the Bevan Imp ahead

The Imp Site

Racing Imps

As soon as the Imp was announced in 1963, and it became known that the engine had been developed from a Coventry-Climax racing design, race-tuners hustled to get their hands on examples. All of them, however, discovered that the design had been developed back, rather than forward, that ports and camshaft details were not at all sporting, and that the unit itself was, indeed, very difficult to tune.

During the 1964 season there were no racing Imps that won - Minis or Anglias won. Halfway through the 1965 season that situation changed. Gradually Imps did better and better and by the end of '65, Imps had outstripped all but a couple of the fastest Minis. In 1966 there wasn't a club race of any importance that wasn't won by an Imp.

The Imp Sport unit, introduced in 1966, was much more amenable to race-tuning.
Even for rallying, Rootes found it easy to extract 75/80bhp with the Zenith-Stromberg carburettored engine. And for racing, if carburation was free, a twin dual-choke Weber 998cc unit could be persuaded to produce at least 110bhp at 8500rpm !

Racing categories



Imps in Saloon car racing

Overallin classNo.Driver & Entrantcarc.c.colour
Oulton Park - 1966, April 2 - international - Called off. Bad weather
Saloon Car Race, Up to 1,000 c.c.
  114R. Calcutt
Alan Fraser Racing Team
Hillman Imp998Blue/White
  115N. Brittan
Alan Fraser Racing Team
Hillman Imp998Blue/White
Oulton Park - 1966, April 9 (mountgreen)
Peco Championship Trophy for Saloon Cars, Up to 1,000 c.c.
  70J. Hardman
Wilmslow Garage Racing
Hillman Imp1000 
Goodwood - 1966, April 11 - international
Ingliston - 1966, April 17 - club
Cadwell Park - 1966, April 24 - club
Ingliston - 1966, April 17 - club
Belgrade Yugoslavia - 1966, May 8 - international
Kalemagden Motor race
Silverstone - 1966, May 14 (mountgreen)
International Saloon Car Race, Up to 1,000 c.c.
  4N. Brittan
Alan Fraser Racing Team
Hillman Imp998 
  5R. Calcutt
Alan Fraser Racing Team
Hillman Imp998 
  6W. McGovern
Paul Emery
Hillman Imp998 
  7J. Markey
Paul Emery
Hillman Imp998 
  8R. Nathan
Roger Nathan Racing
Hillman Imp998 
Crystal Palace - 1966, May 30 - international - (Frank de Jong)
Oulton Park - 1966, June 4 - (mountgreen)

The national Birkett 6 hr relay race at Silverstone in 1965, August 7th
Results according to Autosport:

  1. Western Centre 750s (S Goldthorpe, JM Cotton, IA Bates, B Clayton, NC Bennett, R Sadler, EG Vallender, C Bishop – Austin Specials) - 299 laps
  2. Hartwell Imps (Hillman Imps) - 295 laps
    • AD Taylor
    • AR Hartwell
    • R Payne
    • RW Wickson
  3. TVR Granturas (JB Wingfield, A Mallock, P Simpson, T Entwhistle – TVR Granturas; P Simpson TVR Griffith) - 293 laps

Rootes Switzerland
The exception to the rule that Rootes did not directly enter Imps into races under their own name was 'Rootes Switzerland'. In 1965 (29 August), Rootes Switzerland entered an Imp Sport into the Hill Climb Ollon-Villars. This was round 17 of the World Championship, the mountain GP of Switzerland - Grosser Bergpreis der Schweiz, circuit length: 8,000 km; race distance: 16,000 km. There were 99 who practiced and 80 who actually started.

The swiss Henri Vuarraz drove their Imp, with competition no. 60. The GT1.0 class was won by a Fiat Abarth Monomille (0:10:24,600). 2nd in class: Alpine A108 Renault (0:10:37,600); 5th in class was another Hillman Imp Sport, driven by Philippe Simonetta, entered by Troisième Étoiles. Rootes Switzerland also entered Patrick Lier, but he was only in the entry list (source). Or he did start, but Did Not Arrive (source). And I don't know the difference between DNS and 'In entry list only'. Maybe he did do his practise runs?

