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Personal photos of Australian motor racing '50s to '70s


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#2651 275 GTB-4

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Posted 04 November 2008 - 07:07

Terrific story...would love to know what Merve said...

What part of 64 ANNUAL don't you understand?

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#2652 Dick Willis

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Posted 04 November 2008 - 09:16

Pity the Gladiator didn't have that gun engine in it when I got it, it did 130 mph at Bathurst.

I can understand why it was getting so much wheelspin as up to about 10 years ago it always had an open diff, then the Guy I bought it from welded it up and I fitted a limited slip about 3 years ago.

#2653 275 GTB-4

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Posted 04 November 2008 - 10:19

Originally posted by Dick Willis
Pity the Gladiator didn't have that gun engine in it when I got it, it did 130 mph at Bathurst.

I can understand why it was getting so much wheelspin as up to about 10 years ago it always had an open diff, then the Guy I bought it from welded it up and I fitted a limited slip about 3 years ago.


Dick...please count your blessings...I for one, would kill to have achieved 130MPH at Bathurst...no chance in a one litre Mini :blush: :up:

#2654 David Shaw

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Posted 04 November 2008 - 10:49

Originally posted by Dick Willis
Does anyone know whose Cigar MG this is andthe location ?

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I reckon it to be Max Williams' MG Special at the 1960 Craven "A" International meeting October 1960 at Bathurst as Ray has already noted.

#2655 David Shaw

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Posted 04 November 2008 - 10:56

Actually, I think I have the right car, but wrong meeting. The #82 MGA in the background would be J. Hextall's from the Bathurst 100 meeting at Easter when Max Williams also ran in #132.

#2656 Ray Bell

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Posted 04 November 2008 - 11:58

David raises a question here... and a good one...

I mentioned the fences and didn't recognise the other end of the pits at Bathurst. But those fences would seem to have been built after (or in anticipation of?) the passing of the Speedways Act of 1957. Photos in John Medley's book taken at Hell Corner from the October 1956 meeting show no such fence on the spectator side of the straight and also none opposte the tower in the pic of the finish of the main race.

#2657 Dick Willis

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Posted 05 November 2008 - 09:26

David, if that is Max Williams with Cigar MG, no. 132 do you know of the car's origins and its whereabouts now ?

#2658 Ray Bell

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Posted 05 November 2008 - 09:36

Originally posted by 275 GTB-4
Terrific story...would love to know what Merve said...


I think he was just as shocked that Ray made that comment as Ray was that Merv was the engine builder. The rapport the two men had in subsequent years, Waggott's being totally involved in all of Muir's engines, indicates that they finished the day with plenty of respect for each other.

What part of 64 ANNUAL don't you understand?


I understand the world 'Annual' completely Mick, but you typed in 'Annual review'... which it seems can have two meanings.

The first is an annual review, as in a review published annually, the second is as you apparently intended, a review from an annual publication.

I don't recall that I ever knew such a publication existed, so I'll ask you to forgive my ignorance in this. And just to be reasonable about the whole thing, what about you snap a pic of the page and post it for us all to read?

#2659 Dick Willis

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Posted 05 November 2008 - 09:40

Bathurst Easter 1956 again, the Ausca, one of our great Aussie Specials, in one its earliest appearances.

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#2660 Dick Willis

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Posted 05 November 2008 - 09:53

Same meeting, R. Weintraub's Silversone Healey entered as an open wheeler it came 8th in the Bathurst 100. The trailer is an open wheeler too.




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#2661 Ray Bell

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Posted 05 November 2008 - 10:06

And towed behind an Austin-Healey?

Wonder what sort of hubs they are on that trailer...

#2662 Lee Nicolle

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Posted 05 November 2008 - 10:59

Poor Healey, covered in road grime from open wheel trailer and shaken to bits by an unsprung trailer, particularly on the roads of the day.

#2663 David McKinney

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Posted 05 November 2008 - 11:00

Originally posted by Ray Bell
I understand the world 'Annual' completely Mick, but you typed in 'Annual review'... which it seems can have two meanings.

The first is an annual review, as in a review published annually, the second is as you apparently intended, a review from an annual publication.

Without wishing this to develop into an international incident, 275 did say "RCN 1964 Annual analysis", not "RCN 1964 annual analysis" :)

#2664 Ray Bell

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Posted 05 November 2008 - 11:06

You are right, David... however...

You would also recognise that there are people who throw an odd capital letter onto the beginning of a word from time to time, even without cause. And then you look at the whole post and realise that it begins with that grand old English word 'Obliviously' and you have to wonder how accurate the rest of it might be.

Anyway, my previous post covers the points. He had a complete and accurate report before him, he even cited it in his post in question. Why the erroneous suggestion?

