The 1956 Porsche 356 rally car of Renée Brinkerhoff’s Valkyrie Racing has just left Wardington, headed for Peru, where it will take part in the 2018 Caminos del Inca rally. Run on gravel, the rally represents a sea change for the sixty year-old sports car, which has previously competed solely on asphalt. The switch to gravel rallying required a long list of modifications, which were recently completed at our workshops.
Porsche 356A gravel rally car modifications
Changes to the specification of the beautiful Porsche 356A included lots of chassis strengthening, including stronger damper mounts and more secure fuel tank mountings. We fitted proper seat tubes with upgraded seat belt mounts and relocated the fire extinguisher. New dampers and stronger suspension arms were fitted to help soak up more punishing terrain.
Front and rear sump guards were also fabricated – the rear was especially challenging as 356s do not have the strong rear chassis legs seen on 911s. Countless smaller jobs were completed and the engine was removed for service and checking before being refitted with a custom exhaust system.
The list of changes was substantial, but testing with Renée revealed just how far the car’s performance had evolved as a result. Adjustments to the suspension settings across the full day gave both drivers huge confidence in just how hard the car could be pushed. Richard ended the day with a fantastic 100mph jump, video of which can be seen below.
About Rally Caminos del Inca
Caminos del Inca Rally is Peru’s most famous motorsport event. Taking place from October 20th to 28th, competitors will experience a wide variety of terrain, from open desert to steep and winding mountain roads at more than 15,000 feet above sea level. Renée is partnered on this event by the experienced Peter Lythell and the 356 is supported by veteran Tuthill Safari mechanics, Simon and Jeremy.