The iconic Ti22 Mk II Can-Am car returns to the track at the Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach April 7, 2017 in the Historic Motor Sports Association (HMSA) Can-Am Challenge race.
The original Peter Bryant-designed car was successfully raced in the Can-Am by Jackie Oliver and was one of the few cars capable of competing head-to-head with the dominate McLaren team. It was destroyed in a crash at the Riverside Can-Am race in 1972. This new car is an exact ‘nut and bolt’ recreation of the original car built from Bryant’s drawings and incorporating many original parts.
Peter Bryant’s 1969 Ti 22 Mk I and 1970 Ti 22 Mk II were the first road race cars to make extensive use of Titanium instead of aluminum and steel in their construction and featured innovative aerodynamic bodywork.
The rights of the Ti 22 Mk II were purchased by Bob Lee in 2013 along with most of the original design documents. For the past four years Bob Lee and Ilja Burkoff have been recreating the new Ti 22 Mk II Can-Am race car.
“The task was challenging as we rebuilt the car from incomplete drawings and photos,” said owner Bob Lee. “The team had to learn how to machine, weld and hot form Titanium building the parts needed for this production”.
The Ti 22 Mk II will join nineteen other Can-Am cars in their first appearance at the Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach. The Long Beach street course will be a challenge for these road race cars requiring a different set-up from the typical road course. Hearing these high hp monsters accelerate close to 200 mph on the long front straight will be thrilling for fans. At Long Beach the Mk II will be driven by Ilja Burkoff, an experienced historic racer and lead fabricator for the project.
[Source: HMSA; photo: Pete Biro]