News from Safety Fast! (May 1996)

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The first, and pleasantly frequent duty, is to extend a hearty welcome to new members:

J2 Mr John Keenan of Western Australia owns a May 1956 MGA with just 56,000 miles on the clock, which was delivered to and remained in Pasadena, California, until 1990. It was restored in W.A. by John Hunting after importation, and is now a R.H. drive conversion in BRG re-trimmed in fawn leather. It will be used in VSCC of W.A. and M.G.C.C. W.A. events. Another new member in W.A. is Mr Ronald Kilcullen, who owns 1934 J2/4212, pictured.

This car was previously in the ownership of M.G.C.C. Vic's Walter Magilton. Mr. Kilcullen writes that the car's original first owner, Colin Keefer, is now in his 80s and recounts memories of driving the car in the Australian Grand Prix at Philips Island in the 1930s.

Finally, and also from W.A., we welcome one of Australia's foremost M.G. enthusiasts, Mr Peter Briggs, whose stable includes 1929 14/40, 1931 M1, 1993 J3, 1933 K3, 1934 NE, 1947 TC, 1948 TC Special, and 1959 MGA Twin Cam. The K3 was pictured in our June 1994 issue.

Many people will remember the outstanding last Grand Prix to be held in Adelaide, in 1995. The tremendous enthusiasm of several hundred thousand fans gave the event a great send-off to its new home in Victoria for 1996. The M.G. Clubs of Australia put their shoulder firmly to the wheel and produced a splendid turnout of cars for the support races, and the entry list is reproduced as a Roll of Honour, taken from M.G.C.C. N.S.W.'s 'Opposite Lock':

Car DriverStateEntrantCarColour
1 Lou MolinaVICLou Molina1946 MG TC SpecialWhite
2 Keith ChoyceWAKeith Choyce1937 M.G. TA SpecialSilver
3 Philip BradeySAPhilip Bradey1934 M.G. K3Blue
4 Andrew WillingtonSAAndrew Willington1953 M.G. TF SpecialAluminium
5 Peter BriggsWAYork Motor Museum1933 M.G. K3Green
6 Robin BriggsWAYork Motor Museum1935 M.G. NESilver
7 Graham MeloccoNSWGraham Melocco1949 M.G. TC S/C SpecialGreen
8 Ron TownleyVICRon Townley1939 M.G. TA SpecialRed
9 Ken RoweNSWKen Rowe1947 M.G. TC SpecialBlack
10 Jim CattsNSWJim Catts1948 M.G. TC SpecialGreen
11 Kevin ShearerSAJoan Shearer1947 M.G. TC SpecialGreen
12 Barry HicksNSWBarry Hicks1947 M.G. TC SpecialRed
14 Alistair ClarkeNSWAlistair Clarke1933 M.G. J TypeGreen
15 Ian MawsonVICIan Mawson1934 M.G. P TypeGreen
16 Alan HeritageNSWAlan Heritage1949 M.G. TD SpecialBlack
17 Neil McDowellVICNeil McDowell1947 M.G. TC SpecialGreen
18 John EllisSAJohn Ellis1948 M.G. TC SpecialGreen
19 Alan GriffinSAAlan Griffin1947 M.G. TC SpecialGreen
28 Bob SchapelSABob Schapel1948 M.G.TC Special Silver
29 Ian McLennanVICIan McLennan1934 M.G.P TypeCream
30 Doug GordonSADoug Gordon1949 M.G. TC SpecialGreen
31 Adam BerrymanVICAdam Berryman1933 M.G. K3Green
33 Ross HodgsonNSWRoss Hodgson1949 M.G.TC SpecialBlack
34 John AndersonVICJohn Anderson1934 M.G. PAGreen
38 Peter StattonVICPeter Statton1949 M.G. TC SpecialRed
39 John PayneSAJohn Payne1933 M.G. J2 SpecialRed
41 Gavin MorganSAGavin Morgan1932 M.G.C TypeGreen
47 Ray HickmanVICRay Hickman1947 M.G. TC SpecialRed
49 John GillettVICJohn Gillett1949 M.G. TC SpecialRed
51 John PlayfordSAJohn Playford1949 M.G. TC SpecialBlue
54 Bill SchapelSABill Schapel1947 M.G. TC SpecialRed
59 John PitmanVICJohn Pitman1949 M.G. TC SpecialGreen
73 Graham SmithSAGraham Smith1948 M.G. TC SpecialGreen
77 Patrick RyanVICPatrick Ryan11936 M.G. TA SpecialBlack
81 Percy HunterNSWPercy Hunter1947 M.G. TC SpecialSilver
98 Graeme SteinfortVICGraeme Steinfort1934 M.G. P TypeGreen
140 Harry FirthVICHarry Firth1953 M.G. SpecialGreen

Our member John Hornabrook has kindly sent an article by Bob Jennings which among other cars gives details of the ex-Prince Bira K3, from which I quote, together with photos:
". . . the (Philip) Bradey M.G., was campaigned in Europe by one of the Princes of Siam, Prince Birabongse Bhamubandhu, who raced under the name of "B. Bira". B. Bira was one of the wealthy playboys of the pre-war Grand Prix era as well as being an accomplished driver. He ran the blue M.G. K3 in the light blue colour of the Thai Royal horse racing stables. The car was brought into Australia by John Snow of N.S.W. for the 1936 Australian Grand Prix at Victor Harbour. Later, it was owned by several Adelaide drivers including the late Andy Brown, who drove it to third place in the 1953 Australian Grand Prix at Albert Park. The late Tom Bradey bought the car in 1959 and it has been in the family ever since, Tom leaving the car to his grandson, Philip, who will return from London to drive the car at the Grand Prix."

John writes of his memories of seeing this car race before Tom Bradey bought it.

He says "In those days they ran races up and down the long flat beach at low tide. Sellicks Beach is now a residential suburb of Adelaide and it would be unheard of." He has a clear memory of the 1936 Centenary Grand Prix at Victor Harbour, mentioned in the article above.

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