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While perusing the SCCA "Sports Car" newsletters that were kindly shared by Andy Picariello of the AOC, I came across this interesting story about the Dam Rally. Apparently Sydney decided to debut his fiberglass Palm Beach prototype with the entrants at one of the check points. Apparently the car caused at least a few entrants to be delayed. Click here or the photo above to read the story.
Around the same time that Sydney started work on the Steyr race car, he also started a new sports special that was registered as JGP 473. Although the Steyr took priority, JGP 473 was finished in June of 1947. Tom Lush writes about the special in his book, saying...
"Based on the J frame, with the same wheelbase and track, it was made much lighter by omiting much of the chassis-boxing and cross-bracing, and was lowered considerably by the use of flattened springs. The two-seater body consisted of an aluminum shell mounted over a light tubular framework, and as first constructed without doors, these being added later when regulations governing sports car racing made them compulsory.
Following Sydney's usual weight-savnig formula, the car was fitted with two lightweight seats and remained untrimmed and while in his possesion. The engine* which had been removed from HLF 601 when Leslie took it over had been stripped and rebuilt ready for installation in the new car as Sydney reckoned teh extra power obtained, even for a short time, amply compensated for the work involved in replacing the head gaskets."
The car was very succesful breaking the sports car record at Prescott in 1948. Later, the car passed on to Leslie who continued to race the car with good results. At some point, the front end of the car must must have been damaged badly, because for For Sale photos of the car (via Chiltern Cars) show it with a completely different nose. The car was also fitted with a more liveable Mercury engine. We're not exactly sure what happened to the car, but it's thought to have been destroyed in a fire.
*The engine featured a crude set of cast-iron overhead valve heads from America that predated the Ardun head conversion. These heads were prone to blowing head gaskets on a weely basis. Does anyone know where these heads may have come from?
The Allard Register hopes you and yours have a happy and blessed 2013!
Apart from being a shrewd businessman, Al Moss was also a historian. Whereas most Allard dealers tossed out their old papers, Al saved a treasure trove of air mail letters and telegram correspondence between himself and the Allard Motor Company. We are pleased to announce that Al has passed this documentation onto us so we can share them digitially with all Allard enthusiasts. Over time, we'll share the more interesting documents.
To get us started, here's a letter from the Guv'nor himself. This is the only letter from Sydney addressed to Al. All other correspondence was from either Mr. Davis (Export Manager) or the Service Department. Click here or the image below to view it as apdf. Enjoy!
There's probably no better way to commemorate Sydney Allard's win in the 1952 Monte Carlo Rally than by posting a firsthand account of their ordeal. The author is unknown, but it's assumed to be either Sydney or Tom Lush. We've also included photos of the rally that we doubt you've ever seen. Enjoy!
The crew for this Rally consisted of Sydney Allard, Guy Warburton and Tom Lush, and the crew arrangements were that Sydney and Guy should share the driving and Tom to be responsible for navigating and time keeping. The same crew had done the Rally previously and this arrangement had proved satisfactory.
We selected Glasgow as our starting point; the alternative starting places in Europe meant too long a time away from the office desk, and when the starting list was published we found we were the last but one to leave, there being 72 people; in front of us. Mrs. Allard and her sisters, who wore also driving in an Allard, were 15 numbers ahead of us and this order was of course kept until their unfortunate retirement some 300 miles from Monte Carlo.
We found this photo of Sydney racing at the Poole Speed Trials in 1947 where he took the fastest sports car time (Motor Sport, October '47). The number plate isn't shown in our chassis registry. Know anything about it? Leave a comment.
The Styer often receives most of the attention as Sydney's special, but he also built a special road-going car around the same time, JGP 473. According to the Lush book, the chassis was based on a J1 with much of the cross bracing and boxinig removed to save weight. The chassis was lowered using flattened springs (similar to the Steyr) and the 2-seat body was made of aluminum stretched over the chassis with no doors. Power for the car came from Sydney's previous special HLF 601 which featured a set of Allard OHV heads (pre-Ardun, but copied from an American design). The heads proved to be very troublesome and the car was later converted to a conventional Mercury V8, then supercharged. As page 88 reveals, JGP was the pre-cursor to the J2. I wonder what happened to it?
This June 19th, we'll celebrate Sydney Allard's 100th birthday. If you check your calendars, you'll notice that the 19th is a Saturday. So what's a better way to celebrate Sydney's big day than by taking your Allard out for a nice spirited drive in the country? We hope that you'll celebrate Sydney's birth in style...and if you do, please send us a photo...we'll post every one that's sent to us!
For more info on Sydney's life, click here.
By Hugh Braithwaite
Passing outside his office Ifirst saw the car that I had agreed to navigate in for Sydney Allard and my attention was immediately drawn to two unusual features. Firstly there was a long piece of angle iron sticking up out pf the floor beside the driving seat, topped off with a rubber bicycle handlebar grip. It was fitted so that the top was close to the gear change lever on the steering column. Secondly there was an enormous thick magnifying glass fitted on the steering column between the dash board and the centre of the steering wheel. I was used to all the usual fittings of flexi light for map reading, horn button on the navigators’ side to save the driver having to take a hand off the wheel and also for helping to steady the navigator's nerves, though I never admitted to this.
By Roger Murray-Evans
In early September '09, I got the word that that an Allard P2 Monte Carlo saloon located in Wales was looking for a home. Its owner from 1982 had long term health problems and was re-locating to Malta, and was seeking a new home urgently. Back in the late '70's, at an AOC monthly club night at the George 1V, Portugal Street, London, a couple of lads appeared and were chatting about a certain P2 with a Cadillac engine that they were/had buying/bought.