Monday, 31 October 2011


Mazda MX-5 Miata – The Essential Buyer's Guide iPhone/iPad App (Your marque expert: Carla Crook)

Having this app is just like having a marque expert by your side. Benefit from the authors years of real ownership experience, learn how to spot a bad car quickly, and how to assess a promising one like a true professional. Get the right car at the right price!

• Coverage of the MX-5 (Miata/Eunos Roadster) 1989 – 2001 models including special, limited editions and desirable upgrades
• Where and how to buy an MX-5
• Advice on choosing the right model and condition, including those with modifications
• Key checks – how to spot a bad car quickly
• In-depth analysis of strengths and weaknesses
• Key technical specifications
• Photo illustrations of the important areas to check and foibles to be aware of
• Details of clubs, forums, suppliers and specialists dedicated to the MX-5
• Exclusive videos shot for the app feature the author showing all the things you need to look out for when buying an MX-5/Miata.

Click here for more info about the app on the iTunes app store.

Friday, 28 October 2011


Stuart Turner & Graham Robson speaking at Beaulieu in November.

The ‘Do You Want To Be A Motoring Writer’ conference being held at the National Motor Museum, Beaulieu on Saturday 19th November 2011 has attracted some very knowledgeable speakers. Recently that great raconteur, Stuart Turner (left), has been added to the list.

The conference is aimed at the enthusiastic motor club member interested in particular in veteran, vintage or classic cars and wants to get something more out of their hobby. The morning session will be about writing for magazines and the electronic media, whilst the afternoon will concentrate more on book writing and publishing.

Other speakers include; Steve Cropley, Editor in Chief of Haymarket Motoring magazines, Mark Hughes, Editorial Director, Haynes Book Publishing, Steve Redway, Editor of the TR Register club magazine TRaction, Mark Robinson, editor of Mini Magazine, Graham Robson (below), author of over 150 motoring books and Jon Pressnell, freelance classic car journalist and historian. There will be question sessions at intervals so that the audience can join in, ask questions or express opinions.

Organised by the Michael Sedgwick Memorial Trust, there are still a few places left – but hurry! There are full details of the conference and application form on the website, click on ‘conference’.

Source: Beaulieu


1: Alfa Romeo V6 Engine (SpeedPro) (Kartalamakis)
2: Volkswagen Bus EBG (iPhone app) (Copping/Cservenka)
3: Dieting with my dog (Frezon)
4: Motor Racing - 1930-1962 (Carter)
5: Driven by Desire (Wilson)
6: Tales from the Toolbox (Oliver)
7: The Café Racer Phenomenon (Walker)
8: MV Agusta Fours (Falloon)
9: How to Build Motorcycle-engined Racing Cars (Pashley)
10: Audi R8 (WSC Giants) (Wagstaff)

Thursday, 27 October 2011


John Rosamond's talk to the 40 members and celebrity guests of the Wirral branch of the Triumph Owners Motor Cycle Club (TOMCC) took place at 8.00pm on 24th October 2011.

John Rosamond, John Powell and Bill Smith; both special guests made a welcome contribution to discussions.

The "cowshed" restaurant at The Wheatsheaf pub Raby, was the excellent venue.

Many of the issues raised by Save the Triumph Bonneville! The Inside Story of the Meriden Workers' Co-op were revisited freshening the book's appeal and allowing further detailed explanation plus an opportunity for a lively question and answer debate.

The warmth of response John's talk received suggests that in future there maybe further opportunities to repeat it at other TOMCC branches, stimulating book sales further.

Bill Smith of Bill Smith Motors - Chester, one of the biggest Hinckley Triumph dealers in the North West ( (see heritage and history).
Bill Smith - a grand prix motorcycle road racer specialised in road circuits such as the Isle of Man TT, North West 200 and Ulster Grand Prix. In 1978 Bill won the Formula 3 class in the Formula TT World Championships.

