The Wright Stuff John Wright 128



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Mum and dad, Sue and Denis Wright, one time notable drivers in
Bomber and Saloon Stox circles, encouraged young John to follow the now classic path from the Mini-Stox nursery to the big F1's. He is proud to have been a founder member of the Keith Barber inspired mini formula, seeing it as an ideal training for aspiring world champs! During his six years with the little 'uns, John gained valuable experience, numerous places and 13 creditable wins. Following his 16th birthday, John, together with Mum and Dad, considered running Fll's. however the family felt the economics in running them, as against F1's to be marginal and so they plumped for the big league. Early in '81 the Wright team ventured into the big time. Success didn't come to them in that first race on Long Eaton's shale, as during the initial lap John realised the gear level had parted company with the rest of the ex -Brian Tuplin car. Pictures 1 & 2). However stock car drivers are nothing if not persistent and he stuck with the machine until 1983 recording two wins, his first being in June '83 when he took the chequered flag in the Notts and Derby Championship Race at Long Eaton — his home track, "a proud moment' recalls John. In the autumn of that year, the decision was made that the somewhat erratic Buick 425 power pack was not the stuff of greatness and when, on Andy Kennedy's retirement, the 313 car (Picture 3) became available, the swop was made. John stayed with his second 128 car until Spring 1985, gaining experience, bruises and a win. Pushing him along during these 18 months was an engine with a pedigree. Originally bought new by Dave Fox the Chevrolet L56 had, during its life, been lent by Dave to one S. Smith (then 391 a promising youngster from Rochdale, powering him to some notable wins!. Early 1985 John felt the old Andy Kennedy machine was "good enough for a red", and his present car was initiated. Seen by many as being the smartest paint job of the season, the 128 car, designed and Stilt by Bruno Brown, Dean Tresler and the Wright team is motivated by the now Brian Powles rebuilt LS6 467 from the old Andy Kennedy car.


A fine consolation win, at Crewe second thee out provided John with the confidence booster he needed in overcoming the teething troubles surrounding a new untried car. "I really feel that car, engine and me are coming good together", says the 20 year old transport manager. A feeling confirmed by a steady improvement in placing, culminating in an excellent second place in Sheffield final at the beginning of July. as with many Formula Oct drivers, John would find it hard to continue without sponsorship. In his case, his father and local motor motor cycle dealers The Bike Shop'. This does not only run to financial help, as the splendid art work of the car was designed by the lovely Maureen from the aforementioned business, and all concerned in sponsorship lend a hand in the car's maintenance. John's present aim is "back to blue for August" and then to motor on to that next important colour change. He sees only one difficulty in achieving that goal, not car, not driver, not sponsor, but the lack of a full committed team of mechanics. "My present crew are tremendous", says 'John, "but they can only do so much." Young Mr. Wright feels that the continual motivation of a dedicated crew will do much towards helping him purchase that tin of red cellulose. So if you are keen, knowledgable and available, why not contact John and hang on the coat-tails of likeable young man who reckons he's going places.