#2665 bradbury west

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Posted 05 November 2008 - 11:27

Apologies if I appear ungrateful, ungracious or dozy, but there are no pictures this end on the post for the Healey Silverstone/Trailer shots. Can anyone help?
Roger Lund

#2666 275 GTB-4

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Posted 05 November 2008 - 11:29

Originally posted by Ray Bell

I understand the world 'Annual' completely Mick, but you typed in 'Annual review'... which it seems can have two meanings.

The first is an annual review, as in a review published annually, the second is as you apparently intended, a review from an annual publication.

I don't recall that I ever knew such a publication existed, so I'll ask you to forgive my ignorance in this. And just to be reasonable about the whole thing, what about you snap a pic of the page and post it for us all to read?


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#2667 Ray Bell

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Posted 05 November 2008 - 11:45

So here's the source of the mystery misunderstanding...

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Though it says 'the two entered the braking area for the final corner together', it then misnames that corner as 'Hell' corner. Anyone seasoned in Bathurst knowledge would know, of course, that Hell is the first corner, not the last.

But on looking at the RCN race report something else comes to light. The final corner is named in that report's description of this incident too... as 'Shell' corner.



Roger... if you click on 'quote' for that post, copy and paste the URL (just from 'http' to '.jpg') into your browser, it will bring up the pic. Then when you return to the thread and refresh it will be magically visible.

#2668 David McKinney

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Posted 05 November 2008 - 12:44

Originally posted by Ray Bell
Roger... if you click on 'quote' for that post, copy and paste the URL (just from 'http' to '.jpg') into your browser, it will bring up the pic. Then when you return to the thread and refresh it will be magically visible.

Thanks Ray
I'd never thought of doing that on this or other occasions :up:

#2669 GeoffR

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Posted 05 November 2008 - 19:21

Wonder what sort of hubs they are on that trailer...



No idea what the hubs are, but the one that is visible looks like it has a 'bearing buddy' on it - a device commonly used on boat trailers. Fits on the hub in place of the normal cap & has a grease nipple in the centre so you can easily pump fresh grease into it.

#2670 Derek Pitt

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Posted 05 November 2008 - 20:08

Gentlemen

With regard to the Healey Silverstone and its Austin Healey 100 tow car picture, my immediate thought is...wouldn't the tow car be quicker on a crcuit than the racing car it is towing?

Am i wrong though? - I really know nothing of the Silverstone . I know they were raced in an era when high performance sports cars were scarce and at a time when virtually all such cars were rendered obsolete by the introduction of the XK120, but I have always thought they were "previous generation" to the 100/4, both in concept and performance.

I recall David Mckay writing that a well-driven Austin Healey was almost as quick as his production drum-braked Aston Martin DB3S...perhaps he meant a 100S

Derek

#2671 Ray Bell

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Posted 05 November 2008 - 21:31

You're probably right, and in addition to that, the towed assemblage would undoubtedly be much heavier than the towing vehicle...

It's possible, though, that the towing vehicle also raced, and that it towed the Silverstone because it was registered and the Silverstone wasn't.

#2672 Dick Willis

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Posted 06 November 2008 - 01:51

Derek mentioned the Aston DB 3S, Tom Sulman's at Bathurst, Easter 1956, a famous rego number and according to Blandon's book this SB3S is owned by David Richards.

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#2673 Dick Willis

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Posted 06 November 2008 - 02:30

The Aston looks a bit sad in the nose, I wonder whose Cooper is under the cover beside it ?

I've been asked if I have a pic of an early Ralt, this was taken at Newcastle's King Edward Park Hillclimb around 1955, but I'm not sure if its a Ralt, can anyone help ?

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#2674 Derek Pitt

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Posted 06 November 2008 - 05:50

Dick,

Does the fact that you are on your computer delighting us with your pictures today mean you will not be at Sandown historics this weekend?

Derek

#2675 Gordon Graham

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Posted 06 November 2008 - 07:15

I thought Dick might be interested in this shot of the Sharp Holden (As it used to look!)

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And here's the Anderson Holden referred to over on the Holden racing thread. I can dig out a few more Holden specials, if anyone's interested.

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#2676 David McKinney

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Posted 06 November 2008 - 07:20

Originally posted by Dick Willis
I've been asked if I have a pic of an early Ralt, this was taken at Newcastle's King Edward Park Hillclimb around 1955, but I'm not sure if its a Ralt, can anyone help ?

Didn't the early Ralts have cast wheels, or was that only some of them?

#2677 Dick Willis

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Posted 06 November 2008 - 09:34

Derek, sorry can't get to Sandown, there's a recession on !

