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Thread: Muriwai Beach Racing - The Bill Tinson Collection

  1. #1
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    Muriwai Beach Racing - The Bill Tinson Collection

    Auckland City Library have kindly given permission to post Bill Tinsons photograph collection of beach racing at Muriwai in the 1920s.


    1 Showing racing cars, including a Cadillac, on a rock shelf at Muriwai beach
    'Sir George Grey Special Collections, Auckland Libraries, 7-A758

    2 Racing cars at the start line on Muriwai beach with a crowd of spectators looking on
    Sir George Grey Special Collections, Auckland Libraries, 7-A7593

    3 A 12/50 Alvis super sports owned by F G Farrell, winner of New Zealand light car Cup and placed second in the Handicap Race at Muriwai Beach in 1926; his mechanic's wife at the wheel
    Date 1926 Sir George Grey Special Collections, Auckland Libraries, 7-A8739

    4 Selwyn Craig's Packard MRS (Mountain Road Special) racing car at Muriwai beach, with Mr Craig at the wheel, Gordon Harris in the left foreground'
    Sir George Grey Special Collections, Auckland Libraries, 7-A7605

    5 Showing an 11 HP Bean racing car modified by Gordon Harris and driven by F G Farrell on Muriwai beach
    'Sir George Grey Special Collections, Auckland Libraries, 7-A7581

    6 Racing cars on Muriwai beach: Seabrook's 30/98 Vauxhall (winner of the unlimited class) driven and prepared by Sanderson of New South Wales, Campbell Motors' Durant (right background), and the Auckland Motor Company's Talbot (partly obscured, left)
    'Sir George Grey Special Collections, Auckland Libraries, 7-A7583
    Attached Images Attached Images       
    Last edited by bry3500; 09-24-2015 at 04:29 AM.

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    7 Showing a small crowd gathered around Mr W Ah Chee's Cadillac (driven by Mr W Boyle) on Muriwai Beach
    Sir George Grey Special Collections, Auckland Libraries, 7-A7584


    8 John W Andrew's Model-T Ford, very much modified, being examined on Muriwai Beach after the the engine took in sand and seized up 1923 'Sir George Grey Special Collections, Auckland Libraries, 7-A7591

    9 Showing one of a few purpose-built Ford racing cars (it did not race) parked on grass at Muriwai Beach
    Sir George Grey Special Collections, Auckland Libraries, 7-A7585

    10 Showing a small crowd examining racing cars on Muriwai Beach. The car in the foreground is a 9.5 hp Standard; adjacent is a Bean (no.20), with its driver F G Farrell (hatless) leaning into the cockpit; in the background is a Universal Motor Company Ford.
    Sir George Grey Special Collections, Auckland Libraries, 7-A7586

    11 Showing a small group of men standing next to a Talbot 12 hp racing car on Muriwai Beach. F G Farrell of the Auckland Motor Company is in the driver's seat. 1923 .
    'Sir George Grey Special Collections, Auckland Libraries, 7-A7587

    12 Howard Natrass winner of the first New Zealand Motor Cup at the wheel of his Cadillac on Muriwai beach. A stripped touring Cadillac in the background entered by Mr Carlyon of Guavas, Tikokino , Hawke's Bay, driven by Mr W Boyle came fourth. Theis was the first race in New Zealand to be timed electrically, by a rig imported from London by a club official. 1921.
    'Sir George Grey Special Collections, Auckland Libraries, 7-A7604
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    Last edited by bry3500; 09-24-2015 at 04:35 AM.

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    13 W Ah Chee's Cadillac and F G Farrell's Bean racing car parked on grass at Muriwai Beach 1922
    Sir George Grey Special Collections, Auckland Libraries, 7-A7588

    14 Motor racing fans and a car on Muriwai beach
    Sir George Grey Special Collections, Auckland Libraries, 7-A7589

    15 W Boyle? at the wheel of a Meteor racing car on Muriwai Beach
    'Sir George Grey Special Collections, Auckland Libraries, 7-A7590

    16 John and Phil Seabrook in their Jewett racing car on Muriwai Beach
    Sir George Grey Special Collections, Auckland Libraries, 7-A7592

    17 Two men inspecting F G Farrell's (unsuccessful) Talbot 12 hp racing car on Muriwai Beach, with a Buick (right) and a Durant (left) 1923
    Sir George Grey Special Collections, Auckland Libraries, 7-A7594

