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Sierra RS500 Donington onboard: Time For Coffee?

Thirty years since it was built and a quarter of a century since it last raced, this Sierra BTCC car is back in business - and how...

By Matt Bird / Thursday, May 16, 2019

Ask any British Touring Car Championship fan about their favourite car from the series' remarkable 60-year history, and there's a fair chance many will say 'Sierra'. The big-power, big-attitude Cossies of the late 1980s captured hearts and minds like little else, the Group A tin-top era going out in spectacular fashion.

RS500 vids have featured on PH before, of course, though we make no apologies for running one again. Moreover, this a modern vid - from the recent Donington Historic weekend, no less - rather than one of the clips from way back when, meaning better camera and sound quality. And a renewed appreciation for just how loopy fast these cars were.

The RS500 greedily chomps through gears on its way to daft speeds: more than 140mph before braking for Redgate and for the Goddards chicane, for example, and in excess of 110mph all the way down the Craner Curves. Brake and tyre technology have moved on since the 80s, but they sure as heck knew about making cars go.

This video was sent in by reader Julian Thomas; having not raced for 25 years, the ex-Rouse RS500 was bought by him in 2018 and restored to the state you see it in here. He describes it as "one of my favourite racing cars ever" after watching Rouse in period, and says it's "fabulous to drive" - more than 580hp will help with that...

Having dropped to seventh, in this video we see our hero fight his way back through the field. For those with fond memories of the car in period, or those fans who've grown to love Sierras in more recent years, this vid is well worth watching. And to Julian, all the best for the next race!

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