Andrew Bagnall – A Race History 1986 – 2015
Andrew Bagnall was born on 14th February 1947 in New Zealand. He started racing in about 1986 when aged 39. He has since had 30 years of high level international motorsport competition at many world famous race tracks, including racing four times in the Le Mans 24 Hour race. He has also raced at Spa-Francorchamps, Monza, Imola, Nurburgring, Laguna Seca, Daytona, Sebring, Silverstone, Donington, Bathurst, Zolder, Zeltweg and many, many more places. Aside from his introductory years in a small capacity Fords and Toyotas, followed by 3 years racing in a Group A Ford Sierra-Cosworth Turbo, Andrew’s racing has been primarily in Porsche race cars. Read on for an outline history about one of New Zealand’s most experienced Porsche endurance race car drivers.
1986 – Andrew began his endurance racing in 1986 driving a Ford Escort Mk 3 RS1600i in the ‘Nissan Mobil 500’ series endurance races at Wellington and Pukekohe. He was 14th at Pukekohe. He also took his Escort RS1600i to Australia to race in one of five rounds of the Better Brakes/AMSCAR series held at Amaroo Park, Sydney, two races of the Australian Endurance Championship, and one race in the Australian Touring Car Championship.
In 1987, Andrew went to Europe to compete in five of the seven rounds of the 1987 European Touring Car Championship. He teamed with Chris Hodgetts (GB) in a ‘Gullivers Travel Ltd’ entered #92 Toyota Corolla GT AE86. In Division 1 of the Manufacturer’s title, the Team scored points in four rounds of the five rounds they competed and they finished 9th in the Manufacturer’s Championship. Brief details of races are as follows:-
- Donington 500km (GB) 5h April – 23 started/12 finished – DNF ‘Spun off’ on 85 of 125 laps
- Estoril (Spain) 25 April – Did Not Compete
- Andersop 3.5 hours (Sweden) 24 May – 23 started/14 finished – 8th overall/3rd in class on 116 laps
- Zolder 3.5 hours (Belgium) 7 June – 28 started/13 finished – 9th overall/2nd in class 108 of 120 laps
- Zeltweg 505km (Austria) 14 June – 34 started/25 finished – 12th overall/1st in class 78 of 85 laps
- Imola 3.5 hours (Italy) 28 June – 29 started/19 finished – 18th overall/5th in class on 88 laps.
- Nogaro (Spain) 13 September – Did Not Compete
In 1987 Andrew also raced in the inaugural ‘FIA World Touring Car Championship’. In total there were 10 rounds of the Championship of which he raced in three of the European rounds in a ‘Team GB Ltd’ Toyota Corolla GT AE86 and three rounds of the Asia-Pacific rounds in a ‘Gullivers Travel Ltd’ Toyota Sprinter AE86. Chris Hodgetts (GB) and Mark Jennings (NZ) joined Andrew as co-drivers for the races. Brief details of the races are as follows:-
- Monza 500km (Italy) 22 March – #92 qualified 30th, finished 10th overall/ 1st in class on 78 of 86 laps
- Jarama (Spain) 19 April – Did Not Compete
- Dijon (France) 10 May – Did Not Compete
- Nurburgring (Germany) 12 July – Did Not Compete
- Spa 24 Hour (Belgium) 1-2 August – #92 retired on 49 of 481 laps
- Brno -(Czechoslovakia) 16 Aug – Did Not Compete
- Silverstone (GB) 6th September RAC Tourist Trophy – #106 qualified 28th, finished 16th and 1st in class on 98 of 105 laps
- Bathurst 1000km (Australia) 4th October – #94 qualified 46th – retired on lap 77 of 158 laps
- Calder (Melbourne, Aust) 11 October – Did Not Start
- Nissan Mobil 500 Wellington (NZ) 26 October – #94 qualified 30th, finished 16th/1st in class on 135 of 150 laps.
- Pukekohe 500 (NZ) 2 November – details unknown
- Inter Tec 500, Fuji ( Japan) 15th November – #103 retired lap 17 of 112
In 1988 Andrew moved up to a much faster car in a Group A Ford Sierra RS500-Cosworth Turbo. Teamed with Andrew Miedecke of Miedecke Motor Sport, Australia, he raced in the four-round ‘FIA Asia Pacific Touring Car Championship’. The first race was the ‘Tooheys 1000’ at Bathurst but their Sierra RS 500 retired on lap 102 of the winner’s 161 laps. The next races were the ‘Nissan Mobil 500’ race in Wellington on 23rd October and the Promo Touring Car 500 at Pukekohe one week later – where the Andrews finished 7th. The last race of the Championship was the Fuji Inter Tec 500 at Fuji, Japan – but he did not start in this race.
Andrew also competed in all nine races in the Australian Touring car Championship in the Miedecke Motorsports Ford Sierra RS500 with best results being 6th at Calder, 4th at Winton and 6th at Sandown – he finished in overall 10th place in the Championship. Andrew drove in the Sandown 500, Melbourne, Australia with Andrew Miedecke, but they retired their Sierra RS 500 after only 28 laps. He also drove in one race of the European Touring Car Championship in a ‘Chris Hodgetts Motorsport’ entered Corolla GT.