Pos.No.DriverCarEntrant Laps Time Pos. Group
57.58Philippe Simonetta (CH)Hillman Imp SportTroisime Etoiles 2 0:11:30,7005.GT1.0
74.60Henri Vuarraz (CH)Hillman Imp Sport Rootes Switzer-land 2 0:12:38,6008.GT1.0;
 51Patrick Lier (CH)Hillman Imp SportRootes Switzer-land In entry list only  GT1.0


Rootes France
The Belgian Pierre Servaes says that his friend Michel Branchard (French) used to prepare Imps for Rootes France in the years 1965/1975. And that he still [April 2011] prepares full race engines and gearboxes, but he would like to stop.
Michel Branchard is the designer/builder of the 16 valves engine with a motorbicycle cylinder head BMW K1 head (he is an aeronautics engineer) and it's really a terrific job. He would like to sell it, but is very expensive : ca. €15.000. So at the moment he his looking for a good car to fit the engine in it and test it.
Searching Google for Rootes France + Imp does not get you anywhere...

Fraser Imps
It was in this form that the Fraser Imps of the mid-60s, (which were effectively Works imps in all but name) performed so spectacularly. Driven by Bernard Unett, Tony Lanfranchi, Nick Brittan etc. they gave the Minis and Anglias a hard time.
In 1966 Fraser's cars won 30 races in the UK and took 32 seconds and thirds into the bargain. In 1967 they were even more effective, for five-speed Jack Knight gearboxes were fitted. The cars could reach 120mph if suitably geared and were so highly tuned they they were reluctant to run cleanly under 4000rpm.

Racing Imps of 1966 came basically in three colour schemes:

The battle between these three colours is a close one. Although at that time the Fraser Imps were the fastest, they had only maybe three or four b.h.p. on the others. They all had something very close to 100 b.h.p. available from their club racing engines.

George Bevan & Bill McGovern
The crowning succes on the circuits was a hat-trick of the British Saloon Car Championship victories in 1970, 1971 and 1972 for driver Bill McGovern in private cars prepared by tuning wizard George Bevan, underlining the car's unrealised potential as a production vehicle.



Roger Nathan Racing


Ladbroke Hall, Rootes London, Technical Department racing team
In addition to our normal day jobs we were tasked to develop our own Imps for competition work. The first one was our Rootes London CP Imp.
Lead by the support of our then General Manager Neville Jackson, we were given permission to evaluate running our own racing team, but one of the main conditions was that it had to be low key - in order that we would not infringe on the factory activities with the Fraser Imps or compete against them.

In Scotland Imps were particularly popular for saloon car racing - not only because they were built locally but because the main racing circuit in Scotland Ingliston is a very tight circuit with a short main straight. From it's introduction in 998cc form the Imp virtually eliminated it's main rival in the up to 1000cc the Mini, and indeed was faster than a race modified 1275 Mini Cooper S.
The Imp had several advantages - the suspension (in MK 2 form) required little modification to give road holding and handling which were only matched by one other car of period: the Lotus Elan.

Parts of this came from the Competition Chat on Works Rally Imps by Tim Beckett, Stourport-on-Severn, Worcestershire as published in Impressions of December 1995. He quotes several publications as his sources.

Available from EWA is a video "Saloon Car Racing 60's Style" which covers the 1968 British Saloon Car Championship. It's about 40 minutes long, and has a bunch of shots of the blue and white works Imps, as well as a few privateers.

     Imp Engined Saloon, Sports Cars and Special Saloon Challenge

South East Motor Sports Enthusiasts Club SEMSEC - championships for all cars
The Imp Engine Saloon, Sports Cars and Special Saloon Challenge was a new challenge series introduced in 2002 for cars using Imp engines. There are classes to include various levels of modification and performance, which include a wide range of cars from relatively standard Imps to space Framed Imps, Stilettos and Imp-engined sports cars. It is hoped that the start made in 2002 can be built upon for 2003.

photo from Cars & Car Conversions June 1976 on page 39
unknown racers, perhaps at Brands Hatch, likely in 1976
2nd Imp: sunvisor still in, no cage, perhaps comp.# 324, perspex window with round hole?
1st Imp: beard? lid taped shut, 3-tone Imp? glass window with winding mechanism still in
  unknown Imper. 70s? front rad; minilites; competition no. 84; Polar White with different bonnet and roof; very wide rear tyres

Names and places

-- the years that Rootes dealers sold Imps and Rootes sold Imp parts --

Still far from complete. The order is alphabetical in part

Spaceframe racers: Maguire; Rawlson; Mason and the Davrians.
Halfway the 70s, the Special Saloon Cars raced with fibreglass bodyshells with only 20% of the original Imp remaining.

