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


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#3301 mercnut

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Posted 18 May 2010 - 09:07

Hi JB

The last time the Sabakat was orange was when Ernie crashed and burnt it. Called Burnt orange?

Regards

Guy

hi from a newbie,watched the sabakat at strathpine,was painted bronze,interesting body flex on each gearchange next & last sighting was at lowood,was burning fiercely when we arrived,had been fitted with an aero engine,believe only a wheel or two was salvaged from the remains .

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#3302 kaydee

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Posted 18 May 2010 - 12:48

Another car for identification -
Photos were taken at Sandown meeting in Feb 1964.
I have Glyn Scott, Lotus 20 pencilled in - any confirmation that this is correct?

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#3303 Ray Bell

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Posted 18 May 2010 - 13:56

It may be Glynn's Lotus 27, Kevin...

It's not a Lotus 20, it clearly has a monocoque chassis and inboard front spring/damper units. I don't remember clearly that the 27 had a pushrod engine, but some competitors were slow in changing over to twin cams.

#3304 David McKinney

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Posted 18 May 2010 - 14:10

Twincams were still fairly rare in February 1964

#3305 Lee Nicolle

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Posted 18 May 2010 - 23:22

Are they rubber donuts as halfshaft unis? Scarey if they are.

#3306 john medley

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Posted 19 May 2010 - 00:10

I thought I saw the Sabakat in two tone, probably light/dark grey... maybe bronze/brown, the darker colour in a central stripe.

Mercnut, wonderful observation re bodyflex/gearchange! Tell us more(and welcome to TNF)?

#3307 Terry Walker

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Posted 19 May 2010 - 02:08

Those Hillman Imp doughnuts were used on the Elan, and some 1500cc GP cars too I think. Cheap, easy to replace. Surprisingly tough.

#3308 Lee Nicolle

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Posted 19 May 2010 - 02:14

Those Hillman Imp doughnuts were used on the Elan, and some 1500cc GP cars too I think. Cheap, easy to replace. Surprisingly tough.

I think I would be replacing them every meeting. And modern historic tyres still have more grip than those of old.

#3309 Wirra

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Posted 19 May 2010 - 03:48

...Cheap, easy to replace. Surprisingly tough.

Jurid couplings have been used for decades on production cars, e.g. Jaguars. Even SS Commodores pushing out 350bhp use them on the tail shaft.

Having stated that, IIRC a coupling failure was once suspected to have been the cause of Jim Clark's fatal crash.

Edited by Wirra, 19 May 2010 - 03:54.


#3310 mercnut

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Posted 19 May 2010 - 05:26

I thought I saw the Sabakat in two tone, probably light/dark grey... maybe bronze/brown, the darker colour in a central stripe.

Mercnut, wonderful observation re bodyflex/gearchange! Tell us more(and welcome to TNF)?

thanks for the welcome john,if i remember correctly,(a long time ago now) it was a black stripe down the middle,first "modern" racecar i fell in love with.

#3311 JimBradshaw

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Posted 19 May 2010 - 10:08

thanks for the welcome john,if i remember correctly,(a long time ago now) it was a black stripe down the middle,first "modern" racecar i fell in love with.


I have often wondered, given Cliff Allison's performance in the 1958 Belgium GP and the lack of results achieved by the Sabakat, what went wong.

Little is known of Ern Tadgell, he is a forgotten figure... I have no idea if he is still with us even..or what he ever achieved.

My thought is, had the car been fitted with a 2.2 Climax, it would have been front-line competitive, right up to the advent of the Patterson/Stillwell T51's

Any thoughts ?
JB

#3312 Ray Bell

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Posted 19 May 2010 - 11:54

Originally posted by Lee Nicolle
Are they rubber donuts as halfshaft unis? Scarey if they are.


Lots of bad reports around about these things... why?

Because some early renditions of them in openwheelers had no centralising ball/socket in the middle. Neither did the Elans.

If you look at the simple installation in any Fiat, there's always a ball on the tail of the gearbox and a socket that goes over the ball in the tailshaft within the donut.

