The return of No 17: the ex Makinen/Todt coupe in the Acropolis after32 years
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  1. #1
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    Default The return of No 17: the ex Makinen/Todt coupe in the Acropolis after32 years

    For the first time in recent history, the organizing committee is allowing Historic class rally cars to participate in the WRC event in the “Open” class. The Open class cars will only participate in the first loop of the second day and the full third day, but this is still 140 km of classic Acropolis gravel stages. We are taking this opportunity to enter in the very same works 504 coupe V6 rally car driven as entry No 17 in the 1980 Acropolis rally by legendary Finn Timo Makinen and co-driven by none other than current FIA president Jean Todt. We expect that the return of this legendary car will draw much attention from the media and the public. This will be the first time in the event’s history that a historic car returns to the contemporary rally.
    For details see http://www.acropolisrally.gr/EN/2012//

    No 17 started out as a 1979 Safari Rally car and was rallied in three continents in a single year: In 1980 it was driven at the Acropolis Rally by Makinen/Todt (10th), Ambrosino drove it in the Bandama Rally (3rd), and Lefebvre in Rally Argentina (5th). It was sent to America in 1982 where it was modified by McLaren and dominated its class at the SCCA PRO Rally Championship until it retired in 1984, after more successful rallies than any other Works Coupe. It is a group 4 competition GT car with a 275 bhp 3-liter V6, fully restored and in active duty since 2007. In the 2009 Historic Acropolis it won both its class and category, performing flawlessly throughout the rally without a need for service. The two photos below show the car at the Acropolis start, the second in the 1980 event driven by Makinen/Todt and the first when we drove it at the 2009 Historic Acropolis. The 2009 photo shows the car with its USA colors; for its return to the Acropolis rally it will be returned to its 1980 ESSO-PEUGEOT Acropolis livery.

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    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails The return of No 17: the ex Makinen/Todt coupe in the Acropolis after32 years-acr099.jpg   The return of No 17: the ex Makinen/Todt coupe in the Acropolis after32 years-makinen-acropolis.jpg  

  2. #2
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    We had to take a deep breath before deciding, as we will be starting behind the WRC cars, and they are real trench diggers. On top of that, the Acropolis is considered the toughest stop of the WRC and a real game changer, and the risk of damage to the car is high. The A/Fers that have driven the car know that it is a very unforgiving rally machine so we are making some changes to the set up to minimize the risk of damage: One inch lift, lower bump shocks and less caster. I have also promised the concerned parties to keep the red mist in check; the plan is to enjoy the vibe of the event, give the car a mild work-out and bring it back in one piece. At least this is my story and I am sticking to it! Below are some photos of the car from the 1980 event .
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails The return of No 17: the ex Makinen/Todt coupe in the Acropolis after32 years-80gr-makinen-1.jpg   The return of No 17: the ex Makinen/Todt coupe in the Acropolis after32 years-504-v6-acropolis.jpg   The return of No 17: the ex Makinen/Todt coupe in the Acropolis after32 years-makinen3acropole80.jpg  

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    1000+ Posts PeterT's Avatar
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    Fantastic news Thanos. Owen would be proud.

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    Quote Originally Posted by PeterT View Post
    Fantastic news Thanos. Owen would be proud.
    He kept telling me that "to finish first, you must first finish!" I will print it on a sticker and put it on the dash as a reminder!

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    Quote Originally Posted by ThanosK View Post
    We had to take a deep breath before deciding, as we will be starting behind the WRC cars, and they are real trench diggers. On top of that, the Acropolis is considered the toughest stop of the WRC and a real game changer, and the risk of damage to the car is high. The A/Fers that have driven the car know that it is a very unforgiving rally machine so we are making some changes to the set up to minimize the risk of damage: One inch lift, lower bump shocks and less caster. I have also promised the concerned parties to keep the red mist in check; the plan is to enjoy the vibe of the event, give the car a mild work-out and bring it back in one piece. At least this is my story and I am sticking to it! Below are some photos of the car from the 1980 event .
    Definitely fit a brake booster!
    Great photos, the Meteora one is now my screen background.
    Graham

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    Quote Originally Posted by GRAHAM WALLIS View Post
    Definitely fit a brake booster!
    Great photos, the Meteora one is now my screen background.
    Graham
    The brake booster is high on the list, but I am not sure there is enough time to retrofit one; lots of fabrication involved to revert to standard! You would be very happy with the rest of the changes.