Thomas Hartwell --> Team Hartwell

By 1968, you had the 925cc supercharged Emery car, but that was yellow and black, Keith Holland's blue and white Fraser Imp. and Reg [sic] Payne's Hartwell car that was white and orange.
There were lots of other chaps running Imps by then, Ed Hill, John Calvert, Bill McGovern, Richard Staveacre, Reg Hargrave, John Rice, Terry Watts, Jeff Ward, Nick Birch, Maurice Ford,Colin Henderson, Mike Freeman, Jeremy Nightingale, Bruce Waterworth, Adrian Webb, Tony Charnell, Jim Teagles, Alan Moore, Melvyn Adams, Trevor Wilcox, Jean Denton, Juhani Kynsilento entered by George Bevan alongside Bill McGovern & I recall seeing James Hunt driving Jeremy Nightingale's in the supporting race for the 1970 GP at Brands!

Peter Gaydon
Andrew Mylius (was a Graphic Designer); did he drive for Hartwell ?
Yes, you did see James drive Jeremy's Imp in 1970, but that car was new for 1970 (and the Group 2 regs that had come into force). I know this as dad bought the car (1967 reg. from a little old lady in Tunbridge Wells) and stored it in our garage for five months until Jeremy collected it just before Christmas 1969. We were always impressed at how much quicker the car was when James drove it in 1970.


Melvyn Adams won the private entrants award in the British Saloon Car Championships in 1972 with a Group II Imp.

Ray Armes - reader of Tripe C

Chris Astley, only fourteen, racing his dad's Hillman Imp


Barry Barnes, Imp entrant for the 80/81 Wendy Wools series

David Beams (Ginetta G15)

Malcolm Bell Hillman Imp Californian (Chrysler), 998cc; 1976, Cadwell Park

Gerry Birrell's orange Singer Chamois is on the inside of the front row. Start of the over 1000cc saloon car race, 1968, Ingliston.
Graham Birrell (Ecosse Imp) on the front row of the dummy grid for the Adam Wylie Memorial Trophy race, 1968, Ingliston.

1966 Club Racing Championships:
Scottish Speed Championship: Gerry Birrell in a Singer Chamois/Lotus Elan came 3rd, gathering 59 points.
on page 51 of 'Why finish last?' (1969) Andrew Cowan writes: "my Scottish friend Gerry Birrell who had won the Scottish Saloon Car racing championship with a Singer Chamois. [...] and Gerry was a good mechanic in his own right".

Keith Blaynee

Glenn Board, Imp entrant for the 80/81 Wendy Wools series

John Bokkelkamp in a Hillman Imp (comp. no 42) was entered by Diva Cars Holland (NL) into the Zandvoort Trophy - ETCC Division 1 on 25 August 1968. Round 9 of the European Touring Car Challenge. 0 laps.

D.D. Brown drove 1 of 2 Imps (#105) in Class A (up to 1000cc) on Oulton Park, 17 July 1965 and he won. The other Imp (A.D. Taylor, #76) came 4th. It was event 4: scratch race for saloon cars, part of the British Racing and Sports Car Club limited. The weather was fine and warm. His time was 21 min. 23.4 sec, a comfortable 7 sec. ahead of no. 2 in a Cooper S. His average speed was 77.45 mph. He also had the fastest lap: 2 min. 5.8 sec, with a speed of 79.01 mph.

Jonathan Buncombe and the 'Chimp'


John Calvert raced an 850 Imp in 1968 and 1969.

Graham Cashmore

Hugh Chalmers, 998 Imp (Ingliston, May 1976)

Brands Hatch 26th Nov 1972
Event 4: Mini Miglia/Saloon Car Race 10 Laps
7th overall: #161, Mike Chapple; Hillman Imp, 998cc (Class B 851-1000 cc)

Alex G. Clacher had a very fast 998cc Hillman Imp which he both build and tuned. He raced at most of the British and Irish Circuits.
His Imp had an apple green car, with an applegreen roof, but the bit in between was white.
Very good driver, a heating engineer from Darlington. Used to appear on northern circuits in the 70s, always at or near the front. He won most things 'up north' in the 1-litre class. He held the 1000cc Special Saloon record for many circuits - which was one of the most competitive classes in British motor racing at the time.
Gerry Marshall's column in Car and Car Conversions 'From the Hot Seat' mentioned him rather often?
He came south for some BARC saloon car championship races. Snetterton. June 1972 at Cadwell Park. 1974 at Chicane, Croft. racing70s
Some good races at Croft with a Mini driver called Cedric Bell in 1970-72
Alec Clacher, who had been the king of Croft for quite a long time in 1972. Brian Coyle said: "I knew his car weighed the same as mine, but he had this Bevan engine".

