The Future Classics race series
is fast becoming one of the most popular Motorsport classes here in Ireland and when you look at the way the class is structured it's easy to see why:
- The cars are cheap to build & cheap to run
- The build regulations are relaxed
- A broad range of cars are eligible (pretty much anything pre 1994, non 4 wheel drive)
- There's a time barrier within reach of fairly standard cars which makes big budgets completely pointless
- The emphasis is on having fun
Future Classics competitor Darran O'Hara got in touch with details of his latest project to demonstrate just how little it can cost to build a race car for the series. On an tight budget himself, Darran kept the costs down by doing most of the work himself but did draft in a team of dedicated helpers to lend a hand with the big tasks, namely welding in the roll cage, painting the car and dealing with rust.
Costs were also kept down by keeping a keen eye out for 2nd hand bargains and bartering with fellow competitors for big ticket items like the cage (Darren runs a motorsport graphics company) and was able to offer his services in exchange for some of the bits and bobs needed for the build.
- Mitsubishi Fto. 2L non mivec (168 Bhp ) 5 speed Manual. From Done Deal €450.00
- Haggled for a rollcage out of an unused EP3 Honda Civic - FOC!
- Angle grinder discs … Gas and welding wire … €150.00
- Bonnet pins, kill switch, pull cords, rain light € 120.00
- 2x 3L tubs of JCB Yellow, thinners and sanding pads €100.00
- Used set of wheels €60.00
- Black paint for wheels €15.00
- Tyres: a very old set of used 16 inch Yokohama AO48's Kindly donated from Liam Moran an Ex ITCC Driver. FOC!
- 2nd hand Seat and harness €80.00
- Handheld fire extinguisher €45.00
- Brake pads € 135.00
- Full service kit: oil filter, air filter, spark plugs, engine oil. €100.00
- 2nd hand lowering springs € 50.00
Total cost: €1305
The car was stripped apart, the interior ripped out and all the panels sanded and prepped for paint. The biggest job was fitting the roll cage. However with a few experienced hands on deck and a bit of 'A Team' music it was done in a few days. Bar the safety equipment and the overall appearance, the car would be left pretty much standard - with almost 170bhp on tap from the stock v6 motor it should have enough power to get within reach of the 1.09sec barrier time.
The car was left on the original shock absorbers but a set of 2nd hand lowering springs were fitted (it later turned out that 2 of the shocks were actually blown) The 2nd hand, resprayed wheels were then fitted with some very very old Yokohama A048's. The car was given a full respray in JCB yellow! and graphics applied.
The biggest test was if the car would pass scrutiny....and it did, with flying colours!
A few weeks later and the first race was entered. During qualifying Darran stayed out of everyones way and managed a lap time 1:13, just 4 seconds off the 1.09 time barrier on Mondello Park's national circuit, which isn't bad for the first time out. Apparently the handling was terrible.
After just a few laps in race 1 disaster struck:
"We wanted to learn what the car was capable of and what to improve. Unfortunately due to stupidity we never checked if the car had enough oil before qualifying and I over revved the engine … Unsurprisingly It went boom ...!"
So we needed a new engine - Back to Done Deal and €200.00 later we had an engine.
Now to sort the shocks, Darran spotted a set of brand new coilovers on ebay in Malta! At just €340.00 for the full set of springs and dampers he's not expecting much but they surely have to be better than what's in the car now!
Total spend to date €1845.00
However..... Sold items from car: Interior seats, window motors, radio, various other interior bits: €400.00
The car will stand Darran €1445.00
which isn't bad at all.
Check out the future classics on Mondello.TV!