Sports 2000

Last updated
Royale RP37 Royalerp37.jpg
Royale RP37

Sports 2000 is a restricted-rules class of two-seat, mid-engined, open-cockpit, full-bodied sports-prototype racecar used largely in amateur road racing. Sometimes known as S2000 or S2, the class was developed by John Webb, then of the Brands Hatch racing circuit in England, as an affordable form of sports car racing, essentially a sports car version of Formula Ford 2000. The key attributes of the class were a body design reminiscent of two-liter Group 6 sports racing cars like the Chevron B21 and Lola T-212 but with an ultra-reliable and inexpensive drivetrain comprising a two-liter "Pinto" overhead camshaft engine with very limited allowed modifications and the well-proven, VW-based Hewland Mk 9 transaxle. S2000 aerodynamics continued to evolve beyond their 1970s Group 6 roots, with very 'slippery' cars featuring spats over the wheels becoming the norm.

In the UK S2000 was largely seen as an alternative to front-engined Clubmans racing, a class for amateurs who were often deeply involved in developing their own cars over periods of years. The category suffered due to the demise of FF2000 in the late 1980s, and further when Clubmans transformed into the rear-engined National Supersports category, but it has recently undergone something of a revival in both historic and contemporary forms as a (relatively) low-cost form of sports car racing.

In the US, while it continues to have popularity as an amateur race class within SCCA competition in the US, at one point in the late 1980s and early 1990s, professional Sports 2000 racing was prevalent. One such series was the American Cities Racing League (ACRL) where the teams represented cities (primarily on the US West Coast) much as in stick-and-ball sports. Rather than individual drivers running for the championship, the two team drivers earned points for their sponsor city, a concept revived for the A1GP, where teams represent countries rather than cities. This series used the uprated Cosworth/Ford YAC engine. Another series was the North American Pro Series or NAPS which visited many of the classic roadrace circuits in the U.S. and was often a support race for IMSA weekends. Later this series became the Oldsmobile Pro Series running the Oldsmobile Quad 4 engine.

In Sports 2000 racing in the UK, the Pinto engine has recently been replaced with the Mazda-based Ford Duratec engine, although Pintos continue to compete as a separate class.

In South Africa, an innovative transverse engined version of the Sports 2000 participated in a highly successful national series throughout the 1990s. Notable drivers (and series organizers) are Neville Jordan and Alan Eve who now own the A1GP cars and have set up Afrix Motorsport.

Early Sports 2000 cars are now of a sufficient age that they are being welcomed by several vintage racing sanctioning bodies in the US.

Companies that manufactured Sports 2000 chassis include: Carbir, Chevron, Crossle, Lola, March, MCR, Reynard, Rotor, Royale, Shannon, Swift, Tiga Race Cars and Van Diemen.


Related Research Articles

Ford GT40 High-performance endurance racing car

The Ford GT40 was an American high-performance endurance racing car. The Mk I, Mk II, and Mk III variants were designed and built in the UK based upon the Lola Mk6 during the early 1960s. The Mk IV model was designed and built in the United States. The range was powered by a series of American-built Ford V8 engines modified for racing. Initially the GT40 wasn't a racing success until the project was moved to the US where further development vastly improved the car's performance and reliability.

Stock car racing Form of automobile racing

Stock car racing is a form of automobile racing found mainly and most prominently in the United States and Canada, with New Zealand, Australia, Mexico, the United Kingdom and Brazil also having forms of stock car auto racing. Traditionally, races are run on oval tracks measuring approximately 0.25 to 2.66 miles. The world's largest governing body for stock car racing is the American NASCAR, and its NASCAR Cup Series is the premier top-level series of professional stock car racing. Top-level races typically range between 200 to 600 miles in length. The cars were originally production models ("stock") but are now highly modified.

