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Old 12-09-2013, 02:28 PM
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Grant Campbell
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: Mt Eliza Victoria Australia
Posts: 656
Default Historic Sandown Tribute to Melbourne Race Car Constructor....


Just a few kilometres from Sandown Park in a small factory behind his home at Mordialloc, Brian Shead designed, engineered and constructed some of the finest racing cars to grace Australia's circuits.

Shead built his first race car in 1960 - a Formula Junior closely resembling the Cooper of the time, and by 1989 he had constructed almost 50 highly successful open wheelers. Essentially a one-man operation, Brian Shead gave up his day job in 1973 to design and build cars full time.

Appropriately named after the world's fastest land animal, his "Cheetah" racers proved hard to catch. The dynamic duo of Brian Shead and Brian Sampson dominated Formula 3 racing during the 1970s, and Cheetahs became the Formula 2 benchmark in the 1980s. Shead himself won the Australian F2 title in 1979, and his cars went on to score five consecutive Australian F2 championships from 1984 to 1988 inclusive.

The 1977 Australian Hillclimb Championship was won by Ian Judd driving an Oldsmobile powered Cheetah, Bob Prendergast took the 1980 Victorian title in a Cheetah Mk. 7 and in 2007 yet another AF2 championship went to the Melbourne constructor with Edward Gavin behind the wheel. A Cheetah Clubman went on to win multiple NSW and Victorian sports car titles driven by Peter Jones, and Formula Pacific and Formula Holden Cheetahs also raced with distinction.

Brian Shead has also been a long-time member of the CAMS National Track Safety Committee, and it is fitting the Victorian Historic Racing Register will pay tribute to this outstanding engineer, constructor and race driver at its Historic Sandown meeting on November 8-10, 2013. A fine cross-section of Cheetah race cars will be on display, adding yet another dimension to three fantastic days of motor sport as it used to be.

For more information contact Brian Reed on 0427 395 296.
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