Back to lots

1971 JRT Ford Escort RS1600 'Group 2' FIA Race Car 'Lairy Canary'*

Lot Number: 708

1971 JRT Ford Escort RS1600 'Group 2' FIA Race Car 'Lairy Canary'*

This Aveley-built 1971 RS1600 is undoubtedly one of the best FIA Mk1 'Group 2' Escorts in Europe, with an HTP valid until 2026. Totally reliable, extremely competitive - a stunning, turn-key package, built by the Jordan Racing Team in 2021 - build number 2021-031.


LIVE AUCTION: This lot was auctioned on Friday 23rd February, 2024 at 2.00pm GMT at The Wing, Silverstone Circuit, NN12 8TN

  • Body Colour

    Canary Yellow/Iconic Blue

  • Drive


  • Registration Number

    WRC 261M


This Aveley-built 1971 RS1600 is undoubtedly one of the best FIA Mk1 'Group 2' Escorts in Europe, with an HTP valid until 2026. Totally reliable, extremely competitive - a stunning, turn-key package, built by the Jordan Racing Team in 2021 - build number 2021-031.


This car is an original Aveley-built Ford Escort RS1600 sourced by the late Mike Bell in Belgium in 2011 as an original road car and which he subsequently converted to a fully specified 'Group 2' race car. Mike was an experienced and much-liked circuit racer who wanted to build a special race car finished in the colours of his beloved Norwich FC but to a genuine period Zakspeed design. This car eventually became known as 'The Lairy Canary' and was admired from the start. He ran it very successfully in FIA Saloon Car races all over Europe until his sad passing.

It was subsequently acquired by the Iconic Auctioneers Chairman, Nick Whale, during 'lockdown' in 2020/2021 and immediately entrusted to the renowned Midlands-based Jordan Racing Team for a professional rebuild. Mike and his team stripped the car completely and invested many hours of detailed work in the bodyshell including seam-welding and lightening and strengthening where required. A welded-in FIA-specification roll cage was fitted and all the running gear components including the brakes, suspension and drive train, were either rebuilt or replaced. The engine/gearbox were sold and a new, ultimate-spec, 2-litre BDG was ordered from Jondel Race Engines and mated to a new ZF 5-speed gearbox. The car was completely repainted by the long-established competition car painting specialists, Normandale in Daventry. When finished, the car was set-up, driven and tested by both Mike and Andrew Jordan and then raced successfully by Nick and Harry Whale in the Motor Racing Legends series in 2021 and 2022 with class wins and top-ten finishes every time out.The car also competed in the 2023 Mallorca Rally, finishing first in class and fifth overall and is road-registered with all the necessary parts to run highly competitively in both races and rallies to FIA 'Group 2' Saloon spec. The FIA HTP paperwork was renewed when JRT rebuilt the car and is valid until December 2026 (FIA Class: CT24 Period H1 - 1972 to 1975).

After the Mallorca event, the engine was sent for a complete refresh, as was the gearbox, and a new clutch was fitted at the same time. Its next outing was the 2023 Silverstone Festival, driven by Touring Car legend, Matt Neal, partnered by Harry Whale, once again achieving a class win and a very strong fifth overall in an ultra-competitive FIA Saloon grid with Motor Racing Legends. The car has not been used since and is sold as it finished, with a fresh engine and gearbox and an undamaged racing history. It is both demonstrably reliable and extremely competitive with a genuine reason for sale. 'The Lairy Canary' is undoubtedly one of the best Mk1 'Group 2' Escorts in Europe and is sold with spares and 12 wheels as a full turn-key package with help and guidance if required.

Not the cheapest, but the best never is. All inspections welcomed and encouraged, please call Nick or Harry for further details on both the car and spares package.


Lot Number
Registration Number
WRC 261M
MOT Expiry
Chassis Number
Engine Number
JRE 497
Body Colour
Canary Yellow/Iconic Blue





Due to the change in venue all vehicles must now be collected from The Wing, Silverstone Circuit, NN12 8TN on Sunday 25th February between 10am and 3pm

Any vehicles not collected by this time will be transported to a secure storage facility in Northampton by our transport partner EM Rogers, the charges for which are £175 plus VAT for removal and £10 plus VAT per day for storage. We will make contact on Sunday morning to confirm how you will be removing your vehicle(s). If we do not hear back from you by 1pm on Sunday, we will arrange collection with EM Rogers on your behalf.


Enjoy the excitement of bidding, knowing your budget has been approved and confirmed by your dedicated Account Manager at Oracle Car Finance. For further information simply click HERE for your free quote or call 03308 387 7491.

Oracle Finance

Buying anything at an auction is an exhilarating experience and it is easy to get caught up in the moment of seeing these fantastic cars, from roaring supercars to our much-loved classics, parading up and down the runway.

With our car auction finance experts, alongside our growing panel of specialist lenders, we may be able to get you pre-approved for your bespoke car finance package before you start the excitement of bidding at the event. Just one of the benefits of speaking to a member of our award-winning team here at Oracle Car Finance, is that we could help get you approved at the top end of your budget with an agreement in principle on any UK auction vehicle, so that you’re ready to bid confidently should your dream car sell at a higher price than expected. This agreement in principle tends to be valid between 30 and 90 days.

Get a free quote

Our Official Car Finance Provider, Oracle Finance, is the UK’s No.1 funder for prestige, sports and classic cars and can provide funding options for any vehicle, from £25,000 to multi-million pound classics and supercars.

A classic car or motorcycle is a source of great pride and enjoyment but, whether your car or motorcycle is in storage or on the road, you’ll need a specialist insurance policy. We have partnered with Howden Insurance a leading insurance brokers with a team dedicated to classic cars and motorcycles. They cover a vast array of classic and vintage models and only work with insurers who provide a great service and share our passion for the classic motor industry.

For a personal classic car or classic motorcycle quote, visit:

Newsletter Sign Up

Keyword Alerts