If the best things come to those who wait, why hasn’t my Sierra been mended by a bunch of magic elves with impeccable welding skills? It’s months since I decided to fix a few rust scabs and replace a front wing, yet the car hasn’t gained a miraculous ability for self-repair. I despair, I really do.

 

Still, I’ve managed to patch a couple of holes (nothing major – two the size of a 5p coin, and another small-ish triangle where muck gathers behind the front wheel) and stitch together a stress crack that appeared on the inner wing adjacent to the fuse box. This is the place where all Sierras (and Sapphires) seem to suffer, so I added a strengthening plate alongside the existing double-skin, followed by seam-sealer and a quick coat of white stone chip protection; hopefully, it will help the 30-year-old bodyshell cope with coilovers and country roads.

I suppose the ideal answer would be the strut-top supports found on Escort Cosworth inner wings and Ford Motorsport bulkhead/chassis rail plates, but the modification I’ve made will be completely hidden when the front wing and arch liner are back in place, which means I won’t be hung, drawn and quartered by concours purists for meddling with a genuine Cossie.

Talking of which, photos of my three-door appear on several pages of my latest book, Factory-Original Ford RS Cosworths, which hit the shelves this month, available through Ford Books (www.fordbooks.co.uk) for £30 delivered. I’ve added a personalised inscription to the opening page, which means the very first copy from the initial print run is dedicated to D31 XCD. Okay, the car will never again be factory-original, but at least it now has its own little place in history.

 

Thanks: Ford Books www.fordbooks.co.uk