Tag Archives: Sturgis

Why Don’t You ? – LECo MG Mk II

Back in the 1950’s when the A3 was the main road connecting the ports of Southampton and Portsmouth with London Fred Sturges and Peter Tompkins ran Liss Engineering Company in the village bearing the same name about 1/3rd of the way twixt Portsmouth and London in the Hampshire country side.

After Peter wrote off his 1937 MG TA the pair built a special recycling the engine and gearbox and fitting it to a
chassis frame built from tubing supplied by budding Grand Prix outfit Connaught Engineering. The body was built up from an aluminium nose discarded by the Vanwall Grand Prix Ferrari that had been secured with the help of Mike Hawthorn during a test session at Goodwood.

LECo MG Mk II, Autumn Classic, Castle Combe

Today’s featured vehicle was commissioned for the 1954 season by Margret and Captain Richard Ashby who after returning from an overseas posting attended a meeting at Goodwood where they were less than impressed with the standard of driving.

ERA and BRM founder Raymond Mays overhearing the Ashby’s derogatory comments asked ” “If you feel you could do better, why don’t you have a go?”

LECo MG Mk II, Quattlebaum, Autumn Classic, Castle Combe

Like the LECo Mk I The Ashby’s Mk II featured a chassis made from materials supplied by Connaught.

It appears the Mk II was originally powered by a Morris motor but by 1956 this had been replaced by an MG XPAG motor, the final body shape is said to have evolved with “repairs” necessary during it’s competition history.

LECo MG Mk II, Quattlebaum, Autumn Classic, Castle Combe

The Ashby’s are both known to have competed with the LECo Mk II in events at Goodwood, Crystal Palace, the Brighton Speed Trials and Bo Peep Hill Climb in Firle East Sussex.

Of the cars known results Richard won at least one event at Goodwood in September 1956 while Margret scored 5th places in two races at the same venue in June 1957.

LECo MG Mk II, Quattlebaum, Autumn Classic, Castle Combe

American Alex Quattlebaum is seen driving the Ashby’s LECo to victory at Castle Combe at last years Autumn Classic which was the conclusion of a European Tour that included events at Spa, Zolder, Dijon, Silverstone, Oulton Park, Donington, Goodwood and through the streets of Oporto, Portugal.

Alex also owns the third LECo, built in 1956 with a Tojero like body, which is the only other LECo known to exist.

Thanks for joining me on this “Why Don’t You ?” edition of “Gettin’ a li’l psycho on tyres” I hope you will join me again for Maserati Monday tomorrow. Don’t forget to come back now !