George Coghill, Maguire Imp - bought from Mike's father ('Classic Racer' @ Sold on to Mike Hannon? George Coghill, 998 Imp (Ingliston, April 1978)

A few years ago, Brian Cutting won the Castle Combe Special GT Championship with his Imp, a yellow McGuire Stiletto.
This Imp made a lap of 1:06 which is an average of 100 Mph around the circuit, faster than some very fast racing cars, and at the time faster than any Ferrari had gone around there.
Later the Dane Earling Jensen got to drive it.

Brian Cutting (Hartwell/Maguire Stiletto at Castle Combe 1981, 63)
Entrant in an Imp for the 80/81Wendy Wools series


Basil Dagge (Dagg ?) was also an intermittent attendee in his slightly more purposeful Imp. (Llandow). He always used a beautifully prepared Imp. Red and yellow. (he never went spaceframe?). Basil Dagge, Copse Corner, Silverstone, March 1978
- bill moffat, Dec 9 2003,;
- racing70s

Sue Davies, entrant in an Imp for the 80/81Wendy Wools series Donington - white Maguire Imp, 850 class(?)

Alison Davis (Ginetta G15)

Brian Davis, entrant in an Imp for the 80/81 Wendy Wools series

Ms. Kim Devlin (Scotland) Hillman Chrysler Imp, 998cc (Class: Special Saloons). She competed in the Sid Bushwell Trophy race, August 1978 at Croft (the annual Battle of Britain meeting)
- racing70s


Doc Enderby, leading driver David Enderby, entrant in a Chamois Coupé for the 80/81Wendy Wools series David Enderby in a Mason Stiletto, ca. 1978. He later had a Maguire Imp, then a Stiletto, then Karmann Ghia.

Len Elkerton


Douglas Fairbarn, entrant in an Imp for the 80/81 Wendy Wools series

Garry Ferryman

Duncan Fisher's 998 Imp (Ingliston, April 1974). Duncan Fisher in a Fraser Imp Ingliston in September 1977

Ray Fitzpatrick in the ex Ken Leech Imp at Mondello.

Keith Freeman, entrant in an Imp for the 80/81 Wendy Wools series

Ian Forrest and his 'Drambuie Imp'.

John Fyda's 997cc Imp winning the special saloon race at Ingliston, April 1975


     comp no. 48, photogr. Han Veuger, Den Haag
Unknown Imper, likely at Zandvoort?
  CCC, 1972
Unknown Imper, likely 1972, maybe Brands Hatch

Adrian Gamble - built a space frame with Chris Roberts, called it the Chrade.

Ricky Gauld's Stiletto winning at Ingliston in April 1977 - David Ogilvy's Imp is behind. ; Ingliston in September 1977. Ricky Gauld's brand new Davrian-Imp (Ingliston, April 1978)

Ivor Goodwin in a John Godfrey Sunbeam Imp

Mike Gordon-Smith (GB) competed in the Grand Touring 1300 class (GT1.3) on Zandvoort [GT] 30 May 1966, comp. no. 49. In this class he had the fastest lap in his Hillman Imp, exactly as fast as Cornelis van der Leden (NL) in his Alfa Romeo Giulietta Sprint Zagato: 1:58.900, doing 126.953 km/h. He finished 2nd in class, behind Van der Leden.
9 August 1970 Bosman Racing entered him and his Hillman Imp in Zandvoort [S/P/FL], comp. no. 51, class SPFL 1.3. He did start, but apparently with a Lotus Elite??, result unknown.

Tim Goss, 1974 - Chevron B6 'Gropa' in British Sports Car Championship, also Clan Crusader, Ginetta G4, MGB GT V8 and Lola DFV in Martini International.

John Goulder later owned the Wallinger Imp (bought it of Jim McGaughey? - the Richard Wallinger Imp). Goulder raced it in the Donington GT.

G Gray's 998cc Imp (Ingliston, April 1975)


Cars lining up for the Hartley Whyte Trophy race in May 1968 (Ingliston), with D. Stewart's Imp (95), Robert Haining (Imp, 02) and Jim Dryden's black & white Mini all visible.

