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NO PAIN!! - NO GAIN!!

Daryl Harris # 32

If you feel that you would like to support or sponsor me for the current or next season contact : darylharris32@yahoo.co.uk
Or write to 30 Formby Avenue, Stanmore, Middlesex, HA7 2JZ.
Many Thanks
 

I've been involved in oval racing since a very young age, having watched my father and two uncles and then becoming their mechanic in the later years. I finally talked my father round to letting me race in early 1997 in his old car, which we shared for the first season. He then decided to buy a new car for the '98 season so I used the old car for the 1998-99 seasons.

During the '99 season we decided that the old car wasn't upto pace as it was twelve years old and looking and sounding a bit tired. A new car was discussed and it was decided that I liked the shape of a car about 5 years old but was written off in a big crash, I did some calling round to see if I could locate the car. To my surprise I tracked the car down in a field at the brothers of the original car builder, so I got a van and trailer and trekked up to East Anglia, I found it in a field with grass up to it's roof. We soon got the car out with the use of a tractor and put it on the trailer, when we got it back to the workshop and had a good look we found the car was in a right state so I got the gas axe (acetylene torch) out and cut off all the bent pieces leaving us with not a lot left.

   

As you can see I created a bit of work for myself and not forgetting the knowledgeable father and superb welder my valuable uncle. once we knew where the chassis rails were going we got started re-building the chassis tub and bonnet rails. We decided to use as much tubular steel as possible as this is stronger and lighter than standard box section. Working with tube is easy when you are working up against box section but as you can see below, we made the side rails completely out of tube with use of my fathers hydraulic pipe bender and a bit of practice on some scrap pieces. The art was not to get any kinks in the tube because we were cold bending which worked out well in the end as you can see.

   

During the '99 season I got a phone call from Spedeworth International asking if they could put my new car in the national racing car show at NEC Birmingham in January, I gladly agreed but realised I was a bit behind on time so any time off work I got I was back down the motorway to London to my fathers garage to get stuck into the car. As you can see below we were getting there but still a way off the finished result, we persevered and weeks to go we sent the car to be painted in pearlesant white but when we got the car back it was more like an off grey, so back the car went for a completely different colour which is a two tone Alfa Romeo paint.

 

 

Once the car came back it was rapped up and then sent up to the sign writers to be airbrushed, unfortunately I didn't have a sponsor at the time so I sponsored myself (ANY SPONSORS FEEL FREE TO CONTACT ME VIA EMAIL). The car was then wrapped up and back down to the paint shop to be lacquered, what a purlarva!!!

As you can see I finally got it finished on time but the two weeks before the show I took as a holiday and spent everyday from 9am until midnight adding the finishing touches so the car looked 100% on the day and of coarse it did (blowing my own trumpet). In the end the car went to the racing car show at the NEC and then a week later it went to the oval racing show at Brentwood international, having worn myself out and my father & my uncle we took a break from playing with car for a couple of weeks.


 

 

Before the season started the car had a dummy engine in for the shows so this had to come out and the full race engine put in, the engine is a 5.7 litre 400bhp V8 chevy fully race prepared by Harris Racing (that's dad really). The engine consists of dome top pistons with a crower racing cam and followers imported from the states along with total seal piston rings, it runs with a 650 holley double pumper carb on top of an edelbrock inlet manifold. The clutch is a 7¼” tilton twin plate racing model with a fluid dampar at the front of the engine for crank balance, the radiator is a large griffin aluminium numberand finished off with a 14” K&N air filter but standing 8 inches high, (Phanar!! Phanar!!).

   

The car had to then be completely set up with the right spring ratings and then put on weighing scales with a pad under each wheel, the weight can then be moved around so we can then achieve the right cross weights thus knowing the car will handle right straight out of the box. The right degree of caster and camber is added and the tracking is set, I was now ready to go racing.

   

The first meeting I went to was Yarmouth in mid May where I just went along to run the car in and the engine, before I went to the next meeting a Bovingdon I had to change the oil and check the tappets also the car had to be completely nut and bolted which entails the car being checked from top to bottom to make sure nothing is hanging off once the car is settled in. So I went to Bovingdon knowing I could now push the car that little bit more, surprisingly I won two heats and came third in the final,(it works! Yippee!!!). I went on for the rest of 2001 season and did really well winning 12 heats, leading the English championship up until two laps to go but was put out. I qualified on the front row of the grid for the British Championship and finished in 2nd place, in the world final at Ipswich I qualified in 7th position and made my way upto 3rd when I was spun out of contention but carried on to finish in 10th.

   

So not a bad season all in all, unfortunately I've had to miss the start of 2002 season due to a shoulder operation but should be back on the track soon. Also my father Terry, uncle Dennis and cousin Robert all race with me, I would also like to say a big thank you to my father because without him it would never have been built and also my uncle because it would never have been welded and not forgetting cousin Robert and mechanic Big Rob.

   

If you wish to meet me and the car then check out the v8 stock cars web site @ www.v8stockcars.co.uk or www.spedeworth.co.uk for all fixtures.

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