Reader Mystery: Who Knows this Fiberglass Racer?

Homebuilt Fiberglass Racing Special

Darren wrote in trying to track down this fiberglass-bodied, Ford Flathead V8-powered special that his father build when Darren was a child. Anyone know anything about this beauty? Let’s hear about it in the comments.

Update: Locke wrote in with a tantalizing clue. “An Australian by the name of Nat Buchanan made fiberglass bodies to put on MGs, TR2s, Healeys, etc. One of the bodies was based on the Aston Martin DB3S & that’s what your photo is. A flathead wasn’t a typical engine choice for an MG in Australia, but it was fairly common in the U.S., so I would guess that this was a U.S. built car—assuming the frame is an MG. This was 1957.”

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In the Can-Am Pits: Road Atlanta 1972

Let’s walk among the trumpets and crazy wide slicks of the 1972 Can-Am paddock at Road Atlanta. Maybe I over-romanticize the history of motor racing—okay, definitely—but wandering among the teams here looks much more like any amateur vintage race happening this weekend than the velvet-rope, VIP charade of top-shelf racing in the modern era. You can argue safety and engineering advances, but you’ll never make me believe that fan access is better now.

More at Mac’s Motor City Garage.

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1952 Palm Springs Road Races Track Map

1952 Palm Springs Road Races Track Map

I think we can all generally agree that the rapid increase in technology—particularly the desktop computer—has made society better in almost every way. Sure, maybe we’re all too buried in our phone screens, but the societal benefits of all that increased computation have made our medicine, our education, our entertainment, our jobs.. on the whole: faster, easier, more enjoyable. I have yet to find, however, a single example of a contemporary track map that is better designed or more engaging than those created by draftsmen hunched over a table with a pencil and a bottle of ink.

This example of the track map for the Palm Springs road races of 1952 is an excellent example. Would a contemporary track map designer sketch in these gorgeous little illustrations of the cars lined up on the track? Would a contemporary designer playfully wrap the typography of the turns around the contours of the map? I doubt it. I’m glad that Stan Parker signed his name to this masterpiece so we can thank someone specific. Thanks, Stan.

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Bare Shell with High Surface Finish

Toledo Fiberglass Sportsca Body Ad

The Microbond Fibreglass Body Shell £49!!!

Dimensions: Wheelbase…….. 6ft. 9in.
Front body width…………. 4ft. 9in.
Rear body width………….. 4ft. 4in.

Suitable for Austin Specials.

Inspection invited at our works, Mondays to Fridays and Saturday mornings up to 1 p.m.

Bare shell with high surface finish, untrimmed, in the following colours: Red, Green, White, Black or Blue — £49.

Extras available include interior wheel arches, mounting tubes, doors, etc. Send for details. Other models in the course of preparation.

Kits for experimental work or bodywork repairs: 12/6, 17/6, 28/6, and 45/-.

Bulk material prices on application. Trade supplied.

Micron Plastics (Dept. MS 4).
Harefield Road, Rickmansworth, Herts
Tel.: 3312

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1963 Highlands Rally

We frequently bemoan the fact that the modern reinterpretations of classic road races have reduced these once thrilling spectacles to timed rallies. But the timed rally has its own rich history as demonstrated here by this remarkable document of the 1963 Atlantic Sports Car Club Rally. If you prescribe to the theory that sports car clubs fundamentally transformed from casual social clubs that had fairly inclusive low-key timed events and gymkhanas, to racing clubs that focused solely on competition; then that return to the more social events is perhaps a welcome return to the roots of sports cars clubs. If those events look a lot more like this Nova Scotian rally, I’m for it.

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Justin Lapriore’s 2015 Amelia Island

This spring the Amelia Island Concourse d’Elegance celebrated its 20th year. For the past three of them Justin Lapriore’s videos have become a bit of a tradition for the Florida island community as well.

It’s wonderful to see that in much the same way that the Amelia Island event has grown into one of the premier concours in the States, Justin’s videos have followed a similar trajectory. I look forward to them each year, and although a few months have past since the event, post-production—just like a concours level restoration—takes time.

(Thanks for the editing eye, Craig.)

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Stirling Moss’s Porsche RS61 For Sale

Stirling Moss Porsche RS61

The Porsche RS61 Spyder that Stirling Moss bought at auction in 2010 is coming back across the block this weekend at Bonhams Goodwood Festival of Speed sale. It’s not hard to understand why this example caught Sir Stirling’s eye, as it’s a magnificent example and sister to the RS60 he drove to a 3rd at the 1961 Targa Florio.

Stirling Moss has called this the “best Porsche they ever made”. I think we’d all do well to trust his judgement on it. Although he’s more well known for his exploits behind the wheel of Maseratis and Mercedes and Ferraris, Sir Stirling had a good deal of experience with Porsche 550s and 718s, and used a 904 as his road car.

More on this example when we covered Stirling Moss’s purchase back in 2010.

More information on this magnificent machine on Bonhams’ Lot Detail Page.

Update: Sold for £1,905,500 (US$ 2,935,255) inc. premium. Almost double what Stirling bought it for when she was last up for auction.

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Bruno Dorigo’s Abarth Obsession

This is what passion looks like. It’s not uncommon to know someone that has a few old cars and a bit of memorabilia locked away in a garage. But when someone opens their garage up as a museum; starts a club to share their passion with the world; and gets their cars out and seen as much as possible—that’s the kind of passion and sense of community that I have a deep respect for. Bruno Dorigo’s Abarth collection is impressive, but it’s his passion that is truly enviable.

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1957 Catalina Grand Prix for Motorcycles

I’ve seen a few clips here and there from Catalina, but never anything this comprehensive. This collection of 22 minutes from the 1957 running of the 100-mile Catalina Grand Prix motorcycle race is absolutely fantastic. The chaos of that start is crazy. That everyone seems to just get up and start their bikes back up and continues is even crazier.

via Motobilia.

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1959 Santa Barbara and Riverside Races Home Movies

Another can of film has made it out of the attic and onto YouTube. Rejoice! Here is the Owens Family’s footage from 1959’s Memorial Day Santa Barbara Road Races, The Kiwanis Grand Prix at Riverside, and The Labor Day Santa Barbara Road Races. How is it possible that this footage has been up for over a year and only has 28 views? Can’t we do something about that, readers?!

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