Monday, 30 June 2014

Bristol 401 'Mitchell Special'

I'd not heard of this car before I saw it at the SeeRed meeting at Donington Park in May 2011, but it's the Mitchell Special, based on an early 1950s Bristol 401 and you can read about it here. It was driven in the Pre-1961 Sports & GT Cars race by the builder of the car, Andrew Mitchell, and I took the photograph below during that race at McLeans Corner.
I would have liked to have included here a photograph of the standard Bristol 401, but on looking through my photographs it seems that I've never actually taken a photograph of one, nor of the virtually identical Bristol 403.

Friday, 27 June 2014

Friday's Ferrari

Today's car is one which I've shown twice before, on 29 March 2013 and 5 April 2013, on those occasions at the Coys International Historic Festival meeting at Silverstone in August 2001.
It's a 1956 Ferrari 750 Monza, serial number 0568M, and it's pictured here in the pit garage at Silverstone at the Historic Tribute meeting of June 2004. The website says this about the car:
 0568M was a 750 Monza Scaglietti Spyder, was sold to Francois Picard, F, he finished 3rd in the GP Agadir, was a dnf in Dakar, 3rd in the 1000km Paris, Monthlery, 11th in GP Rouen, then Alfonso de Portago raced the Monza in the GP Sweden, where it stayed after the GP, new owner was Tore Bjurström, S - Scuderia Ferrari Swezia. In 1958 the Finn Carl-Otto Bremer became the new owner and raced the Monza until 1961. After Bremer died in a flying accident, the car went Pentti Groehn he drove the car on local sand tracks and ice races.
I don't know whether the car took part in the meeting or not. The history of the car (click on the serial number above) doesn't mention this Silverstone event, but it does say that Carlos Moneverde was the owner at that time. It was a 2 day meeting and I went on the Saturday but the Historic Sports Car Championship race was on the Sunday. This is the entry list for that race:
You will see that the last car is Carlos Monteverde's Silver and Blue Ferrari Y50 (I think someone must have mistaken a badly formed '7' for a 'Y').

Wednesday, 25 June 2014

Jaguar XKSS

The Jaguar XKSS was a road-going version of the 1954/55 Jaguar D-type created by modifying the chassis of the D-types which remained unsold when Jaguar withdrew from racing after the 1955 season. You can read the story of the XKSS here. The car shown above was photographed at the Coys International Historic Festival meeting at Silverstone in July 1995. The featured marque at that meeting was Aston Martin, with a special tribute to Carroll Shelby who shared the winning drive in an Aston Martin DBR1 at the 1959 Le Mans 24 Houir race with Roy Salvadori. The lettering above the number plate of the above car reads:
'Supporting the Shelby Transplant Trust
Innes Ireland Memorial Rally'
I can't find any reference to this car in the programme of the meeting, nor on the internet, but I've come across a forum on the website which says this (and incidentally infers that the car in the above photograph is actually a replica):

