In the world of motoring, there can’t be more passionate or enthusiastic car owners than those who own anything with a blue oval badge. Generations of Ford owners, young and old, gathered at the landmark Titanic Building for the Northern Ireland RS Owners Club regional day. The late spring sunshine was a welcome sight and the clear skies provided the perfect backdrop to show off the immaculate paintwork of a range of performance Ford machinery.
The Escort remains for many, the quintessential fast Ford. Whilst the Lotus Cortina may have been the car that enabled the ordinary man on the street to get a taste of affordable speed, the rally-bred Mark 1 and Mark II Escort became true motoring icons, because of their sporting success, perfect rear wheel drive chassis and incredible popularity with the original 1970’s boy racer brigade.
Many Escorts are now cherished and valuable cars in their own right. So it was a delight to see such a wide variety of cars on display. The standard and presentation was a testament to their owners – and their eye for detail. This concours RS 1800 was nigh on perfect and without a doubt, cleaner than it left the factory.
There can be too many car fans who didn’t have a Ford crush at some or other, during their childhood. In fact, you can almost guess a person’s age, based on their favorite hot Ford. For the 80’s child, the cars to lust after were either the Escort RS Turbo or the whale-tail Sierra Cosworth. The crisp white paint of the Series 1 Turbo accentuate the angular, squared off lines of the car.
For the 90’s generation, on the other hand, Ford reached the peak of their powers with the Escort Cosworth. The over-the-top design, all muscular arches and tea-tray spoilers will always be a total head turner, especially in Imperial Blue.
With such a stunning array of machinery, it is easy to overlook the other iconic Fords that have graced the showrooms and roads of Northern Ireland in years gone by. The Capri was the original sports car for the masses. The sleek coupe was a staple component of the Ford range for over almost 20 years. Ford abandoned the model due to declining sales and have never adequately filled the void it left in the model line up.
After such a torrent of nostalgia, you could be forgiven for thinking that Ford have ceased making sought after machinery. Not so! Recent years have saw Ford unveil a complete range of hot hatches, from the very chuckable Fiesta ST, right through to the glorious five-pot Focus RS. With a brand new model imminent, our love of fast Fords remains far from over.
Check out our gallery by Graham Curry for more pictures of your favourite performance Ford.