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OBM: the mystery car competition in Classic & Sports car.


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#1 Marcor

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Posted 15 January 2001 - 03:10

I've taken part for the first time to the Mystery car competition, a game in the magazine Classic & Sports car of January 2001. The answer had to be sent by December 31, so I can give you my answer.

Each month, there's a picture with a car to recognise. This month it was "easy" as this picture was published in the same magazine some years ago.

We had to recognise Oscar B. Moore and his BMW 328 Special which he called himself OBM. In the topic about the Formule Libre, we can see the pair sometimes.

Here's my answer:
Oscar Bernard Moore was a motor dealer and part-time racing driver. Just after the Second World War he entered his Frazer Nash in some sportscars race in Europe. In June 1946 he was in the entry list of the 2-litre class of the Belgian GP but didn't appear. Moore travelled a lot in 1947. He came in Sweden when he took part to a sportscars race at the Rommehed Military Airport on February and finished second behind a Citroen. He also came at San Remo in April where he didn't finish the race won by Yves Giraud-Cabantous. The following month he took part in the sportscars race of the GP des Frontières. The results was the same than at San Remo: Giraud-Cabantous won and Moore retired. Oscar B. Moore was also present in the Circuit des Remparts, at Angoulême. Eugène Martin in a Frazer Nash BMW beat the Cisitalias (driven by French aces Manzon, Sommer, Loyer, Schell, ...) and the Simca-Gordinis (driven by Wimille and Le Sorcier Amédée Gordini himself) and won the race.

Maybe this result gave some ideas to Moore, I don't know, but in 1948 Oscar B. Moore created his own single-seater Formula B (later Formula 2) from the ex-Leslie Johnson sportscar BMW 328, registered GHX516. He called his car OBM (from his own initials). The mystery car of the month was that OBM and Moore posed at the wheel of his car for the picture. The BMW connection is clear.

This ungainly-looking special started life as a sports BMW 328 and was converted into an offset sigle-seater F2 car by Oscar B. Moore in 1948. The special was described by the Autocar in 1948 as being "possibly Britain's most advanced Formula B (F2) car".

He raced it extensively both in Britain ad abroad with some success in secondary events between 1948 and 1950. In May 1949, Moore took part in the GP de Bruxelles, a 300-km F2 race run on the short-lived circuit Léopold III and was forced to retire. Two weeks later, on June 5, and always in Belgium, Moore and his OBM was placing third in the 2-litre class of the 1949 GP des Frontières at Chimay, the winner being Emile Cornet in a Veritas.

Oscar Moore won a 5-lap minor national races at Lulsgate (15 April 1950) and came back in the Bénélux. He finished fifth in the 1950 Luxembourg GP, a sportscar race, three laps behind arch-favourites Alberto Ascari and Gigi Villoresi (works Ferrari 166 sport) but in the same lap as Jacques Swaters (third in a Veritas and Rossdorp in a private Ferrari sport). Ten days after he finished in 11th position at Chimay in the GP des Frontières (a F2 event) where the winner was John Claes who gave to HWM his first international victory.

The finest hour of the OBM and his driver was, perhaps, winning the Manx Cup some weeks later. He gained also some victories in club races at Silverstone.

By 1950 it was no match for purpose-built F2 cars and for the 1951 season, Oscar Moore purchased second-hand one of the first batch of Alta engined HWMs. These cars were built by partners Georges Abecassis and John Heath of Hersham & Walton Motors in Surrey. In 1950 HWM was the first British works team to contest international single-seater events in Europe since 1939. John Claes won the GP des Frontières (see above); Stirling Moss was third behind two Alfa Romeos at Bari and won his heat in the F2 Napoli race where Lance Macklin was second overall.

Initially Oscar Moore retained the troublesome Alta unit. He won a 2-litre supersports race at Castle Combe on 31 March 1951. In the Continent he finished 7th in the F2 event at Genoa (20 May 1951) and retired at Mettet, in Belgium (15 July 1951).