Not only did 1500cc GP cars have them (and they never had Hillman Imp units, they were larger than that), but there were some 2.5/2.7 and Tasman cars had them too. If I'm not mistaken, the Gardner/Bartlett Mildren Brabham had them.

They do have the handy advantage of affording the drivetrain some cushioning of shock loads.

#3313 JimBradshaw

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Posted 19 May 2010 - 12:53

Lots of bad reports around about these things... why?

If I'm not mistaken, the Gardner/Bartlett Mildren Brabham had them.


I rather think it was the Stillwell/Gardner/Bartlett Mildren Brabham 1965 Gold Star Winning car

JB

#3314 Lee Nicolle

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Posted 19 May 2010 - 23:05

Lots of bad reports around about these things... why?

Because some early renditions of them in openwheelers had no centralising ball/socket in the middle. Neither did the Elans.

If you look at the simple installation in any Fiat, there's always a ball on the tail of the gearbox and a socket that goes over the ball in the tailshaft within the donut.

Not only did 1500cc GP cars have them (and they never had Hillman Imp units, they were larger than that), but there were some 2.5/2.7 and Tasman cars had them too. If I'm not mistaken, the Gardner/Bartlett Mildren Brabham had them.

They do have the handy advantage of affording the drivetrain some cushioning of shock loads.

While I do not that often pay much attention to those cars all the ones I have seen have had big uni joints or CV joints.As has been said some cars have them on the tailshaft. I know they cause problems there. But when they are outside the final drive the torque multiplication [by the diff ratio] plus the indirect gears makes then seem very vulnerable to me plus ofcourse rubber will whip around all over the place and not follow a concentric path. The ball on the output will ofcourse solve most of that but still a scarey design. Bad on a tailshaft but dumb when you have up around 10 times the power and torque.
It really is only an improvement on an Austin 7 which had rag joint unis on earlys. I think even the last of them had a proper uni.
Even most modern cars have gone away from donuts and rag joints on steering imput as they are far from failsafe.
Old Toranas had donuts on the end of the column and they are an accident waiting to happen!

#3315 gatkin

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Posted 20 May 2010 - 00:16

Good prospects there, David... here's one for you...

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Nahhh... here's another one for you:

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Which Gold Star Champion is in this pic?


Hi there Ray Bell, I know this photo was posted ages ago, but the link to the "Which Gold Star Champion is in this pic?" has disappeared. My late father was Bob Atkin and as such would love to see the photo. Could you see if you still have it and re-post it or send it to me via message.

Many Thanks

Greg



#3316 Wilyman

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Posted 20 May 2010 - 01:34

Lots of bad reports around about these things... why?

Because some early renditions of them in openwheelers had no centralising ball/socket in the middle. Neither did the Elans.

If you look at the simple installation in any Fiat, there's always a ball on the tail of the gearbox and a socket that goes over the ball in the tailshaft within the donut.

Not only did 1500cc GP cars have them (and they never had Hillman Imp units, they were larger than that), but there were some 2.5/2.7 and Tasman cars had them too. If I'm not mistaken, the Gardner/Bartlett Mildren Brabham had them.

They do have the handy advantage of affording the drivetrain some cushioning of shock loads.




Also remove the need of a sliding spline on the half-shaft getting rid of spline binding with the power on and extreme suspension angles?

TNF*118

Edited by Wilyman, 20 May 2010 - 01:37.


#3317 Guy Miller

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Posted 20 May 2010 - 04:46

I have often wondered, given Cliff Allison's performance in the 1958 Belgium GP and the lack of results achieved by the Sabakat, what went wong.

Little is known of Ern Tadgell, he is a forgotten figure... I have no idea if he is still with us even..or what he ever achieved.

My thought is, had the car been fitted with a 2.2 Climax, it would have been front-line competitive, right up to the advent of the Patterson/Stillwell T51's

Any thoughts ?
JB


Hi JB
Ernie was killed in an aircraft accident in about 68-69. He was an Ag Pilot who never flew on friday 13th. Guess what day he had the accident? He was actually quite Ok physically after the accident but died about 7 days later from the burns he recieved. They actually found him sitting in a water trough when rescurers arrived at the crash site and he walked to the ambulance.
From my memory when the sabakat arrived in the back of a Percival EP9 cut up in pieces it had a 1500cc climax motor in it. Ernie wanted more power and they removed a motor from a crashed Ep 9 and put it in it. It went like stink in a straight line but would not go round corners. In fact I believe the weight of the engine caused the car to bottom out under braking giving little steering. The car was quite unreliable.
I had Ernies brother contact me when I was racing at the Sandown Historics last year. He did have some funny stories to tell?