'Beachcomber’s Tales from the Day – October 2012.
“Carroll Shelby – The Innes Ireland Memorial Rally”
Several people have contacted me over my connections with Carroll Shelby – so here’s a brief backgrounder as a prelude to the main story.
In 1978 I visited my old pal [and partner in the UK based “Americar” speed shop] Keith Harvie, who had moved to the US to set up Performance Automotive Wharehouse [PAW].
I spent some time with Keith – including visiting his neighbours on the trading estate in Tarzana – including one Don Prudhomme!
Keith was busy building an Arntz Cobra complete with genuine 427 side oiler and all the good bits. I felt there was a good market for such a replica in the UK and we spoke with Steve Arntz to try to set up a deal for 2 cars. He refused to supply outside the Continental USA – so Keith bought the 2 kits for me [!!] and shipped them to England where I’d just set up my speed shop “Muscle City”.
The “chassis” was an abysmal mess, the body wasn’t much better. So we completely revamped the body and I designed a chassis taking Jaguar suspension. That was my introduction to Cobra replicas – there then followed 25+ years of involvement developing, manufacturing and selling. Along the way I developed a friendship with my pal Adrian Cocking from Realm Engineering [RAM] – who at that time made the fiberglass bodies for me. I continued to liaise with and design for AC over the years, so when Shelby American contacted Adrian to discuss a sole UK approval for Cobra replicas – I was called in to head the negotiations. Long story short – the approval was granted [unique outside the US] and I became very friendly with Shelby and ended up assisting in the setting up of his European Transplant Trust – handling organ transplants for underprivileged people. I was designated as the European Liaison Officer.
It was under this guise that I organized the vehicles for the celebrities to drive during the memorial festival for Innes Ireland. Innes was a truly talented driver who like many succumbed at a far too young age to cancer. This was at a time when the drivers were not so full of their own importance and counted each other [in the main] as comrades as well as competitors.
I arranged for a display at the National Racing Car show to showcase the Transplant Trust and it was during this time that all Shelby’s car racing buddies got together to honour Inness Ireland with a huge cavalcade, culminating at Silverstone Race track.
I arranged cars [replicas !] for Carroll [Cobra of course], Sir Jack Brabham [D Type], Richard Noble MBE – former world speed record holder [XKSS], D Type for John Surtees MBE and various D’s and Cobras for other dignatories including the Lord Mayor of Birmingham.
After a Black tie dinner the preceeding night – the public in their classic cars – all 2000+ of them - congregated in the car parks of the National Exhibition Centre. The first stop over was the Jaguar Works in Coventry, where a lavish lunch had been put on by Jaguar for the dignatories. When the cavalcade started out it was emphasized that this was taking place on public roads and that the national speed limits should be observed …......
Well that lasted for all of 5 miles until Shelby overtook Sir Stirling Moss and gave him the finger! Later the police reported a convoy of “fast moving cars” travelling on the motorway at speeds in excess of 140 mph!! No action was taken and the whole trip turned into a bit of a tear up.
I was travelling in my Cobra with the BBC television cameraman [lady actually] to record as much as possible. 
It was a pure delight to see Shelby totally at ease with his racing mates, even my intrusion with the camera and interviews was not an imposition as I was considered a friend.
It was a revelation to hear stories that at the time could not possibly have been published. Like the time a certain driver at Le Mans put the Ford GT into the sandbank at Mulsanne corner rather than drive it as in his words it was “Bloody lethal”. Or when describing his championship winning Aston [with Roy Salvadori as co-driver] as “basically, a sack of shit”. Or when Carroll was asked about Enzo – “a man who needed a size 12 up his ass”.
All the celebs and dignatories gave up a considerable amount of time – some travelling 1000’s of miles to be there. The rally raised over £50K that was split with specific Cancer Charities, and apart from the evening soiree – the celebs received not a penny. 
Apparently Innes Ireland was a definite hooligan – in a nice way. A rebel rouser and one to party.
Carroll told us of the time after the Spa race, when Innes decided he wanted to see the view from the top of the local church. Having had a few drinks [after the race] he was refused entry to the church …….Carroll and the boys bet him he wouldn’t be able to get to see the view as the priest was adamant at not letting the drunken revellers into the church. So Innes proceeded to climb up the outside of steeple! He did make it to the top, but didn’t make it down again before the priest had called the local gendarmerie. When they arrived -  lucky for the boys they were race enthusiasts – Carroll arranged for all present to autograph copies of the race programmes and forget about Innes’ little escapade.
When the cars eventually arrived at Silverstone they were all lined up around the circuit – with Carroll with Moss riding shotgun in the lead Cobra. The cars stretched 3/4s of the way round the circuit and were 4 abreast. The Cavalcade then took 3 tours of the circuit before parking up for the speeches from the various celebs. The whole event was filmed by a bunch of friends from a local Film and lighting hire company, who with the management’s blessings took out several exceedingly valuable cameras, sound and lighting equipment – not to mention two company support vans and a specially adapted motorcycle film platform! 
It would be hard to imagine today’s crop of F1 superstars all coming together for such an event for one of their number.'

Monday, 23 June 2014

Aston Martin DB2

This photograph was taken at the Aston Martin Owners Club meeting at Oulton Park in May 2002. It's a 1950 Aston Martin DB2, one of three cars which were built to take part in the 1950 Le Mans 24 hour race. Unfortunately it didn't take part in that race because of an accident en route to the circuit and this Bonhams website describes the history of the car when it was offered for auction in 2010. It was raced at the Oulton Park meeting by the then owner, Oliver Leyba of Hamburg, who is shown in action below at Lodge Corner.

