European Touring Car Championship

Golden Years - 1986 index

The 1986 promised to be a classic season, and in fact it was. Never before or after, so many works cars were entered. Defending champions Volvo, left in the cold by Eggenberger, turned to the Belgian RAS team, which had made a name for themselves in the small class. Eggenberger became Ford's works team, with the Sierra XR4 TI and some impressive driver pairings. Rover, having missed the 1985 championship, normally entered three cars, sometimes with good old Denny Hulme. The cars were a steady development from 1982, stil surprisingly competitive. Schnitzer BMW, supposed to have a lost year before the M3 was homologated, found some horsepower during the winter, and became frontrunners once again. If this wasn't entertaining enough, the Australian GM brand Holden entered some races with the big Commodore, in view of the 1987 World Championship.

And this was only division 3. Division 2 was contested by the BMW 325i's against the Mercedes 190, entered by Merecedes France, Carlsson and sometimes AMG.

Although the races proved to be very entertaining, behind the scenes a war raged like never before. Protest followed protest, with this time Volvo and Ford the victims. Illegal fuel, Volvo's fuel tank a little oversize, it shouldn't have happened but it did.

The last race seemed to give, unexpectedly, Percy the title, who would pip Ravaglia for just one point. So Rover's Win Percy was champion - for four weeks. Then, FISA remembered the bulletin 204 (january 1986) where was stated that the 5 worst results (opposite to the 4 of 1985) would be scratched from the championship. Guess what? BMW's Ravaglia was champion now...

At the end of the year, Volvo and Rover withdrew from touring car racing.

In 1987, apart from the ETCC, a true World Championship would be organized. With works teams from Holden, Ford, BMW, Alfa Romeo and Maserati (!) it promised to be a great championship indeed.

The races:

Misano Zolder Jarama

The cars

The pictures

Final classification

1982-1988 index