John Powell - owner of Bridge Road Motorcycles - Liverpool who provide spare parts to keep Meriden Triumphs running (

From left to right Tom Stemson (branch chairman), John Rosamond and Graeme Keynon (branch treasurer) organised the event with the help of David Porter - Editor of Nacelle.

Save the Triumph Bonneville! – The inside story of the Meriden Workers’ Co-op
Was £24.99, now only £12.49!
By John Rosamond

Written by the ex-Chairman of the workers’ board of directors of the famous Meriden co-op, this is the real story of the last bastion of British motorcycle production following the collapse of the industry. It’s also the story of a workforce’s refusal to let the Triumph Bonneville die ...
More info.

Thursday, 20 October 2011


To mark the launch of the all new event at London ExCeL Top Gear Live is celebrating 40 years of the legendary racing film Le Mans at the exclusive Top Gear Live London Gala on 24 November 2011.

In celebration of the film’s 40th anniversary, which starred Hollywood legend Steve McQueen, guests will gain an unforgettable insight into Le Mans as they watch original clips, view stills and marvel at behind-the-scenes footage while sharing the memories of those who were there.

VIP guests will also be joined by Chad McQueen, son of the late Steve Mc Queen, and racing legends Derek Bell and David Piper, as they reminisce on the making of the film – where both risked their lives as they brought to life McQueen’s dream: to create the best, most realistic film about motorsport ever.

Le Mans, which used cutting-edge techniques and filmed largely live, featured the Porsche 917 and the Ferrari 512 and is remembered for its breathtaking footage from the actual 1970 race.

This iconic piece of cinematography, which featured 26 high performance cars, 41 stunt drivers and some 350,000 French speaking extras, uniquely captures the exhilarating atmosphere of arguably the greatest race on earth.

Guests will also have an exclusive opportunity to get up close to David Piper’s original 1969 Porsche 917 which will be on display at the gala event.

Tickets for the Top Gear Live London Gala are £425 + VAT per person, for further information or to make a booking contact the VIP Team on 0207 370 8341.

Coming soon from Veloce!
Le Mans Panoramic
By Gavin Ireland.
The Le Mans 24 Hours is the ultimate endurance race, and a classic feature of the motorsport calendar. This book captures the sheer scale and drama of this legendary race as never before, using specialist panoramic photography to give an unprecedented wide angle view of how the race is entered, watched, won, and lost. It is a timeless tribute to the Le Mans 24 Hours. More info.

Wednesday, 19 October 2011


Dan's tragic death over the weekend during an Indy series race in Las Vegas has sparked controversy over the safety of the series and particularly grid sizes in this 230mph sport. Whatever the outcome of last weekend's terrible events, Dan's career in this gladiatorial contest is fully documented in Veloce's book The British at Indianapolis including his Indy 500 win in 2005 and second places in 2009 and 2010 - a fitting tribute to a great racer.

The British at Indianapolis by Ian Wagstaff, follows the format of the author’s award winning The British at Le Mans. It recounts the history of the Indianapolis 500 race through the eyes and actions of those British born or British citizens who have driven in it, or been involved in any other way – be it as a designer, mechanic, or official. It also examines the British built cars that have won the Indy 500 and the significance of the rear-engined revolution brought to the Indianapolis Motor Speedway by Cooper in 1961, and elevated to success by Lotus and Lola. It includes such names as Jim Clark, Graham Hill, Nigel Mansell, Dan Wheldon and Dario Franchitti. In addition to the 500 it includes other races at the IMS, notably Lewis Hamilton’s victory in the Formula One Grand Prix there. It is a story that goes back to the first 500 in 1911, when London-born Hughie Hughes became the first British-born driver to race in the 500, to the present day, with more British than ever competing in the race and British drivers winning twice in the last four years. More info.

