The Politoys Ford FX3 had been the first Grand Prix car ever to be named after itīs sponsor, an Italian toy manufacturer. It had been also the first attempt of Frank Williams to establish a works team of his own. Williams had started with a single private entry back in 1969 with a Brabham Ford BT26 for Piers Courage. For 1970 Williams had become a so-called semi-works team with an Italian de Tomaso Fords running for Courage, but the Briton had been killed during the Dutch Grand Prix that year for reasons unknown until today. For the rest of the season the de Tomaso Ford had been driven by Brian Redman from Britain and later the season by Australian Tim Schenken.

For 1971 Frank Williams had bought a March Ford (first a 701, then a 711) for French driver Henri Pescarolo, while he planned to construct a Grand Prix car of his own. Designer Len Bailey went a very conventional way for doing so. In his lay out he took some elements from other cars being successful in 1971. So the shape of the monocoque is very similar of that of the Tyrrell Ford 001 - 004, the nose looks like that of the B.R.M. P160 and the cockpit cover like that one of the March Ford 711. The car gave itīs debut at mid-season 1972 at the British Grand Prix held at Brands Hatch. The races earlier that year Pescarolo and his new team mate Carlos Pace had to drive in March Fords (721 for the Frenchman, 711 for the Brazilian). And at Brands Hatch only a single car was available for Pescarolo. But he was not happy about itīs performance. On the grid Pescarolo with the Politoys Ford was last but one, only his fellow countryman Francois with the Connew Ford was slower. Already in the 8th of 76 laps Pescarolo had a very big moment at the very fast valley of Pilgrimīs Drop, where Swiss Jo Siffert had been killed at the end of the 1971. Pescaroloīs car broke into 2 pieces directly behind the cockpit and caught fire, but the Frenchman managed it to escape his wreck only with minor injuries. After that accident the Politoys Ford FX3 project was stopped, Pescarolo returned to his March Ford 721 for the rest of the season.

For 1973 Frank Williams once again signed a contract with an Italian sports car manufacturer, this time Iso Rivolta. A B-version of the FX3 was built and Marlboro replaced Politoys as the title sponsor, so the cars were called Iso Rivolta Marlboro Ford FX3B. New Zealander Howden Ganley, Nanni Galli from Italy, and in the South African Grand Prix at Kyalami Jack Pretorius drove the first 3 rounds of the 1973 worldchampionship with the FX3Bs. From the Spanish Grand Prix onwards new safety regulations were introduced making the FX3 replaced by the IR01.


Model Designation: FX3 Year: 1972 Designer: Len Bailey Chassis: Williams aluminum monocoque Engine: Ford Cosworth DFV 3.0 litre V8 Gearbox: Hewland DG 300 5 speed manual Tyres: Goodyear Driver: Henri Pescarolo/F Sponsors: Politoys (toys), Motul (fuels and oils)




Đ 2001 by researchracing


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