    You recognized Meteora on the backgroung of the photo, I am VERY impressed!

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    Beautiful, congratulations, be sure to post some good photos of you in the event!
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    read this with a 16 year old boy, with a beer in the hand voice:
    ¡AWESOME, DUDE!


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    Fantastic Thanos, good luck and enjoy this event!

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    Default All dressed up and no place to go!

    Well, we are going to sit this one out! My co-driver has a leg injury that requires urgent attention and the terrain is too risky to charge it with a new team member. Quite disappointing as the car is fully ready, recce notes complete and the rally was first thought of the morning for weeks (ok, second thought yesterday after Halle Berry, we watched one of her movies the night before).

    Nothing is all bad, the car looks great in the original works livery and frankly the stages are really rough and the risk of SOME damage nearly certain. I know the plan was to have a spirited drive, but looking at the Open category entries got our adrenaline going. Predicting a rally result is like reading tea leaves, but a top three would be a realistic target and we would be pushing really hard for the top spot. We got the top category and class spots in the last Historic Acropolis we entered and vanity compels for a repeat in the WRC event. So who knows, maybe the car is spared a bad caning.

    On another note, I was surprised by my reaction to seeing the car in Safari/Acropolis livery. I was so used to seeing this livery on replica cars and period photos, that it did not feel like my car, it almost felt like one of the fakes. And then I took it for a quick blast on the mountain and it was mine again. Sort of like when my daughter straightened her hair, she did not look like my kid for a day or two; then she started talking back to me and I realised she was the same kid!

    The new/old livery is beginning to grow on me, here are some photos:
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails The return of No 17: the ex Makinen/Todt coupe in the Acropolis after32 years-dsc03539.jpg   The return of No 17: the ex Makinen/Todt coupe in the Acropolis after32 years-dsc03540.jpg  

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    She looks great! Is that engine with the two triple throat webers?

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    Quote Originally Posted by stew View Post
    She looks great! Is that engine with the two triple throat webers?
    That's the one, 192 bhp ATW (with worn rings!)
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails The return of No 17: the ex Makinen/Todt coupe in the Acropolis after32 years-gr5036-engine-bay.jpg  

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    Quote Originally Posted by ThanosK View Post
    Well, we are going to sit this one out! My co-driver has a leg injury that requires urgent attention and the terrain is too risky to charge it with a new team member. Quite disappointing as the car is fully ready, recce notes complete and the rally was first thought of the morning for weeks (ok, second thought yesterday after Halle Berry, we watched one of her movies the night before).

    Nothing is all bad, the car looks great in the original works livery and frankly the stages are really rough and the risk of SOME damage nearly certain. I know the plan was to have a spirited drive, but looking at the Open category entries got our adrenaline going. Predicting a rally result is like reading tea leaves, but a top three would be a realistic target and we would be pushing really hard for the top spot. We got the top category and class spots in the last Historic Acropolis we entered and vanity compels for a repeat in the WRC event. So who knows, maybe the car is spared a bad caning.

    On another note, I was surprised by my reaction to seeing the car in Safari/Acropolis livery. I was so used to seeing this livery on replica cars and period photos, that it did not feel like my car, it almost felt like one of the fakes. And then I took it for a quick blast on the mountain and it was mine again. Sort of like when my daughter straightened her hair, she did not look like my kid for a day or two; then she started talking back to me and I realised she was the same kid!

