Tag Archives: Forum

Clever Canadian – Sadler BMC Formula Junior

When Clever Canadian Bill Sadlers Dad was ready to junk the family business Sadler Auto Electric 1939 Austin panel van Bill asked to take on the vehicle he had been delivering parts with and turned it into a convertible.

Later he converted his Hillman Minx to take a 150hp flathead Ford V8, the cars original brakes proved too small on his competitive debut at Watkins Glen.

Sadler BMC Formula Junior, Stephen Bulling, Autimn Classic, Castle Combe,

This led Bill to building a number of sports cars to race, he was an early adopter of both the small block Chevy V8 and the engine behind the driver layout which would become part of the formula for any half way decent Can Am car many years later.

By 1959 MENSA International member Bill was producing sports cars in small numbers when he decided to build a batch of 12 open wheel cars to the international Formula Junior specifications that were announced in 1958.

Sadler BMC Formula Junior, Stephen Bulling, Autimn Classic, Castle Combe,

The Sadler Formula Junior’s were built to a tuned version of the 1098 cc / 67 cui 46hp BMC A series engine more commonly found in Austin A35 van’s, Austin A40 Pininfarina Countryman’s, Morris Minors, Austin Healey Sprite’s, BMC’s various badge engineered 1100’s, later Mini Clubmans, Australian built Mini Mokes and Austin Allegro’s.

The engine and similarly sourced 4 speed gearbox sits in a tubular frame and is covered by an aluminium body.

Sadler BMC Formula Junior, Stephen Bulling, Autimn Classic, Castle Combe,

Details of 1959 Formula Junior races in which Sadlers took part are extremely hard to find, but by 1960 G Hag, Vic Yachuk, Ernest Donnan, James Walter and George Roberts, had all recorded starts in Sadler Formula Juniors in North America.

According to Dutchy and Steven W at The Nostalgia Forum, today’s Sadler seen in these photographs with Stephen Bulling driving at Castle Combe, was at one time driven by Canadian Dave Rodgman.

Thanks for joining me on this “Clever Canadian” edition of “Gettin’ a li’l psycho on tyres” I hope you will join me again tomorrow when I’ll be looking at the first in a new Sunday Healey series. Don’t forget to come back now !


Jack’s 500 – Waye JAP

Based in Adelaide, Australia Jack Waye built today’s featured Waye 500 in 1953 and painted it red.

Waye 500, Doug Yates, Autumn Classic, Castle Combe

Featuring a pair of conventional if no longer on trend transverse leaf springs front and rear the Waye was orignally powered by a JAP speedway engine fitted with a Norton gearbox.

Waye 500, Doug Yates, Autumn Classic, Castle Combe

Jack sold the Waye 500 to Kevin Fuss in 1955 and in the ’56 / ’57 off season Kevin swapped the JAP motor for a Manx Norton, and made sprockets with different ratio’s for hillclimbing and circuit racing.

Waye 500, Doug Yates, Autumn Classic, Castle Combe

While Kevin mostly drove the car while it was in his ownership, until 1966, on one occasion Bernie O’Hare was credited with recording a top speed of 98mph at the wheel of the Waye 500 at Collingwood.

Waye 500, Doug Yates, Autumn Classic, Castle Combe

John Vinall became the third owner of the Waye 500 but only raced it until the end of 1967 when he discovered cracks in the flywheel.

Waye 500, Doug Yates, Autumn Classic, Castle Combe

John and his fiancee were killed in a road accident four years later and it was not until 1993 Waye 500 ran again after his brother David had the engine overhauled.

Waye 500, Autumn Classic, Castle Combe

The overhauled engine did not run well after it’s second practice run and the car was put back into storage until it was bought by David and Andrew Halliday in Sydney, Australia.

When they removed the Manx Norton to fit it into a Cooper they discovered that the timing had slipped which is what had caused the engine to malfunction in 1993.

In 2011 Andrew Halliday advertised the Waye now fitted with a JAP engine again and it was bought by Doug Yates, who is seen at the wheel in these photographs at Castle Combe.

My thanks to members of The Nostalgia Forum who contributed to the Motorbike powered race cars 1950 to 1980 thread, particularly Greg Mackie and John Medley and to one lung who contributed to the Personal photos of Australian motor racing ’50s to ’70s thread all of which helped lead to discovering that J Waye was the most likely candidate to have built the Waye 500.