    18 Showing a Meteor racing car and other vehicles at Muriwai Beach
    Sir George Grey Special Collections, Auckland Libraries, 7-A7598

    19 Billy Miller's Chandler racing car at Muriwai Beach
    'Sir George Grey Special Collections, Auckland Libraries, 7-A7597
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    20 The Bean motor racing team enjoying a picnic lunch in front of their car at Muriwai beach. Gordon Harris is on the right.
    Sir George Grey Special Collections, Auckland Libraries, 7-A7595'

    21 F G Farrell at the wheel of a Talbot 12 hp racing car on Muriwai Beach. Fast but unreliable - it overturned. 1924.
    Sir George Grey Special Collections, Auckland Libraries, 7-A7600

    22 Racing cars at the start of the New Zealand Motor Cup (unlimited class) on Muriwai Beach
    'Sir George Grey Special Collections, Auckland Libraries, 7-A7599

    23 F G Farrell's 11.9 hp Bean racing car entering Muriwai Beach across rough rocks. Farrel was placed second.
    'Sir George Grey Special Collections, Auckland Libraries, 7-A7603

    24 F G Farrell's Bean racing car parked on grass at Muriwai Beach, with a Standard 9.5 hp car in the background
    Sir George Grey Special Collections, Auckland Libraries, 7-A7602

    25 Showing gearbox parts on the floor of the Auckland Motor Company workshop in Wyndham Street. A Talbot car can be seen in the background.
    Sir George Grey Special Collections, Auckland Libraries, 7-A7644
    Attached Images Attached Images       

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    Semi-Pro Racer Spgeti's Avatar
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    I really love this old stuff and makes you wonder do any of these cars exist today. Thanks for posting.

  6. #6
    I agree completely- this is great.
    Our family had a farm at Muriwai, I remember the beach and road scrambles 1957.
    This is really a long time ago and it must have been a real sight to see these doing it on the sand before any sealed race track
    No permit required I presume.........

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    This one is not from the Bill Tinson collection. Captioned 1926
    Showing Hope Bartletts Sunbeam leading R B Wilson in the Stutz
    Attached Images Attached Images  
    Last edited by bry3500; 09-24-2015 at 07:13 AM.

  8. #8
    Quote Originally Posted by Spgeti View Post
    I really love this old stuff and makes you wonder do any of these cars exist today. Thanks for posting.
    One of my customers has the makings of 3 Chandlers- wonder if#19 ended up with him

    As a Packard man, my favourite is #4- the Packard- and it is a V12-double 6.
    Update - the car won the Cup in 1922 and exists today as a Tourer, heres the link to a survivor and its history

    http://www.southpacificpackards.org....une_Twin_6.pdf

    Also heres a list of winners -

    1921 Muriwai Howard Nattrass Cadillac
    1921 Muriwai Howard Nattrass Cadilla
    1922 Muriwai Selwyn Craig Packard
    1923 Muriwai Seabrook Fowlds Vauxhall
    1924 Muriwai Howard Nattrass Mercer
    1925 Muriwai C.W (Bill).F. Hamilton Sunbeam
    1926 Muriwai R.B. Wilson Stutz
    1927 Muriwai R.B. Wilson Stutz
    1928 Muriwai R.B. Wilson Stutz
    Last edited by John McKechnie; 09-24-2015 at 05:24 AM.

  9. #9
    Taken from southpacific packards- heres part of the race-

    In the race Craig got away to a bad start having no first gear. But by the end of the
    first lap of twelve and a half miles, he had passed all the field except the Hudson
    and reached the corner at too high a speed. That combined with the length of the
    Packard forced him into a double spin. Although he didn't come to a compete stop
    it did cost him time. But Chandler got into the soft sand and at the second turn the
    Hudson and the Packard had left the field behind. Another spin from the Packard
    left the Hudson half a mile ahead, but the Baby Grand was catching up fast. The
    Hudson still in the lead overheated and started to slow, allowing the Packard to
    pass, followed by a Cadillac. Craig crossed the finish line doing over 100mph disappearing
    off down the beach from were he eventually returned to receive the victor’s
    laurels. His average speed was 76mph.
    During the race the oil boiled in the Packard gearbox owing to the heat generated
    by the high speed of the shafts. The riding mechanic had to hold the lever in gear

    !922- 100 mph on the sand...........

  10. #10
    Semi-Pro Racer Spgeti's Avatar
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    Bloody brave men....