Sports car racing Auto racing on circuits with two seat cars and enclosed wheels

Sports car racing is a form of motorsport road racing which utilises sports cars that have two seats and enclosed wheels. They may be purpose-built (Prototype) or related to road-going models. Broadly speaking, sports car racing is one of the main types of circuit auto racing, alongside open-wheel single seater racing, touring car racing and stock car racing. Sports car races are often endurance races that are run over relatively large distances, and there is usually a larger emphasis placed on the reliability and efficiency of the car than in some of the other types of auto racing. The FIA World Endurance Championship is an example of a sports car racing series.

Lola Cars International Ltd. was a British race car engineering company in operation from 1958 to 2012. The company was founded by Eric Broadley in Huntingdon, England, and endured for more than fifty years to become one of the oldest and largest manufacturers of racing cars in the world. Lola Cars started by building small front-engined sports cars, and branched out into Formula Junior cars before diversifying into a wider range of sporting vehicles. Lola was acquired by Martin Birrane in 1998 after the unsuccessful MasterCard Lola attempt at Formula One.

24 Hours of Daytona Sports car endurance race held in Daytona, FL, US

The 24 Hours of Daytona, currently known as the Rolex 24 At Daytona for sponsorship reasons, is a 24-hour sports car endurance race held annually at Daytona International Speedway in Daytona Beach, Florida. It is run on a 3.56-mile (5.73 km) combined road course, utilizing portions of the NASCAR tri-oval and an infield road course. Since its inception, it has been held on the last weekend of January or first weekend of February as part of Speedweeks, and it is the first major automobile race of the year in the United States. It is also the first race of the season for the WeatherTech SportsCar Championship.

Eddie Cheever American racing driver

Edward McKay "Eddie" Cheever Jr. is an American former racing driver who raced for almost 30 years in Formula One, sports cars, CART, and the Indy Racing League. Cheever participated in 143 Formula One World Championship races and started 132, more than any other American, driving for nine different teams from 1978 through 1989. In 1996, he formed his own IRL team, Team Cheever, and won the 1998 Indianapolis 500 as both owner and driver. The team later competed in sports cars.

Can-Am

The Canadian-American Challenge Cup, or Can-Am, was an SCCA/CASC sports car racing series from 1966 to 1987.

Formula 5000

Formula 5000 was an open wheel, single seater auto-racing formula that ran in different series in various regions around the world from 1968 to 1982. It was originally intended as a low-cost series aimed at open-wheel racing cars that no longer fit into any particular formula. The '5000' denomination comes from the maximum 5.0 litre engine capacity allowed in the cars, although many cars ran with smaller engines. Manufacturers included McLaren, Eagle, March, Lola, Lotus, Elfin, Matich and Chevron.

Formula racing Auto racing on circuits using open wheel cars built to specified formula

Formula racing is any of several forms of open-wheeled single-seater motorsport road racing. The origin of the term lies in the nomenclature that was adopted by the FIA for all of its post-World War II single-seater regulations, or formulae. The best known of these formulae are Formula One, Formula E, Formula Two, Formula Three, regional Formula Three and Formula Four. Common usage of "formula racing" encompasses other single-seater series, including the GP2 Series, which replaced Formula 3000.

The Atlantic Championship is a formula race car series with races throughout North America. It has been called Champ Car Atlantics, Toyota Atlantics, or just Atlantics or Formula Atlantic, although the latter two terms risk confusion with the Sports Car Club of America's amateur Formula Atlantics division.

Formula Ford Race car class

Formula Ford, also known as F1600 and Formula F, is an entry-level class of single seater, open-wheel formula racing. The various championships held across the world form an important step for many prospective Formula One drivers. Formula Ford has traditionally been regarded as the first major stepping stone into formula racing after karting. The series typically sees professional career minded drivers enter alongside amateurs and enthusiasts. Success in Formula F can lead directly to other junior formulae such as a Formula Renault 2.0 and Formula Three, or the W Series for female drivers.