I’d also like to thank John Bolly Blog Low for helping me establish that J stood for Jack and finally previous owner Andrew Halliday for :-

a) advertising the Waye for sale on Loose Fillings PDF in 2011


b) sharing details about the Waye 500 with editor Graham Howard, producer Terry Wright and publisher Garry Simkin who ran a small article, on which most of today’s blog is based on, in the 2nd edition of Loose Fillings published in Winter 1999.

Thanks for joining me on this “Jack’s 500” edition of “Gettin’ a li’l psycho on tyres”, I hope you will join me again tomorrow when I’ll be looking at a Leyland Concept car with a square wheel. Don’t forget to come back now !


MK IV Details – UK MKIVS Megameet

For those like me who chose to live a no budget life style running a vehicle is made a lot easier thanks to owners forums.

UK MKIVs Megameet

Soon after acquiring my Golf Mk IV a couple of years ago one of it’s tailgate struts started to come adrift and when I checked on the internet how I might fix it I stumbled on the UK MKIVs Forum which provided the answer.

Volkswagen Golf Mk IV, UK MKIVs Megameet

A couple of month’s ago I revisited the site to get some advice on brakes and noticed that a couple of members were organising a Megameet at Frankies Field, Grendon Lakes, Northamptonshire at the friendly price of completely free and managed to get to the last day of the meeting which included a show and shine competition and a game of cricket, above winner of the best engine bay award was “tolucophoto”.

Volkswagen Bora, UK MKIV's Megameet

Deleting door handles is one way to make ones car more aerodynamically efficient, apparently to open the doors on this Bora one has to press a button below the door mirror.

Volkswagen Golf Mk IV, UK MKIVs Megameet

Above a 2003 R32, one of each of the original four colours was present reflects a couple of fluffy white clouds.

Volkswagen Golf Mk IV, UK MKIVs Megameet

If you want to get down you need to ride on air, one day I hope to check out just how good the ride really is.

Volkswagen Golf Mk IV, UK MKIVs Megameet

All too soon the cricket was over, I never broke my duck in three innings nor did I make a catch, and the prizes had been awarded and it was time to say good bye, I look forward to returning to next years event when I hope to make a weekend of it.

More pics of the event on these links from dan Ward and LTgoodevil, my thanks to our hosts Dan and Royce.

Thanks for joining me on this “MK IV Details” edition of “Gettin’ a li’l psycho on tyres” I hope you will join me again tomorrow when I’ll be looking at an easy to replicate, yet difficult to authenticate special edition. Don’t forget to come back now !


Shafer 8 – Rigling Buick

Like the Wonder Bread Special I looked at last year today’s featured chassis is credited as being the handy work of Herman Rigling who is said to have built no fewer than 8 of the 40 chassis that started the 1931 Indy 500.

Rigling Buick, Silverstone Classic,

Foremost of the 8 entries that Herman had a hand in building was the Buick powered #12 example driven Phil Schafer known as the Schafer 8 which started 23rd and finished 12th.

Rigling Buick, Heinz Bachmann, Silverstone Classic,

The following season Phil returned to Indy to drive the #33 Shafer 8 Rigling Buick from 26th on the grid through to an 11th place finish.

Rigling Buick, Silverstone Classic,

In 1933 Phil was absent from the Indy 500 grid having failed to qualify the #7 Abels Fink Auto Special in an officially sanctioned qualifying session, he did qualify on the morning of the race, but officials realised they had overstepped their jurisdiction by allowing the running of a qualifying session on race day morning !

However the #8 Abels Fink Auto Special, Phil’s Shafer 8 dating back to 1931 , was driven by H W Stubblefield from 10th on the grid to a fifth place finish.

Rigling Buick, Silverstone Classic,

Phil entered two Shafer 8’s for the 1934 Indy 500, it would appear his original Rigling Buick was entered as the #36 for Al Miller and his mechanician Pinky Donaldson while Phil and mechanician Earle Frost drove the #26 Shafer 8.

Rigling Buick, Silverstone Classic,

Al drove to a 6th place finish from 8th on the grid while Phil starting from an Indy 500 career high 6th on the grid recorded his only Indy 500 retirement with a broken cam shaft drive after completing 130 laps to be classified 16th in his last drive at the Brickyard.

