Titan Formula Cars

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At GingerMan Raceway


Attendee Comments


Charles Lucas - Boroughbridge, UK 

Luke.jpg (223845 bytes)The greatest privilege of the GingerMan experience for me was to realize that, even after all these years, there were weird folk out there who still enjoy driving and caring for old Titans. The thought never occurred to us, when Tom & the lads were building them in Huntingdon, that they would still be giving pleasure and moments of frustration, irritation and even fear 30 years down the line.

That successful business men like Fred Opert and Pierre Phillips were prepared to spare the time to come to the event only endorses the fact that we treasure our old enthusiasms that make this life worth while.

The great surprise of the weekend for which I now feel some shame and subsequent respect was to discover that you guys will still race in torrential rain such as I've seldom seen before, even in the UK where we virtually live under water!

Apart from that, finding one of the 3 Ausper Formula Juniors in the paddock that Tom built 40 years ago was an added bonus.

So it was memorable weekend for me, and I'm eternally grateful to Andy and all the guys who took the trouble to stage the event & to make us feel at home. It was the high spot of my summer to meet you all, and I have the framed photograph of the Titan line-up on my wall as I write to remind me of these happy days. Please keep those Titans rolling and drop those ride-hights!  

Regards,  Charles Lucas

B.S. Levy 

Article written about the Reunion in Vintage Motorsports Magazine [Click here].



Roy Thomas -  UK 

Roy.jpg (110792 bytes)Simple words never seem enough. Even winning a race seldom provokes more than "Well done". So in that tradition, I say to Andy, Well Done Andy!

Due to his hard work entirely we all enjoyed a superb weekend at the Titan Reunion held at South Haven. The warmth of our reception was overwhelming, and to see all those beautifully prepared cars in one place, quite breathtaking! Particularly for me, all those years on since it's inception.

Many new friends were made, and many old ones renewed. To see Fred and Pierre attend was very rewarding, they both played a major role in establishing the marque. Without them selling what they believed in, success would have been unthinkable.

For me, it was just great to see Charles Lucas and Derek Lawrence again, although fellow countrymen, we seldom keep in touch, but within minutes, all the joy of those halcyon years came flooding back.

Big thank you also to Titan Motorsport for their trophy's, it was only pressure of business that kept Diana and Oz away.

Following that fabulous weekend, Derek and I became tourists, enjoying the spectacular scenery of Colorado , ably guided by Andy and his charming wife Victoria. What a week! Special thanks also to Bob Alder, chauffeur, and guide to all the best truck stops!

Tell you the truth, when I first heard from Andy, I thought, oh no, another one (Geek, Nerd, Anorak!, Ed.)! Since then we have become great friends, and he can be very understanding of my fading memory, and how he needs to be! When he first mooted the idea of a Titan reunion a year ago, I was full of apprehension. How wrong I was.

So back to simple words, Well done, Andy! Fabulous job well done. And thank you too, to all those who made our stay so memorable and enjoyable.

 Regards, Roy Thomas


Derek Lawrence  - UK 

Derek.jpg (174335 bytes)I have still not come back down to earth from our memorable trip to the Titan reunion. Even though I brought my first race car from Charles Lucas Engineering when they were at Highgate I had never met Luke before. Tom and I keep in touch by Christmas cards so it was great to see him again. He’s lost a little weight but still the same OLD Tom. He never seems to change.

Fred Opert looked and sounded the same as he did 25 years ago. He used to have a beautiful secretary Patty. I wonder where she is now???? I had never met Pierre so it was fascinating to sit and listen to Tom,

Luke, Fred and Pierre and all the tails of things they did, drivers and cars they ran and scrapes they got into.  

I was most impressed with the standard of preparation of the cars, many of them looked brand new, and the racing was great. My lasting memories of the reunion will be all the friendly people I met. Special thanks to all the organizers especially Andy and Victoria for their hospitality, Vaughn and Einstein for the photographs and Bob Alder for introducing me to chicken fried steak (is 'Thank You' the right word for Bob?)

 Regards, Derek Lawrence

Bob Alder - Denver, CO 

Bob.jpg (94492 bytes)Andy asked that I say a few words about the Titan Reunion that took place July 6-9 at GingerMan. One word will really do — great! For sure it was disappointing that only about 13 Titans were there, but it didn't distract from the quality of the event.

Andy and I put our Titans (And a goodly amount of Andy's other "stuff," but that's whole 'nuther story) in a big enclosed trailer and shared the two days of driving from Denver to Michigan .