David Hall

Adrian Hamilton's Davrian Imp leads Tom Paterson's Clan Crusader at Knockhill, April 1982

Mike Hannon who hillclimbed the George Coghill Maguire Imp. He had a bad leg and fitted a hand clutch on the gear lever.

Toivo Hamalainin (Finland)

Paul Haywood-Halfpenny

Roy Harrington benderboat Minis and Imps/HillmanImpHarrington.jpg , displayed in Minis-and-Imps

Fred Hendy - Rawlson spaceframe

Simon Heijndijk raced an 875cc Hillman Imp at Zandvoort in the Touring Cars 850-1300 cc and finished 6th in the Group 1000 on 19 July 1964. On 17 October he finished 7th in the Final Races.
On 15 May 1967 on Zandvoort in the Formula Libre (Closed) - 1000cc, he had the Fastest Lap in his Heyndijk Imp. He did it in 2:06.200, doing 119.610 km/h (unknown length, 12 laps). He finished 2nd in class
(He also used to rally).

Michael Holland drove a 848cc Bevan Imp, pink car, white top. (The stroke of the crank had to be reduced by 2mm. to lose the 27cc)
April 1977, at Silverstone in the Esso Uniflo Championship; class: Special Saloons up to 850cc; comp #63 - Michael won his class (Special Saloons up to 850cc) in this race, at an average speed of 79.69mph (128.2kph) and set fastest lap at 81.99mph (132.2kph)

Steve Holland; black Davrian, 850 class, no.73 at Lydden

There was also a good 1-litre series at Castle Combe for a few years - Cornishman Andy Holloway was the Imp drver to beat there.

John Homewood in the south (he rarely ventured out of Kent); Jeff Ward in the midlands. 1-Litre saloons were very good around that time, lots of quick Imps and Minis, plus the odd Anglia.
However, his place was taken by Rob Mason in a Bevan Imp and within a year the class was all but dead, with many of the best Mini drivers switching to 7s or Miglias. Rob Mason was a Team Bevan driver, but Bill McGovern was the driver that won the British Touring car championship three times in a Bevan Imp without factory support.
John Homewood; Imp Sport; Brands Hatch; 1973

Jim Howden's Chamois doing the Hartley Whyte saloon car final, July 1970

Alan Humberstone, entrant (in a Stiletto Ford) for the 80/81Wendy Wools series White Stiletto, 1300bda, ca. 1977-78.

Nick Humphrey (1980s - that's right: the late 80s!) won often his class in modified saloon series, against metros.

 Ray Hutchinson, Zandvoort 1970
   Zandvoort 1975
The NSU TTS of Max Ungricht holding off one of the Dutch-based Imps at Zandvoort.
Summer of 1975 in the Netherlands, big sponsormoney wasn't yet dictating the gamesmanship, according to motor journalist Terry Grimwood. Drivers were still racing for enjoyment, rather than to keep the sponsor happy.

Ray Hutchinson (private entry)
Hillman Imp (comp. no. 10); 31 August 1969, International Zandvoort Trophy Races (Zandvoort [S/FL]);Group FL 1.3; Started, result unknown

18 May 1970 (Pinkster races) he entered with competition number 43 in the formula Libre (Zandvoort [S/P/FL]), but did not arrive.
Hutchinson was the only one to continue in the race after an accident with a Porsche.. The Porsche 911 started the trouble. It went into a spin. Then Hutchinson hit it, which cost him a side panel plus a bit of his passenger door. The Porsche lost its rear end (?). A Mini-Marcos drove into the panels on the track and had to give up the race.

9 August 1970 Bosman Racing (Henk Bosman of Maserati fame) entered him and his Hillman Imp in Zandvoort [S/P/FL], comp. no. 43, 998cc, class SPFL 1.3. He did start. result unknown.


