1977 Porsche 935 #40 Pilots: C. Ballot-Léna, P. Gregg Team: JMS Racing / ASA Cachia Race: 3rd overall (1st in Group 5) at Le Mans in 1977 Spark - S2021 (resin)
In 1976, FIA redefined the rules for Group 5 racing. These new rules allowed extensive modifications to the car. Specifically, only the bonnet, roof, doors and rail panel were left unmodified. Porsche jumped on the opportunity and developed the famous 935. Powering the big beast was a boxer-6 SOHC with 12 valves and 2857 cm³. With it’s single KKK turbo it delivered a brutal 630 hp of power. The 935 only weighed 900 kg, and with that single big turbo it suffered from a LOT of turbo lag. That being so, Porsche’s dedicated Group 5 weapon was not for the faint of heart. In spite of that, in 1977 Porsche offered the model for sale, and it was a hit amongst privateers
The French team JMS Racing was serious about the 1977 24 Heures du Mans. They bought chassis #930 770 0912 to race in Group 5 and #930 670 0177 (Porsche 934) for Group 4. To prepare both cars they partnered with Henri Cachia from ASA Cachia, and painted them in the striking “X-Ray” livery. However, during the race things were not smooth for #40. The car had problems with the brakes and fuel injector pump, and even needed a turbocharger replacement. Nonetheless, 935 #40 had a better race than the superior factory 935/77. Despite all the mishaps, on Sunday afternoon car #40 finished in third overall and first in class. Concurrently, car #56 finished 12th overall and third in class. Not bad at all for the team’s first attempt at La Sarthe.
The “X-Ray 935”. 935 #40 here is a grail model for me. Not only does it have one of the coolest liveries ever, I had both the #40 and #56 in my 1:18 days. Ever since I got the X-Ray 934 I was looking forward to completing the duo. Nevertheless, Spark’s model is nothing short of rare, and I hadn’t found one until now. In the end, I got a GREAT 1:43, a class winner and an art car. In other words, a grail model. Score!