Although popular with the privateers, the Mk1 RS2000 never really had much involvement in motorsport as a works car – but then it was never built for that purpose. Whereas the RS1600 came about to provide Ford with a means of participating successfully in motorsport, and in particular rallying, the RS2000 was launched for commercial rather than competition reasons.
Roger Clarke did win the 1974 Mintex Dales in an RS2000, driving AOO 674L. Incidentally, this was the only time he actually rallied an RS2000.
However, the most notable success was on the Avon Tour of Britain. This was an event designed to incorporate both rallying and circuit racing into one event, featuring rally and race drivers from all over the world.
In 1974, on its debut works outing, Ford entered two Group One RS2000’s. One was driven by Roger Clark with Jim Porter as his co-driver and the other by Gerry Marshall paired with Paul White. Driving a pair of white RS2000’s, Clark headed home in first place driving PVX445M, closely followed by Marshall in PVX 446M.
In 1975, Tony Pond also took victory on the Avon Tour of Britain driving TFR 8, a privately owned and entered RS2000.
During the same year, Tom Walkinshaw made appearances in the British Saloon Car Championship. Driving a green Mk1 RS2000 with dark green decals, his success however was limited.
Roger Clark in action on the 1974 Tour of Britain
Footage from the 1975 Tour of Britain