The 500 was held at Bathurst, the name of the race was changed to whichever was the sponsor. The cost of cars determines the classes.
1967 Galaher 500, Class A - Up to $1,800
Galaher was an Irish-owned cigarette manufacturing company. Jack Eiffeltower / David O'Keefe (Hillman Imp GT): 4th in class, 30th in the race - 114 laps in 6:57.18
Bob Edgerton / David Toshack (Hillman Imp GT): 5th in class, 31st in the race - 114 laps in 6:58.13
The class winner in a Datsun 1000 did 117 laps in 6:56.11. Lindsay Little / Stan Pomroy were the 3rd team to drive an Imp GT, but they didn't fifnish. This was the first year Imps were involved.
1968 Hardie Ferodo 500, Class A - Up to $ 1,850
In 1968, the race was sponsored by the big brake-lining firm of Hardie Ferodo Pty Ltd.
Allan Johns / David Frazer came 4th in class, 40th in the race in their Hillman Imp GT. They did 107 laps in 6:46.48, whereas the winner in a Corolla did 113 laps in 6:45.23.
Ross Withers / Mel Mollison also drove a Hillman Imp GT, but did not finish because of an accident. The following year in the 1969 Hardie Ferodo 500, the only team in an Hillman Imp GT, George Geshopulos / Ray Scanlan, had an accident in their 88th lap. No Imps since.


Jimmy Jack. Jimmy Jack's 998 Imp (Ingliston, April 1977, # 125, green)

Laurence Jacobsen's ex-Alex Clacher 998 Imp in the Ingliston paddock, April 1976. Laurence Jacobsen chases Ian Forrest up to Caravan Corner at Ingliston, May 1976. Laurence Jacobsen's 'Chimp' - an Imp body on a 2-litre Chevron sports car!!

Earling Jensen
Erling Jensens Maguire Imp was Brian Cuttings 2nd Maguire Stiletto.

Andy Jones


John Kirk's Wallinger Imp at Ingliston's Caravan Corner, April 1978. John Kirk, Wallinger Imp (Ingliston April 1978) comp. # 137, red spaceframed Imp saloon

W. Keppler drove the blue 887cc Racing Partnerships (Jersey) Ltd. Hillman Imp at Oulton on 24th April 1965. Or maybe someone had his fingers in the wrong position and it's really a 998cc? Car. No. 185, Class (c) Up to 1000 cc
Event 1 The 7-lap scratch race at 2:00 PM
[source: programme]

W. Kinney; Hillman Imp; Zandvoort [GT]; 3 Oct. 1965

Peter Knipe, entrant in an Imp for the 80/81 Wendy Wools series

Rob Knox black and yellow Imp was built by Ray.

Roy Knowles limps round Caravan Corner in his ex-Hugh Chalmers Imp after a clash in the up-to-1000cc saloon race at Ingliston, April 1977; Ingliston in September 1977

Doc Knutsen raced a Maguire Stilletto 998cc in 1983, bought from David Enderby, a colleague of his.
about safety he writes (on Autosport Bulletin Board): "Maguire's chassis were properly engineered and well triangulated multi-tubular space frames, with proper seats and proper seatbelt anchoring strong points [...]".

Seventies: Hans Kok, Hans Ernst, The Netherlands


Mr. Lavis

Michael Law, entrant in a Stiletto, for the 80/81 Wendy Wools series
Mike Laws home built car: white blue Stiletto; Donington, circa 80.

David Leaver

    4th overall in ESSO Uniflo championship
Demon Carter engine, 4-speed Knight gearbox, Marston fuel tank, Firestone slicks & Goodyear wets on Revolutions. Tidy fibreglass body.
4th overall in ESSO Uniflo championship
Class D 1st year in racing
Who ? When ?

Brian Leonard, entrant in an Imp for the 80/81 Wendy Wools series

Richard Long's 1-litre Greetham Imp at Mallory Park, October 1977. (black with red and white lettering).

Michael Luck; Chrysler Californian; entrant for the 80/81Wendy Wools series
Mike Luck - white Stiletto no.83.

Ian Luck, entrant in an Imp for the 80/81 Wendy Wools series


Patrick (Pat) Mannion, entrant in a Stiletto, for the 80/81 Wendy Wools series; leading imper

Rob Mason, entrant in an Imp for the 80/81 Wendy Wools series

John Mawditt, entrant in an Imp for the 80/81 Wendy Wools series

John Meredith's Maguire Mini Traveller with an Imp engine at Doune hillclimb, September 1980

Eddie McLurg, entrant in Imp for the 80/81Wendy Wools series (Eddie McClurg)

James McGaughay ; another spaceframe Imp, 998cc (white); Ingliston in September 1977
His Imp's second outing: August 1978 at Croft (comp.#32), coming 2nd in class, in atrocious conditions, to Keith Hardy in his 998cc Imp
Jim McGaughey was driving Dick Wallinger's Imp
Jim McGaughay's Fraser Imp (Ingliston, April 1978) white car, Saltire roof, comp. # 126

