Now we can account for 5 completed shells and 1 car built up from panels. Where was the 6th completed shell? An article from a period Racing Digest about the 1969 Sebring race quotes, " Meanwhile in the English camp, British Leyland showed they meant business having brought a number of works prepared vehicles and included no less than 3 MGC light weight C-GTS prototypes... the 3rd only to be driven during the practice sessions on Thursday and spent the rest of time under dust covers. " In a January 1999 6 page article in' MG World Magazine', David Knowles dedicates 1/2 page to the "Mystery of the Extra Car". The mystery lives on. .
Graham Wiseman, willingly but reluctantly gave back the reg. no. for his RMO to Swansea at the pleading and duress of the many "enthusiasts" of the time, a decision which he still regrets. He sold his "RMO" ;(ADO52-1061) to a dealer in the late 1980's, for 5000 pounds. ADO 52-1061 later showed up in the USA where it was sold through Christies in New York and was later bought by Derek Durst - a well-known collector of race and antique cars, in Rhode Island in .
Derek also owned BMO541B, the LeMans B racer which he found in Texas and restored. He took it to a Silverstone Auction where it did not sell because there was doubt about its being legitimate. The car was sold for a fraction of the sum of the reserve privately. Derek went back to the USA disgusted. Within 6 months, the car was featured in a 10-page spread as, "the most important MGB Race Car in MG history "BMO541B". (Anybody see a pattern here?) .
Needless to say he did not want to go through this a 2nd time, so he traded ADO52- 1061 off to David Dexter of Swansea , MA (no I'm not making that up). David really wanted an American hot rod, instead, so he sold the car to me. .
What happened to this car in the years between Sebring 1969 and its reappearance in a junkyard in California in 1979? Remember the desert car? What desert in England were they talking about? David Knowles tells me of stories he heard during his investigation for his article on the lightweights from factory personal -- vague stories of testing done in desert on a lightweight car that was "written off". Does anyone know these details? I'd sure like to hear them if you know. .
I am planning to have ADO52-1061 John Twist's Summer Party in Ada, Michigan. I am taking great pains to mechanically restore the car so it should be race ready (I have been told it qualifies for vintage racing). The car has a full roll cage, 4 disc brakes, fuel cell, and dual master cyl. fire system, straight cut gears w/overdrive and many amazing details added by the factory so many years ago. Please come by and take a look! .
P.S. If anyone has any information regarding the above car please call or email me' I will keep our conversations in the strictest of confidence. I hope to see you all there. By the way, if there is anyone who would like to help me get my tri-carb C roadster out to Mich. from New York let me know as I only have one butt and 2 cars.
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