    The new/old livery is beginning to grow on me, here are some photos:
    Probably a good thing really, I can't imagine how rough it would be after the WRC cars have been through, not enjoyable at all.
    You can see the trouble the Fiesta Academy cars have in completing the course.
    I hope the car will be on display at the start.

    I have the suspension in the 505 and completed 4 days of outback driving whilst organising a long distance rally last weekend. Still working fine, I can't believe how good the ride is and no tramp on corrugations even with just the original rear cross member mounts installed.
    Graham

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    Great thread Thanos, lovely car...When is the event, I will keep track of the results.
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    Quote Originally Posted by parry View Post
    Great thread Thanos, lovely car...When is the event, I will keep track of the results.
    Thanks Parry. The rally starts this coming Thursday, May 24. Why don't you come over and visit your relatives while you are at it, it runs pretty close to their home. Here is the link

    http://www.acropolisrally.gr/EN/2012/

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    Quote Originally Posted by GRAHAM WALLIS View Post
    Probably a good thing really, I can't imagine how rough it would be after the WRC cars have been through, not enjoyable at all.
    You can see the trouble the Fiesta Academy cars have in completing the course.
    You are right, Graham. I drove the Elatia stage the day after the rally in my Berline last year. It is fast, wide and open and we typically average 90 km/hr on it during our events. I barely made it to 60 average and it was like playing a video game with boulders coming at you. At many apex points the trenches were more than half meter deep, f***ing graves my co-driver called them. So no driving pleasure, for sure. Motorman pulled out after reece last week, he said no way the 205 would make it through the terrain. Ditto for the Alfisti who were planning to represent with an Alfasud and a Giulia on steroids. The other historics did not even bother going for recce, opting to protect their cars. But this arrogant feeling that the car would make it through with minimal damage and at the top of its class kept me in the entries until I was forced out, along with another, very important consideration: For most Greeks drivers the WRC Acropolis is not a rally it's an institution; the driving is not fun, but the vibe is amazing. This is compounded by some talk that it may not be on the WRC calendar next year (and even some years after that) so we may be running out of daylight here. Last year the crowds were impossible to control, a stage had to be cancelled as a result, and the organizers paid a stiff fine. The manufacturers are not in love with it because of the damages the cars suffer, this does not help much either. But WRC fans love it because it is the wild card that can change the leader board halfway through the rally season. So lots of conflicting considerations... My mechanic used to run the Toyota WRC service in Greece and he sad that he took their WRC Corolla completely apart in June after the event and finished putting it it back together in August after having to replace ALL the suspension and steering parts, even the crossmember. This is what he said to me after he finished the coupe prep and I picked it up from him: "The young ones have never seen or heard a car like this or seen a big RWD drifting through sweepers. So give them someting to cheer about, they spend may hours in the sun and dust to watch you guys. But race with your head and bring the car back in one piece, it's the only piece out there". I replied that if I break it there would be two pieces, he was not amused. When I told him we were pulling out he was both relieved AND disappointed; so conflicting emotions, for sure, the Acropolis, another manifestation of Greece's bipolar nature.

    Quote Originally Posted by GRAHAM WALLIS View Post
    ...I hope the car will be on display at the start....
    Yes, it will be in the lobby of the Loutraki Casino Hotel from the 22nd to the end of the rally, assuning I can be certain it will be properly guarded.

    Quote Originally Posted by GRAHAM WALLIS View Post
    ...I have the suspension in the 505 and completed 4 days of outback driving whilst organising a long distance rally last weekend. Still working fine, I can't believe how good the ride is and no tramp on corrugations...
    Yes, this set up is amazing, my recce coupe also feels super smooth AND quick. For the rough stuff fit the thinnest rear ARB (15 mm/) you can find and a thick (27.5 mm) front ARB.

    The works Acropolis set up is 23% stiffer front and rear and you can feel the difference. Not as smooth but certainly quicker on high speed four-wheel-drift sweepers.

