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HDT Sports Sedan raced by Peter Brock to feature at Bathurst

An iconic Sports Sedan is the latest to join a special display marking Repco’s 100th anniversary at the Repco Bathurst 1000 next month.

One of the Holden Dealer Team’s stunning V8-engined Torana Sports Sedans will form part of the ‘Repco in Motorsport’ exhibition at the National Motor Racing Museum, continuing its 100th anniversary celebration.

Sports Sedan racing was the fastest growing motorsport discipline during the 1970s featuring big names racing for big prize money in front of large crowds, with the category becoming a promoter’s delight.

Engine of choice for many of the frontrunning competitors was the Repco-Holden V8 developed for Formula 5000 competition. However, as more open-wheeler inspired designs hit the track the unit proved the perfect match for a new generation of Sports Sedans through the 1970s and into the 1980s.

The HDT was just one leading team to dip its toes into Sports Sedans through the building of ‘The Beast’ in the early 1970s, an ex-rally LJ Torana featuring a V8 crammed into it.

It’s second entry was this LH built by Colin Bond’s crew in Sydney and led by talented engineer Henry Nehrybecki, who sadly passed away last year. George Smith of Dencar was also part of the build team.

Debuting in mid-1976 by Bond at Sandown, the rapid development of the category left the Torana behind as further Formula 5000 technology was adapted into these Sports Sedans.

Preparation was moved from Sydney to Melbourne the next year where Ron Harrop raced the Torana as build up to Sandown and Bathurst, before star driver Peter Brock raced it in its final appearance at Calder in 1978.

After being on-sold and continually raced, it ended up in the hands of Sports Sedan competitor Des Wall, with the Torana receiving a full restoration in 2012. Wall passed away before its return to the track at the 2013 Muscle Car Masters as son David completed the restoration and drove the Torana at the meeting.

Already revealed to be part of the ‘Repco in Motorsport’ exhibition is the Brabham BT19 driven by Jack Brabham to the 1966 Formula 1 World Championship and the last NASCAR winner in Australia restored to its Repco colours.