Bathurst 1984 - Group A

The Start of the Group A Era

For Bathurst 1984 both Group C and Group A ran together in a “transition” period. Ray chose to make the move to the new Group A formula along with Colin Bond in the former Group E "Network Alfa" car.

The Alfetta GTV6 was successful from Group A’s inception in Europe, winning multiple championships includingfour consecutive European Touring Car Championship titles between 1982 and 1985, and the British Touring Car Championship was won in 1983 with Andy Rouse driving. However by the time Group A made it to Australia in 1984 the GTV6 was starting to lose it's competitive edge given the reletively small 2.5 litre engine and comparetivly lower power output.

Up until 1984 the car had been remarkably standard, however for 1984 more time and a more serious commitment saw the team strip the car, take out a lot of weight where allowed to get close to the weight limit and completely rebuild the car at Gulson’s Canberra Alfa dealership.

Unlike the Bond car which ran essentially a Autodelta Group A “kit”, the Gulson car was essentially a local effort with a lot of help from Gulson’s USA contacts and a little help from Alfa.

The major difference between the two cars suspension was the lack of the works torsion bars (these would come later). The suspension however did have the Autodelta lower control arms, but locally made springs and Spax shocks.

The engine was freshly re-build by regular engine man Chris Hedges in Canberra with a modified, highly tuned version of the standard injection system, more heavily modified heads and camshafts, and high compression pistons.

The brakes were locally prepared top competition Girlock ventilated discs and Lockheed callipers front and rear.

Ray was joined by Grant O’Donnell as co-driver. Grant also drove with Ray at the New Zealand races in early 1985.

Ray qualified with a 2:37.

The car finished 5th outright in the new Group A category, completing131 laps.

Above: Thru the dipper at Bathurst

Above: Lifting 2 wheels through the dipper

Above: Lifting a wheel in front of the DJR XE Falcon - how’s the body roll!

Above: You can see the car just this side of the Camaro and next to the Bond Network Alfa car, after the 1984 start line pile up.

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Scott Farquharson 2014