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Historic Motor Sports Association Club Vintage Race at Laguna Seca, California
April 24-25, 2010

 

A nice collection of Elvas was among the 140 entrants in the spring HMSA Club event held on the weekend of April 24-25 at California’s famed Laguna Seca racetrack. Of the half-dozen Couriers entered was Bud Byrnes “Monterey Historic” veteran 1963 Elva MK III. The car was a purpose-built racecar delivered to an American in France, who raced it at Clermont Ferrand and elsewhere. It was found in a Georgia Swamp and restored. Bud got the car i8n 2005 and has just freshened the motor and has added the most unusual 3-into-1 exhaust manifold that sports expansion chambers that are computer pulse-rated. The engine work must be working as Bud ran among the first half-dozen cars in his class that included some big-motored production cars.

Ken Palmer and Roy Bruckner own the two MK 6 that were entered. Ken has traced the history of his yellow MK 6 all the way back to its beginnings. Rudy Rudolph properly restored it prior to Ken’s ownership. Ken battled Roy the entire weekend and two or three car lengths were all that separated them until Ken’s MK 6 broke a right rear stub axle on the track’s fast right handed Turn 5. He made a spectacular spin around and ended up on the side of the track, in the sand, while the wheel and tire were seen rolling to the other side of the asphalt. Ken was OK but not so the axle and wheel. He will fix them but might have to miss June’s “Sonoma Historics” to which he has been invited.

The other MK 6 of Roy Bruckner has finally worked out all its early issues. Roy has replaced the front drum brakes with disc brakes (a Frank Nichols option in 1962) and done some motor work. Replacing the gearbox’s too tall overdrive 4th gear has given the car some top end speed it had lacked. I asked Roy to describe his car and here is his response:

My car has chassis #60-28, and was built in August, 1962. It still has the original factory motor (#10668), which is a Climax 1098 cc FWA, with a FWB block and dual Webers (factory). Previous owner/racers from 1962 - 1966 have been Mike Hall, Peter Helferich, and F. Reed Andrews. The car was raced primarily in the Midwest, and has participated in the Road America 500 in 1963 with Mike Hall, who finished 13th overall, and in 1964 in the First Annual AARC at Riverside, where it placed 7th overall with Pete Helferich. In addition, the Elva has raced at Connelsville Airport, Road America, Elkhart Lake, and Wilmot Hills. I understand that Mr. Reed Andrews is now in his eighties, and still races a VW with SCCA in the Ohio Region! What's fun is that Don Kruzan, previous owner who restored the car, was able to collect a number of old photographs of the car in action at some of these tracks, as well as other documentation.

There is a third California based MK 6 owned by Tom Thinesen of San Jose, but he did not have his car quite ready for the HMSA weekend. He has ordered new pistons for the car that he thinks will cure a high rpm miss. We will all find out soon as his car also has been accepted to appear at the Sonoma Historics..

Bob Engberg
bobengberg@aim.com




Ken Palmer and Roy Bruckner approach the bridge over the Start line at Laguna Seca. Ken Palmer seated in his MK 6. “She Goes”.



Start of the small bore production race with Bud Byrnes hold onto fourth. Ken Palmer looks on with concern as his broken MK 6 is carted into the paddock. Roy Bruckner ex-Don Kruzan MK 6.

Elva Entrants in the HMSA Laguna Seca Race,
April 22-23, 2010.

Roy Bruckner - Elva MK 6
Ken Palmer - Elva MK 6
Dana Stevan - 1959 Courier MK I
Tom Matychowiak - 1959 Courier MK I
Bud Byrnes - 1963 Courier
Chuck Turvey - 1963 Courier
Pat Fitzsimmons - 1963 Courier
Ken Pieri - 1962 Courier MK 3

 

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