    Quote Originally Posted by GRAHAM WALLIS View Post
    ...even with just the original rear cross member mounts installed.
    Graham
    Yeah, this project is way behind. The prototype solid mountsthe machinist made work really well on the Berline so far and I gave him the ok to proceed with the group buy production, but he is busy with other projects at the moment. I will keep reminding him.

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    Yes, this set up is amazing, my recce coupe also feels super smooth AND quick. For the rough stuff fit the thinnest rear ARB (15 mm/) you can find and a thick (27.5 mm) front ARB.

    The works Acropolis set up is 23% stiffer front and rear and you can feel the difference. Not as smooth but certainly quicker on high speed four-wheel-drift sweepers.


    Yeah, this project is way behind. The prototype solid mountsthe machinist made work really well on the Berline so far and I gave him the ok to proceed with the group buy production, but he is busy with other projects at the moment. I will keep reminding him.[/QUOTE]

    I tried it with GR bars all round at first and it had ultra sharp turn in but too twitchy at the rear.
    GTi bar at the front and GR at the rear feels better, I will run this for a while and see how it goes.
    Quaife needs to be fitted soon. The engine is putting out 81 kw at the wheels, just a high km ZDJL with a mild cam and Megasquirt.
    Graham

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    Quote Originally Posted by GRAHAM WALLIS View Post
    ...I tried it with GR bars all round at first and it had ultra sharp turn in but too twitchy at the rear. GTi bar at the front and GR at the rear feels better...
    This actually sounds as if the rear is a tad (15 mm?) high. Not worth doing much at this point. If you plan on more power (filled head, cam and valve springs from Stew, for example for another 15 kw ATW) then it will squat a bit on power so you will get more speed AND better handling.

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    Quote Originally Posted by ThanosK View Post
    This actually sounds as if the rear is a tad (15 mm?) high. Not worth doing much at this point. If you plan on more power (filled head, cam and valve springs from Stew, for example for another 15 kw ATW) then it will squat a bit on power so you will get more speed AND better handling.
    You're right but could be good when loaded for the outback event in August.
    The front is a tad low, may move the spring platforms up.
    It has the UK springs in the front, Eibachs in the rear.
    Graham

  20. #20
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    How did I miss this thread?!

    The car looks great!
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    Sorry you won't be contesting the event - but that's just a selfish wish to see a great result for a Peugeot in such a prestigious event. Relieved to know that gorgeous car won't be subjected to the abuse at the same time...

    Glad it all came together though, and hopefully the opportunity will present itself later that another build can be used instead.

    BTW - I thought about the alloy mounts but decided to give welding them up to give the solid mount a try. I've got a few subframes to play with.

    Rabin

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    What an amazing looking car! I've never seen triple throat webers, I thought it must have been some tricky downdraft mechanical injection hidden in the valley. Would love to see any video/ on board in the future, just to listen to the thing!
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    We dropped the car off at rally HQ a few days ago. My friend Nikos who has a 504 rally car and a Citroen DS cabriolet followed me there in the DS so we could drive back home together. I ran into Giraudet whom I have known for some time and I met Novikov for the first time. The youngster is impressive, very quiet and intense, also very confident. Right now the all-or-nothing driving has become very expensive, but I feel that with experience and Giraudet's guidance he will do great things. The coupe drew incredible attention, it was a bit embarassing. Thankfully the DS was drawing an even bigger crowd. We went to the service park in the DS and parked it next to the Citroen section (maybe a few of the ponies will get confused and jump in, Nikos said), then we got a backstage pass to the trailers. I saw the Minis for the first time and talked to some of the mechanics. One of them (the Qatari) had a bad crash during recce, it was amazing how quickly they were putting back together. The cost of the suspension is mind blowing, it makes the fact that our cars' archaic set-ups make it through even more impressive. Yesterday's recce clamed a lot of parts, I think even the veterans are taken aback by the carnage. For the first time I am only a little upset I am not in it. I am attaching some photos, it actually sucked seeing the car on display, then going to the service park. I told Nikos we should put the DS on display, the coupe belongs in the service park with the rest of the gravel warriors. But I am over it now, these stages have already eaten a few of these warriors alive. Off to watch the event for the next few days, I will hopefully come back with a report and photos. Below are the comments from yesterday's recce for day 2 of the rally, we are expecting rain today and this will make it even worse.

