1979 March 79B Formula Atlantic
Ex-James King. Chassis 79B-16
$65,000. Top flat bottom FA car to have.
The March, chassis #16, was purchased by James King from Doug Shierson Racing in the spring of 1979. King focused primarily on SCCA racing with the March, but did compete in a few CASC North American Formula Atlantic Series races. For 1979, these included a 6th place finish at Road America in July, and 13th at the Canadian Grand Prix Formula Atlantic support race in Montreal in September.
According to James, the March was either on pole, or the front row, for most all of the SCCA Formula Atlantic races in which he competed for 1979.
For the 1981 season, James acquired 1980 March 80A aero side pods and had them installed on the car. He would race the car in this configuration through 1982.
Near the end of the 1982 season, after qualifying for the SCCA National Championship with the March, James pulled the engine from the March and installed it in his new Ralt RT4. He ran the Ralt at the SCCA Runoffs and won the National Championship.
James then turned the March over to his team/business partner Dennis Eade of Comprep.
The March was subsequently purchased from Eade by the current owner and rebuilt by John Rogers Racing. Since then the March has been raced by the current owner in historic races.
The March was restored by John Rogers Racing including some additional chassis stiffening. It has a Wenz motor with 10 hours on and a Hewland FT200 with approximately 13 hours (see video below). The car is equipped with digital ignition, and a digital analog tach with playback. The car has a Marc Bahner rear wing but with original March side supports. The car is equipped with March reproduced front wheels and BBS rears. Spares include an additional nose and spare gears. The Willans belts are 10 years old along with the fuel cell and Halon fire system.
The March is currently in the dark green livery that James King raced in 1981. For 1982 the March carried white “Bud Light” livery to help launch Budweisers new light beer. This livery can be seen in the period photos from 1982. The current green paint is in very good condition except for the nose which could use a respray.
When reviewing the current detail photos, it is notable that what appears to be scuffs in the green paint along the side of the inner tub panels are actually scuffs in the clear tape that was applied to the tub to prevent the actual paint from being scuffed. Also, the peeling on the underside of the tub is peeling white paint, not damage to the panels themselves.
The March 79B is one of the very top cars to have in flat bottom Historic Formula Atlantic racing. If you want to win in Historic Formula Atlantic, this is the chassis you can do it with. We know. We used to race one. Forgiving and fast!
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The person who took this video is an ex-March F2 racer and March restorer. He is currently taking care of the March for the owner. He had the following to say regarding the gearbox video:
“Here’s a peak at the ring and pinion. The clicking is from the diff as I was rolling the wheel backward then I rolled them forward and no noise. My professional opinion is it is fine and needs nothing. The oil is bright red and clean. “
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