When I had my choice of a Le Mans Healy or the '57- I ( barf ) took the 6 cylinder.
it was pretty with primrose over black side panels. The little back seat was a RIOT.
Stock, it was good for 104 MPH, period - which meant damn near anything American was much faster.
It was quick starting, smooth running EXCEPT when the SU's decided to go out of sync - there went a whole day fiddling with 'em.
Wasn't my car, I didn't agree with project, but, I had my hands on putting a 455 Buick motor in a Bug Eyed Sprite.
It ended up a sort of odd drag car because it handled so badly ( as predicted ) and short on brakes ( as predicted ).
Ya...I'd be embarrassed, too.
I worked on a number of English sports cars in the '60s & 70's. Nice to look at but typically lousy in design and quality.
When the wife wanted a sports car, got her a 1990 Mazda Miata (first production year). I like the tribute to the English sports car. The Miata is a great car that has needed little work mechanically. Reportedly they spent 6 years designing it and came out with a winner.
The wife likes to drive fast, even at her advanced age. It is a white knuckle experience. She isn't satisfied until she has me screaming like a little girl.
When I was a kid....racing bikes in Spain on a track made by some US Navy Sea Bees in Rota.......a friend once gave me some advice:
Don't ever piss into the wind.....and don't ever ride a BSA.....
But I have to admit....I've always wanted a BSA 441 Victor Special! WoW....what a bike. A Thumper.
All the Navy guys that raced had Bultacos.....Matadors...and another model...I can't remember.
I had some money saved up....and when I got there...saw a brand new Montessa Capra racing bike....so I bought it.
This was around 1971 and years before the Japanese got into building motocross bikes.
My 250cc Montessa....beat the pants off the Bultacos....for the most part. But also, I was 15 and I guess they were all in their 20s or so....and I had the throttle cranked on as much as possible...
I had so much fun...I was about 15 at the time.
EDIT PS: Never rode a Montessa...IIRC, the Montessa's were the rarely contested King of the Hill until the Kawasaki Bighorn hit the market.
I think all the Navy guys were carrying a bit of extra weight.....
I can't believe how rake thin I am in those pics....
Once my brother and I took the bike up to Seville and I tried to enter a real Spanish Motorcross race....with professionals....but it turned out, I need some special license....and or I was considered too young.
As it happened, one of the Spanish racers was having problems with his bike....pre-race....and couldn't get it fixed...so he asked if he could borrow mine.
I said yes...and he jumped on to try it out. He was astonished that the brakes weren't up to par...and immediately started to give directions to his mechanics to fix it right away....which he did.
The track was amazing....carved out of the side of a mountain....and had a huge downward plunge at one point...
This was serious business to these racers...it was some pro circuit race.
Don't know the exact time line....but after the Spanish bikes...Bultaco and Montessa......the Eastern European bikes were big...Maico, CZ.....and the Swedish? bike....Husquvarna.
That's another bike I've always wanted....a Husky....WoW, what a bike.
Husquavarna made a 350cc Desert Racer with a 6 speed gearbox.....I lusted after that one....and the big 400cc ones...
Both Husky and Maico were big in the 400cc Class. Love the look of the Maico's with those radial fins....and angular gas tank.
Yea, then Kawasaki hit the market......Their famous lime green colors...
Then it all went to water cooled .....Then mono shocks....
I raced a time or two, when I got back to the States....but by then, my bike needed a rebuild...and was out dated.