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McLaren M2B

6286 Views 24 Replies 13 Participants Last post by  TSRF
This is a simple balsa bodyshell I've just carved of Bruce McLaren's 1966 Monaco Grand Prix car that marked the start of his grand prix team.

Vehicle Car Tire Wheel Automotive tire

I only had the wheelbase measurement, a side view photo and a photo from above taken at Monaco to base the carving on so it is more about capturing the impression of the car rather than accuracy. As it is a quick carving I have only hinted at engine detail.

Wheel Tire Vehicle Automotive tire Car

Tire Automotive parking light Wheel Automotive tail & brake light Hood

The body is fitted to an Airfix slimline chassis.



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A lovely build, David, and a great concept.
Tony was right in saying a Parnell Lotus 33 was also used as the 'Yamura' in filming Grand Prix. I've just realised there's a photo of it in the 1966 Dutch GP in Paul Parker's Formula 1 in Camera 1960-69. Same colours. Engine a low-exhaust two-litre BRM V8. (Another book lists the Parnell/Mike Spence car all year as a 25, which would be getting on in years; perhaps it was a rebuilt 25.)
Spence is wearing a Chris Amon-style helmet (minus the kiwi emblem) as used by James Garner in the movie. The original plan was to film Amon as 'Pete Aron' racing a McLaren M2B during the 1966 season but, as mentioned above, the team never got that second car to a race and other drivers wore 'his' helmet, including Bruce McLaren.
McLaren's sole racing white and green M2B was apparently filmed with both the Ford V8 (high, central exhausts) and the side-exhaust Serenissima V8.
I haven't seen the film for many years and can't recall how they coped with several different cars for the 'Yamura'. Probably not very well.

Yet another car used in filming was a two-litre Brabham BT11-BRM, owned by MGM and presumably white+green too, but it never started a GP. Amon tried unsuccessfully to qualify it for the Italian GP. Michael Clark's 2010 book Chris Amon quotes him as recalling that 'it was very much a "film-car" ... it didn't exactly have all the right bits on it'.
Chris did do a lot of other driving for the film, but at the wheel of a GT40 camera car. Phil Hill drove a Lotus 25 purely as a camera car, and apparently the GT40 too.

Another car used for filming, at least as a camera car, was a Formula Libre McLaren M3A (chassis 3) with a 4.7-litre Ford V8. It or its components were later sold to Bobby Olthoff in South Africa and he rebuilt and ran it in the combined F1-F5000 national championship there for some years. I have a few photos of it (in red and yellow) at Kyalami in 1968. UK veterans may remember M3A-2 as Patsy Burt's hillclimb and sprint championship car.
Rob J
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Thanks, David. I hadn't spotted the reversed (if faded) colours on Spence's helmet.

On the Lotuses, Parker identifies the Parnell car as 33 R13.

Anyway, it seems there's scope for you or someone else to build a second Yamura.

Parker's book also has a photo of what he identifies as the R6 Lotus 25, at Monaco, where Phil Hill drove it in the opening laps with a camera on the nose. It has a typical Climax engine and was dark blue with a white stripe (almost Eagle-like), if the photo colours are accurate.

Must have a look for a dvd of the film, which was apparently issued that way several years ago.
Rob J
I found a copy of Grand Prix on an old videotape a few days ago and have watched it on a straight run-through. Many good parts, whatever its flaws. I don't think the Monza banking was used for the real Italian GP in 1966, for example. Still, great to see.
I haven't done a close "Pause" study but the "Yamura" seen most seems to be the McLaren M2B with American Ford V8 as modelled by David.
In most of the close-ups of James Garner, it's probably one of the Lotus 25s that David mentioned.
I don't recall seeing the Parnell Lotus 33 BRM with Mike Spence driving, but it may be in there somewhere.
Garner was apparently the best of the actors in actually driving a race car. Some were towed.
Yves Montand looks fairly good too. Of course it must have seemed a dawdle after hustling a truck carrying nitroglycerine over mountain roads (in The Wages of Fear).
Rob J
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