Tag Archives: Harvick

King Kevin 4 The Happy Nation !

Without the wonders of the internet I’d probably have no idea who Kevin Harvick was, around the time he was pulled into NASCAR’s top echelon of Cup racing by Richard Childress, RCR, the mainstream press in the UK had barely registered RCR and NASCAR’s star driver Dale Earnhardt’s passing and showed no interest in the guy Richard would turn to in his hour of need.

Thanks to the likes of Jerry Bonkowski over at Yahoo! Sport I managed to keep in touch with what was going on in Cup competition at the turn of the Millennium.

Chevrolet Impala SS, Harvick, Nurburgring,

In 2008 Jay Busbee at the same august internet enterprise ran a competition in which his readers were asked to fantasise about the future of NASCAR to be in with a chance of winning a number of NASCAR goodies.

My entry above imagined a 24 hour Cup race at the Nurburgring, which won me a “Americans For A Gunk Free Nation” cap signed by none other than Happy Kevin Harvick.

Chevrolet Impala SS, Kevin Harvick, Aaron's 499, Talladega,

The following year I got even luckier thanks to a much missed website called rowdy.com and won a trip to see Kevin race in the Aaron’s 499 at Talladega.

The race was best remembered for the wipe out between winner Brad Keselowski and Carl Edwards at the finish line, my man Kevin had a torrid time after his own early wipe out dented every panel on his car and his 2009 season was his worst since his semaphore slump in 2002.

On the plus side Kevin did win the 2009 Bud Shootout and in the post race interview uttered the phrase that I would eventually purloin and tweek for the title of this blog in 2010.

Chevrolet Impala SS

Photo Courtesy Kevin Harvicks Twitter feed.

The following season there were rumours that Kevin would switch to Haas Stewart Racing but these came to nought and Kevin bounced back to place 3rd in the Cup standings 3 times over the next four seasons.

At the end of 2011, to show how serious the matter of winning the Cup was, Kevin shut down his championship winning Kevin Harvick Inc Nationwide and Camping World Series Truck teams in his quest to focus on a Cup winning competitive edge.

Chevrolet Impala SS, Kansas, Kevin Harvick

Photo courtesy Kevin Harvick’s Twitter feed.

However despite finishing third in the final Cup standings last year Kevin decided that the switch to Stewart Haas Racing was due and amazingly after scoring 20 top ten finishes Kevin was crowned Sprint Cup Champion after winning his fifth race of the season at Homestead Miami to beat Ryan Newman by just one point.

The following day Kevin tweeted “All I can (do) is thank you to everyone for the support through all the years!! What a year this has been!!! WE WIN!!!”

Having been a Happy fan with a signed hat since 2008, I would like to congratulate Kevin and his SHR crew on their Championship success, thank him for keeping me entertained through thick and thin and wish him and his delightful wife Delana, who allegedly wears the fire suit, along with their son Keelan a relaxing festive break and best wishes for the 2015 season which kicks of on Valentines day with the Sprint Unlimited at Daytona.

Thanks for joining me on this “King Kevin 4 The Happy Nation !” edition of “Gettin’ a li’l psycho on tyres” I hope you will join me again for Ferrari Friday tomorrow. Don’t forget to come back now !


RIP Eddie Stobart – Ford Escort RS 1800 Replica

Ford RS1800 Replica, Race Retro, Stoneleigh

No trip along a British or European motorway is complete without seeing one of an immaculate fleet of Eddie Stobart trucks.

Ford RS1800 Replica, Race Retro, Stoneleigh

Eddie Stobart (Snr) founded an agricultural business in the 1950’s and his son Eddie Stobart (Jnr) built the company into one of the best known haulage companies in Europe over a period of 30 years.

Ford RS1800 Replica, Race Retro, Stoneleigh

Eddie (Jnr) sold the company to his brother William and business partner Andrew Tinkler in 2004. It is sad to record that Eddie (Jnr) predeceased his father aged just 56 last week.

Ford RS1800 Replica, Race Retro, Stoneleigh

This Ford Escort MKII RS1800 Replica appears to have started life as a 1972 Ford Escort MK 1 1100L and been reshelled with a post 1975 style body.

Ford RS1800 Replica, Race Retro, Stoneleigh

This Eddie Stobart sponsored car was successfully campaigned in 2006 and 2007 in selected historic rallies by 5 time British Rally Champion Jimmy McRae, father of World Rally Champion Colin McRae.