By the way the sabakat did have a browny black stripe down the centre of it.

Regards

Guy


Regards

#3318 David McKinney

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Posted 20 May 2010 - 06:15

From my memory when the sabakat arrived in the back of a Percival EP9 cut up in pieces it had a 1500cc climax motor in it. Ernie wanted more power and they removed a motor from a crashed Ep 9 and put it in it.

You've telescoped the history there a bit, Guy - unintentionally, perhaps

Ern had two good seasons in the car with the 1500 Climax, especially at Phillip Island, before the ill-advised engine-swap


#3319 David Shaw

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Posted 20 May 2010 - 08:08

Personally, I think the best the Sabakat did was in the 1959 Westernport Trophy at the Island when Stan Jones drove it into the Gold Star points after damaging his Cooper in a preliminary race.

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#3320 Ellis French

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Posted 20 May 2010 - 11:12

These were taken by an aquaintance at Bathurst at Easter 1951 or 1952.

Edit...He has some other images of 1955 Redex cars going around the track but says he wasnt there then....but maybe he was.

Can anyone identify any cars/drivers for him please.

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Edit..Last 2 images flipped

Edited by Ellis French, 21 May 2010 - 00:18.


#3321 David McKinney

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Posted 20 May 2010 - 11:16

The leading car in the second-to-last photo looks too modern for 1951/52
And a left-hooker to boot!
In fact, I suspect the last two photos might be printed in reverse...

#3322 David Shaw

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Posted 20 May 2010 - 12:06

Is the yellow car in the second photo the Wylie Javelin?


#3323 Ray Bell

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Posted 20 May 2010 - 13:27

Yes, the Wylie Javelin... perhaps chasing Bill Ford in the Petticoat Special...

I see the Dixon Riley in there too, with its long pointed tail. As David says, the two pics are back to front, and the presence of an MGTF would also indicate later than '51 or '52.

That last orange car is definitely one only a mother would love!

#3324 Dick Willis

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Posted 20 May 2010 - 20:29

The red car in the first pic looks like the Silverstone Healey, don't know about the Wylie Javelin in pic 2, could it be a 500 special ? Is the car that's too modern the C Type Jag ?

#3325 David McKinney

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Posted 20 May 2010 - 21:49

Yes, I'm sure it's a Healey Silverstone - and I also thought it looked like a C-type, but without looking too closely wondered if it might be an Austin-Healey or something Australian

I also had doubts about the yellow car being the Wylie-Javelin - for the same reasons as you - but Ray seemed adamant. I did make a note to see if I could find any rear-view pictures of it (but haven't got around to doing so yet)

#3326 Ray Bell

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Posted 20 May 2010 - 23:06

At the 1956 Easter meeting, Weintraub has his red Healey Silverstone racing, so did Arthur Griffiths have the Wylie there...

The Dixon Riley ran with Dick Bland at the helm too. This is looking like a good chance of being the meeting, especially since there were four TFs running.

John Medley will know more when he arrives...

#3327 hammo

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Posted 20 May 2010 - 23:44

I think I am getting the hang of this posting thing!
Here are three shots taken at Longford in the 60's
Dont know much about who the people or cars are!





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#3328 Ellis French

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Posted 21 May 2010 - 00:28

Yes, the Wylie Javelin... perhaps chasing Bill Ford in the Petticoat Special...

I see the Dixon Riley in there too, with its long pointed tail. As David says, the two pics are back to front, and the presence of an MGTF would also indicate later than '51 or '52.

That last orange car is definitely one only a mother would love!



I have flipped the images and added a note re possible year.