Gordon, good pic of the Sharp, must be about 1982, seems like an eternity ago now. In its original format it certainly was no oil painting as in the pic below taken when it was first "discovered" Now of course it is a thing of beauty proving that you can make a silk purse out of a sow's ear.

David, as I said I am a bit confused about the "Ralt" pic but in the Brabham Ralt Honda story there is a pic of an early Ralt at Parramatta Park with wire wheels, probably the mag wheels came later.

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#2678 David Shaw

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Posted 06 November 2008 - 11:54

Originally posted by Dick Willis
The Aston looks a bit sad in the nose, I wonder whose Cooper is under the cover beside it ?


I would say its Alec Mildren's T20, as according to my records the only other Cooper there was Rod Blake's air-cooled model. Mildren's car was #10 for that meeting, so would that just be coincidental or could it be that positions in the paddock were allocated numerically?

#2679 HiRich

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Posted 06 November 2008 - 13:10

Originally posted by Dick Willis
I've been asked if I have a pic of an early Ralt, this was taken at Newcastle's King Edward Park Hillclimb around 1955, but I'm not sure if its a Ralt, can anyone help ?

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There is a picture of this exact car, same race number here suggesting it is Austin Tauranac driving. It's clearly not the Mk 1 or Mk 2, so I'd guess it's the Mk 3, formerly the Hooper 500 (and modified by Ron)

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#2680 Dick Willis

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Posted 07 November 2008 - 02:04

Well done HiRich, I have been given some more information by an "anonymous" donor and you are absolutely right. Its the Hooper 500 which went on to become Ralt 3, the pic was taken in September 1954.
Below is Ralt 4 driven by Noel Hall at Lowood in 1959, powered by a Vincent twin.

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#2681 Andrew Fellowes

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Posted 07 November 2008 - 02:54

Originally posted by Dick Willis
Gordon, good pic of the Sharp, must be about 1982, seems like an eternity ago now. In its original format it certainly was no oil painting as in the pic below taken when it was first "discovered" Now of course it is a thing of beauty proving that you can make a silk purse out of a sow's ear.


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-stunning work.

Great photos you have Dick, absolutely fascinating,

Andrew

#2682 Dick Willis

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Posted 07 November 2008 - 08:58

Bathurst, Easter 1956 again, the ex Alf Najar MG TB Special winner of the 1947 NSW GP at Bathurst now entered by Alan Murray.

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#2683 Dick Willis

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Posted 07 November 2008 - 23:33

Before I lose track of MG Specials/Cigar MG's etc, here is a pic of a young Tim Shellshear in 1963 at Oran Park about to to go out on his first drive of the MG Special he had recently bought from Bill Reynolds, does
anyone anything of its history before Bill Reynolds.

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#2684 seldo

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Posted 08 November 2008 - 00:02

Originally posted by Dick Willis
Before I lose track of MG Specials/Cigar MG's etc, here is a pic of a young Tim Shellshear in 1963 at Oran Park about to to go out on his first drive of the MG Special , does
anyone anything of its history before Bill Reynolds.

..Hmmm...not quite true Dick. It's a long story, but I used to work with Bill Reynolds for some years and became quite good friends with Bill. His 20 year relationship with his live-in lady terminated, and, as is usually the case in these situations, Bill had to move-on. As a result he had nowhere to keep all his stuff and he GAVE the car to me as he said he will never drive it again. At the time, I was very young - about 18 and still living at home with my parents at Chatswood in Sydney - and had no idea of it's worth, but I was glad to accept it - my very own first racing car!!!. However, I was not a lot better off than Bill in that I had nowhere really to store it except for my parents' open car-port, which wasn't really very satisfactory (for them or for the car). So - enter Tim who was a neighbour who lived around the corner in the next block. I didn't really know him but we'd spoken in the street and he had a spare garage and said I could leave it there until I managed to do something with it.
I'm afraid circumstances change, and I had an acrimonious parting with my family (over my attendance at the monthly meeting of the North Shore Sporting Car Club of all things, and my father's refusal to sign my CAMS licence application) and I left home and bought a house-boat to live on, and didn't revisit Chatswood again for a couple of years until I was brought home there after a car accident for recuperation. Time ticked on and I did not know how to contact Tim ( I couldn't even remember his name) and he assumed possession of the car. So - he did not BUY the car from Bill - he assumed possession from me, and to the best of my knowledge he has never even met Bill.
Also, the time line isn't quite right because I would think this occurred about '65, since I didn't start working with Bill until August '64

#2685 Dick Willis

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Posted 08 November 2008 - 00:17

Thanks Seldo for those comments "straight from the proverbial horse's mouth", do you know who Bill got the car from ?

