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Harry Smith - Australian Grand Prix, 1951


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#401 Terry Walker

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Posted 24 April 2011 - 07:44

I just had a thought (I get them occasionally, very scarey) and it looks like I'll have to cruise into the State Library and look up a Perth Post Office Guide for 1950 or 51, look in Welshpool, find the name of the business Harry Smith ran. Also, if available, electoral rolls for 1950 or 51. Too many Smiths no doubt. But the electoral rolls used to show occupation, which is a very handy clue. How many Harold Smiths were panel beaters or coach builders that year? Chances are also that at that time Smith may have lived on or close to premises - it was semi rural then. (NB for ACT residents: both sources are available in the National Library too.)

Edited by Terry Walker, 24 April 2011 - 07:44.


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#402 Ray Bell

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Posted 24 April 2011 - 12:44

Might his occupation likely be something like 'Company Director'?

This is, of course, a promising line of enquiry and having spoken at length to Rodney on the subject last week as he travelled through to the Falcon GT get together in Brisbane, I know he'd be pleased if something could be dredged out of the archives somewhere.

#403 Repco22

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Posted 24 April 2011 - 14:42

Oh... something else this thread has achieved, Rod. It's dragged you here among us.


:blush: Why thanks Ray. You're very kind! It's nice to be here.

#404 Ray Bell

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Posted 24 April 2011 - 20:29

I believe it is...

And as soon as you start a thread posting your cartoons it will be an even happier place!

#405 ken devine

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Posted 24 April 2011 - 21:09

On my return to Perth I will try to locate Harrys defendants through a section of the West Australian.It has been great keeping up on my I phone.

#406 Wilyman

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Posted 25 April 2011 - 03:40

On my return to Perth I will try to locate Harrys defendants through a section of the West Australian.It has been great keeping up on my I phone.



Ken,
Don't let anyone forget that you first raised the question of the Smith Special twelve months ago on the "SpeedWest Forum". :wave:

#407 Repco22

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Posted 25 April 2011 - 13:08

I believe it is...

And as soon as you start a thread posting your cartoons it will be an even happier place!


I'd be glad to Ray. Just as soon as I figure out how to start my own thread modestly! :well:

#408 john medley

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Posted 29 April 2011 - 00:59

This story gets curiouser and curiouser. It is so easy to get one's brain into a mental set which then slots new pieces of information( or rumour!) neatly inside that mental set. Just the simple facts( or are they?) about Harold, his occupation, the body on the car, his location 1950, the car's location 1950 now give us a pretty neat fit -- do you agree?

I promise I am not making this up. I received a phone call last night and( from a different person) an email this morning, both referring to a recently found document written daily in 1948 in NSW. At this stage I am not allowed to disclose the who/where/why of this document, but I am told the document states that at a NSW rally in 1948 John Crouch man of many cars and 1949 Australian Grand Prix winner turned up with a car having a well finished fully enveloping body, all in the general style of an Allard, and carrying a Ford V8 engine. Those who communicated this information believe John Crouch's car that day was later Harold's

Edited by john medley, 29 April 2011 - 01:01.


#409 john medley

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Posted 29 April 2011 - 07:55

A little further research might dispel this new and strange turn of events....

The rally mentioned was a (NSW) Vintage Sports Car Club event on the evening of 24 April 1948. Thankfully, Australian Motor Sports' report includes the words ..."... and Crouch brought Brian Walker in the ex Alec Hayes Ford V8 Special ( Vintage cars of 1998)..." which may well solve our problem, not least because John Crouch and Brian (Blackjack) Walker won the event. The real clue lies in the misspelt former owner "Alec Hay"( from Victoria): if my memory serves me correctly the Alec Hay car was bodied similarly but not the same as Harold's V8. It was reminiscent of those Buckland bodies, it was a bit like those unfortunate Allards and Alvises of that postwar period -- or vaguely like an aerodynamic HRG like Tony Gaze imported. It looked a bit like the Joshua Cadillac, or the Head brothers Austin A125, or that Hudson Special Ray Bell has previously posted pics of here -- if my memory serves me correctly.

So far I have not found a pic of the Alec Hay car, but I will keep searching. The story of Harold's car doesnt need any more twists and turns , and strangenesses.....

#410 john medley

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Posted 29 April 2011 - 08:18

Found!

Australian Motor Sports February 1948 Page 26 pic shows ".. this attractive V8 Special is owned and driven by Alex Hay; went very well until overheating forced him to retire" in the apalling heat at the Point Cook 1948 Australian Grand Prix. It is clearly not Harold's car

#411 Repco22

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Posted 02 June 2011 - 03:26

This month's VSCC of WA club mag has mentioned that a bunch of pics from the '51 Narrogin AGP has been donated to the club. Might be some of the Smith Special for RODWIL and whoever is interested.

#412 john medley

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Posted 02 June 2011 - 08:35

Welcome back Harry and Harold and all them.

Are we able to hear about the long ago-predicted newspaper articles , and about Harold's daughter?

#413 ken devine

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Posted 02 June 2011 - 09:46

It would be interesting to see those photos Rod. I am doing a story and photos of Harold and the car with my photo display at Albany
this weekend maybe we will get some results. I have just spoken to Warren Scally who restored the car in 1972 he also tried to find information on the car and all he was told it came from Kalgoorlie. He has been in contact with Rodwell for some time.
Strangely i would have passed the location where the car was many times in the 60s.

#414 john medley

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Posted 02 June 2011 - 22:35

You may recall mention of this car perhaps being parked at the back of Silvio Massola's Melbourne workshop. I have been advised that Sil died April 2011, aged 97

Edited by john medley, 02 June 2011 - 22:36.