Ford RS1800 Replica, Race Retro, Stoneleigh

Most recently this Escort has been run by Whelan Historic Motorsport in historic rally events for Jim Whelan and co driver John Atherton.

Slightly off topic congratulations to Kevin Harvick who made it two Sprint Cup wins in a row yesterday when he won the traditional Grandfather Clock at Martinsville last night. This was the first time I have ever seen my man win a Cup Race on TV.

I hope you’ll join me again for another edition of ‘Gettin’ a lil’ psycho on tyres’. Don’t forget to come back now !

Stop press ! It is with a heavy heart that I have to report Mr Ed Arnaudin contributor of many fabulous photo’s to ‘Gettin’ a lil’ psycho on tyres’ passed away during the red flag period of the Martinsville race.

A proper appreciation of Ed will follow in due course, in the meantime I hope you join me in honouring and celebrating his life by typing his name in the ‘Search psycho on tyres box’, in death as in life Ed has much to share.

Condolences to the best friend I have never met, Steve Arnaudin and his family.


English Corvette – TR7 V8

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The prototype V8 powered Triumph TR7 variant was produced as early as 1972. The performance of the model led to these vehicles being dubbed English Corvettes in some circles.

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The Triumph TR8 Coupe was in production from 1978 to 1980 the TR8 Drophead was designed by Michelotti and introduced in 1980 continuing in production until 1982.

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As a result of poor labour relations and the inherent industrial action it is thought that only 400 TR8 Coupes were built along with an estimated 2400 Dropheads, the majority of which were sold in the United States and Canada.

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In other countries outside North America some TR7 owners upgraded their cars with variations of the all alloy Buick / Rover 3528cc / 215 cui V8. From the best records available to me this appears to be one such upgraded car.

My thanks to the Pistonhead who brought this TR7 V8 along to the Sunday Service at the BMW plant back in January.

Slightly off topic, why is it the only time ‘my’ driver ‘Happy’ Harvick wins a cup race I am too busy too catch it ?

Congratulations to Kevin, who is misquoted to give this blog it’s name, and the #29 Richard Childress Team πŸ™‚

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


May the best man win – Homestead Miami

When the intelnet first entered my life around 2003/4 thanks to some excellent writing by Jerry Bonkowski I found myself developing an interest in all things NASCAR.

That interest turned to fandom when I won a Happy Harvick hat thanks to a competition run by Jay Busbee’s From The Marbles Blog.

Last year I was fortunate for a third time when I won tickets to go to the Aarons 499 at Talladega, where these photos were taken, thanks to Buck Fever over at rowdy.com.

Today is the final round of the NASCAR Sprint Cup and ‘my driver’ Kevin Harvick stands an outside chance of winning it all.

May the best man win, Go Harvick ! Go #29 ! Go Happy !

More fun at ‘Gettin’ a lil’ psycho on tyres’ tomorrow don’t forget to come back now !


The Ugly Duckling – Jaguar S-Type

Amongst two classic vehicles I recently found in the car park of the Morgan Motor Company was this beautiful Jaguar S-Type that in silver epitomises Sir William Lyons maxim “grace pace and space”, though it was considered the ugly duckling of its two contemporary 4 door siblings the smaller MKII and larger MK X.

The S-Type was a reworking of the Jaguar MKII / Daimler V8 250 shell and ended up looking like a half way house between the MK11 and MK X indeed when I first saw this car from the back I thought it was a MK X.

This particular vehicle is powered by a 210 hp twin carb 3442 cc / 210 cui cast iron bloc 6 cylinder motor which was significantly less popular than the 3.8 litre variant. The 3.4 was capable of reaching 60 mph from stationary in 13.9 secs and had a top speed of 115 mph figures that were down on the lighter 3.4 litre MK II.

However where the S-Type excelled was in its superior traction ride and cornering capability thanks to an independent rear suspension whose origins can be traced back through the MK10 Jaguar to the E-Type and it’s D-type prototypes E1A and E2A.

Back in the day companies that excelled in exporting products were given a Queens Award for Export in recognition of their contribution to minimising the UK’s balance of payment deficit with the rest of the world.

Production of the S-Type commenced in 1963 and continued until 1968 with 9,928 examples of the 3.4 litre being built compared to 15,065 of the 3.8 litre variant. This vehicle appears to be one of the last 909 3.4 litre vehicles built in 1968. Mr Crouch a Jaguar Body Engineer allegedly reported “that everyone (at Browns Lane) was glad to see the end of the S” a sentiment I find difficult to agree with 42 years later.

