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History of a CP, DP, GT3 and EP
Datsun 2000 Roadster

Dave McDowell

The Dave McDowell years

After Dave purchased the car from Col. George Franklin he campaigned it with some success in the SCCA's Central Division over a number of years, firstly in D Production, through GT3 from 1984 and, finally, in E Production from 1987. Business, travel and financial obligations prevented a consistently serious effort, but Dave was a strong campaigner when he did race, breaking E-production track records at most of the Central Division tracks .  He also qualified and raced at the Runoffs in 1983, 1985 and 1987, as well as achieving a qualifying record at the 1987 runoffs, where Dave achieved his best result, finishing second to Bob Studdard, also racing a Datsun 2000. (The Datsuns benefited from the removal of a 100lb weight restriction because insufficient notification was given by the SCCA to impose the extra weight). 

The 1987 race marked the car's fourth National Runoffs, over a period of 18 years.


The official 1987 ARRC Results

In 2001, Dave still owned the car.  He races it occasionally with fair success, although he has not campaigned it seriously since 1987.  During his ownership, Dave has continued to develop and improve his Datsun 2000, to comply with changes in SCCA rules and to ensure that the car remains competitive. These changes are outlined in the fascinating gallery below which, like the George Franklin gallery, includes images kindly provided by Dave himself.

 The Dave McDowell Roadster Gallery
 Click on thumbnails for larger images.
The early years Col. Franklin had damaged the right front of the car and he decided to repaint the car red when the repairs were done. The car was red when Col. Franklin sold it to Dave.
#85 in the late 1970s

Back to silver Dave changed the colour back to silver in 1978

In the shop - early 1980s These photos were taken in the early 1980s when Dave decided to modify the front and rear suspension to accept coil over springs and shocks. The chassis stands were a big help. The other Roadster in the foreground is Dave's wife's street toy.
Suspension mods

Mid Ohio, 1984 Dave competing in GT3 at the Carousel, Mid Ohio during an SCCA National race in 1984 in GT3 in 1984. (Photo courtesy of

Dave McDowell leads Tom Brennan Dave leading Tom Brennan in his 924.  Tom won National Championships in both the Datsun 2000 and the Porsche.

Road Atlanta - GT3 Road Atlanta 1985 - the GT3 Runoffs.

1987 Runoffs - on the grid - front view Road Atlanta 1987 - the grid at the EP Runoffs - Dave qualified first with a new lap record.  Bob Studdard, the eventual winner, sits alongside Dave, in his Datsun 2000.
1987 Runoffs - on the grid - rear view

1987 Runoffs - the early laps Road Atlanta 1987 - the race. Bob Studdard (not shown) leads. Dave takes 2nd place, the best Runoffs placing for the Franklin/McDowell 2000 in its long history. The race was a real battle, and Dave kept in the clear. He said: "I just waited for all the messes to clear themselves up in front of me".
1987 Runoffs - 2nd place

On the grid - front 3/4 view Dave's 2000 as most recently raced.

From 2001 Dave's 2000 in the year 2001. Work progresses slowly.


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