#2686 Dick Willis

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Posted 08 November 2008 - 04:26

One of my all time favourite cars, Dick Cobden's Ferrari, which I first saw at Mt Druitt in 1954 when I was a kid, here it is at Bathurst, Easter 1956 and driven then by Curly Brydon.

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#2687 seldo

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Posted 08 November 2008 - 08:28

Originally posted by Dick Willis
Thanks Seldo for those comments "straight from the proverbial horse's mouth", do you know who Bill got the car from ?

I was always under the impression (rightly or wrongly) that Bill built it...

#2688 Dick Willis

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Posted 09 November 2008 - 00:00

Easter 1956, Lex Davison's Ferrari, winner of the Bathurst 100. I don't think anyone at that time was aware of the original history of the car.

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#2689 John Ellacott

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Posted 10 November 2008 - 07:48

Good to see you posting Dick.Love the Ferraris, the Davison car is at Donnington but do you know where the other one is?
To bring this thread back to page one here is a photo from just after the start of theBlue Mountains Trophy Race with Frank Matich Elfin leading Leo Geoghegan Lotus and Frank Gardiner Brabham -- all 1500s.

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#2690 David McKinney

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Posted 10 November 2008 - 17:31

Originally posted by John Ellacott
Love the Ferraris, the Davison car is at Donington but do you know where the other one is?

Likewise.
Or was last I heard

#2691 starlet

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Posted 10 November 2008 - 18:13

No, it was sold in 2002 to an Austrian restorer and collector.

#2692 ken devine

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Posted 10 November 2008 - 22:44

Can anyone verify this? i was talking to a chap at Sandown on Sunday who builds model F1 cars he had
one of the Lex Davison Ferrari,i told him of its WA history and that it was know at Donnington he contradicted
me by saying the Donington car was not the Davison car, he was adamant that there were in fact 3 cars
and the Davison car was sold to America by Jim Harwood . I know the Donington car was Davisons,can
anybody solve this argument.

#2693 David McKinney

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Posted 10 November 2008 - 23:07

Jim Harwood may indeed have sold it to America, but it was in the UK as early as 1967, and in Tom Wheatcroft's hands by 1972.
Don't quite know what your friend means by "there were three cars" :confused:

#2694 ken devine

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Posted 10 November 2008 - 23:33

David it is a well known fact here in Western Australia that Jim Harwood sold it to Tom Wheatcroft, even
Bob Weaver who was going to convert it to a spotscar confirms the fact. Isuppose the guy reckons the
factory sold 3 cars which would have been most unusual. As you probably realise you cannot convince
some people that they are wrong.

#2695 Terry Walker

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Posted 11 November 2008 - 05:09

The Ferrari Super Squalo, later the Ferrari Corvette, also went to Wheatcroft, still with the V8. The Donington museum found the correct V12, and rebuilt the car or original spec. A few years ago, as Ken notes, it was sold on. This is Ferrari Corvette at Caversham, 1962, Jim Harwood at the wheel.

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#2696 Terry Walker

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Posted 11 November 2008 - 05:17

Just to add: the Davison car is not only in the Donington collection, the signwriting and display materials with the car explicitly state that is it the ex-Lex Davison car, and it has been restored to Lex Davison era specs - ie, with the 3 litre engine, rather than its original Grand Prix 2 litre engine. I was very happy to say hello to the car, and read all the placards, when I visited Donington Motor Museum last. The provenance of the car is beyond dispute.

#2697 Derek Pitt

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Posted 11 November 2008 - 06:10

I took this photo back in the 80's, just outside of the era I know, but it shows 2 fellows pushing a T51 Cooper at Sandown. I have posted it because I have never known who the rather dubious looking character driving is -anybody got any clues?

Derek

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#2698 Derek Pitt

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Posted 11 November 2008 - 06:12

Try Again

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#2699 ken devine

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Posted 11 November 2008 - 06:22

Thanks Terry you have no doubt confirmed my argument,the book on the Donington Collection also has
the same information.I dont know if we will convince this guy as he seems to think he knows everything.

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#2700 onelung

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Posted 11 November 2008 - 06:34

Re the Cobden Ferrari - this was a Type 125 originally, then had a Corvette motor fitted and ultimately went to Donington where it was reunited with the original (or at least correct..) engine?
I reckon I saw this car in Donington 30 years ago and seem to recall there was something to the effect that the original motor had been put to use in a speed boat (shades of Napier engines and Salmson?) and then reunited with the chassis.
Two Super Squalos - Type 555 - were brought to Oz in '56? I am not aware that either of these got the Corvette treatment, but stand to be corrected.
The above photo of the Ferrari Corvette looks more like the bodywork as for the 500 - no side bulges - but do enlighten me if I'm looking with eyes half shut.
Fire away by all means...

Geoff.