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Andersson-Stone. The special story behind a historic photo

Andersson-Stone. The special story behind a historic photo
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It's been a while since we took you through the history of Toyota in the WRC in several companies. Or rather: to the forgotten rally victories and successes. Under the leadership of the legendary Ove Andersson, Toyota became very big in motorsport. The creation of the alliance between the Swede and Toyota has a special origin. And for that we go back to the Rallye Automobiles de Monte-Carlo of 1971.

During the 1971 season Alpine-Renault was the glorious winner of the International Manufacturers Championship. This was not least due to the performance of Ove Andersson. That season he won no less than four rallies within the International Manufacturers Championship of 1971 in the service of Alpine-Renault. The IMC was also the predecessor of the WRC, which started in 1973.

Andersson won the Akropolis Rally and the Österreichische Alpenfahrt with Arne Hertz during the 1971 season. With co-driver Tony Nash he won the Rally d'Italia (San Remo-Sestriere). That happened in a white Alpine, which was sponsored by the Pope. The bond between Andersson and the Vatican dates back to the sixties, when the Swede drove for Lancia, among others. He also owes his name Paven to that. The Swede booked the first victory of that year in the Rallye Automobiles de Monte Carlo. The co-pilot was British David Stone. He was about to say goodbye to the rally world. But he wanted to add one more feat to his fine co-pilot record: victory in one of the oldest and most famous rallies in the world.

The 1971 edition of this illustrious rally is still known as the race in which the weather gods really demanded the utmost from the participating teams. Large amounts of snow fell in the run-up to the race, to such an extent that some passes were closed. They were open during the special stages. During the rally, all drivers were treated to the most diverse weather conditions. As a result, the crews and support teams regularly made incorrect tire choices. And that was an extra handicap during the “Monte” of 1971. It turned out that only 30 of the 248 teams reached the finish line in the Principality.

It is less well known that the winning team was the prelude to an extremely exciting and impressive period in rally history. The winners competed together only once. We already mentioned Ove Andersson. The co-pilot of Equipe 28 was the British David Stone. He knew Ove Andersson, but did not compete with the Swede until March 1971. The two pilots clicked excellently with each other. The Swedish-British duo submerged rally-loving France. The French are betting on a victory from compatriots Therier and Callewaert, who, like Andersson and Stone, also drove the Alpine-Renault A110 1600. But the French Alpine duo was 914 seconds short of the winning team. And to add to the misery: the Swedish duo Waldegard-Thorszelius took third place with the Porsche 6/XNUMX. Bizarre: they achieved exactly the same final time as the French team Andruet-Vial (also Alpine-Renault). Because the Swedes won one special stage more than the French, they finished number three.

Back to Andersson-Stone. After Monte Carlo 1971, the one-time collaboration ended. But the gentlemen did not lose sight of each other. Stone also got wind of Andersson driving his first rally in a Toyota in 1972. Together with the well-known navigator Arne Hertz, he drove the BNU rally in Mozambique that year. At that time there was no question of a contract with Toyota; Andersson drove the Celica by invitation.

Meanwhile, Toyota was looking for a rally partner in Europe. The Japanese consciously chose not to set up a factory team themselves. They went for the unique construction in which an external constructor organized and coordinated the rally activities. Toyota came into contact with Holvoet Racing through Eugène Paesmans. Paesmans was very important for Toyota in Belgium. He arranged for a large delegation to come to Belgium from Japan, also for a rally deal to clinch. But old Holvoet kindly declined the honour, to the astonishment of the party from the Land of the Rising Sun.

Benny Heuvinck, the Flemish Toyota rally archivist, told us a nice piece of history about this in 2020 and also unfolded how Andersson came into the picture. “It was none other than David Stone - the co-pilot during Monte Carlo 1971 - who put Andersson and Toyota Japan in touch to discuss a contract. That debates were legendary. Andersson did not speak a word of Japanese. And the Toyota delegation had forgotten to arrange an interpreter. Both parties just looked at each other. The contract was completed within five minutes.”

Datsun also wanted Andersson's hand, but the Swede opted for Toyota. Both parties agreed on a contract. In addition, Toyota made two rally-prepared red Celicas and two right-hand drive Corona service cars available. The cars were sent to Sweden from Japan, with Japanese license plates. Andersson's official Toyota debut was on the 1972 British RAC Rally. With Geraint Phillips he drove the Celica 1600 GT with 2T-G DOHC engine to ninth place. In addition, the Andersson-Phillips duo becomes class winner.

The sequel is known. Ove Andersson moved his Andersson Motorsport from Dannemora, Sweden, to Lot in Belgium, where he and his team laid the foundations for Toyota's later and ever-growing successes in rallying from 1974 onwards. Individual drivers of name and fame as well as the manufacturer itself regularly found themselves on the podium. And since the 1971s, the drivers and the constructor have been crowned world champions several times under the leadership of Ove Andersson. Today, under the name of Toyota Gazoo Racing, Toyota is (still) one of the leading manufacturers in the WRC. And that history began in 40, when a Swedish-British duo took place together in a rally car once, and promptly won the XNUMXth Monte Carlo rally.

Automobilia 2022 (copy)
Andersson-Stone. The special story behind a historic photo
Equipe 28- Andersson/Stone- won the “Monte” of 1971.
Andersson-Stone. The special story behind a historic photo
The XNUMXth edition of the Rallye Automobile Monte-Carlo was illustrious for several reasons
Andersson-Stone. The special story behind a historic photo
European Toyota rally debut for Andersson. With Gerraint Phillips he took ninth place in the Daily Mirror RAC in the autumn of 1972. The contact and the contract between Andersson and Toyota came about thanks to David Stone, with whom he won the XNUMXth Monte Carlo rally.
Andersson-Stone. The special story behind a historic photo
Not long after the ratification of the cooperation between Toyota and Andersson, a team of serious size emerged. This photo dates from 1973, and was taken in the run-up to that year's RAC.


Give a reaction
    • No, it was a 914-6. Looked it up specifically. Waldegard and his co-pilot won the “Monte” in 1969 and 1970 with a 911 S. After this, Porsche decided to try its luck with the 914-6 (also in terms of weight distribution). 🙂

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