For 1952 Moore installed a 3.4 XK Jaguar engine in his HWM, being one of the first enthusiasts to create Jaguar XK-engined specials. The work HWM should be credited with producing the first serious Jaguar-engined sports racing car outside of the Jaguar factory, but the formula had been tried first by the private owner Oscar B. Moore. The resulting cycled-winged amalgam (XMC 34) won its class first time out at the Prescott Hill Climb in May 1952, and was to prove competitive in circuit racing too, despite its somewhat old-fashioned appearance.

During the season Oscar Moore also became the first in the UK to run a 3.8-litre Jaguar engined, when they bored out the 3.4 to a quoted 3.8. After finishing 6th in the Ulster Trophy Dundrod in this form (a formula 1 race won by Piero Taruffi's Ferrari 375), the car was found to have the legs of the expensive works Aston Martin in the 1952 Jersey International Road Race. Although it failed in the second heat after a connecting rod broke it had bee lying second only to Ian Stewart's C-type and was leading Georges Abecassis in one of those DB3s.

Moore raced the car into the 1953 season but sold it to Gerry Scali (for hill climbing) during the year upon finding that he was being outpaced by the C-type Jaguars which were finally getting into the hands of private owners.

Oscar Moore's Finchley, North London garage was notable also for hiring out XK 120 roadsters.

Previously, for the second month in a row the magazine received no entries for this game ![p][Edited by Marcor on 01-15-2001]

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#2 uechtel

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Posted 09 October 2002 - 21:06

just discovered this old thread: I would desperately like to see a picture of that car!

And one of the Orley Speciale, too... :clap:

#3 Felix Muelas

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Posted 09 October 2002 - 21:25

As shown on page 29...only 3 times bigger ;)
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#4 uechtel

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Posted 09 October 2002 - 21:44

Whow! :stoned:

And aBIG THANK YOU!!!

#5 Doug Nye

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Posted 09 October 2002 - 22:08

Oscar Moore's son Peter runs the Motor Book Postal Auction open to subscribers only here in England, but with worldwide membership. It is a very, very good source of memorabilia and literature with an enormous couple of thousand Lots auction list appearing at regular intervals through the year. I haven't actually seen one of the list for some time, but Peter ran the show from Pulborough in Sussex and is certainly still doing so, though I cannot be certain whether or not the address has changed. If anybody's interested I'll seek further, unless one of you knows all about MBPA already????

DCN

#6 Marcor

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Posted 10 October 2002 - 01:52

Uechtel,
You must read the book "LE GRAND PRIX DES FRONTIERES A CHIMAY" by André biaumet (Tome 1: 1926 - 1960). There are b & w pictures of BMW's derivated cars "a gogo"
Jef Legros' Frazer Nash (1947)
André Pilette's Frazer Nash (1949)
Alexandre Orley's Veritas monoposto (1949)
Emile Cornet's Veritas RS (1949)
O.B. Moore's OBM (1950)
Jacques Swaters's Veritas RS (1950)
Honoré Wagner's Veritas RS (1950)
André Pilette's BMW 328 (1950)
Georges Berger's Jicey (1951)
Bob Spikins Frazer Nash Replica (1951)

and also
Willy Heeks AFM (1952)
Olivier Gendebien's Veritas (1952)
Georges Mulnard's Monnier Speciale (1952), with BMW 328-engine
Paul Delebarre's BMW Special (1954), engine = BMW 328.

Im sure you had to appreciate...

#7 ensign14

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Posted 10 October 2002 - 08:12

Originally posted by Marcor
Uechtel,
You must read the book "LE GRAND PRIX DES FRONTIERES A CHIMAY" by André biaumet (Tome 1: 1926 - 1960). There are b & w pictures of BMW's derivated cars "a gogo"

And so must everyone else - this book is a MUST.

Pulborough...a lovely part of the world...if I'd've known Oscar Moore's sone was there when I was there on business, I'd've tried to look him up...what's this auction thingy?

#8 uechtel

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Posted 10 October 2002 - 22:55

Uechtel,
You must read the book "LE GRAND PRIX DES FRONTIERES A CHIMAY" by André biaumet (Tome 1: 1926 - 1960).



even if I don´t speak any French??? :cry:


Do you know where I can get it and at what prize? Didn´t find it at amazon nor ebay.

I am very interested in that Orley Speciale. My sources tell me, that it is the very first Veritas "Meteor" Formula 2 car, which appeared briefly in 1948 with a Bugatti engine. But on the other hand there has been some mismatch with Meteors in France, so it is also possible, that it could as well be quite a "normal" derivate of a Veritas RS. An open matter which I would really try to find out.

#9 Hans Etzrodt

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Posted 11 October 2002 - 01:19

Uechtel - you should find the book in the first two stores.
:)
http://www.editions-palmier.fr/
http://www.abebooks.com/
http://www.bibliofind.com/
http://www.alibris.com/
http://collectors-carbooks.co.uk/
http://www.collector...ooksinStore.htm
http://www.chaters.c...ftoken=96187996
http://www.simonlewis.com/
http://www.tavaresmotorsport.com/
http://www.autoboek.com/
http://www.antiqbook.com/
http://www.amazon.co...ats-query-page/
http://www.bookfinder.com/
http://www.ebay.com/
http://www.atlasf1.c...tore/index.html
http://www.eoinyoung.com/
http://www.powells.com
http://www.motorsportcollector.com/
http://www.motorbooks.com/
http://wilkinsonsauto.com/
e-mail: autobooks@autobooks.co.uk Kenneth Ball at Autobooks Limited in England.
http://www.lesezeich...nd/motspor1.htm
http://www.kb.nl/gabriel/ Gateway to Europe’s National Libraries

#10 ensign14

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Posted 11 October 2002 - 07:00

Originally posted by uechtel


even if I don´t speak any French??? :cry:

Yes - the pictures alone make the book worth buying (see above). There is not in truth that much text but you could muddle through with a good dictionary.

#11 uechtel

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Posted 11 October 2002 - 17:22

Uechtel - you should find the book in the first two stores.



Hans, thank you for the tip! I found it here. Cost 33 EUR, that sounds indeed reasonable. I hope I will get along somehow with the French order form there :confused:

#12 Adam F

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Posted 11 October 2002 - 20:21

A couple of bits of info re. Oscar & Peter Moore :-

Oscar Moore was born on 6 May 1903 in Durban, South Africa.
He died on 9 January 1968 (aged 65) in West Chiltington, Sussex.

Peter Moore's Motor Books Postal Auctions is at

Tamarisk House,
Gay Street,
Pulborough,
West Sussex
RH20 2HH
Phone 01798 813221

ADAM

#13 uechtel

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Posted 17 October 2002 - 21:22

Uechtel,

You must read the book "LE GRAND PRIX DES FRONTIERES A CHIMAY" by André biaumet (Tome 1: 1926 - 1960). There are b & w pictures of BMW's derivated cars "a gogo"
Jef Legros' Frazer Nash (1947)
André Pilette's Frazer Nash (1949)
Alexandre Orley's Veritas monoposto (1949)
Emile Cornet's Veritas RS (1949)
O.B. Moore's OBM (1950)
Jacques Swaters's Veritas RS (1950)
Honoré Wagner's Veritas RS (1950)
André Pilette's BMW 328 (1950)
Georges Berger's Jicey (1951)
Bob Spikins Frazer Nash Replica (1951)

and also
Willy Heeks AFM (1952)
Olivier Gendebien's Veritas (1952)
Georges Mulnard's Monnier Speciale (1952), with BMW 328-engine
Paul Delebarre's BMW Special (1954), engine = BMW 328.

Im sure you had to appreciate...



Just today I found it in my letterbox and I already love it! :love:

Thanx, Marcor, for your advice!

Real great pictures!

But ensign14, there IS quite a lot of text! So I will certainly have to invite my French colleague again for a bottle of wine or two in the next days!

#14 Felix Muelas

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Posted 11 February 2003 - 20:10

Just a tiny step back in time...this appeared in June 1951´s edition of MotorSport ;)

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#15 ensign14

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Posted 11 February 2003 - 22:25

I rang, he wasn't in. I'm ready to offer £900 plus a Skoda Favorit Estate.