Friday, 20 June 2014

Friday's Ferrari

This car, photographed at the 1994 Coys International Historic Festival meeting at Silverstone in July 1994, is a 1962 Ferrari 250 GTO, serial number 3445GT. If you read the history of the car you will see that it was rebodied by Drogo in 1965 in a non-GTO style, but following an accident in 1976 it was again rebodied as a standard Series 1 GTO. This website details that part of the car's life and has photographs of the car with its Drogo body. At Silverstone the car was entered and driven in the Coys of Kensington GT Race by the owner Robs Lamplough.

Wednesday, 18 June 2014

Speedway: John Player's No. 6 Classic (16 April 1976) at Belle Vue Stadium

Heat 4: Chris Morton (yellow/black), Tommy Jansson (white), Peter Collins (blue) & Jim McMillan (red)

Heat 6: Peter Collins

Heat 8: George Hunter (red) & Tommy Jansson (yellow/black)

Peter Collins, Eric Boocock, Russ Hodgson & Chris Morton

Peter Collins

Heat 12: Chris Morton (red) & Nigel Boocock (yellow/black)

Eric Boocock, Paul Tyrer & Chris Morton

Heat 14: Mitch Graham (yellow/black), Reg Wilson (white) & Kristian Praestbro (red)

Tommy Jansson

Heat 15: Russ Hodgson (white) & Soren Sjosten (yellow/black)

Heat 16: Geoff Pusey (red) & Jim McMillan (yellow/black)

Result: 1st Peter Collins (15 points)
           2nd Doug Wyer (12 points)
           3rd Chris Morton (12 points)
           4th Tommy Jansson (12 points)
There was a run-off for 2nd and 3rd places, finishing as above

Monday, 16 June 2014


This is a car I photographed in St Peter Port on our recent trip to Guernsey. When I first saw it I thought that it was a Mazda, but the badge said 'Eunos' (which I'd never heard of) so I took the photograph to remind me to find out something about it.
It turns out that it is a Mazda, an MX-5, which was marketed in Japan under the name of Eunos.

Friday, 13 June 2014

Friday's Ferrari

I took this photograph in the public parking area at the Richard Seaman Memorial Trophies meeting at Oulton Park in July 1987.
It's a Dino 246 GT, a car produced by Ferrari between 1969 and 1974. It has a 2.4 litre V6 engine and the 'L' at the end of the registration number suggests that it was made between 1 August 1972 and 31 July 1973, which should indicate that it's a Series III model. It was marketed as a Dino rather than a Ferrari and this Wikipedia article gives the following explanation:
'Dino was a marque for mid-engined, rear-drive sports cars produced by Ferrari from 1968 to 1976. Used for models with engines with fewer than 12 cylinders, it was an attempt by the company to offer a relatively low-cost sports car. The Ferrari name remained reserved for its premium V-12 and flat 12 models until 1976, when "Dino" was retired in favor of full Ferrari branding.'

Wednesday, 11 June 2014

Austin 7

The Austin 7, produced by the Austin Motor company from 1922 to 1939, was the car which brought car ownership to people in Great Britain in much the same way as the Ford Model T did for Americans in the USA. Several of these cars took part in the Manchester to Blackpool Veteran and Vintage Car Run organised by the Lancashire Automobile Club in May 1992 and below are photographs of two of those cars taken at the starting point for the run on the Exchange Station approach, opposite Manchester Cathedral.
This is the 1927 Austin 7 Chummy of Peter Marshall of Thornton Cleveleys, Lancashire
This one is the 1928 Austin Chummy of Richard P Yates of Wrea Green, Fylde