    1 LOEB Sébastien - ELENA Daniel CITROEN DS3 WRC
    "One or two Special Stages are very rough. There are big ruts and big stones can come out. The new Special Stage is very fast and isn't that bad for the cars. SS11 is really bad."

    2 HIRVONEN Mikko – LEHTINEN Jarmo CITROEN DS3 WRC
    "The Special Stages of Saturday are very rough. They are very rocky and abrasive. Saturday is going to be a very difficult day."

    3 LATVALA Jari-Matti - ANTTILA Miikka FORD Fiesta RS WRC
    "The Saturday stages are quite rough. They are hard and in this condition, we'll have to think of the car. The new Special Stage (Ziria) is very very fast in places."

    4 SOLBERG Petter - PATTERSON Chris FORD Fiesta RS WRC
    "The Saturday Special Stages are very rough. That's proper Acropolis Rally, like in the early days."

    5 TANAK Ott - SIKK Kuldar FORD Fiesta RS WRC
    "Saturday looks like the roughest day. It will be hard for the car. Ziria is very fast, a quite nice stage."

    6 NOVIKOV Evgeny - GIRAUDET Denis FORD Fiesta RS WRC
    "The Special Stages we saw today were very good, as usual. The new (Ziria) is quite fast, not bad."

    7 AL ATTIYAH Nasser – BERNACCHINI Giovanni CITROEN DS3 WRC
    "The Special Stages of Saturday are very rough and they will be very hard. The new Special Stage (Ziria) and Kineta are nice."

    8 NEUVILLE Thierry - GILSOUL Nicolas CITROEN DS3 WRC
    "The Special Stages are quite nice. They are a little bit rougher than those of Friday. I think that this will be the most difficult day for cars and drivers."

    9 OLIVEIRA Daniel Rolim - MAGALHAES Carlos FORD Fiesta RS WRC
    "The Special Stages are very rough and difficult. Kineta has a lot of tarmac in the middle, old tarmac that makes the stage very technical."

    10 OSTBERG Mads - ANDERSSON Jonas FORD Fiesta RS WRC
    "The day wasn't good. The stages weren't good. The rally is definitely a car-killer. We've already "killed" two cars in the recce. Horrible! Very bad conditions."

    12 ARAUJO Armindo - RAMALHO Miguel MINI John Cooper Works WRC
    "The stages had a lot of rocks and are very hard. They will be difficult. The new one is also rough."

    21 PROKOP Martin - HRUZA Zdenek FORD Fiesta RS WRC
    "The stages of Saturday are rougher than last year. The new Special Stage (Ziria) is nice, I like it. It is very very fast, like a special stage in New Zealand."

    22 OGIER Sébastien - INGRASSIA Julien SKODA Fabia S2000
    "The Special Stages we drove today are quite rough. Saturday is going to be rougher and very hard for the cars."

    23 MIKKELSEN Andreas - FLOENE Ola SKODA Fabia S2000
    "The Special Stages of Saturday are very rough, maybe the roughest I have been to in my career. But OK, it will be a new experience. I liked SS1."

    200 ABBRING Kevin – MICLOTTE Frederic SKODA Fabia S2000
    "Our job is finished. Two of the Saturday stages are fast, Kineta was a disaster at first, but after the second pass it was better. Nevertheless, it was just one stage. The rest are nice."

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    ok, for some reason the photos are not uploading, I will reduce their size and try again later.

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    Quote Originally Posted by ThanosK View Post
    ok, for some reason the photos are not uploading, I will reduce their size and try again later.
    Hi Thanos,
    What happened to the photo's?

    Awsome thread by the way!

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