WRITTEN BY: NATHAN VAN VUGT
It has been a busy start to the year for ECU-Racing and the hard work has really paid off. Today we unveil the newest addition to the team’s lineage of Formula Student cars — and if you haven’t noticed — it is Sunoco, in particular the Porsche 917/30.
The history of the Porsche 917/30 was an obvious choice for the team with Edith Cowan University’s 25th anniversary happening next year and the colours of the Sunoco livery coinciding with the university’s colours.
But why the Porsche 917? After five years of McLaren dominating the Can-Am series — which sounds very familiar to the team and many Australian Formula Student teams — Porsche developed the 917/10K. During the 1972 season Porsche dominated with Mark Donohue injured and George Follmer taking the series with the 917/10K. In the 1973 series, the Sunoco livery draped the Porsche for the first time. The 917/30 was developed around a change in aero rules, which we have had to overcome with the new 2015 FSAE rules. Also, a longer wheelbase was introduced, which could also be related, but we won’t give too much away.
Porsche went on to win the 1973 season, winning all but two races, with the most powerful road car ever built. Capable of four-digit power figures, the driver had the option of running up to 32psi of boost when needed. The dominance of the 917/30 was so great it pushed McLaren to leave the sport concentrating on Formula 1 and the Indy 500.
This livery means a lot to the team. We are able to celebrate our university’s 25th anniversary and pay homage to the Porsche 917/30 — a car that has inspired our design and motivation to achieve even greater things.