#415 David Shaw

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Posted 02 June 2011 - 23:49

Sad to hear about Sil's passing.

#416 Ray Bell

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Posted 03 June 2011 - 03:33

Indeed...

And he outlived Lou by many years, did he not?

#417 ken devine

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Posted 03 June 2011 - 03:36

To further add to the confusion when i spoke to Warren yesterday his first words after i asked him about the car were yes the
Allard Special, that is what he was told when he inquired about it and it came from Kalgoorlie. Warren contacted a museum in the UK
with the details and specifications of the car and was told it was possibly an Allard prototype.
When he sold the car it was sold at auction i forgot to ask him what year.

#418 Wilyman

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Posted 04 June 2011 - 03:11

To further add to the confusion when i spoke to Warren yesterday his first words after i asked him about the car were yes the
Allard Special, that is what he was told when he inquired about it and it came from Kalgoorlie. Warren contacted a museum in the UK
with the details and specifications of the car and was told it was possibly an Allard prototype.
When he sold the car it was sold at auction i forgot to ask him what year.



Ken,
Prior to the Smith Special appearing in Kalgoorlie it spent some time in Norseman, owner unknown/deceased. Then appearing in a Kalgoorlie car yard, Camilleri Motors. Ron Godenzie snr then took possession. There is still a gap here in how it found its way to the swamp from Kalgoorlie?
All the above has been previously recorded on this site.

Interesting that Warren sold the car at auction. This leaves a gap in its history as to what happened to it from that time to it turning up in the East?

An Allard prototype? If so it would have appeared almost fresh from the drawing board and been built in Australia in record time from the late '40's to its competition debut in the 1951 AGP. No air transport back then, Bristol Freighter perhaps?



Ken, enjoy yourself at Albany.

#419 Ray Bell

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Posted 07 June 2011 - 14:10

Originally posted by ken devine
To further add to the confusion when i spoke to Warren yesterday.....


I think the only thing that 'adds to the confusion' is that anyone might still take note of any talk of Allard origins...

Sure, several owners have believed they've been buying some kind of Allard, but all but one dropped it like a hot scone when real Allard specialists looked it over and shook their heads.

As Rod gets into his revamping we might finally get pics of the rear suspension which, I'm very sure, will put paid to any thought of Allard having had anything to do with this car.

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#420 Repco22

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Posted 08 June 2011 - 04:23

I think the only thing that 'adds to the confusion' is that anyone might still take note of any talk of Allard origins...

Sure, several owners have believed they've been buying some kind of Allard, but all but one dropped it like a hot scone when real Allard specialists looked it over and shook their heads.

As Rod gets into his revamping we might finally get pics of the rear suspension which, I'm very sure, will put paid to any thought of Allard having had anything to do with this car.

WELL SAID!!! :up:

#421 Repco22

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Posted 30 April 2012 - 05:31

These two pics of Eldred Norman's Double V8 have just surfaced. They were taken by Len Moore at the Narrogin AGP in 1951.
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#422 ken devine

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Posted 17 April 2013 - 03:20

I have just spoken to Harolds son who contacted me after finding this thread in this forum. He is also looking for information on the car.
Harold took his life in 1951 owing to financial difficulties. Harolds wife gave the car to a relation Ted Sharp in payment for a debt, Ted
had a Holden Dealership in Esperance and he completed the car it is not known when he sold it this is possibly when it went to Kal goorlie. Harolds wife took the family to live in NSW in 1952 the later moved to Queensland.
The shed where the car was built was bought by Houghton motors and used as their panelshop.
Roley would like to contact the present owner.

#423 Terry Walker

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Posted 17 April 2013 - 06:52

Wow, Ken, that's a fantastic added piece in the jigsaw. Accounts for many things. I recall the Houghton panel shop well, in Welshpool Rd, now demolished after Houghtons, in turn, folded fifty years later. There's part of a Toyota dealership on the site now. Cnr Ellam St and Welshpool Rd.

#424 BMH Comic

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Posted 17 April 2013 - 07:28

Wow, Ken, that's a fantastic added piece in the jigsaw. Accounts for many things. I recall the Houghton panel shop well, in Welshpool Rd, now demolished after Houghtons, in turn, folded fifty years later. There's part of a Toyota dealership on the site now. Cnr Ellam St and Welshpool Rd.



It adds a another piece of the puzzel to more than one Jigsaw!!

It now explains the relationship between Mr Ted Sharp who wound up with the water injection equipment from Aubury Badger!! Of course they knew one another. They were both country Holden dealers.

#425 Wilyman

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Posted 17 April 2013 - 10:00

I have just spoken to Harolds son who contacted me after finding this thread in this forum. He is also looking for information on the car.
Harold took his life in 1951 owing to financial difficulties. Harolds wife gave the car to a relation Ted Sharp in payment for a debt, Ted
had a Holden Dealership in Esperance and he completed the car it is not known when he sold it this is possibly when it went to Kal goorlie. Harolds wife took the family to live in NSW in 1952 the later moved to Queensland.
The shed where the car was built was bought by Houghton motors and used as their panelshop.
Roley would like to contact the present owner.



Ken,
Just when we thought it was safe.....
So from Esperance we could say it ended up in Norseman then Kalgoorlie?

#426 ken devine

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Posted 17 April 2013 - 22:22

It was probaly just driven through Norseman on its way to Kalgoorlie. We need to find out when it went to Kalgoorlie and finished up in that caryard and when it was parked in that Jandakot swamp.

#427 Ray Bell

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Posted 17 April 2013 - 22:54

Could it be that someone had a girlfriend in Norseman?

Ted Sharp even, or perhaps this was behind Harry Smith's problems?