Tag Archives: Fun Day

SoCal TV Hustler – Ford Falcon

25 years after Edsel Ford allegedly passed on the Falcon name in favour of Mercury, for a new brand in 1935, Ford under the direction of Robert McNamara finally brought the Falcon name into the market for it’s new mid size car range in 1960.

Ford Falcon, Edenbridge Fun Day

The first generation Falcon’s, like the ’62 4 door station wagon seen here at Edenbridge earlier this year, were primarily designed as second cars for families who already had a full size land yacht on the drive and needed a second vehicle for the wife to drive.

Ford Falcon, Edenbridge Fun Day

By 1962 the four door station wagon was available with a Squire options package that included faux wood paneling which gave the car car a quasi woody look.

Ford Falcon, Edenbridge Fun Day

Part of Fords marketing strategy for the Falcon from 1961 to 1965 was to include Charles Schulz peanuts characters Charlie Brown and Lucy in the sales literature for the Falcon models.

Ford Falcon, Edenbridge Fun Day

Look closely again at the number plate holders in the top photo and you’ll see they bear the legend “Encino Ralph Williams”. Ralph Williams was a Southern California TV Car Hustler, a born motor mouth who lived by the ABS moto, ALWAYS BE SELLING. It appears he did not always play his audience with straight dice and he was moved on by local authorities for a variety of violations. I found this linked footage, presumably an out take, of Ralph in action to give you an idea of what colourful legend he was. WARNING DO NOT CLICK ON THE LINK IF YOUR EARS ARE EASILY OFFENDED.

Ford Falcon, Edenbridge Fun Day

The first series Falcon’s were also badged as Mercury Comets and in Canada as Ford Frontenacs until 1963 when the second generation Falcons were introduced.

Thanks for joining me on this “SoCal TV Hustler” edition of “Gettin’ a li’l psycho on tyres” I hope you will join me again tomorrow for Ferrari Friday. Don’t forget to come back now !


Big John Burns Rubber – Edenbridge Fun Day

On Bank Holiday Monday I popped over to Edenbridge, Kent, just south of London, where John Surtees was due to take part in the Edenbridge Fun Day with a demonstration of his first Formula One Car the Surtees TS7.

John Surtees, OBE, Edenbridge Fun Day

John was in good form and delighted to be promoting Edenbridge the town in which he based his racing team and the Henry Surtees Foundation that John set up in memory of son to give young people an opportunity to experience the emotion, disciplines and learning that the world of motorsport can offer.

BMW 500 Rennsport, Edenbridge Fun Day

Taking part in the demonstration were two of John’s bikes, he was seven time world motor cycle champion in 350 and 500 classes locking both out from 1957 to 1960, above a 1954 58p 500cc BMW Rennsport.

Mercedes 300SL, Edenbridge Fun Day

John’s 1956 Gullwing Mercedes 300SL also took part in the parade.

Connew, Eddington, Surtees TS7, Edenbridge Fun Day

Among the former Surtees employees Peter Connew, who went on to design his own Formula One car after the Surtees TS7 seen in the background was finished and Bob Eggington who was workshop foreman at the Surtees factory.

Surtees TS14, Edenbridge Fun Day

Half way through the 1973 season Mike Hailwood joked with reporters that his Surtees TS14 was so unreliable that he used to take a book with him in the car to read while he was waiting to be towed back to the pits. Chassis #04 seen here lived up to it’s reputation when it developed a fuel leak just as Oliver Turvey was about to fire it up for the parade.

Surtees TS7, Edenbridge Fun Day

The Surtees TS7 chassis #01 also nearly blotted it’s copybook when it ejected an important piece of rubber from it’s starter motor meaning John needed a push start before joining the parade.

Kerr, Surtees TS15, Edenbridge Fun Day

The Formula 2, second open wheel tier, Surtees TS15 of the type, and probably the same chassis, which Carlos Pace used to win a non Championship race in Brazil at the end of 1972, was driven by 2002 British Formula 3 Champion Robbie Kerr. In the background is the former Surtees factory building which is soon to be replaced by a supermarket.

Surtees TS7, Edenbridge Fun Day

You would not believe John was a man of 79 when he unleashed the 400 horsepower from the Ford Cosworth DFV, engine number 050, and smoked his tyres as he set off down the B2026 from Edenbridge Station in to town.

MV Augusta 500, Edenbridge Fun Day

Surprisingly the 1960 4 cylinder 500 cc / 45 cui MV Augusta, on which John won the last of his seven motorcycle championships was even noisier than the 3 litre / 183 cui V8 Cosworth.

Surtees TS7, Edenbridge Fun Day

Above John is seen returning to the site of his former factory with his MV behind. As I learned last year when I attended the BRM Day a chance to see a Grand Prix car on the streets is never one to be missed.

Thanks for joining me on this “Big John Burns Rubber” edition of “Gettin’ a li’l psycho on tyres”. I hope you will join me again tomorrow. Don’t forget to come back now !