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Simon Gunson in his Ford Capri Perana Replica with a Class Win in Rnd 2

posted 9 Dec 2013, 17:40 by Unknown user   [ updated 9 Dec 2013, 17:40 ]
In South Africa during the 1960s, Basil Green was earning himself a reputation for extracting major performance gains from all kinds of cars but more particularly, Fords.

In 1969, Green got his hands on one of the first MkI Ford Capris to arrive in South Africa. He tossed out the V6 and fitted a 5.0-litre Mustang V8 engine, then up-rated the gearbox, differential, suspension and brakes and named it the Ford Capri Perana after the two engineers who helped him develop the car.

On the race track in their home country, the Perana Capris demolished everything and 18 months later they were banned from racing.

Today, the original cars are a rare and expensive commodity but replicas are still competing in various events around the globe.

In Australia, there are just a handful of Capri Peranas but there is only one in WA and it is the only one fitted with a wide-body kit.

Owner, Simon Gunson, of Canning Vale, built the 1971 6.0-litre V8 replica two years ago to compete in tarmac rallies in the classic car category.

Last week, he made his first appearance for the season in the McRae Motorsport Rallysprints at Perth Motorplex in Kwinana winning his class (Tarmac 2WD over 2000cc) and finishing ninth overall.

Gunson said that he has only recently been in a position to get back into motor racing, after a long absence, and wanted something that would stand out, be competitive and fun to drive.

“I have always been a fan of the Ford Capri,” he said. “The kit car only weighs 1100kg and produces 500hp which means its competitive against more powerful, heavier cars like Porsches and Toranas that compete in the Classic Car category.”

While it is a new car it had to be built to 1971 specifications so the engine has a carburettor and it has a live rear axle suspension. 

Will White, driving a 2006 Mitsubishi Lancer Evo IX, was the overall round two winner of the Rallysprint series, finishing ahead of Mark Greenham in a Mitsubishi Evo VII and Jamie Lister in his 2000 Subaru Impreza WRX STi

Round Three will be held at the Perth Motorplex on Thursday, January 23.