The first rally for A377VUK was in Belgium. His driver, Ruben Borjesson (a member of the King of Sweden’s bodyguard!)
was lying first in the event when the battery exploded due to the ‘Pavé’ roads in Belgium.
A377VUK ("SYB1L") (ex-Middle East Recce Car) Driving, Del Lines - Co-driver, Steve Turvey.
Porlock Toll Road May 1986 Somerset stages.
Original Middle East spec., basically standard/uprated front suspension; 300bhp engine; 'Getrag' Jaguar gearbox; 4HA LSD rear axle;
twin shock absorbers (4 in total); 4 link rear suspension with Panhard rod; wheels 8" x 15" with Pirelli gravel racers.
Timberscombe forest - Somerset stages
In all Del’s team did around 25 events with “A377” and “A683” with some success. The program came to a temporary
halt in early February 1986 when, due to ‘driver error’ Del planted the Pond car A379 VUK into a large, one thousand year old tree
in Longleat Park – in full view of his then Bank Manager! “A683” was sold to Mick Moore in Lancs and “A377" was used on a Himalaya
rally in 1986 and not seen for some time, it is now being rebuilt by the present owner for another rally in Asia.
"Bastos" shell ( A379VUK - rebuilt 1986-7)
Driving, Del Lines - Co-driver, Keith Rumary. April 1989 Southwest stages Rally.
The car is still in race trim but has not been rallied since 2004.
Same spec as white car but with TWR fron racing hubs; larger cross drilled discs; racing calipers; all Rose-jointed front suspension. Wiring on this car was by TRWR/Lucas electrician John Smith and was handmade using fire-proof cable. (The same man wired all the Silk Cut Jaguars for Le Mans.) "This car is the definitive SD1 rally car" (Tony Pond's words)
It took him a year to rebuild the car into an ex-Bastos shell donated by Tom Walkinshaw Racing who let him have the shell only
on the proviso that Del bought the ex-Jeff Allam/Ahmin Hahne Bathurst car and the ex-Tony Pond Computervision car (B565AOX). In 1995 the
rebuilt car was sold to Duncan Holder in Somerset for his museum.
Del’s first SD1 road car came to him almost by accident. “My van hire business went quiet due to alterations in Mr Lawson’s
mortgage tax relief scheme. So, as a gesture, I sold my 827 Vitesse and drove around in a “W” registered 3500 SD1. I kept doing little tweaks
and alterations until I really came to enjoy driving it. My partner at the time nicknamed the car ‘Trevor’ – the reason for this still evades me.”
Since then Del has owned close to 50 SD1’s! Some good 6 cylinder models have been converted to V8 and sold on. The rest have been dismantled
for spares. For example, in 1991 he had a good bodyshell that he built into a 4-litre Vitesse, complete with Getrag gearbox, 3.00:1 L.S.Diff/disc
brake rear axle, oil coolers on engine and power steering, U.S.A. spec headlamps, Jaguar XJS front brakes, electric roof and 7” revolution wheels
with 215/60 x 15” tyres – painted flame red, the same as his 827 Vitesse. This car is currently in Lisbon due to the fact that en route from
Madeira to Marbella a Portuguese fork lift truck driver drove into the front of it. It has taken 1 year to sort out the insurance. As a
consequence Del issues a stern warning - "Don’t prang your car in Portugal"!
In the last year Del has found a new virgin bodyshell in a lock-up in Evercreech, Somerset. This is the base for a
new 4-litre car – at present taking shape in his Fuengirola workshop. Basically a left-hand drive, it will use the mechanical and trim
parts from the car in Lisbon. It has no sun-roof so Del plans to fit air-conditioning. The old car will be straightened and used as an “EFI” tow car.
Finally, Del’s reaction at being invited to be the Club’s Technical Adviser? “It is an honour. I will answer member’s
questions by e-mail and all postal requests will be channelled through the SD1 Club via Club Secretary Helen Andrew.”
We very much welcome “Del” as Technical Adviser on V8’s, his experience is undoubtedly a great asset for the SD1 Club.