Thanks to Phillip Whiteman over at The Nostalgia Forum for bringing the role of E2A to my attention.

Slightly off topic, 20 years after Dale Earnhadt pulled off one of the most spectacular finishes in history by making up 16 places to take his final win, Talladega produced another thriller yesterday, an absolute heart stopper for fellow Kevin Harvick fans I am sure with over eighty lead changes amongst 20 odd drivers.

I was most despondent when Kevin T-boned someone with around a third of the race left to run, yet somehow the Happy pit crew kept Kevin on the lead lap after patching his car up with copious quantities of tank tape and Kevin crossed the finish line first with one lap to go (white flag lap) however the big one occurred as Kevin being pushed by David Reutimann on the outside of Turn One fell slightly behind team mate Clint Bowyer who was himself being pushed by pole sitter Juan Pablo Montoya.

Though AJ Almendinger ended up on his roof it was noticeable that none of the vehicles at Talladega went airborne in the same way as last year which might be attributable to the switch from the rear wing to the rear gurney flap earlier this year. Fortunately it would appear no one was hurt either and after agonising minuets off decision making Bowyer was declared the winner.

Harvick has closed the points deficit to 38 on Johnson who got shuffled down the pack on the last restart to an eventual 7th and sits just 14 points ahead of Dangerous Denny Hamlin who had a torrid race going a lap down but thanks to a lucky dog still salvaged a ninth place finish by the end. They don’t call this race the Alabahma Lottery for nothing.

Next week NASCAR moves to Texas where Denny Hamlin won last time out and he Happy and Johnson will have it all to play for, my only prediction is that Johnson will be staying well away from the #77 of Sam Hornish Jr.

Thanks for stopping by wishing everyone a momentous Monday, don’t forget to come back now !


Born out of an Austin Maxi – AC 3000 ME

Born out of an Austin Maxi – AC 3000 ME

Stumbled across this lovely little AC 3000 ME at Silverstone many, many moons ago.

Auto Carriers (AC) can trace it’s roots back 1903, but is probably best known to my generation for two cars that it did not design, namely the AC Ace a design which started life as a Weller engined Tojero and was purchased by AC before eventually morphing into the brutal AC Cobra.

Similarly the AC 3000 ME started out as an Austin Maxi, I’ll repeat that for the more incredulous reader Austin Maxi (!) powered special built by Peter Bohanna and Robin Stables which after AC took it over became a Ford, top of the UK range, 3 litre / 183cui Essex V6 powered vehicle.

AC made just 71 of these vehicles starting in 1979 until production was halted at the Thames Ditton works in 1984. A further 30 3000 ME’s were produced under license by AC (Scotland) including a unique Alfa Romeo V6 prototype. One for collectors to look out for one would imagine.

No AC’s of any kind were built between 1985 and 1996.

Wishing you all a relaxing Sunday and hoping Kevin Harvick can put one over the #48 and #11 at Matinsville tonight. Hope springs eternal for this ‘Happy’ fan πŸ™‚

Don’t forget to come back now !


Move Over – Rover P6… Cabriolet !

The other day I was ambling along to the shops in the bright sunshine and I caught a glimpse of an old school chrome bumper through a hedge, it was attached to a Rover P6 (marketed as a Rover 2000) I didn’t think much of it till I got around the corner and it registered there was something odd, the roof was missing.

I went back to check and sure enough this is a Rover 2000 4 door cabriolet. I have no idea where or when the conversion was done, probably when the car was at least 12 months old to avoid attracting additional car purchase tax.

The Rover P6 Series 1 was in production from 1963 – 1973. This particular model was relatively underpowered by a 104 hp single carb, 1978 cc 120 CUI Heronhead (flat head / combustion chamber in the piston) overhead cam four cylinder engine. 208, 875 examples were produced of which between 160 to 170 are thought to have been converted post registration (to avoid additional car purchase tax) into estate / station wagon types by HR Owen and Crayford Engineering. Crayford are well known for Cabriolet conversions and possibly may have done this one.

If you know anything about Convertible P6’s please tell us about them ?

Slightly off topic tonight (UK time) is the night Happy Harvick and anyone else interested in lifting the NEXTEL CUP surely has to beat Jimmy Johnson to be considered a contender, if the #48 leaves California with the win then I’d say the Chase and the Drive for Five is all over bar the shouting. Fingers crossed Go Happy ! Go Harvick ! Go #29 !

Wishing everybody a sunny Sunday. Don’t forget to come back know !