GRM BUILDS A NEW BATHURST MONARO!

The 'red' Monaro claimed victory in the 2003 Bathurst 24 Hour with Greg Murphy driving the car over the line, sharing the win with Peter Brock, Todd Kelly and Jason Bright. Photo: an1images.com / Dirk Klynsmith.

GARRY Rogers Motorsport is building a brand new Nations Cup-specification Holden Monaro CV8 race car identical to its Bathurst 24 Hour-winning machines – and it’s going to run at Mount Panorama, Bathurst in November.

The team, which built and operated the two, Bathurst 24 Hour-winning Monaros in 2002 and 2003 for Holden Motorsport, is building up an identical version car using a spare body shell.

GRM has told v8sleuth.com.au that the car was originally intended for Garry Rogers to drive in the 2005 Nations Cup, however the category and its owner, PROCAR Australia, died in 2004 and the build never commenced.

It will be built to identical specifications to the original Monaro race cars. The team has a suitable seven-litre V8 engine to use and retained all of the original design drawings from which to re-manufacture any parts it no longer has in stock.

The team aims to run it in the Holden Bathurst Revival at ARG’s Bathurst International in November with Garry Rogers himself set to possibly take the wheel.

“We’ve had people sitting around here picking their nose with nothing to do lately so we’ve been tidying up all of the stuff we have sitting around and we’ve dug through our old containers,” Garry Rogers told v8sleuth.com.au

“We found we had all the moulds, spares and odds and ends for those Monaros and Barry (Rogers) said half-jokingly we should build another one.

“We were going to build another one back in the day, it goes back to when Brock came on board with us driving in the red car (in 2003). He and I raced back in the day in Hume Weir together and raced for many years and we were sitting somewhere (during Brock’s time driving the GRM Monaro) and he said we (GRM) should build another car so he and I can have a match race!

“So Barry said recently, why not? And the rest has rolled from there. I felt there was no sense in doing it unless we could do it properly. Every nut and bolt will be the same.

“We have an engine and lots of bits and pieces but we’ve contacted Holinger to sort a gearbox, and Ron Harrop made the original rear hubs and we don’t have any left so he’s sorting those.”

The Bathurst 24 Hour-winning and Nations Cup Monaros feature in our new V8 Sleuth-published book, ‘Racing The Lion’, a 400 page illustrated history of Holden in motorsport.

At 400 pages and packed with photos never before published, it’s the perfect collector’s piece and can be pre-ordered now here.

As for the future of the car, Rogers says it’s not being built with the intention to sell it – but never say never.

The ‘yellow’ Monaro claimed victory in the 2002 Bathurst 24 Hour. Photo: an1images.com / Dirk Klynsmith.

“We don’t intend to sell it, but if we had to get some money back on the project we would,” he says.

Rogers says the car will be ready for Bathurst in November though the car should be finished by the end of August.

“Flat out it should take us three months to have finished. There are some odds and ends to get made, including the rear hubs, but we’ve got everything rolling along. Working flat out we’ll have it finished at the end of August.”

What colour the Monaro will be is yet to be confirmed, through Rogers today told v8sleuth.com.au it most definitely will not replicate one of the existing cars colours – so yellow and red are out of the equation.

The original ‘yellow’ Monaro won the 2002 24 Hour in the hands of Garth Tander, Steve Richards, Nathan Pretty and Cameron McConville and the same car and driver line-up finished runners-up in the 2003 24 Hour.

Pretty drove it in the 2003 and 2004 Nations Cup, commenting to V8 Sleuth in June last year it was a “car that could have sucked in the clouds!”

Peter Brock drove the ‘red’ car during the 2003 Nations Cup Series prior to the 24 Hour race at Bathurst. Photo: an1images.com / Dirk Klynsmith.

The second-built ‘red’ Monaro was constructed for the 2003 Nations Cup season and was driven by Brock for in the sprint-based series before he, Greg Murphy, Jason Bright and Todd Kelly teamed up to win the Bathurst 24 Hour.

A third car was built by Team Brock and raced in Peter and James Brock’s hands in 2004, the last year of PROCAR and Nations Cup. The initial chassis work was done by GRM before Team Brock built up the car.

The Bathurst 24 Hour-winning and Nations Cup Monaros feature in our new V8 Sleuth-published book, ‘Racing The Lion’, a 400 page illustrated history of Holden in motorsport.

At 400 pages and packed with photos never before published, it’s the perfect collector’s piece and can be pre-ordered here now.

With over 20 years in the Australian motorsport industry, Noonan is the head of V8 Sleuth. He’s held a range of roles including working in television with Seven and Ten, print media and public relations. With a specialty in Australian motorsport history, he’s known around racing paddocks as ’the Sleuth’ and started his motorsport media career in 1997.