Rigling Buick, Silverstone Classic,

Phil continued competing in the AAA championship until 1936 and continued to participate in the Pikes Peak Hillclimb until 1952.

Heinz Bachmann is seen at the wheel of a Rigling Buick above that is believed to be the Shafer 8 that Phil Shafer failed to qualify at Indy in 1933 but with which Paul won the AAA non Championship race at Elgin Illinois, as described at the end of the post by John Glenn Printz, and raced in his final Indy start in 1934.

My thanks to Vitesse2 and Michael Ferner at the Nostalgia Forum for their help with some of the details in today’s story, I highly recommend reading Michael’s retelling of the 1933 Indy 500 qualification saga part 1 of which appears linked here and part 2 linked here with the race report linked here.

Thanks for joining me on this “Shafer 8” edition of “Gettin’ a li’l psycho on tyres” I hope you will join me again tomorrow when I’ll be looking at a DIY Backie. Don’t forget to come back now !


Allard + Farrell + Maserati = The Farrallac MK2

The origins of the Farrallac featured today lie in the Allard J2, chassis J1911registration JWP 800, that rising star Peter Collins purchased and took delivery of in Kidderminster on March 29th 1951.

Allard J2

[Photo supplied by David Hooper copyright holder unknown, this photo will be credited or removed upon request]

Peter Collins seen above, possibly at Westwood Park, on the left drove JWP 800 to victories at two national events held at Gamston and at least one more at Croft where he set an outright lap record.


After passing through the hands of a businessman in the Midlands JWP 800 ended up in the hands of cycle manufacturer Don Farrell who with his wife Stella, a champion cyclist, used the car to compete in hillclimbs and sprints.

Farrallac MK2, Silverstone Classic PD

In order to improve the stability and straight line speed of the cycle winged J2 Don built an all enveloping body for the vehicle and with the unoffficial aid of Allard draghtsman, later Chief Engineer, Dave Hooper fitted the car with wishbone front suspension.

Farrallac MK2, Silverstone Classic PD

The Farrallac Mk1 was used by the Farrells for two years until October 1959 when crossing the finishing line on a hillclimb near Marlow, having set Fastest Time of the Day a track rod broke which consequently sent the car over a barbed wire fence rendering JWP 800 beyond repair and left Don Farrell nursing his wounds in hospital.

Farrallac MK2, Silverstone Classic PD

While recovering Don planned The Farrallac Mk2 which he subsequently built in 1960

Farrallac MK2, Silverstone Classic PD

[Photo Courtesy David Hooper]

using the 400 hp 5980cc Cadillac engine,

Farrallac MK2, Silverstone Classic PD

Alvis gearbox and some of the suspension salvaged from JWP 800 which were fitted to a new twin tube chassis along with Alfin drum brakes.

Farrallac MK2, Silverstone Classic PD

David Hooper tells me the rear body work came from a J2

Farrallac MK2, Silverstone Classic PD

while the front was sourced from a Maserati.

Farrallac Mk2, Silverstone Classic, PD

With a top speed of 165 mph

Farrallac MK2, Silverstone Classic PD

The Farrallac Mk2 was campaigned by the Farrells covering standing 1/4 miles in 12 seconds.

Farrallac MK2, Silverstone Classic PD

In the mid sixties the Farrallac Mk2 passed into the hands of Burno Ferrari who replaced the Cadillac motor for a Ford then the car disappeared,

Farrallac MK2, Silverstone Classic PD

resurfacing in the hands of Tony Bianchi in the late 1970’s.

Farrallac MK2, Silverstone Classic PD

Tony spent seven years bring the car back to health finding a Cadillac engine and fitting it with “Offy” cylinder heads from a stock car. Tony still owns the Mk2 33 years later.

Bob Bull the passenger above tells me he saw an indicated 160 mph as he hung on to his helmet flying along Silverstone’s Hangar Straight.

My thanks to Bob Bull, Colin Warnes of the Allard Register, Allard Chief Engineer David Hooper, Simon Taylor, Classic and Sportscar Magazine (July 1985), The Nostalgia Forum members C Drewett, and Fuzzi for their photo’s and help with information for today’s blog.

Thanks for joining me on today’s Farrallac edition of ‘Gettin’ a lil’ psycho on tyres’ join me again tomorrow for another visit to Castle Combe. Don’t forget to come back now !