1989 brought more racing in the Ford Sierra RS 500. Teamed again with Andrew Miedecke, Andrew raced in the ‘Nissan Mobil 500’ series races at Wellington and Pukekohe, scoring a fine 6th place at Wellington. In Australia the two Andrews won the Pepsi 300 at Oran Park. Graeme Crosby joined Andrew for the Toohey’s 1000 at Bathurst but they retired the Miedecke Motorsport Sierra RS 500 after 97 laps. Andrew also managed to fit in the first three rounds of the Australian Touring Car Championship in a Miedecke Motorsport Sierra RS500 – results were a retirement Amaroo Park, Sydney, a 7th at Launceston, Tasmania, and another retirement at Lakeside, Brisbane.
In 1990, and still in the Ford Sierra-Cosworth RS 500, Andrew raced again in the ‘Nissan Mobil 500’ series at Wellington and Pukekohe, scoring a fine 2nd place at Pukekohe. Andrew also competed in the three-round Australian Endurance series in a ‘Playscape Racing’ RS 500; in his first race, the Sandown 500, he and Robbie Francevic retired in lap 122 of 161; in the Toohey’s 1000 at Bathurst, he and Robbie finished 7th; and, at the Sydney 500 he and Kevin Waldock finished 7th.
Andrew’s Porsche Racing begins
In 1996 Andrew drove in the ‘Le Mans 24 Hour’ endurance race; he was part of the two-car ‘New Hardware Racing/Parr Motorsport’ “Le Kiwi Comeback” team where, together with Stephane Ortelli and Andy Pilgrim, they raced a Porsche 911 GT2 LM to complete 299 laps and be placed 17th overall and 4th in the GT class.
In 1997 he drove in one race of the 11-round ‘FIA GT Championship’. This was Round 9 and held over four hours at Mugello, Italy, on 28th September 1988. The ‘Seikel Motorsport’ Porsche 911 GT2 he shared was classified 25th overall.
In 1998 Andrew drove in two rounds of the ‘FIA GT Championship’ in a Porsche 911 GT2. His first race was in Round 9, the Homestead 500km in Florida on 11th October where he finished 15th. His next was in Round 10 for the Laguna Seca 500km in California on 25th October, but he did not finish – his Porsche was classified 20th on 62 laps of the leader’s 139 laps.
In 1999 the USA Road Racing Championship entered its second and final season. Of the scheduled five races, only three were run and the other two were cancelled because of lack of top line entries. The three races that ran were the Rolex 24 Hours of Daytona, the Dodger Dealers GP at Lime Rock over 2.5 hours, and the US Road Racing Classic at Mid-Ohio, also over 2.5 hours. Andrew drove a Peter Seikel Motorsports Porsche GT2 at Daytona to finish in 19th place overall and 4th in the GT2 class.
In 2000 Andrew raced to 3rd place in the Suzaka GT300, Japan, in a ‘Team Taisan’ Porsche 996 GT3R
In 2001 he raced in Round 1 of the 10-round Grand American Road Racing Championship – this was in the Rolex 24 Hours of Daytona where his team qualified 51st and finished in 17th place overall, and 11th in the GT class, in a Seikel Motor Sports #57 Porsche 996 GT3-RS. He also raced in two rounds of the American Le Mans GT series in USA – one of these was in a ‘Seikel Motorsports’ 996 GT3-RS at the Sebring 12 Hour race where the team car recorded a ‘Did Not Finish’, having completed only 60 of 370 laps.
In 2001 Andrew raced at the Le Mans 24 Hour ‘Seikel Motor Sport’ 996 GT3-RS and finished 12th overall and 6th in the GT class on 272 laps.
2002 saw Andrew racing in two races of the American Le Mans GT series in ‘Seikel Motorsport’ 996 GT3 RS. He raced in the Nurburgring 24 Hours in a Porsche GT3, and the Bathurst 24 Hour in a ‘Seikel Motorsports’ Porsche 996 GT3 RS. He also raced in New Zealand in some rounds of the ‘Bridgestone Porsche Race Championship.’
2003 saw Andrew in one round of the American Le Mans GT series in a ‘Seikel Motorsport’ 911 GT3-RS. He also raced at the Le Mans 24 Hour in a ‘Seikel Motorsport’ 911 GT3-RS where, together with his co-drivers, he was listed in 40th position but the team had retired on Lap 134.
Andrew raced in some rounds (9 races in total) of the 2003/04 of the Porsche Trans-Tasman Cup held in New Zealand. He participated in his fourth and final Le Mans 24 Hour race in 2004 and while driving a ‘Seikel Motorsport’ 911 GT3–RS he with his co-drivers finished 15th overall and 4th in the GT class on 317 laps. He also raced in some of the 9-round Australian Carrera Cup series.
Over the next few years, Andrew raced in some rounds in of the NZ Porsche GT3 Championship series in 2004/05 (16 races), 2005/06 (15 races), 2006/07 (11 races), 2008/09 (9 Races), 2009/10 (15 races), 2010/11 (3 races). He drove a 996 GT3 Cup car until moving in to a 997 GT3 Cup car for the 2008/09 year and onwards.
Andrew and his co-driver clinched the ‘2014 South Island NZ Endurance 3 hour Championship’ as overall winners in a three race series – 1st Teretonga, 1st Ruapuna, 3rd Timaru. He also raced in the ‘Highlands 101’ in Otago, NZ, to finish 18th in a 997 GT3 Cup car.
The Directors of the Porsche Festival 2016 and European Motors Ltd-Porsche acknowledge the wide experience and significant achievements of Andrew Bagnall in Porsche racing cars worldwide. Throughout all his racing he has proved to be an outstanding ambassador to the Porsche brand and to New Zealand.
NZ Festival of Motor Racing celebrating Porsche – January 2016
New Zealand Porsche Drivers
By Jim Barclay