from their premises in Surbiton, Surrey, SBD Motorsport
specialise in designing and manufacturing engine components
and management system for Vauxhall, Ford Duratec and Suzuki
Hayabusa engines for motorsport use.
wealth of knowledge is an understatement when it comes to the
knowledge possessed by company director, Steve Broughton , and
indeed his staff. SBD was Steve's brainchild, although he almost
stumbled upon motorsport by accident during the early 80s. "I
used to work at British Aerospace," Steve told Pacenotes.
"A friend of mine who also worked there decided to take up
rallying. At the time, I wasn't interested in motorsport but I
started giving him a hand."
rally bug was planted and later, Steve took up rallying with a
Chevette. It was then that his expertise as an engineer shone
through, and the beginnings of SBD Motorsport were formed. "The
Chevette has a 2.3 engine at the time but then I decided to get
someone else to build a Lotus Sunbeam engine for me," Steve
told Pacenotes. "Later, I decided to get a dry sump system
so I pulled the engine apart and rebuilt it, making the dry sump
system fit my car."
started to do fairly well in the rally scene, sealing top two
finishes in his class on a regular basis. But with the highs come
the lows, and after a big accident at Longcross where he hit a
drum filled with concrete and then a tree, he decided to give
up the sport for six months.
late 1987, he decided to make a comback and put a two litre eight
valve engine into his mount, for which he designed a belt driven
the same time, Steve's day to day work was beginnings to fade
so he started eyeing up other ventures. With his knowledge, motorsport
was a natural progression, so the early days of SBD were formed.
first, I started selling road going parts but it was an almost impossible
task," Steve admitted. "I was buying a few parts at a time
to sell on, but I needed to buy about £10k worth of product
to be able to make a profit." It was only when he built an engine
for another competitor that Steve had finally found his niche.
first engine that I bolted together was for a guy who did hillclimbs,"
Steve recalled. "Afterwards, he went to a well known event and
started to win. Roy Lane looked after his car, and he saw how well
it went, so he told everybody else in the hillclimb market.
same thing happened with rallying," Steve continued. " I
built an engine for an Astra and the competitor started to beat works
cars. After that, I received calls from General Motors, MSD and Tim
Ashton. I got a bit of work from that but I was still from the shed
eventually decided to get a workshop of his own. At first, he was
going to rent the workshop together with a friend, splitting the cost
between them, but unfortunately his friend had to pull out. "I
ended up with a massive workshop on my own," Steve explained.
"So I was feeling a bit poor but a few friends helped out, sales
picked up and engine building picked up. We started doing work for
Opel Turkey on their rally and race cars. Things took off from there."
was booming and Steve went on to work with many well known names,
including Sydney Meeke, father of Kris. Every Astra that was rallying
at that time had been through Steve's workshop. Then he was on
the verge of sealing a big contract from Gerneal Motors when the
new boss of the company decided to pull out of rallying.
with GM was good but I was flying out weeks at a time," Steve
admitted. "When it came down to it, we weren't actually getting
any return from it. So we slowly steered away from the contracts
and moved to club rallying."
built a lot of rally engines but it was quite hard work. Most
clubman didn't have vast sums of money so we were making more
by selling parts. Around the same time, I was programming for
John Read Racing Engines, and was better off doing design and
Steve started to sell components to companies including the likes
of Camillus Bradley and John Read. In fact, he admits that he
has sold to most of the dealers in Ireland, as well as many of
the UK's extremely well known names.
Vauxhall XE engine is one of Steve's specialities. He designed
a new cam, piston and con rod for the XE, which was fitted to
Adrian Hetherington's car and built by Ivan Orr of Cormeen Motorsport.
"The power went to 292bhp but it also pulled from idle,"
Steve proudly explained. "Adrian Hetherington went out for
a drive, came back and told me it coughed a bit when he went around
a roundabout. I wondered what was going on.....but then he said
he was in sixth gear at 1000rpm!"
Motorsport has also designed new traction control systems, launch
control systems, fly by wire system plus much more.
business has taken Steve to many places around the world, including
the likes of Moscow. An ice racing champion asked him to build
two engines before flying him out to Russia where he spent four
days. That led him to work with Lada - yes, Lada! But these were
no ordinary Ladas - in fact, they spent £25K on parts alone
after a day in Sweet Lamb with Steve and Jimmy McRae! That was
at the same time as ordering £12 million worth of bits,
including engines, suspension and sub-frames, which were all shipped
to Russia for rallying!
and the rest of the staff at SBD Motorsport, certainly know their
business inside out. They design and test all of their components
in house, and they are perfectly positioned to cater for all competitors,
as all staff members compete in various motorsport disciplines.
always like to come up with something new which is affordable
for clubman competitors," Steve said. "Usually we come
up with something, take a bit of time to get it going, then our
competitors realise its pretty good and try to copy it, by which
time I've already improved it!"
engine builders have failed, Steve has always worked his way around
problems. He has advised many of the leading names out there, so if
you are looking to do some work to your engine, or need advice on who
to do the work for you, make sure you contact SBD Motorsport.
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