The finale of the 1985 World Sports Car Championship sees world championship racing of any kind, come to Malaysia for the first time ever. Motorcycles and Formula 1 cars would race in Malaysia years later. It is hot and humid in Malaysia with temperatures of 100+ degrees Fahrenheit. It isn’t the heat, but it’s the humidity that the driver’s will really have to cope with here at Shah Alam. When you inhale, it is almost like breathing in water as opposed to air.
Dark clouds also loom, so this race, like the typhoon conditions at Fuji last time out, will be a wet one. The clouds form overhead like a sci fi movie with special effects. There’s rain, lightning, and thunder, everywhere. The rain here in Malaysia, even makes the enormous typhoon we saw at Fuji last time, look pathetic. So, the race begins here at Shah Alam! The cars are underway! The battle is on at the front between the Rothmans Porsche’s and the TWR Jaguar’s, foreshadowing what we may see next season in 1986. Jochen Mass takes the lead, and slotting into second place is the Jaguar with Mike Thackwell at the wheel of it.
Hans Stuck and Derek Bell run third, with Stuck taking the start, running the PDK semi-automatic gearbox in the back of the Porsche. Remember, Vern Schuppan and Al Holbert drove to a fifth place at Brands Hatch back in September with this same transmission in the back of their 956 model Porsche. Walter Rohrl, driving for Audi in the World Rally Championship also utilizes a PDK gearbox in the incredibly awesome Audi Quattro Group B rally car. Hans Stuck is closing on the leader and the semi-automatic gearbox ought to be an advantage on the twists and turns of this Shah Alam circuit.
Jaguar’s currently run third and fourth, as they search for their best result of the 1985 season. But, things are not looking good for the British Racing Green cars as Jan Lammers blows a tire, crashing out of the motor race. The sister car #51 is still running. The V12 Jaguars are indeed equal to the Rothmans Porsche’s, however Mike Thackwell runs a little wide. Who can blame him? In this type of severe heat and humidity, it’s an endurance test, these 500 miles, as the heat and humidity affects e very driver out there.
Hans Stuck finishes his first stint and immediately goes to cool off, with both his hands and feet in buckets of ice water. Derek Bell has taken over the driving chores in the #2 Porsche as the world champs hope to win here at Shah Alam in the WSC finale for 1985. Jacky Ickx and Derek Bell are having a lively scrap, and Bell takes P1 from Ickx. Jacky Ickx and Jochen Mass are second, before Bell has to hit pit lane for service. It’s game over for Bell and Stuck however. The driveshaft in the Porsche 962 has packed up. The semi-automatic gear box pulls and snatches at the drive shafts, especially on the tight confines here at Shah Alam. It is game over, after a second failure for Hans Stuck and Derek Bell. But, they’ll be back to race for Porsche in 1986.
Jochen Mass now leads the motor race, co-driving with Jacky Ickx. But then, our old nemesis, rain, returns. Mother Nature clearly has other plans for this race. The battle at the front is getting tasty, though because Jan Lammers at the wheel of the #52 Jaguar XJR6, has just unlapped himself, and he’s closing on Jochen Mass hand over fist! The rain does ease off, thankfully. But, Jan Lammers’ valiant challenge won’t be enough. Jochen Mass and Jacky Ickx win in Malaysia!
Here are the results.
- #1 Ickx/Mass Porsche 962C Rothmans Porsche
- #51 Thackwell/Nielsen/Lammers Jaguar XJR6 TWR Jaguar
- #3 Schuppan/Weaver Porsche 962C Rothmans Porsche
…And last, but certainly not least, here are the final points standings in the driver’s championship cup.
- Derek Bell 117 points
- Hans Stuck 117 points *World Champions
- Jacky Ickx 101 points
- Jochen Mass 101 points
- Klaus Ludwig 58 points
- Bob Wollek 58 points
- Paolo Barilla 52 points
- Alessandro Nannini 50 points
Gordon Spice & Ray Bellm 130 points
For 1986, the World Sports Car Championship promises to deliver, with new challenges and new challengers. Join us, won’t you? You’ll be glad you did. See you in 1986. So long, everyone.