#3329 Lee Nicolle

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Posted 21 May 2010 - 00:48

The second of Ellis's pics has the small yellow rear engined car. I have no idea what it is but that should make it late 50s at the least.
As does the track, I have seen other pics of that place early 50s and there was almost no fences, just straw bales.And the bitumen seems too good too.Those pics seem to be taken at the dipper or the approach to Forrest Elbow I think.
Also the drivers helmets look to modern for early 50s, as do a few of those cars.
For mine i would say 61 would be closer,
They are great pics though

#3330 Dick Willis

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Posted 21 May 2010 - 03:01

Methinks you are in the wrong decade with 1961, Lee. If the yellow car in pic 2 was the Wylie Javelin wouldn't it have two exhaust outlets beside the rear grille, because of its flat four engine, not a high swept pipe on the rh side.

#3331 john medley

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Posted 21 May 2010 - 06:40

The Silverstone Healey is Tom Jordan's. Austen Taurenac 's yellow Norton Special chases Bill Ford' s red canvas bodied Hudson Special, John Boorman's Jaguar C type makes way for Ray Fowler's MG J2/TC Special and Dick Bland's Dixon Riley, dont know the yellow thing, time 55 and/or 56, major clue to me appears to be the skid marks on the road probably from thecrashed-in-practice MGTC of Norm Rogers who according to the Bathurst book ran there only in October 1955 --- but then some of the other cars dont fit. More research needed!

#3332 Ellis French

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Posted 21 May 2010 - 06:58

The Silverstone Healey is Tom Jordan's. Austen Taurenac 's yellow Norton Special chases Bill Ford' s red canvas bodied Hudson Special, John Boorman's Jaguar C type makes way for Ray Fowler's MG J2/TC Special and Dick Bland's Dixon Riley, dont know the yellow thing, time 55 and/or 56, major clue to me appears to be the skid marks on the road probably from thecrashed-in-practice MGTC of Norm Rogers who according to the Bathurst book ran there only in October 1955 --- but then some of the other cars dont fit. More research needed!




Thanks for all that info. I will pass it on to the owner of the photos
Much appreciated

Ellis

#3333 kaydee

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Posted 21 May 2010 - 07:26

Some photos from the Armstrong 500 at Phillip Island in 1961 -

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Pit area

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Trade support service area


#3334 Ray Bell

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Posted 21 May 2010 - 11:25

Originally posted by Lee Nicolle
.....And the bitumen seems too good too. Those pics seem to be taken at the dipper or the approach to Forrest Elbow I think.
Also the drivers' helmets look to modern for early 50s, as do a few of those cars.
For mine i would say 61 would be closer,
They are great pics though


The bitumen doesn't seem very different from the earliest post-war years until the early sixties...

The photos are all taken from the spectator area above the Dipper, the point where the cutting is perhaps 20' high and therefore gives a commanding view of the cars going through the corner. The cars are heading for an unnamed right hander before the run that heads them down towards Forrest's Elbow. The fences were like that through most of the fifties, IIRC.

#3335 Ellis French

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Posted 21 May 2010 - 12:03

A few more in the same box of slides at Bathurst.......

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#3336 Ray Bell

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Posted 21 May 2010 - 12:16

Originally posted by Lee Nicolle
While I do not that often pay much attention to those cars all the ones I have seen have had big uni joints or CV joints. As has been said some cars have them on the tailshaft. I know they cause problems there. But when they are outside the final drive the torque multiplication [by the diff ratio] plus the indirect gears makes then seem very vulnerable to me plus ofcourse rubber will whip around all over the place and not follow a concentric path. The ball on the output will ofcourse solve most of that but still a scarey design. Bad on a tailshaft but dumb when you have up around 10 times the power and torque.
It really is only an improvement on an Austin 7 which had rag joint unis on earlys. I think even the last of them had a proper uni.
Even most modern cars have gone away from donuts and rag joints on steering imput as they are far from failsafe.
Old Toranas had donuts on the end of the column and they are an accident waiting to happen!


Lee, you really needed to be there...

Like I said, Brabhams with 2.7 Climaxes had donuts each side of the diff and they didn't have a problem at all and they weren't replaced nearly as often as you'd think. And it was quite the normal thing for them to have the centralising ball, so they never even thought about whipping around all over the place.

