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Getting Started - a brief guide to racing a 2CV

This guide is designed to help you if you are going to start racing in either the 2CV Racing Championship or its famous 24-hour race. The fun starts here…

There are normally around six 2CV races during the year. The racing season commonly starts in April and runs through until November. There are some 'sprint’ 12 lap events, whilst most are endurance events that vary in length between 1 hour and 24 hours. Endurance events will allow second, third and fourth drivers to compete in the same car depending on their length.

Racing Requirements

Basics - To start racing you will need the following: -

A car racing licence. (Minimum of a national race ‘B’ license) These are available from the MSA (motorsport association, UK motorsport governing body).To get your license, if your are a complete novice, will mean completing an ARDS course before applying for your license. The ARDS course to is a basic test to make sure you are safe and aware before joining us on track.

Look at racing licence packs from the MSA here :- http://www.msauk.org/site/cms/contentViewArticle.asp?article=2384

Look at one of many ARDS courses here :- http://www.thruxtonracing.co.uk/home_racingdriver.html

Membership of the 2CV Racing Club. Membership will provide you with your racing number, important race information, Snails Pace club magazine, invites to social events, club discount schemes and will allow you to score points in our championship rounds.

Membership of the B.A.R.C. (The British Automobile Racing Club) who will provide you with your race entries and information, club discount scheme, Startline club magazine and Race dates through out the year. Look at the BARC website here :- http://www.barc.net

Personal Safety equipment. Compulsory for every race driver will be fireproof overalls and crash helmet. Other items of safety equipment are strongly advised. Race overalls and crash helmets need to be to the correct specification. This can be found in the MSA ‘blue book’ which comes with your race license starter pack.

Vehicle Safety equipment. Cars need to comply with current MSA safety requirements. You will need a roll cage, fire extinguisher, racing harness, plus other less expensive safety items. The MSA blue book will list all safety requirements that must be met for circuit racing.

Medical. If you are a first time applicant you will need a medical before applying for your race license. These can be done by your GP and are similar in style to medicals done for life insurance purposes.

A Race Car. Race cars can be built yourself, borrowed, bought and hired. There is nothing stopping you from getting on the track. Mention fire extinguishers and harnesses.

History The whole concept of 2CV racing is that it’s an inexpensive, fun formula that allows you onto the motorsports ladder so that means that anybody can do it, novice or experienced. There is always help at hand either via our website, on race days or by phone. Team spirit and a family friendly atmosphere is what we try to provide at all events.

The rules have been written by the drivers for the drivers with cost and safety in mind. The cost of building a 2CV racing car can be as little as £1500-£2000, but this depends on how much work you do yourself and how competitive you want to be. Alternatively second hand race cars are generally available on our website, www.2cvtv.com and Ebay.


Engines - Sensible engine tuning means engines can last a couple of seasons, including a 24-hour between rebuilds, and it only costs between £600 and £1200 to build in the first place. They are a simple and interesting unit to work on and performance is better than most people think. With 35-45HP and a car weighing only 530Kg the cars can still do 90 mph.

Modifications are limited to higher (9.0:1) compression pistons, gas flowed cylinder heads, lightened flywheels, from the 2004 season a mandatory control camshaft from Kent Cams, details of which will be sent to you on joining the 2CV Racing Club (it is no longer permitted to use Citroen’s original camshaft) and 2CV racing club approved Luminition electronic ignition.

The engine technical regulations, as with all the technical regulations apply to both the enduro (including 24hr) and sprint races.

Much amusement has been had by the motoring press with reports of 3 or 4 engines per car required for the 24hr race, this 'requirement' is rubbish. The 24hr race, now held at Snetterton Circuit in Norfolk but formerly always run at Mondello Park near Dublin, has nearly always been won by a team which started and finished with the same engine then finished the rest of the season on it, even competing with the same engine in the following year's 24hr event! Any engine failures during the 24hr race are usually caused by drivers unfamiliar with the 2cv's simple but unusual gear change, the best way to overcome the unfamiliarity is to use the car for a round or two of the championship before the 24hr race, driving a road 2cv helps a lot too.

