M.G.s in Competition
Historic photos of Australian M.G.s in action
Archivist; Matthew Magilton
This PA has an Australian copy of an English body. Note the typically Aspinal windscreen mounts. I wonder if 258.857 is the car that Lanes Motors sold to “Miss Narrie” in 1934? Note the look on the drivers face as the ‘helper’ takes a firm grip on the front mudguard.
This J3 is almost certainly chassis J3762 now owned and restored by Ed Taylor. The event could be a Victorian Light Car Club 1/4 mile sprint. Any more information would be most welcome. I can highly recommend Ed Taylor’s book covering the histories of all 22 J3s. – Magilton collection.
Here is Tim Jackson’s J3 (J3771) competing in the New Years Day Centenary 300 race at Phillip Island in 1935. The driver is Bernie Horsley with his brother Jack as the brave riding mechanic. In 1993 Jack gave a talk at one of our Pre War nights. In this event they retired with a sheared blower drive, possibly caused by the flexing of the chassis on this very rough circuit.Magilton Collection.
Here we are in the pits at the old Phillip Island circuit. It is the 27th of October 1934 and the competitors are getting ready for the Victorian Centenary Grand Prix. On the left is a J3, number 10 being driven by the Horsley brothers, Bernie and Jack. They imported J3771 only weeks before and it was registered 198.657 on the 13th of October. On the right is another J3 (J3776), number 8 to be driven by Ces’ Warren. His Aspinall bodied car finished 7th (whatever happened to this car?). Bernie Horsley sold his car to Hugh Syme who competed in several races with Tom Hollinrake as driver. Today it is being enthusiastically restored and researched by Tim Jackson.
Bill Benett collection.
Here is Russell Bowes in his N type Magnette at the Australian Grand Prix at Lobethal in January 1939. The body could be an Australian copy of an English body as the doors do not look ‘factory’. I would love to find out more about this car. Russell was unable to finish this race and soon aquired the K3 #3030 off Colin Dunne but he war apparently prevented Russell from using the K3. Russell enlisted in the RAAF and was a Flight Lieutennant with 79 Squadron when he was killed in Burma in 1943. He was awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross.
Here is a line up of very historic cars taken at the time of the 1953 Australian Grand Prix at Albert park. Outside Otto Stone’s home in Glenhuntly we have from left to right:
- John Sawyer who was apprenticed to Otto and lived next door with K3752 registered BJ.371
- Otto Stone who entered for the Grand Prix but was unable to start, with K3016 registered GAG.131
- Les Murphy, winner of two Australian Grands Prix and Q0256 which he has just bought, registration OD.437. He came fourth in the 1953 A.G.P.
- Jim Gullen, an engineer from Yorkshire with K3004 registered YT.256. His car was unable to finish the 1953 A.G.P.
Rod Murphy Collection
You are now standing on the outside of “Young and Jackson’s” corner on the old Phillip Island circuit and bracing yourself for any flying stones. It is New Years Day 1934 and three members of the Lanes Motors MG team are screaming past in this 100 mile race. Note how the riding mechanics are throwing their weight behind the drivers as the cars bounce across the rutted track. These Aspinall bodies were fitted with a handle behind the driver for this purpose. Les Jennings in L0546 leads Ces Warren in J3766 and Les Murphy in J4112.
Alan Bail collection.
Race ready and sitting on the sand at Phillip Island prior to the Centenary 300 being run by the ARDC is PA 0595. This car was imported by Lanes Motors with a rare ENV gearbox and fitted with an Aspinall body. Campbell Graham of Warrnambool took delivery from Lanes in September 1934 and competed in the Victorian Centenary G.P. in October, but prior to this PA 0595 was driven by Bill Thompson (head of Lanes M.G. Dept) in the Phillip Island Winter 100 coming home 7th as part of the Lanes team. At the Centenary 300 Campbell was part of the Lanes team entry with Roy McKay and the ultimate winner Les Murphy, all in white P types. Tragically Campbell and his riding mechanic Jack Peters were killed when their car rolled at The Needles Eye, a narrow part of the straight approaching Hell corner on New Years Day 1935. After many years of storage P 0595 was bought dismantled from Peter Swan by Ian George who commenced a detailed restoration which was completed when ownership passed to Graeme Jackson.
David Smallacombe collection.