Tuesday, 4 June 2013

La Vie En Bleu 2013

After having such a great day out at the Bugatti Owners Club bash La Vie En Bleu last year I definitely had to go back, and I must say I had an even better experience second time around. If you are to go to Prescott once a year this may well be the event to go to.
As well as seeing a great array of cars and having a great time sketching I also got to catch up with another car sketching fanatic Stefan Majoram. I must say this guy is a great inspiration in terms of his loose and fluid sketching ability. Go check out his sketches from La Vie en Bleu and much more at his blog stefanssketchblog.blogspot.co.uk.

1950 Cooper Mark IV

 (ink sketch)
First sketch was this lovely Cooper which has been sensitively restored in order to preserve it's history, I'll leave it up to one of the current owners to tell it's story:
"Little is know of the early history of this car prior to 1970 when it was discovered by Bill Needham in a Potefract scrap metal yard. Bill restored the car back to original specification and began to campaign it vigorously over the next 25 years, finally calling it a day in 2007. In that time not only had the car regularly competed at all the major UK circuits, but also all over Europe including Nurburgring, Spa, Zolder, Zandvoort, Knutsdrop, Chimay, Montlhery, Peronne, Pau and Monza. It has also competed on a number of occasions at Goodwood Revival. Bill reckoned that the car must have covered at least 1000 racing miles each season, which computes to in excess of 25,000 competition miles in his ownership.
It currently runs a 500cc JAP engine running at 15 to 1 compression on methanol."
Ian Patton (current co owner and campaigner)

1953 Staride

(ink and watercolour)

Whilst sketching the Cooper I was asked to sketch this Staride this is the second Staride I've sketched this year and I was delighted to do so. 

This Staride has a 1953 Manx Norton engine in it which has surprisingly never been in a bike. It is one of 3 engines that came out of the factory and has never been installed in a bike. This type of engine is standard for the Staride and is preferred for track racing due to it's robust nature, as opposed to the JAP speedway engines that are used in other 500s, which are more suited to short runs as is expected with speedway engines.

Traction Avant Front End

(ink sketch)

I managed to sketch this whilst the Staride was going up the hill on it's second practice run. The ski slope nature of the avant front grill caught my eye and I thought I'd give it a go.
This Avant is a bit different as it was built, rebuilt and modernised by Malcom Saggers. The moderisation comes in the form of a 1.9 Citroen BX diesel engine and 5 speed gearbox, style with practicality. 

Amilcar Aero Special

(ink and watercolour)
Last but by no means least was this incredible Amilcar. The special utilises a 1930 Amilcar M2/M3 chassis and a 1917 American Hispano Suiza v8 11 litre aero engine. 50.000 of these areo engines were built and used in a variety of planes during WWI. This particular one came from an SE5a biplane and according to the wikipedia article it produced 200bhp. The car uses a Fraiser Nash transmission and the engine sounded perfect when the owner and builder Rob warmed it up before his final run of the day.

More photos from another glorious day at Prescott:

Cooper 500 wheel off 
Iota Race Car with a fantastic body shape
 Pembleton 3 wheeler utilising a Moto Guzzi engine
 Edwardian racers and their not so Edwardian owners
Two of three convertible Traction Avants on display 
 It wouldn't be a French celebration without a lovely 2CV
Vinot & Deguingand 
 I think that's more than a whale tale.
 Whilst drawing the Amilcar I was asked whether I'd like to see another supercharged example. This is a fantastic restoration carried out by Aston Keynes Vintage Restorations 
with a supercharged v6 engine.
One of the huge Edwardians leaving the pits for it's last run of the day.

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