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Narrow Ford Falcon: Ingenuity at TC's command

Prepared by the official Ford team, it competed in Road Touring in the late 1960s.

The 1967 season marked a before and after for him Road Tourism. Because in that year there was a real technical revolution that unleashed a profound change in the category park, which began to feed on new cars to put the Cupecitas aside.

Companies that Hares, the Carafe and the Orange Thunder They were some of those vehicles that demonstrated at the end of the 60s how far the ingenuity of Argentine preparers could go. Within that original group was the Narrow Falcon prepared by the official Ford team at its factory in Pacheco.

Narrow Ford Falcon: Ingenuity at TC's commandThe original vehicle, which was also known as the Minifalcon, It was devised by the technicians of the Ovalo brand to take full advantage of the technical regulations of the TC. The premise was to make a helmet off the assembly line as narrow as possible, but without neglecting the original aesthetics of the vehicle. After a lot of work and a frustrated debut in the Vuelta de Tandil (the engine broke and could not run), the Angostado debuted in the 1967 Grand Prix with Carmelo Galbato as a pilot.

The first races of 1968 were taken to develop the unit. The first big result came in Rafaela when Galbato crossed the finish line second after scoring for several laps. In Pacheco, meanwhile, work continued to get more power from the engines. In three months a power plant with an extra 25 HP was achieved, something that had been achieved without making substantial modifications. Thus 320 HP was reached on the factory test bench.

This improvement was possible thanks to the realization of the Engineer Willy Mikulan, technical manager of the project, who decided to work with the engines on one side and the chassis on the other. For the latter, a Heriberto Pronello, who had previously had success with the IKA Hares.

Narrow Ford Falcon: Ingenuity at TC's commandIn the middle of the year he joined the team Carlos Alberto Reutemann, which shortly after continued with its sporting campaign in Europe until reaching Formula 1. His arrival was endorsed by Oscar Galvez, in charge of the sports management of the team and who had been impacted by the conductive technique of the Santa Fe.

Despite the large investment that Ford made in the model, the triumph was slow in coming. According to its technicians, one of the points against the car was the excessive weight of the engine, which made the chassis unstable when entering the curves. To balance the weight and fix the issue, it was placed a little further back. That solution made the cars of the "oval" finally ignite in the fight.

Finally, the Angostado achieved its first victory on September 22, 1968 at Allen, Río Negro. The race started with Carlos Marincovich y Carlos Pairetti, with both Chevrolet, at the forefront. But shortly after the start of the competition they both left and Galbato took the lead. After enduring the onslaught of Gaston perkins, the Ford driver made a reassuring difference in the last 20 kilometers when accelerating to a final speed of 268 km / h, something unprecedented for the time. In the following tests Galbato and Reutemann were ahead, although they did not celebrate any other success. The championship was won by Pairetti, while Galbato was 4th and Reutemann, 7th.

In 1969 Ford changed its sports policy - it focused on working on the F100 engine - and that put an end to the Narrow stage in the TC. At least officially since there were other drivers who continued to race with this car and there was even a second victory in the hands of Ricardo Bonnano in Allen with an average of 220 km / h that improved what Galbato did the previous year.

Some consider this project a failure, others credit it because they highlight the prominence it had in a year when prototypes dominated. Perhaps that is the reason why he continues to be remembered today.

Narrow Ford Falcon: Ingenuity at TC's commandTHE CONSTRUCTION OF A NARROWED

The construction process of the Narrow Falcon began by cutting 14 centimeters of sheet metal from the tail and part of the flat that works as a protector for the differential ball. Then it was due narrow the floor at the height of the skirting boards by 12 centimeters and the lateral structures were assembled with the six body studs shortened by 5 centimeters in their total height. Thus, the rear of the Falcon was narrowed by 20 centimeters.

They also had to be done swish in the front suspension towers, so that you could work on the engine comfortably. Subsequently, the rear doors were welded -Already shortened- with the fenders and these were in turn attached to the tail. Once the sides were armed, work began on the tubular structure which also acted as a false chassis.

After this stage, the trimmed ceiling and all the spot welds with electric arc welding are reviewed. Between the two false chassis, a previously molded “U” -shaped sheet was welded to reinforce the floor. Finally, another set was added to the original rear suspension bracket to use four shock absorbers.


Diego durruty

Journalist with 30 years of experience. Worked in magazines STROKE, The graphic, Coequipier y Only TC, on the Internet sites SportsYa!, y and on the radios Rock pop y He covered the Dakar rally for the German agency dpa. He currently drives Two Daring Guys, a car magazine that is broadcast on Tuesdays from 18 to 19 by; is editor of motorsport in Red Bull Argentina, columnist on the show WorldSport (AM Splendid) and in Surf & Rock FM.  He is also a teacher in SPORTS. Now you can read it on his blog:

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