We did a piece on the DR30 Skyline and the FJ20 engine quite a long time ago, but a cache of old Group A racing videos on YouTube brought some memories flooding back. I used to have one you see.
Here are some videos from the 1987 Japanese Group A season, the year after the DR30 won the All-Japan championship. The videos include a time attack between a stock R31 GTS-X roadcar and the Advan Group A DR30 racecar (um…the racecar wins!) as well as highlights from a race at Tsukuba. This looks like an very early episode of Hot Version. Ahh…the memories.
The DR30 was campaigned in Australia in the 1980s by the Nissan/Gibson team to great success, and Wheels Magazine in Australia was allowed to drive the Gibson racecar in their September 1987 issue.
The Australian Group A car weighed 1035kg and produced 350hp, and the main impressions were of the Skyline’s tremendous straight line speed and torque. According to the Gibson team, the main limitation with the DR30 was the lack of aerodynamics (not a wing or spoiler in sight!) and the roadcar-based suspension. Wheels writer Peter McKay reported that the DR30 was twitchy under braking, is slow to turn in, and has a snappy transition to oversteer. Pretty much like the roadcar then!
Speaking of which, one of the most famous and well-remembered pieces of footage in Australian racing was from the 1987 Bathurst 1000 endurance race. Glenn Seton, driving the Gibson DR30, decided to stay out on slicks during a brief shower: