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Revis Borgward


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#1 shabin

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Posted 09 July 2005 - 15:24

My late father, John Habin, developed the Revis Borgward 1500 with Reg Bicknell in Southampton in 1954 but I do not know when it was first raced. I know my father raced the car at the following:

Goodwood on 12 April 1955

Ibsley on 30 April 1955

Aintree International on 3 September 1955

I also understand that my father retired from racing in 1955, apparently after a bad crash.

Does anyone have a picture of the Revis Borgward, preferably with my father in it, or a copy of a report of its first race or any later event, including hopefully the race in which he was injured?

In fact, any information or pictures would be gratefully appreciated.

Many thanks.

Simon Habin

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#2 Marc Ceulemans

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Posted 09 July 2005 - 16:53

The 1493 cc Borgward-engined Revis took part in the British Empire Trophy at Oulton Park, on April 2, 1955.

In the entry list, the driver was either R. Bicknell or J. Habin (your father) but Bicknell did the race. It was probably the first race of the car (it's to be confirmed).

My source = Autocar.

#3 ReWind

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Posted 09 July 2005 - 17:31

Here is a pretty comprehensive portrait of John Habin.

#4 David McKinney

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Posted 09 July 2005 - 18:56

Reg Bicknell was fifth in his heat of the 1500 race at the 1955 Whitsun Goodwood meeting, and took a second and a fourth elsewhere (no specifics, I'm afraid)
A description of the Revis-Borgward and couple of pictures can be found in Anthony Pritchard's Specialist Sports/Racing Cars of the Fifties & Sixties (Osprey 1986, ISBN 0-84045-643-6)

#5 hinnershitz

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Posted 09 July 2005 - 22:39

Deja-vu...

http://forums.atlasf...?threadid=57930

#6 hinnershitz

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Posted 09 July 2005 - 22:45

Sorry, that was a bit too fast, as you're talking about the 1500cc car here. Nevertheless, maybe the old thread may be some help?

#7 Hugo Boecker

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Posted 11 July 2005 - 08:34

According to "Specialist British Sports/Racing Cars of the Fifties & Sixties" by Antony Pritchard the first race of this car was the Britih Empire Trophy at Oulton Park on April 2nd 1955. Bicknell was 3rd fastest in practice, in the race he crashed heavily at Druid's.

#8 Marc Ceulemans

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Posted 11 July 2005 - 22:13

From the report of the BARC Member's Meeting, in AUTOCAR, April 1, 1954:

In the next scratch event, for unblown 1 1/2-litres came the well-known names of Bicknell and Revis - the same Bicknell but new car with a Borgward engine in place of the familiar Formula 3 unit.

It was obvious from the way Coombs' Connaught-engined Lotus went after the first lap who was going to win - although the remainder tried hard enough.

P. S. Baily was very lucky to escape injury when his Tojeiro went off the road at St. Mary's.

Results (lap distance = 2.4 miles)
Scratch races, Sports cars up to 1500 cc (5 laps)
1- Lotus 1484 cc (J. Coombs) 9m 29,8s, 75.86 mph
2- Revis 1498 (R. G. Bicknell) 9m 48s
3- J.A.G.M.G. 1467 (T. Hodges) 10m 17.4s

So the first race of the car was one week before the British Empire Trophy.

#9 David McKinney

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Posted 12 July 2005 - 05:03

Originally posted by Marc Ceulemans
From the report of the BARC Member's Meeting, in AUTOCAR, April 1, 1954:
So the first race of the car was one week before the British Empire Trophy.

Plus one year?

#10 RAP

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Posted 12 July 2005 - 13:39

As David spotted, the date of the Autocar report quoted is 1955, not 54. The race was the 18th Members Meeting on 26th March 1955.

#11 Marc Ceulemans

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Posted 12 July 2005 - 17:48

yes, + 1 year !

#12 shabin

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Posted 13 July 2005 - 18:02

Thank you everyone for your contributions.

It seems that the car was developed by Reg Bicknell, who is better known for the Revis 500, but who also drove the Staride which my father developed with Mike Erskine. My father was also a motor trader in Southampton, like Reg Bicknell, and travelled to Germany to purchase the 1493cc Hansa-Borward 'Renn' racing engine for the new Revis Borgward.

My father and Reg Bicknell were to race the new car in 1955 and it seems that its first outing was at National Goodwood on 26 March 1955, when Reg Bicknell came 2nd. The entry in Anthony Pritchard's book is therefore incorrect.

I have the following additional races:

2 April 1955 for the Britsih Empire Trophy at Oulton, when the car was entered by Reg Bicknell and my father but Reg drove and crashed at druid's corner.

12 April 1955 at the Goodwood Easter meeting when both were again mentioned but the result merely advises that they were on the entry list.

30 April 1955 at National Ibsley (National) when Reg Bicknell drove and came 4th.

30 April 1955 at National Ibsely (International) when my father drove but the report stated that he did not start.

30 May 1955 at Goodwood International when Reg Bicknell drove and came 5th but did not finish in the Sports Unlimited event.

3 September 1955 at Aintree International when my father drove (and he was the sole named entrant) when the results state that he was in the entry list but it was not known if he ran.

By the following year the car had been sold to John Fisher who raced in the Sussex Trophy at Goodwood on 8 September 1956 (qualified but retired) and in BRSCC Formula 2 at Brands Hatch on 9 September 1956 (came 7th).

By all accounts the car was not a success and had 'very real handling problems'.

This is why I suspect that my father had a bad crash in the Revis Borgward which led him to stop racing. The question is when did this happen? Does anyone have a report of the Aintree International race on 3 September 1955?

#13 RAP

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Posted 13 July 2005 - 19:35

A few extra bits of information on the Revis Borgward's career –

Goodwood 26 March – also entered in 5 lap Handicap. Came 10th but not known if driver was Habin or Bicknell
Goodwood Easter – non-starter
Entered at Brands Hatch 12 June for Bicknell but non-starter
Entered Brands Hatch 10 July for Bicknell but not known if ran – no mention in Autosport report.
I have the Autosport report of Aintree 3 Sept but there is no mention of the Revis.


RAP

#14 davidsouthampton

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Posted 08 March 2006 - 01:31

I used to work for Reg Bicknell back in the mid 60s at Revis Automatics (amusement machines) linked to his Revis Car Sales in Hill Lane Southampton. He was one of the first Skoda dealers in the country and was a great character.

Usual ex racing driver with an eye for the ladies and I recall him with fondness - good businessman and a nice guy. He loved cars and had a Borgward Isabella plus a beautiful Ferrari to run around as he posed through his later years. Reg lived at Chilworth - one of Southampton's affluent areas but was a very down to earth chap, who would muck in and get his hands dirty when it came to car engines etc.


I left Southampton in 1972 and have always been curious about Reg's later years. He and his (ex)wife also ran the Checkpoint Cafe nr the Bargate as well as the Adam and Eve Nightclub in Spa Road - just behind old Echo offices in Above Bar.

David

#15 rbm

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Posted 28 May 2008 - 09:14

when digging through some 500cc F3 results in iota I came across a report for a race at Castle Coombe 6th October 1951

John Habin in a JBS 500 rolled and broke his jaw.

#16 rbm

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Posted 20 January 2011 - 20:08

does anyone know what became of the Revis Borgward sports car?

#17 rbm

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Posted 16 November 2011 - 18:11

According to John Sutton, the Revis Borgward was acquired by Cliff Dade an antique dealer who lived in Lower Kingswood. Cliff drove the car at Goodwood on several occasions, but without much success.
John was involved in a road accident when he pulled out to overtake a slower car on the London-Brighton road.

"The car was very unstable", as suggested previously, "and I spun around and hit the car I had just overtaken".

Fortunately nobody bar the car was hurt,

"Cliff decided that it was too dangerous to race and so he set about fitting the rear suspension from a Cooper Bobtail with a transverse rear spring and wishbones. The mountings for the spring were rollers and could be moved in and out to alter the anti-roll effect. The spring was located in the centre to the chassis. The car was much better and Cliff had more success with it in this form."

#18 Biggles

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Posted 11 March 2014 - 12:27

In my Batten research a mention of the Revis-Borgward has turned up - in the hands of J Fisher at Mallory Park on 16th September 1956.


Edited by Biggles, 11 March 2014 - 12:44.