Formula Atlantic open-wheel racing specification

Formula Atlantic is a specification of open-wheel racing car developed in the 1970s. It was used in professional racing through the IMSA Atlantic Championship until 2009 and is currently primarily used in amateur racing through Sports Car Club of America Formula Atlantic.

Chevron Cars Ltd English manufacturer of racing cars

Chevron Cars Ltd. is an English manufacturer of racing cars, founded by Derek Bennett in 1965. Following Bennett's death in 1978, the firm has remained active in various guises. The original company's designs and name continue to be used to build replacement parts and continuation models of earlier Chevrons. In 2000, Chevron Racing Cars Ltd., founded by Vin Malkie acquired the trade mark Chevron Racing Cars Ltd and in addition to the company's other activities has designed and built new grand tourer racing cars under the Chevron name, as well as other continuation models of earlier Chevrons.

Spec Racer Ford

Spec Racer Ford is a class of racing car used in Sports Car Club of America (SCCA) and other series road racing events. The Spec Racer Ford, manufactured and marketed by SCCA Enterprises, is a high performance, closed wheel, open cockpit, purpose-built race car intended for paved road courses, such as WeatherTech Raceway Laguna Seca, Buttonwillow Raceway Park, Road America, Watkins Glen, and many other tracks throughout North America. With more than 1,000 cars manufactured, it is the most successful purpose built road racing car in the United States.

Clubman (racing car class) Type of racing car

The Clubman is a marque of prototype front-engined sports racing cars that originated in Britain in 1965 as a low-cost formula for open-top, front-engined roadgoing sports cars like the Lotus 7, which had been crowded out of the mainstream by rear-engined cars such as the Lotus 23.

Advanced Engine Research, Ltd. is an auto racing engine manufacturer based in Basildon, Essex, England. Established in 1997, AER has developed winning engines for a number of high-profile international race series in sports car, prototype racing, rallying, touring car, and open wheel racing. They have designed engines derived from road car platforms, but their emphasis is on clean sheet designed engines with a focus on electronics and turbochargers. Their engines have raced in the 24 Hours of Le Mans, the World Endurance Championship (WEC), the European Le Mans Series (ELMS), the United SportsCar Championship (TUSC), GP3, British Touring Car Championship (BTCC), Nissan/Renault World Series, Grand-Am, Paris Dakar and FIA Sportscar Championship. They have worked with a number of manufacturers including Mazda, Ford, Hyundai, MG/Rover, Nissan, and Toyota. In 2012, AER developed and built Formula One turbo test engines to current rules and in July 2012, AER was chosen as engine partner and supplier to the new GP3 racing series.

The Sportscar Vintage Racing Association (SVRA) is an American automobile club and sanctioning body that supports vintage racing in the United States. The organization was founded in 1981, and is regarded as the premier vintage racing organization in the U.S.

The Cooper Tires USF2000 Championship is an American racing series using the American variation of the Formula Ford formula, "F2000", that resumed operation for the 2010 season. It is sanctioned by IndyCar, and is the first rung of the Road to Indy.

SCCA Pro Racing is the pro racing division of the Sports Car Club of America. SCCA Pro Racing was formed in 1963, the company is a fully owned subsidiary of SCCA.

Chamberlain Engineering was an automotive engine builder turned auto racing team founded by racing driver Hugh Chamberlain in 1972. The team moved through the British national sports car championships before becoming a competitor in the World Sportscar Championship, eventually winning world titles in 1989 and 1992. Chamberlain went on to develop sports cars for Jaguar and Lotus in the 1990s before becoming a customer of the Chrysler Viper GTS-R program in the FIA GT Championship; the team later led MG's return to Le Mans in 2001. Chamberlain later merged with Gareth Evans to form Chamberlain-Synergy Motorsport to campaign TVRs in 2004 before moving to the European Le Mans Series where they won another championship in 2005. Chamberlain-Synergy left active motorsports in 2008, although Hugh Chamberlain continues to work as a manager and consultant with other teams in sports car racing.