Chassis - In the current 2CV rules, you have the choice of two chassis. There is not much difference between them in performance, the standard Citroen chassis is the lightest, whilst the SLC is slightly stiffer than the replacement chassis sold for road use by either Citroen or SLC.

Roll cages - need to be as per the MSA ‘Blue Book’ for saloon cars. The addition of a bar between each front and each rear foot of the cage is compulsory, please refer to the regulations for the details of this bar.

Wheels & tyres - Tyres must be 15 inch 80 profile Firestone F560 or Michelin XZX (not Bridgestone!) road tyres. Sizes used are 125, 135, or 145 (Michelins are only available in 145 size). Most people these days run 145s. A set can last more than a complete season - not including the 24-hour race when between 1 and 4 tyres may be needed to complete the distance. Scrubbed tyres are available through the club at a discount price. Standard Citroen 2cv original road wheels must be used & are available discounted to 2cv racers.

Suspension - The one area where racing 2CV’s are noticeably different from road 2CVs, is that the race 2CV’s suspension has been lowered and stiffened. This means there is none of that ‘scraping the door mirrors on the road’ when cornering like standard road 2CVs.Spring rates are generally increased 150-200% over standard springs which coupled to light weight makes them very agile on the track, enough to surprise other race cars on a test day. Corner speed is the Holy Grail. Modifications required to achieve racing quality handling are very limited, modified front arms (camber and caster adjustments) can be supplied by a number of teams or simply modify them yourself to reduce the costs.

Shock absorbers can be replaced with alternatives and bump stops can be removed. Camber and caster angles are free on front and rear axles. It is also possible to fit an Ami 8 anti roll bar to the front suspension.

Steering - The steering rack must be standard, but track rods are normally lengthened while track rod adjusters can be strengthened or replaced. Through the racing club it is possible to buy strengthened adjuster sets which is recommended. The steering column must have a universal joint added to the bottom end. This means you can lower the steering wheel position to suit your driving position. Standard wheel bearings and kingpins are still used, but its best to check them every year. If the car is doing the 24-hour race then it’s advisable to check them very thoroughly - before the event!

Exhausts - systems must pass MSA noise levels. There are two main types of system used, a modified road system or a 2 into 1 system.

The basic rule of thumb is that the standard system gives better torque and is easy to fit onto existing mountings whilst the 2 into 1 gives better top end power.

Gearbox - A standard 2CV6 602cc gearbox is used (Dyane or 2CV4 gearboxes are not allowed), the only modifications permitted are that you can extend the gear stick and put a blanking pug in the speedo cable hole if no speedometer is fitted to the car. Gearboxes, even in race trim, seem to last for ever, and can be easily rebuilt.

Brakes - The standard 2CV braking system is used, and is more than capable of lasting the 24-hour race even in road car condition. 2CV’s from the mid 70’s onwards had discs on the front and drums on the rear, and if anything a standard 2CV is over braked anyway. Most importantly the front brake calipers should be serviced (fit new seals and replace fluid.LHM fluid only) to prevent overheating. Heat sinks can be fitted to the calipers to help dissipate heat. Brake pads are free, and there are a number of different pads on the market. But in general the standard original Citroën front brake pad is just as good.

Exterior - it is necessary to remove the front and rear bumpers and the fitting of a front spoiler is mandatory. The side and rear windows can be replaced with 4mm thick Perspex sheet. Glass reinforced bonnets, front & rear wings are optional from season 2004. The mandatory ABS front spoiler is available to racing club members.

Technical regulations - To download the latest available complete set of technical regulations please look at the BARC website www.barc.net:-- http://www.barc.net/PDFdocs2005/2cvregs2005ver1.pdf

Technical Menu
Introducing the 2CV Race Car
Technical Regulations
Club Camshaft Requirements
Welsh Arms
Parts, Suppliers & Specialists
Getting Started
Buddy Scheme
Frequently Asked Questions
Advice to first time Racers
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