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by John McKechnie View Post
    One of my customers has the makings of 3 Chandlers- wonder if#19 ended up with him

    As a Packard man, my favourite is #4- the Packard- and it is a V12-double 6.
    Update - the car won the Cup in 1922 and exists today as a Tourer, heres the link to a survivor and its history

    http://www.southpacificpackards.org....une_Twin_6.pdf

    Also heres a list of winners -

    1921 Muriwai Howard Nattrass Cadillac
    1921 Muriwai Howard Nattrass Cadilla
    1922 Muriwai Selwyn Craig Packard
    1923 Muriwai Seabrook Fowlds Vauxhall
    1924 Muriwai Howard Nattrass Mercer
    1925 Muriwai C.W (Bill).F. Hamilton Sunbeam
    1926 Muriwai R.B. Wilson Stutz
    1927 Muriwai R.B. Wilson Stutz
    1928 Muriwai R.B. Wilson Stutz

    From 1922
    Attached Images Attached Images   

  12. #12
    Wow, I am blown away, these are outstanding! Thanks for sharing Bry.

  13. #13
    This is William M Boyle, father of Alan Boyle, of Coke Viva fame.

    This is from Alan:

    "This is a photo of my father William M Boyle Sitting in the 'Cadillac V8' of Bert Shorter #25 and according to my dad this was in 1923 which was the 3rd year of the NZ Motor Cup races. . William Boyle finished 4th place in the 1st NZ Motor Cup in 1921 driving Mr Carlyon's 'Cadillac V8' which was a road car minus running boards and fenders .. I have only recently discovered this fact and am proud of him .. 'The NZ Motor Cup' is the same one the NZIGP races for today .. in Dads 1st Cup Race the winner Nattrass averaged 88 MPH.. meaning they traveled in excess of 100MPH (161 KPH) on the tricky sand of a wind blown beach."

    Name:  A7590 (1).jpg
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  14. #14
    Semi-Pro Racer Spgeti's Avatar
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    What fantastic heritage for Alan.

  15. #15
    Indeed, the Muriwai beach races were contested for the NZ Motor Cup. One of the odd rules around the cup was that if anyone won the cup 3 times they held it in perpetuity. Bob Wilson who's family were the Wilsons of Wilson and Horton the NZ Herald publishers and also the Wilson Home fame (where Bruce McLaren spent part of his childhood) won 3 times in a row with his Stutz.

    Subsequently his estate bequeathed the cup back to be awarded to the winner of the NZ Grand Prix.

    The Stutz is of course the star attraction at the Southward museum. Before arriving in NZ it had placed 3rd in the 1919 at Indy.

  16. #16
    Actually it was third in 1915, driven by Gil Anderson.

  17. #17
    Re the Packard raced by Selwyn Craig, I was doing some research on Twin Sixes in NZ and found the article in the Evening Post which mentions what I presume is the same car. It was November 1922 - https://paperspast.natlib.govt.nz/ne...query=valuable car I wonder what date in 1922 the motor Cup race was held. Unless this was another Twin Six going up in flames.

  18. #18
    I went to the Muriwai beach racing 1954 as a child. I touched the wheel of the George Smith car and he told me off as sand may get into the engine. They stopped racing just as we arrived as the sand had cut up too much. If only I had taken some photos. All very clear in my mind and the real disappointment when they stopped racing.
    Last edited by John H; 05-28-2017 at 02:56 AM.

  19. #19
    Minutes after posting the previous comment I find this one - http://www.localhistoryonline.org.nz...TD-01K-04472-1 - which gives the date of the 1922 race as 1 march 1922, so the car burnt in November can't be the Craig (ex Jellicoe) Twin Six.

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by MarkD View Post
    Minutes after posting the previous comment I find this one - http://www.localhistoryonline.org.nz...TD-01K-04472-1 - which gives the date of the 1922 race as 1 march 1922, so the car burnt in November can't be the Craig (ex Jellicoe) Twin Six.
    According to "Flat to the Boards" by Dick Messenger (and Douglas Wood) the 1922 NZ Motor Cup was run on 11 March 1922. It was scheduled for 25 February, but was postponed due to bad weather, and the next suitable tide was a fortnight later.

    Name:  flat to the boards0001.jpg
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    This book came out in 1986 and is a comprehensive record of NZ motor racing up to 1940. Quite probably many of the pictures in this thread are also in the book. I must have a good look.

    Stu Buchanan

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