Simon Mcb6ath

taking into account that the company principal / chief engineer and his co-designer (and closest friend) both have full-time jobs in addition to their racecar business. Del Quigley, a time-served engineer, works in the Fire and Rescue Service (hence the 'Fire' prefix to the car names), while Andy Smith (whose initials formed the ADS model number prefix on the early designs) is a design engineer for a product design and development company. But don't be tempted into thinking this is a part-time operation, for the nights are long, and then there are the weekends... and up to six full-time staff involved, too.

The company's first spaceframe single seater. the DJADS1 (see V9N5), was followed in 2000 by the Suzuki Hayabusa-powered, aluminium honeycomb chassis, ADS 3 Firecat Sports Racer (VI0N6). Then, in 2002, the company's first full composite chassis single seater, the DJ Firehawk (V12N10), appeared, of which five have been built, all propelled by Hayabusa engines, normally aspirated and supercharged. In each case, the major components, whether fabricated, machined or moulded, were designed using Pro/Engineer 3D CAD and manufactured entirely in house.

The Firehawk's chassis had provision for a range of different engine options, up to and including racing V8s, alluding to an underlying - dare one say burning - ambition to compete in the sport's top echelon. The British Hillclimb Championship has been won since 2003 by normally aspirated, petrol-fuelled variants of the ex-ChampCar Cosworth XB from Nicholson McLaren Engines, latterly badged as the NME V8 (see V14N10), running in Gould Engineering

Firestorm rising

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