Monday, 9 June 2014

Jaguars & Cars with Jaguar Engines

In the 1950s most sports car races would contain a variety of Jaguars, or Jaguar-engined cars and some of these were in evidence at the Donington International Historic Grand Prix meeting in May 2004 at Donington Park organised by the British Racing & Sports Car Club. Below are some of the cars which I photographed at that meeting.
This is a 1954 Jaguar XK120 with the 3442cc version of the straight-6 engine. This car was entered and driven in the HGPCA Race for pre-1959 Drum-Braked Sports Cars by George Holt.
A 1952 Jaguar C-type which took part in the BRDC Historic Sportscar Championship race, although the car is not shown in the programme. It's car XKC021 and may have been owned at that time by Dave Lomas. The Le Mans 24 hour race was won by Jaguar C-types in 1951 and 1953.
The car in the background is Ben Eastick's 1955 Jaguar D-type long-nose, registration number 207 RW, which also took part in the BRDC Historic Sportscar Championship race, as did the car in the foreground, John Pearson's 1959 Costin-bodied Lister Jaguar. The Costin Lister was designed to be fitted with Chevrolet engines but a few used the Jaguar XK unit. Jaguar D-types won the Le Mans 24 hour race in 1955, 1956 and 1957,
This car, which took part in the 2¼ hour long Gentleman Drivers GT and Sports Endurance Race, is a 1954 HWM Jaguar. It was driven in the race by Michael Steele and Julian Bronson.
Another car which took part in the HGPCA Race for Pre-1959 Drum-Braked Sports Cars, this is the 1952 RGS Atalanta Jaguar owned by Barry Wood.

There was also a Cooper Jaguar at the meeting but I didn't get a photograph of that.

Friday, 6 June 2014

Friday's Ferrari

The Ferrari & Maserati Festival of Racing meeting at Donington Park in May 2003 included a race for older Ferraris. The programme of the event says this about this race:

'Designed to be a couple of pilot races for 2003, the initiative is already a hit and more than 20 classic models will be racing at Donington in the first of the series of races. Generally aimed at pre-1990 cars, the class has drawn into action several stunning 1960s cars including two 250s, the 275 GTB of David Cottingham and the 365GTB4 of Grahame Bryant in the class for the oldest cars. The more developed 308s and 328s that used to rule the roost in the Pirelli Maranello Ferrari Challenge have been given a new home in the Classic series and they have supported the event with enthusiasm. Graham Reeder (328), Duncan McKay (308) and Mike Furness (328) have all taken the chance to race their older cars as well as current cars in the PMFC races. With wonderful models like the Dino 246GT of Colin Campbell and the Testarossa of Ray Hanson also due on the grid, it seems that the Ferrari Formula Classic has really captured the imagination of Ferrari owners!'

The photograph below, taken in the pit garage, is of the 1971 Ferrari 365GTB/4C Daytona of Grahame Bryant referred to above.
This car is serial number 13971 and you can read about it here

There was another Ferrari 365GTB/4 Daytona in the Ferrari Owners Club car park on the inside of Redgate Corner and this one is serial number 14517.

Wednesday, 4 June 2014


The Historic Car Races meeting organised by the Aston Martin Owners Club at Oulton Park in September 1986 included a race labelled as Round 3 of the Historic Car Championship. One car which took part in the race was this 1958 BRM P25.
I assume it's John Harper's car, because the programme of the meeting actually shows that car number 27 in this race was John Harper's 1960 Cooper Climax, but I know that John Harper did also drive a BRM P25.
The P25 was the car with which Joakim Bonnier achieved  BRM's first Grand Prix victory, in the 1959 Dutch Grand Prix.

Two photographs of the car at Lodge Corner during the race.

Tuesday, 3 June 2014

Victorian Day 2007, Riverton, New Jersey - The Car Show

One of the photographs I showed yesterday at the Victorian Day in Riverton in June 2007 was of some of the cars lined up in Main Street for people to admire. Here are other photographs I took of  the cars and I've tried to identify each of them, but I'm not too familiar with American cars and if anyone wants to correct any of my identifications please do so.
I think this may be a 1950s Pontiac
This one I can't really hazard a guess, but some 1950s Chevrolets have similar looking grilles (although this grille didn't necessarily come with this particular vehicle)
Possibly a 1940s Plymouth
1950s Ford Fairlane Sunliner
A 1950s Chevrolet, probably a 150
1960s Pontiac (Bonneville?)
1940s Plymouth and 1950s Ford Fairlane Sunliner
1941 Ford De Luxe Coupe
Studebaker Lark (and judging by the licence plate a 1962 model)
Late 1920s/early 1930s car with what looks like a Chevrolet badge
This was lined up with the show cars and it's a 1950s Studebaker pickup, probably a 3R
1950s Ford Fairlane Victoria
1950s Cadillac
1970s AMC AMX
Another view of the 1941 Ford De Luxe Coupe
1970s Plymouth Barracuda
1960s Cadillac deVille
1930s Ford Model A