While I'd met Andy on a few brief occasions it was only during the trip that I began to realize just how dedicated Andy is to this Titan thing. He's an amazing guy. For those of you who don't know it, his commitment to the Registry, to Titans, and to our chosen sport is truly unique. We should all be thankful for his efforts.

Topping those efforts was his actually getting the Titan VIPs to attend. Charles Lucas, Roy Thomas, Derek Lawrence (all three from England ), Fred Opert, and Pierre Phillips. Wow!

Prior articles in the Registry newsletter will tell you details about these guys, but leave it to say that they WERE Titan. And to realize that some of them hadn't seen each other in 25 years was something. They had a grand time catching up. And the stories they told!!!

The one I love is how the MK 9 was being viewed here in the States as a "bad car."  So they send Derek (their works driver) over here to run some events in the States. After repeated track records, first place wins, and a general butt kicking in the car, they returned home. "The car's fine. Thank you very much."

As a matter of record, Andy's MK 9 won the Clash of the Titans. Of course there was some cheating that took place. First, he brings in a ringer (Todd "Very Fast" Strong) to drive the car and then he bums some bonafide rain tires that proved to be invaluable.

Yours truly had NEVER run in the wet. I thought the guys from VSCDA and the VIPs from England would split a gut when I told them that after ten years of FF racing I'd never run in the wet. Hey, In Colorado it seldom rains and if it does we just wait a while and it dries out. They thought that was hilarious.

And rain it did. Hopefully elsewhere the "Splash" of the Titans will be documented. Let me tell you, it was one hell of an introduction to the "wet!"

Back to the VIPs. To get to meet them was not only an honor but also a treat. Roy and Derek rode back to Colorado with us so Andy and I got to know them even more. The nicest guys. If Roy just weren't so damned devilish.

All in all if you didn't attend, you should have. We had a great time at a wonderful track and enjoyed the fine hospitality of VSCDA, John Welch, Keith Laney, and GingerMan Raceway. Many thanks to all of them and to especially to Andy. A job well done.

Regards, Bob Alder

Todd Strong,  Torrance, CA

todd.jpg (186439 bytes)I wanted to drop a note and pass on some thanks about an extraordinary event I recently attended. It was the Titan reunion which was held in conjunction with VSCDA’s South Haven Vintage Car Races at GingerMan Raceway July 7-9, 2000.

The event brought together the key players of Titan’s car building history. Charles Lucas- founder of CLE and Titan Cars, Roy Thomas- designer of Titan cars, and Derek Lawrence- factory works driver, all traveled from England to attend the event. Fred Opert and Pierre Phillips- US importers for Titan cars also attended.

These gentlemen provided a wealth of technical advice, historical information, and entertainment reminiscing about the F3 and FF racing they were involved in during the 60’s and early 70’s. This was truly a once in a lifetime opportunity to discuss the history of Titan cars with the people that created it. Of course the fantastically prepared Titan cars, ranging from a 67 Mk3 FB car to a 75 Mk9 FF also made quite an impression.

I would like to take this opportunity to thank the Titan VIP’s for their attendance, and to Andy Antipas for the long hours and hard work he spent bringing the reunion from a concept to a reality.

Thanks also go to the VSCDA for their great hospitality in hosting the event. And finally on a personal note I must give a giant thanks to Bruce and Cindy Lindstrand of Lindstrand Motorsports. Bruce was a Titan driver from before the cars were vintage, and currently runs a very professional preparation business that cares for many of the vintage Titans in the area.

For the Titan feature race the weather gods threw us a twist and the skies poured down rain. As slicks were the only tires we had it looked as if we would be sidelined until Bruce graciously offered the use of a spare set of rain tires he had. The tires proved fantastic, and allowed me win the Titan feature race driving Andy Antipas’ Mk9 FF in a torrential downpour. Bruce and Cindy, thanks so much for the tires and the hospitality.

Very truly yours, Todd Strong


Vaughn Rockney, Florida

vaughn.jpg (88718 bytes)I had a great time at the Titan Reunion at GingerMan.  Everything was just as I had hoped it would be. I really enjoyed meeting Roy, Luke, Derek, Pierre, and Fred, and then meeting Todd Strong and Bob Alder.

The contacts we made will have value well into the future. Next season, I need to make plans to get out to an RMVR event and meet up with you and Bob again.

