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Joe Kelly and his IRA at Dundrod 1951


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#1 taylov

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Posted 12 November 2009 - 17:08

This photo turned up on Fleabay last week.

Posted Image

The photo is described on the back as Joe Kelly's IRA at Dundrod June 1951. I knew that in the F1 Ulster Trophy race on 2 June 1951, Kelly had raced the Alta GP3 and that is the car seen to the left of the IRA in this photo. On checking the Dundrod programme, Joe Kelly had indeed entered a 1500cc IRA in the 10 lap handicap race that was run before the F1 race. The programme notes state that "Kelly drives a Riley engined special (called the "Irish Racing Automobile") in the handicap...."

The "Irish Racing Automobile (IRA)" was raced by Kelly in the 1949 Manx Cup race on the Isle of Man but was then described as having Lea-Francis power of 1725cc. In 1950 the IRA was again entered by Kelly in the Manx Cup and as a reserve entry in the Dundrod handicap race but by now with the 1500cc engine.

There are suggestions on the web that the Alta GP3 was later raced by Kelly under the name IRA, but here at Dundrod in 1951 they are clearly distinct cars.

Any more info on Kelly and his "IRA" would be most welcome.

Tony

Edited by taylov, 12 November 2009 - 18:09.


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#2 Allan Lupton

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Posted 12 November 2009 - 17:29

Barrie Price, in his book "The Lea-Francis Story" gives Kelly and the IRA a passing mention as having a competition Lea-Francis engine.
I'm sure I've read something else about it, but can't remember what or where.

#3 taylov

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Posted 13 November 2009 - 14:03

Posted Image

Here's another shot taken at the same Dundrod meeting in June 1951, this one of Joe Kelly's Alta that he drove in the main event, the F1 Ulster Trophy. The car is still carryng a race number from another event - it raced as car #25 at Dundrod.

The Kelly IRA raced as #66 in the 10 lap handicap race.

Tony

#4 Geoff E

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Posted 13 November 2009 - 15:58

Posted Image

Here's another shot taken at the same Dundrod meeting in June 1951, this one of Joe Kelly's Alta that he drove in the main event, the F1 Ulster Trophy. The car is still carryng a race number from another event - it raced as car #25 at Dundrod.

The Kelly IRA raced as #66 in the 10 lap handicap race.

Tony


Isn't that the car in the background of the first picture?


#5 taylov

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Posted 13 November 2009 - 17:51

Isn't that the car in the background of the first picture?


Yes, this is from the same lot of photos that I acquired recently.

Joe Kelly raced this Alta GP3 at the 1951 British GP at Silverstone as well as at Dundrod. This car has been well researched in comparison with the IRA in the first photo.

Tony


#6 fuzzi

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Posted 13 November 2009 - 20:17

From "The Curragh Motor Races 1947-1954" by Oliver McCrossan, published by Dreolin Specialist Publications, Tankardstown, County Meath -

In the 1948 race report: "Another new name that appeared on the programme was that of Joe Kelly, his car being called an IRA special, and I hasten to add that the initials stood for Irish Racing Automobile, having been built at his Red Cow Garage at Clondalkin. Over the next few years, Joe Kelly continued to build further IRA Specials, becoming one of the most successful Irish drivers, always very exiting to watch."

#7 EDWARD FITZGERALD

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Posted 13 November 2009 - 21:43

From "The Curragh Motor Races 1947-1954" by Oliver McCrossan, published by Dreolin Specialist Publications, Tankardstown, County Meath -

In the 1948 race report: "Another new name that appeared on the programme was that of Joe Kelly, his car being called an IRA special, and I hasten to add that the initials stood for Irish Racing Automobile, having been built at his Red Cow Garage at Clondalkin. Over the next few years, Joe Kelly continued to build further IRA Specials, becoming one of the most successful Irish drivers, always very exiting to watch."


Standing behind the car in post 4, Dave Griffin , the car raced by Kelly in the Curragh in 48 was a Riley based spl , I have seen it on film and it is very different to the IRA in the photos .