I think the Elans didn't have a centralising ball system, nor the Hillman Imps. This makes them a poor design, but doesn't mean the donuts weren't up to the job. Centralised, they would have coped. Generally speaking, of course, not many cars have such a high torque multiplication level as 10:1 in the rear axle... usually about 4:1.

#3337 Catalina Park

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Posted 21 May 2010 - 12:23

I can think of a few 3 litre F1 that had them (BT19, etc.)
The Porsche 935 also ran very large ones.

#3338 Ray Bell

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Posted 21 May 2010 - 12:26

Originally posted by gatkin
Hi there Ray Bell, I know this photo was posted ages ago, but the link to the "Which Gold Star Champion is in this pic?" has disappeared. My late father was Bob Atkin and as such would love to see the photo. Could you see if you still have it and re-post it or send it to me via message.


Greg, welcome to the forum... I don't know that I ever met you at the circuits, but I certainly knew your father. Both in the pit areas along the east coast and under the concrete ceiling at the Shell servo at Wahroonga (where I once got a tongue lashing from D-d-david for the state of my road car!)... you lost your father way too early...

I will have that pic among my e.mails at home, I'll see if I can remember to re-post it for you. Like the other, it would have been sent to me by one of your dad's contemporaries, Geoff Smedley, who prepared 2.5 Climax cars for John Youl, Frank Matich and Allan Grice among other things.

#3339 Ray Bell

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Posted 21 May 2010 - 12:29

Originally posted by Ellis French
A few more in the same box of slides at Bathurst.......

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Don Gibson's '38 Dodge!

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#3340 Ray Bell

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Posted 21 May 2010 - 12:36

Originally posted by hammo
I think I am getting the hang of this posting thing!
Here are three shots taken at Longford in the '60s
Dont know much about who the people or cars are!

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Keep it up, hammo...

This car is wearing a Scuderia Veloce sticker, is it not? So is that Bob Atkin sitting in the car? If so, it would be Friday or course.

I'm having trouble working out what car it is. Not David's, I think it's a Kiwi connection.

Edited by Ray Bell, 21 May 2010 - 12:43.


#3341 David McKinney

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Posted 21 May 2010 - 13:45

Keep it up, hammo...

This car is wearing a Scuderia Veloce sticker, is it not? So is that Bob Atkin sitting in the car? If so, it would be Friday or course.

I'm having trouble working out what car it is. Not David's, I think it's a Kiwi connection.

It is the car McKay raced in 1962. Chris Amon raced it in Australia in 1963, but only in the February internationals. It'll presumably be the time Jim Palmer drove it at Bathurst (but ISTR failed to start)

#3342 Ray Bell

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Posted 21 May 2010 - 13:49

It must have had a bit of a change to its colour scheme before I first saw it on October 14...

I've posted a picture of it from that day, actually. Probably missing now, of course.

#3343 Ray Bell

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Posted 21 May 2010 - 16:03

Originally posted by JimBradshaw
I rather think it was the Stillwell/Gardner/Bartlett Mildren Brabham 1965 Gold Star Winning car


In fact, Stan, the Stillwell car was never driven by Bartlett...

The car to which I referred was the yellow one driven by Gardner in '65, abortively fitted with a V12 Maserati engine at the end of that year and then returned to Climax power in time for KB to set the first 100mph lap at Bathurst. Later raced by Allan Grice, of course.

But I'm fairly sure the Stillwell/Gardner/Grant (?) car had donuts as well. You would have looked over those things, wouldn't you?

#3344 john medley

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Posted 21 May 2010 - 23:06

Those Bathurst pics have certainly made me sit up and take notice. In that time period the printed race programme did not necessarily show every car -- a serious impediment for people like us looking backwards at all this. I thought that I had managed to identify almost every car/driver that ran at Bathurst when I wrote the Bathurst book, a point I made in the preface entitled "Pity the Poor Historian" There is a certain black humour( and a historian's chagrin) in the fact that in the example I used to illustrate one point in that Preface I got it wrong: in 1962 Bela Phlock entered not the old Bill Dutton 1100 Alta Special but the single seat Prad Alta/Holden which has only recently returned to Historic Racing in the hands of Mal Reid. And the driver of the Anderson Holden pictured on page 180 I now know to be Glyn Scott.