The Clash of the Titans feature race in the rain was also memorable.  I've absolutely never driven in such a downpour, but wouldn't have missed it for anything.

The event T-shirt was another item that will have lasting meaning for me. It was beautifully done, and every time I wear it, it will bring back the memories of the reunion.

Regards, Vaughn Rockney


Andy Antipas, Titan Registry and Reunion Guru

Luke and Roy were surprised to find a 1960 Ausper formula junior in the paddock belonging to Dr. Marv Primack. As it turns out, Roy built all three Auspers in existence. This particular car was once owned by Bubbles Horsley and raced at the Nurburgring! To find this car at GingerMan was a real treat.

We woke up Saturday to cloudy skies which was soon accompanied by rain, and rain, and more rain, and wind. Even with the inclement weather, the VSCDA kept the days schedules running on time. Fred Opert arrived at the track around mid morning and was soon looking over Roger Karnopp’s “brand new” Mk6.

By 5 PM on Saturday it was time for the Clash of the Titans feature race. 9 Titans lined up for the start (7 Mk6s, 1 Mk9, and 1 Mk3). Right before the start, the rain let up a little bit and I was hoping that the track might dry out a bit. However, right after the formation lap the heavens unleashed the heaviest down pours of the day. It was raining sideways!

I have never seen any race continue under such conditions, but the Titan drivers, kept their heads down and pressed on with the job at hand. Cars were hydroplaning and spinning off everywhere, and by some miracle no one came together, damaged their cars, or got hurt.

Todd Strong was driving my Mk9 and due to his skill and those previously mentioned rain tires was able to win the race with Paul Schindlbeck in second and Dave Jordano in third. However, let the record show that Todd fell off the track several times and actually missed the last turn onto the home straight half way through the race. Like I said, the conditions were dreadful. This was a race for the record books!

Following the “Splash” we headed for the track pavilion and had a wonderful BBQ chicken and pork dinner with all the fixings prepared by track chef George “my friends call me big but” who was General Westmoreland’s cook.

Following the dinner, Keith and Barb Laney, Charles Lucas, Fred Opert, and myself present awards to the deserving Titan participants:

Titan World Champion: Todd Strong

Second place overall:   Paul Schindlbeck

Winning Vintage F. Ford: Dave Jordano

Longest Tow: Bob Alder

Titan Car of the Meet: Roger Karnopp

Keith’s race prep business donated three trophies to the top three finishers. Charles donated an engraved pewter tankard for the Titan World Champion, and Diana and Oz donated a lovely engraved pewter plate for the winning Vintage Formula Ford. Fred Opert awarded the top six “Splash” finishers with dark green shirts embroidered with the Titan logo. The Titan Registry donated two engraved glass mugs for the Longest Tow and Titan Car of the Meet. Finally, all reunion participants were presented with the new Titan Cloisonné pin. The titan cars and owners in attendance included:  

Mk3, Brad Baker, Oshawa , Ont. , Canada

Mk6, Paul Schindlbeck, Oswego , IL

Mk6, Dave Jordano, Chicago , IL

Mk6, Bob Alder, Denver, CO

Mk6, Roger Karnopp, Egan , MN

Mk6, Bill Stevenson, Grand Rapids , MI

Mk6, Dave Drake, Grand Rapids , MI

Mk6, Vaughn Rockney, Rockville , MD

Mk6, Bob Mayer, Crystal Lake , IL

Mk6, Dean Tank, Chicago , IL

Mk6, Gerry Tussing, Lincoln , NE

Mk9, Allen Ross, Carrolltown , PA

Mk9, Andy Antipas, Carbondale, CO

Registry participants Todd Strong, Matt Sell, and Ian Hebblethwaite attended the event without their Titans. Todd ( Torrance , CA) as you know by now shared my car. Matt (Boise, ID) is currently restoring a Mk3 Titan to FB specification, and Ian, the Registry Historian, attended the event all the way from South Africa! Now there is commitment for you!

Vaughn Rockney has created a Reunion web page which is linked to the Titan website with lots of information and pictures. When you get a moment take a look and see what you missed.

Sundays weather was perfect. Clear skies and low humidity. The track finally dried out and it was another great day of vintage racing. The vintage formula ford race was excellent with the Titans of Dave Jordano coming home in first and Deane Tank in third. The club ford event was won by Titan Registry participant and VSCDA Race Director John Welch in his (gasp) Hawke! By Sunday afternoon folks had loaded up their cars and started the long drive home.

The memories will last for a long time...........




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