#8 Mal9444

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Posted 14 November 2009 - 08:20

From "The Curragh Motor Races 1947-1954" by Oliver McCrossan, published by Dreolin Specialist Publications, Tankardstown, County Meath -

In the 1948 race report: "Another new name that appeared on the programme was that of Joe Kelly, his car being called an IRA special, and I hasten to add that the initials stood for Irish Racing Automobile ... [my underlining]


Quite!

Remarkable that even in 1948 someone should usurp such a sensitive set of initials to bring a Dublin car to race on an Ulster circuit. It's a great sense of humour we all have, and that's no mistake :lol: :lol:


#9 matey

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Posted 14 November 2009 - 08:42

The car shown in the photo at the beginning of the thread is the second of the three cars which Joe Kelly ran as IRAs at various times.
Dave Griffin had had a hand in its creation. I believe that by 1951 it had a 1500cc Riley engine.
The car was later fitted with a Jaguar engine for Charlie Norton et al, and was rechristened the Jirano.
It is not the same car as the Riley-based (first) IRA which Kelly raced in 1948 and 1949, including at the Curragh in 1948.
The third car was Kelly's Alta GP3, which was briefly christened an IRA-Bristol.

ADAM

#10 Dutchy

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Posted 17 November 2009 - 12:52

Does anyone know the fate of IRAs I and II?

#11 RKELLY13

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Posted 06 January 2010 - 19:33

Does anyone know the fate of IRAs I and II?


Hi to you all if anyone needs photos of Joe Kelly or what happened to the cars he drove please post or send me a message
as I have collected a lifetimes worth about my fathers time racing and tracked all the cars down over the years and
have talked to all the new owners past and present, Joe also went on to have many car showrooms in England and Ireland
from the mid 1950's thru to 1970's when he went on to property trading in Ireland where he build a large collection of Cars
which I have followed to date.

Regards Red Kelly

#12 ensign14

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Posted 06 January 2010 - 19:43

I think all of us would! After all, your father is a part of history that nobody nowadays can match - he took part in the first-ever World Championship Formula 1 race... :)

#13 Michael Ferner

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Posted 07 January 2010 - 08:41

Yes, yes, yes! Yes! :clap: :clap: :clap:

#14 EDWARD FITZGERALD

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Posted 07 January 2010 - 11:41

[quote name='RKELLY13' date='Jan 6 2010, 19:33' post='4067313']
Hi to you all if anyone needs photos of Joe Kelly or what happened to the cars he drove please post or send me a message
as I have collected a lifetimes worth about my fathers time racing and tracked all the cars down over the years and
have talked to all the new owners past and present, Joe also went on to have many car showrooms in England and Ireland
from the mid 1950's thru to 1970's when he went on to property trading in Ireland where he build a large collection of Cars
which I have followed to date.

Regards Red Kelly

Red, I have sent you a pm .

#15 Weslake&TaylorLtd

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Posted 17 January 2010 - 23:28

Posted Image

Here's another shot taken at the same Dundrod meeting in June 1951, this one of Joe Kelly's Alta that he drove in the main event, the F1 Ulster Trophy. The car is still carryng a race number from another event - it raced as car #25 at Dundrod.

The Kelly IRA raced as #66 in the 10 lap handicap race.

Tony


I would be interested in copy"s of any photos you have of the Joe Kelly Alta GP3 .I do have some photos i will be able to exchange with.
Do you have any information on driver Torri Large with regard to him driving the tony gaze F2-1 Alta? when the car was possible in the ownership of HWM.

#16 David McKinney

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Posted 18 January 2010 - 07:18

Torrie Large was an Irish driver who ran a very fast MG TD special. He seems to have been closely associated with Kelly, as he also had drives in the Maserati 6CM and, I think, the C-type Jaguar. I don't think there was any connection with the HWM factory.
I'm sure one of our Irish members will know more

#17 EDWARD FITZGERALD

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Posted 18 January 2010 - 13:08

Torrie was people who knew him a nice chap man about town , appears to have had independant wealth , he mixed with the best , his MGTD special was built on a brand new chassis bought from the Irish assemblers Booth Poole , he exported a nimber of significant veteran cars from Ireland , he left Ireland for an unknown destination in the late fifties early sixties .

#18 Eric Dunsdon

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Posted 18 January 2010 - 15:03

I would be interested in copy"s of any photos you have of the Joe Kelly Alta GP3 .I do have some photos i will be able to exchange with.
Do you have any information on driver Torri Large with regard to him driving the tony gaze F2-1 Alta? when the car was possible in the ownership of HWM.