Alistair McHardy

Ned Murray


     Melvyn Adams racing against a Bevan Imp and a Mini
Les Nash in the purple people eater (Bevan Imp) and Melvyn Adams

Les Nash

Jeremy Nightingale


Mick O'Dell

David Ogilvy.
David Ogilvy passes the abandoned Imps of J Philp and Jimmy Jack at Ingliston's Esses, April 1977; Ingliston in September 1977
End of 1977, David Ogilvy received the Sheila Whyte's award as he had impressed a lot of people with his handling of his Chrysler Imp that year.

George Ostroumoff


Adrian Hamilton's Davrian Imp leads Tom Paterson's Clan Crusader at Knockhill, April 1982

Ray Payne; Hartwell colours: white and orange. He took part in national championships.
He won his class in the Forward Trust race in 1972. In 1973 he was the Forward Trust Special Saloon Champion.

John Schoen, Sun Jul 22, 2001
Subject: Imp wins at Zandvoort

Heinz Pfeiffer has come 2nd in the first race and won the second race of the British Car Trophy at Zandvoort. The British Car Trophy is a German series for British cars op to 1300 cc. The grid consisted of a lot of 1275 M*n*'s and a sole Davrian Imp saloon with a home-prepared 998. Two of the M*n*'s were faster on the straights, but the Imp was better in the twisty bits. One of them puked its guts out in the first race; and in the second race the other car broke a rocker arm, leaving victory to Heinz.

Hans Piller (comp.# 15) drove the Cars and Conversions Hillman Imp (875cc) in the Pinkster Races at Zandvoort, May 18th 1970, in the Formula 6.000 in Group 1 A (under 1300cc).

Peter Pitman
He privately entered his Imps in many races. His Imps were aerodynamic experiments: large cut-outs in the front to create aerodynamic down force.
One of his Imps got sold to Eddie McLurg, who kept the same colour scheme for some time before changing the main colour to yellow, but retained the maroon roof. Further development took place under Eddie's ownership with the car being further lightened with Rawlson fibreglass panels. In 1979 during a race a Lydden Hill, the car was rolled and written-off.

Malcolm Prior

Brian Prebble, Hillman Chrysler Imp 998cc; Class: Special Saloons 850 -1000cc
Woolwich Ferry Special Saloon race at a BARC meeting on the 2nd of December 1979, Brands Hatch


Liam Rabbitt - Sony sponsored Imp

Barry Reece raced a 850cc special saloon Maguire Stilletto, more or less a Hillman Californian in plastic.
He had an horrific accident at Castle Combe 17 September 1983.
In the late 60s Barry Reece was already a well known figure of special saloon races, driving Maguire Minis and Imps; engines built up by himself and his brother Philip. He crashed his Maguire Stilletto at Castle Combe in 1983 and never recovered fully from the severe injuries. Other souce: Chronic injury from which he would never properly recover, passed away shortly after.
According to Autosport, Reece's Maguire Californian touched Ken Davies' Davrian at the very fast Folly bend, with both cars then hitting the armco at high speed. Autosport commented that "both drivers were victims, it would appear, of an unavoidable racing accident in the heat of the moment."
Thruxton, pale green Maguire Stiletto

     Humphrey Renzen, comp.#3, rear of photo: 23 April 1975, likely Zandvoort
Sunbeam Imp Sport, driven by Dutchman Humphrey Renzen (acc.: H.M. Fohr), comp.# 3, likely Zandvoort. Date stamp: 23 April 1975
  Humphrey Renzen, comp.#3, rear of photo: 23 April 1975, likely Zandvoort
detail of previous

Humphrey Renzen,

Jim Richards and the Sidchrome Imp, New Zealand

C Richardson's 998 Imp (Ingliston, April 1977)

Graham Ritter / Peter Janson

Chris Roberts - great 850cc Imp racer. Went on to race an all GRP Rawlson. Died along with David Profitt when Profitt crashed his helicoptor in 1979.

Colin Rooney.
Colin's father, Dan Rooney, used to race his Imp in Ireland.
Other Irish Impers: Cedric Kidd; David Hall (Davrian Imp); Maurice Mitton; John Torrens; Ned Murray.