Tuesday, 18 October 2011


Race Retro, Europe’s premier International Historic Motorsport Show, will be celebrating the Porsche marque, thirty years of the Group C Porsche 956 and thirty years of the Honda Racing Corporation, when it returns to Stoneleigh Park, Coventry, from 24-26 February 2012,

Porsche is Race Retro’s chosen car marque for 2012. From the 1948 birth of the iconic 356, the first sports car to bear the Porsche name, to the current-model 911 GT2 RS, an astonishing and pulse-quickening creation, Porsche has relentlessly pushed the performance envelope. Committed to technical excellence and continual improvement, Porsche has immersed itself in motor sport, and the lessons learnt and advantages gained are passed directly to its road cars. This high-octane philosophy permeates the marque and always has done.

Porsche’s motor sports heritage across the decades will be well represented at Race Retro, with a number of static race and rally displays in Hall 1. Plus, there’ll be guest appearances by Porsche race and rally stars, including a number of legendary Porsche works drivers. There’ll be plenty of sideways action too, on the live action rally stage, on both Saturday and Sunday, where a jaw-dropping selection of rallying icons, including a Porsche 911 RSR, will be showing their mettle.

Hall 2 will be home to Race Retro’s ‘The Porsche 956 at Thirty’ celebrations. It’s hard to appreciate that this astonishing Group C car first competed back in 1982. A wonderfully-timeless and evocative design, it so purposefully and powerfully symbolises Porsche’s involvement with motor sport and its triumphs. The 956, and its successor the 962, secured numerous team, manufacturers’, drivers’, race, and championship successes throughout the 1980’s and 1990’s.

Few manufacturers have been such an integral part of bike racing as Honda hence the celebration of its glorious thirty years. Ever since the Honda Racing Corporation (HRC) was founded in 1982, this hugely-successful organisation has been at the forefront of GP racing, road racing, endurance racing, trials riding and motorcross. And, uniquely, as well as covering all disciplines, since its inception, HRC has actively supported privateer teams and individual riders who have always been able to avail themselves of technical support, set-up advice, research and development, and specialist parts. Visitors to Hall 3 will delight in the variety of Honda displays and delight in the fact that they can rub shoulders with Honda team riders, team managers, and mechanics.

Of course, Classic bikes should be heard as well as seen! The good news is that the race bike ‘Fire-up Paddock’ is returning for 2012. Each day, this aural arena will resonate with the sounds of bike racing’s glorious past, including the marvellous multi-cylinder Hondas.

Adult ticket prices are £20 when booking in advance, £25 on the gate. Children’s tickets are £5 on Friday or Saturday and free on Sunday. Parking is also free throughout. The show is open from 9.30am each day and closes at 5.30pm on Friday and Saturday and 4.30pm on Sunday. To book tickets and for the latest updates, visit

Monday, 17 October 2011


Motor Racing – The Pursuit of Victory 1930-1962 by Anthony Carter is BOOK OF THE MONTH in New Zealand Classic Car!

Click image to view full size

This book is a virtual time machine to the past. It presents stunning – previously unpublished – photographs from motor racing history, and examines the many facets of Grand Prix racing before the dominance of television and commercial advertising. Here are stories of derring-do and racing that constantly pushed the boundaries of technology. The story begins in the 1930s when the German Auto-Unions and Mercedes were heavily subsidised by the Nazi regime to strengthen their engineering might. This produced the most powerful racing cars ever (at least until the turbocharged cars of the 1980s), and which was followed by the postwar era that saw the BRM V16 bringing prestige to Great Britain. Altogether a nostalgic look at a fascinating time in motor racing’s development. More info.

Monday, 10 October 2011


A Sidney design team builds a souped-up sofa and hits 101 MPH on an airport runway - setting a new land speed world record for fastest couch.

Made with a Suzuki GSX 1400cc motorcycle engine!

If you are aspiring to build a racing car with a motorcycle engine this could be the book that you've been waiting for!

How to Build Motorcycle-engined Racing Cars
By Tony Pashley

Takes the reader from the conception of a budget racing car to its appearance on the racetrack in easily understood steps. Although aimed principally at cars for hillclimbing and sprinting activities, it has wider applications also.

Click here for more info about the book!