I recall Torrie Large driving a red Alta entered by WR Baird in the Coronation Trophy Race at Crystal Palace in May 1953. He finished last in both his heat and the final. He also drove the car at Snetterton the following weekend. Large also drove an Alta in the 1953 Ulster Trophy Race. The 'black book' has Tony Gaze as the entrant but Bobby Baird is surely more likely?.

Edited by Eric Dunsdon, 18 January 2010 - 15:08.


#19 Richard Young

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Posted 18 January 2010 - 22:00

Posted Image

Here's another shot taken at the same Dundrod meeting in June 1951, this one of Joe Kelly's Alta that he drove in the main event, the F1 Ulster Trophy. The car is still carryng a race number from another event - it raced as car #25 at Dundrod.

The Kelly IRA raced as #66 in the 10 lap handicap race.

Tony

I have a feeling this pic was taken somewhere other than Dundrod. Indeed the background suggests somewhere like Phoenix Park........

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#20 Weslake&TaylorLtd

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Posted 19 January 2010 - 00:22

Torrie was people who knew him a nice chap man about town , appears to have had independant wealth , he mixed with the best , his MGTD special was built on a brand new chassis bought from the Irish assemblers Booth Poole , he exported a nimber of significant veteran cars from Ireland , he left Ireland for an unknown destination in the late fifties early sixties .


I would like to get in touch with one of our irish members or there friends to gain some more imformation of alta owners in the early fifties period in ireland,
I wouldbe interested to find out if tony gaze F2-1 cars was raced in ireland were and when?

#21 simonlewisbooks

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Posted 19 January 2010 - 11:49

I've long held a photo in my archive that was wrongly identified at Joe's Alta GP3 at Winflied in July 1951
Looking at it again it clearly isn't an Alta but could it be the IRA ?

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The white car the background appears to be Gil Tyrer's Mille Miglia BMW. Can anyone identify the people in the shot?



#22 ndpndp

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Posted 19 January 2010 - 12:21

I've long held a photo in my archive that was wrongly identified at Joe's Alta GP3 at Winflied in July 1951
Looking at it again it clearly isn't an Alta but could it be the IRA ?

Posted Image

The white car the background appears to be Gil Tyrer's Mille Miglia BMW. Can anyone identify the people in the shot?


Kelly did have two cars at the July 1952 Winfield race:
1) his GP Alta which was number 82, and
2) what I believe was his second "IRA", a FIAT-based, Riley engined special, with GP Alta-like bodywork. This car was No. 83, so your hunch is correct, Simon

ADAM

#23 EDWARD FITZGERALD

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Posted 19 January 2010 - 12:56

Kelly did have two cars at the July 1952 Winfield race:
1) his GP Alta which was number 82, and
2) what I believe was his second "IRA", a FIAT-based, Riley engined special, with GP Alta-like bodywork. This car was No. 83, so your hunch is correct, Simon

ADAM


driver wearing leather helme t looks like Joe .

#24 Bjorn Kjer

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Posted 05 April 2012 - 10:41

Regarding post 11 ;

Did anyone get into contact with RKelly then ? And is he still available , please ?

#25 uechtel

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Posted 07 April 2012 - 07:17

Two remarks:

1. There was a rule change, that proper helmets had to be used from 1952 onward
2. I have note, that Tyrer in the Frazer Nash started at Winfield in 1950 and 1951, but naothing about 1952

So are you sure it is 1952?

And as you seem to have some info on this event, which number did Tyrer have on his car? Do you have any results on him for this race?

#26 uechtel

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Posted 07 April 2012 - 07:21

To complete my remarks, the link to the 1951 results on Stefan Örnerdal´s site:

http://www.formula2.net/F251_19.htm

We have Kelly with #83 in an Alta GP (I am not familiar with the differences between the Altas and IRA(s), but doesn´t that fit to the photo?) and also Tyrer in the race. Stefan has no results for a race in 1952 though.

Edited by uechtel, 07 April 2012 - 07:28.


#27 uechtel

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Posted 07 April 2012 - 07:24

Oh, and have also a look here