Marsh Models 1/43 Lola T.260 (St. Jovite 1971)
|PRICE:||Around $50.00 plus shipping|
|REVIEWER:||Scott Van Aken|
|NOTES:||Resin, metal, photo etch, and vacuformed pieces.|
The first year of the Canadian-American Challenge (Can-Am) was the Sports Car Club of America's introduction into big dollar road racing. Prior to this, there were several sports car championships, many of them well attended and featuring famous drivers and cars from around the world. The Can-Am was designed to provide designers with literally restriction free racers, the only requirement that they have four wheels, a full body and seats for two. This was similar to the FIA's Group 7.
With many racing teams scrambling for cars, Lola racing cars offered their new T-70 design, and it was the predominant car for the first year of the series. A well sorted chassis was dominant and won the 1966 championship. That all changed the next year as McLaren cars brought out their M6 design and proceeded to pretty well dominate the series from 1967 until 1972, when the Penske team fielded a monster 12 cylinder turbo-charged Porsche.
During these years, Lola tried many innovative cars that brought little success. Meanwhile, McLaren simply improved on a well tested design and while Lola cars suffered from issues with handling, that was not the case with the McLarens.
Probably the most successful of the later Lola cars was the T.260, fielded by Carl Haas Racing and driven by Jackie Stewart. Stewart managed to win two races in 1971 with the car, and while the Lola improved throughout the season, the McLarens improved even more leaving Stewart's team to play catch-up during most of the season. Stewart's second wing at Mid-Ohio was only due to the appaling condition of the track and the lead McLarens breaking down.
The second round at St Jovite saw Stewart put the T260 on the front row next to pole sitter Hulme whose McLaren M8F led from the start but Stewart sat in second some 5 seconds behind until lap 52 when Hulme, who was tiring from a stomach bug that had laid low most of the McLaren team, had to slow due to exhaustion. Taking advantage of the ailing Hulme Stewart blasted into the lead which he held to the chequered flag.
The St.Jovite event, being the second race of the season, had the car in what was pretty much its initially designed form. Later in the year it sprouted all sorts of additional wings and things to help improve the handling. This Marsh Models kit from 1996 is provided in that trim.
For many who like to build 1/43 car kits, Marsh is one of the best. Their moldings are well done, the instructions are clear and they simply put a lot of effort into providing a quality product. As such, the prices of their kits are not low and increase all the time. Currently similar kits run about $80. Not only that, but they tend to sell out of those that are popular and they are not always reissued.
This kit consists of two resin parts, a full body and a rear wing (which has become slightly warped over the years). A large photo etch fret is included for things like spoilers and the major portion of the interior tub. Sections of the lower pody are also in this material as is the driver's harness, instrument panel and some other pieces. It looks complex, but once folded, it works great.
What is popularly known as white metal makes up much of the rest of the kit. This includes the seats, suspension bits, roll bar, engine block, exhaust pipes, and the flat underside pan. There are also wheel knock-offs, gear shift, wheel inserts and steering wheel. There are separate injector stacks for the engine, and chrome wheel inserts for the plastic wheels. A vacuform windscreen is also provided as well as two brass rod axles.
The instructions are quite nicely done with a large exploded view of the kit. A listing of both metal and etched bits is included to help decide where everything goes. Markings are for one car and I get the suspicion that this sheet is also for other variants of this car as it looks like there is more provided than what will be used. The sheet also includes all the red bits. It is unfortunate that these kits come in a standard box as it invariably means that the sheet will be too large to fit in them flat.
This one is a bit more complex than some of their other offerings, but the end result will be superb and a great addition to any 1/43 Can-Am collection.
Thanks to me for providing this one.
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