Friday, 7 October 2011


A new book in the RAC handbook series

Do you know how your car works? This book dissects and explains one of the finest inventions ever made. Written in a simple, jargon-free language and packed with illustrations and cutaways, it will suit everyone from a pupil with a poster of a supercar on his wall, to a housewife who is just curious about the goings-on beneath her car’s bonnet to even the more experienced tinkering mechanic. It is a simple operating guide to the main parts of a car, its systems and safety devices. A must for all new and current car owners with little knowledge of what goes on under the bonnet!
Whether you're just curious, or wish to become a more knowledgable car owner, this book will start you on an exciting journey of discovery.

What's inside a hybrid car. 1 Gearbox, 2 Internal combustion engine, 3 Idle shutdown system, 4 Battery pack, 5 Electric motor, 6 Electric power management unit (courtesy Peugeot).

How your car works – Your guide to the components & systems of modern cars, including hybrid & electric vehicles by Arvid Linde. AVAILABLE NOW! £12.99, $24.95.

The RAC handbook series (Caring for your cars bodywork & interior is a 2012 title) –

Wednesday, 5 October 2011


As the 50th anniversary of the incomparable Jaguar E-Type draws to a close, British Motor Heritage (BMH) has been celebrating an E-Type milestone of its own – the production of its 100th replacement bonnet.

Best known for the manufacture of replacement bodyshells and individual panels for the MGB, MGR V8, MG Midget, Austin Healey Sprite, Triumph TR6 and original Minis etc, BMH these days also produces bonnets for the Series 1, 2 and 3 Jaguar E-Types.

Supplied exclusively to Unipart Jaguar Classic and distributed by Jaguar Classic Parts, the bonnets are manufactured using the original Jaguar tooling and the 100th one (that for a Series 1 model) was completed on September 11 by Stephen Fry, Martin Pollard, Alan Stacey and Dave Jeffs, who between can boast over 40 years’ service to BMH. The E-Type bonnet is just one of a range of body panels now made by BMH for Unipart Jaguar Classic.

Said BMH’s Managing Director John Yea, “Enthusiasts restoring or repairing treasured classics are increasingly particular about the fit and finish of any replacement panels, and never more so than with the bonnet of the E-type, which forms such a large percentage of the car. Not only are our pressings identical to the originals, but they benefit from the quality of hand finishing for which all our products are renowned.”

Further information on BMH’s replacement parts for the Jaguar E-Type; Mini; MG B, F, TF and Midget; Triumph TR6, TR7, TR8, Spitfire, GT6 and Stag; Austin-Healey Sprite; Morris Minor etc can be found at

Coming soon!
Jaguar E-type – Enthusiast’s restoration Manual by Peter Crespin.

People dream of restoring an E-type, but many fail to complete their project after time or money run out. Do you REALLY need to spend £4000 trimming a two-seater, £6000 on an engine, £2000 on a soft top, or £30,000 for a new body shell? No – you can do it yourself for far less, provided your goal is a solid, presentable, and above all driveable car. If you are time rich but cash poor, this book is for you.
More info.

E-type Essential Buyer's Guide's available now!

Click covers for more info.

Monday, 3 October 2011


The Corgi model will be released before Christmas. More info here!

Nicola West, author of the forthcoming book Mini Minor to Asia Minor – There & Back (due 2012), has made it to the final 20 in the Classic Car of the Year competition with her Morris Mini Minor Deluxe 1961, the subject of the book.

Help Nicola get to the top 5 by voting for the car online and you'll get to see this very vehicle at the Classic Motor Show at Birmingham’s NEC on November 11-13th, complete with sand, jerry cans, and its many stickers!

VOTE NOW, and help name the Morris Mini Minor Classic Car of the Year 2011!

Forthcoming! Mini Minor to Asia Minor - There & Back
By Nicola Susanne West

This is the story of an independent trek in a 50-year-old Mini – all the way to the Great Pyramid and back – with no assistance or support crew, to provide much needed funds and publicity for the Willow Foundation.
Inspirational to others, the book includes practical advice on the car preparation and documentation required for such marathon drives, along with photographs of the Mini’s preparation and the amazing journey itself. More info.