The Real McCoy – Mini Cooper S

Mini Cooper S, Prodrive

The 1964 Monte Carlo Rally boasted a superb entry including factory backed vehicles from Citroen, Ford, Mercedes, Saab, Volvo, Volkswagen and a fleet of 6 works Mini Coopers.

Starting from Athens, Frankfurt, Glasgow, Lisbon, Minsk, Monte Carlo, Oslo, Paris and Warsaw, the field converged on Rheims in France and from there on to 5 competitive stages and a couple of laps of the Monaco Grand Prix track.

The Ford Falcon Sprint of Bo Ljungfeldt won every stage of the rally including the laps around Monaco but in those days the overall results were determined by a handicapping system which translated stage times and engine size into points which meant Ljungfelds 305 hp 4.7 litre 289 cui Falcon did not have a sufficient time margin over the 70hp 1071cc / 65 cui Mini Cooper S seen here crewed by Paddy Hopkirk and Henry Liddon which was declared the winner of the 1964 Monte Carlo Rally.

33 EJB is thought to have been built in 1963 and crewed by Hopkirk and Liddon to 3rd overall and 3rd in class in the 1963 Tour de France prior to winning the 1964 Monte Carlo Rally.

The car belongs to the Heritage Motor Centre at Gaydon and is seen here at the Prodrive workshops because the engine was not running properly.

Like the Revenge Mini Replica I blogged about some months ago 33 EJB also has it’s Replica’s like this one built in the USA.

Finally I’d like to correct an oft repeated error reference the registrations of the works Mini’s on the 1964 Monte Carlo Rally seen in the 5th paragraph of this link.

What ever BMW or anyone else may say the registrations of the works Minis on the Monte Carlo Rally in 1964 were as follows :-

33 EJB #37, Hopkirk/Liddon, Cooper S, 1st overall/1st in class.
570 FMO #182 Makinen/Vanson, Cooper S 4th overall/2nd in class
569 FMO #105 Aaltonen/Ambrose, Cooper S 7th overall/3rd in class
477 BBL #39 Baxter/McMillan, Cooper 43rd overall/2nd in class.
18 CRX #187 Thompson/Heys, Cooper S crashed
277 EBL#189 Mayman/Domleo, Cooper S crashed

My thanks to Alan, Tim, Stephen, Darren, Fred at The Nostalgia Forum who helped me out with the registration numbers.

Hope you have enjoyed to days Handicap edition of ‘Gettin’ a lil’ psycho on tyres’ and that you will join me again tomorrow. Don’t forget to come back now !


Mission Possible – Bristol Cars Ltd

Last Monday 27 employees of Bristol Cars Ltd passed through these gates on their way to work.

00 09 03 21 017sc

This morning only 5 employees will return through these gates as the manufacturing arm of Bristol Cars Ltd has been placed into administration with RSM Tenon.

01 Series 6

Tom Maclennan of RSM Tenon is quoted as saying ” There have been a number of immediate redundancies due to the financial position of the company, (but) we are maintaining the sales and service operations so customers will continue to be supported.”

02 Speedsters

Though not without some criticism over the way the company has been run in the past, there has been a significant amount of support for Bristol Cars Ltd on the internet, in the light of this unfortunate development, from owners and non owners alike as evidenced by threads on pistonheads.com, The Nostalgia Forum and particularly on the Bristol Owners Club forum where members recall many of the Bristol Cars Ltd team with fondness having known them for many years.

03 Blenheims

One member of the Bristol Owners Club, Teb Marius from the Netherlands with professional experience in handling these types of financial situations is calling for professional assistance from members and non members in the UK to investigate the possibility putting together a Bristol Owners Club led Consortium to negotiate a viable future for Bristol Cars Ltd with the administrators. Send Teb an e-mail if you can offer any such professional assistance.

04 Fighters

Alternatively for anyone with the financial muscle who wants make a bid for the manufacturing division of Bristol Cars Ltd, Tom MacLennan and Trevor Binyon at RSM Tenon have been appointed joint administrators of the business and would be interested to hear from you.

In anticipation of good news about the future of Bristol Cars Ltd I hope you’ll join me again at “Gettin’ a lil’ psycho on tyres”. Don’t forget to come back now !