place. Plenty petrol there for V8's

About the ex-Morgenrood tripple rotor Mazda 323 I think Gunter meant it ended up in Zimbabawe. They are still reasonably active there.
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