Bob Seager

John Schneider - still does the Birkett?
entrant in an Imp for the 80/81Wendy Wools series Green Imp, around 1977-78.

Tom Sheppard

Dave Smith; blue Stiletto with the big wing; 1300bda; Donington GT

Steve Soper got a Hillman Imp for the 1972 season. With an 850cc George Bevan engine in it, he was able to win 5 races.

Cars lining up for the Hartley Whyte Trophy race in May 1968 (Ingliston), with D. Stewart's Imp (95), Robert Haining (Imp, 02) and Jim Dryden's black & white Mini all visible.

Peter Stride; Imp; entrant for the 80/81Wendy Wools series


A.D. Taylor drove 1 of 2 Imps (#76) in Class A (up to 1000cc) on Oulton Park, 17 July 1965 and he came 4th. It was event 4: scratch race for saloon cars, part of the British Racing and Sports Car Club limited. The weather was fine and warm. His time was 27 min. 20.8 sec. The other Imp, driven by D.D. Brown won.

W. Thompson's 998 Imp in the Ingliston paddock, April 1977; Bill Thompson - Ingliston in September 1977. Bill Thompson's ATS Imp in the Ingliston paddock, April 1978 (an ex- Duncan Fisher and Laurence Jacobsen car). Bill Thompson (Ingliston, April 1978)

December 1970:
John Turner, already 99% assured of the Atlantic Saloon Car Challenge at the Brands Hatch, won the BARC's Osram-GEC Championship. The 28-year-old Hillman Imp driver has shown an impressive turn of speed this year and at the final round at Thruxton on October 11 the Guys Automobile Engineers-entered car had to win the 1000cc class for John to be champion. It did, but with Richard Longman and Peter Vann in Minis plus Alastair McHardy and Ray Payne in Imps to contend with, this was by no means an easy task.


Richard Wallinger of Burbage Common near Hinckley in Leicestershire was British Saloon car Champion in an Imp. Dick Wallinger's Wallinger Imp (Ingliston, July 1980)
Dick Wallenger - very clever. Built a very narrow car with ground effect

Jeff Ward. Greetham Engineering prepared his very succesful special saloon Hillmam Imp, 998cc. spaceframe: the floor removed from the sills down and replaced with a lightweight aluminium monocoque chassis.
He won the 1976 Hitachi 1000cc Saloon Car Championship with 10 wins out of 14 races. April 1976: Croft circuit, comp. no. 138

Simon Watson, the Triplex rounds, his 50bhp Imp usually winning its class. (Llandow)
- Bill Moffat, Dec 9 2003,

Simon Watson and Jo Bailey. Imp Sport (1969; engine: blueprinting by Paul Emery, later Greetham Engineering; gearbox rebuilt by Paul Emery; suspension and brakes). 1974. Group One. Sponsor: L and G Fire Protection --> bright red Imp. 50bhp at the wheels.
Simon: Triplex rounds. He won the Avon tyre Challenge.
Jo: Britax championship
Throughout the 1974 season the Imp won its class 10 times out of 30 starts and 24 finishes.

John Whyte, dark red Imp coupé, Doune 89

Barry Wood was the Ginetta works driver, who in his G15 had 11 class wins in 1971, two class 2nd and one 2nd overall in a total of 15 races.
Driving a giant killing Ginetta / Clive Richardson; photos Norman Hodson. - Cars & Car Conversions 1972, May. - p.72-73,75

Ernie Woods - Laser Transport Stiletto

R D Wyllie's 998 Imp (Ingliston, May 1976)

In the Lakeside races (Brisbane Qld. Australia) on July 6, 1997:
1st: Sunbeam Imp - Darcy Maddock
2nd: Sunbeam Imp - Russell Maddock

Unknown Imp racers



Monday 27th August 2012
Race 11 HSCC ByBox Historic Touring Cars

85 Nick Lunn  Singer Chamois  
86 Andy Jones  Singer Chamois  
87 Simon Benoy  Hillman Imp  
89 Adrian Oliver  Hillman Imp  
90 Jon Orr  Hillman Imp  
91 Vince Frost  Hillman Imp  
93 Stuart Kerr  Singer Chamois  
94 Steve Platts  Singer Chamois  
95 Shaun Hazlewood  Hillman Imp  
97 David Heale  Hillman Imp  
99 Ian Gunton  Hillman Imp Super  

The Imp Site
   Competitive Impers

© Franka
File version: 14 September 2019