I spent time in last night's dark hours trying to absolutely establish exactly which meeting(s) the pics show. Again, I failed. And the more recently posted ones add to the confusion. I think we can probably agree that the marks on the tar and some other things indicate one meeting, probably October 1955, probably race day. The cars however do not fit the Bathurst book details for that meeting -- which means that the book is wrong on those details. Cars are shown that did not appear in the programme, the results, the films,the descriptions, the other photos sighted. That IS Austen Taurenac's yellow Norton Special, Ray Fowler's MG is clearly yellow when it was recorded elsewhere as blue at that time, that IS Allan Gray's Jaguar XK140, that IS the John Boorman C Type Jaguar, yes Ray that is Don Gibson's Dodge in typical pose, but WHAT is that yellow thing in the original set? What/who is the large Jaguar sedan(MK 5?) in that second set. Could that pale blue/green Austin be Barry Gurdon's?

These are times when the camera should be smashed!

The yellow thing COULD be the first Rizzo Riley when Frank Tobin owned it. It had large blue flashes down either side of the front of an otherwise yellow body, and the wide front track was a feature of that car.

Dick Willis, you might ring up Charlie Smith and ask if that is him in that yellow Fiat 1100

Definitely more research needed!

#3345 Dick Willis

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Posted 22 May 2010 - 02:51

John, I've sent the pic to Charlie so we will await his response, great Bathurst pics Ellis !

#3346 Lee Nicolle

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Posted 22 May 2010 - 03:25

I can think of a few 3 litre F1 that had them (BT19, etc.)
The Porsche 935 also ran very large ones.

The 935s that i have seen have had big CVs, the type that some F1 cars were using in the 80s. And the ones that the offroad guys were scrounging for buggies

#3347 Lee Nicolle

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Posted 22 May 2010 - 03:32

Lee, you really needed to be there...

Like I said, Brabhams with 2.7 Climaxes had donuts each side of the diff and they didn't have a problem at all and they weren't replaced nearly as often as you'd think. And it was quite the normal thing for them to have the centralising ball, so they never even thought about whipping around all over the place.

I think the Elans didn't have a centralising ball system, nor the Hillman Imps. This makes them a poor design, but doesn't mean the donuts weren't up to the job. Centralised, they would have coped. Generally speaking, of course, not many cars have such a high torque multiplication level as 10:1 in the rear axle... usually about 4:1.

Multiply diff ratio of 4.1 by first gear ratio and on some smaller road cars you are getting toward 10.1.
Whatever they were used on I still think it is an inept system, an accident waiting too happen. Though some of those uni joints were too as they were running the unis close to bind. I have seen those break. Not a pretty sight

Edited by Lee Nicolle, 22 May 2010 - 03:33.


#3348 David Shaw

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Posted 22 May 2010 - 03:47

What/who is the large Jaguar sedan(MK 5?) in that second set. Could that pale blue/green Austin be Barry Gurdon's?


Frank Hann used to run a Mk. 5, and I would expect the Austin to be Gurdon's.


#3349 john medley

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Posted 22 May 2010 - 06:04

David, exactly. That is who they are. My point is that those two are among the several that dont appear in the listings for October 1955 in the Bathurst book, and much work went into getting those lists right I thought. Barry Gurdon entered his A90 for that meeting, but obviously ran his A50

I too congratulate you Ellis on the pics -- rare colour indeed. Any more?

#3350 Ellis French

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Posted 22 May 2010 - 06:23

David, exactly. That is who they are. My point is that those two are among the several that dont appear in the listings for October 1955 in the Bathurst book, and much work went into getting those lists right I thought. Barry Gurdon entered his A90 for that meeting, but obviously ran his A50

I too congratulate you Ellis on the pics -- rare colour indeed. Any more?


As stated before they are not mine but the owner was interested in putting names etc to them so I thankyou on his behalf.
Think this is the last few from the box......dont think I've doubled up.

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