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Tom Parkinson loved racing his Courier .. Where is it now? 
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Joined: Wed Feb 03, 2010 7:52 am
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Post Tom Parkinson loved racing his Courier .. Where is it now?
I first received an email from Tom Parkinson back in early 2014 and added a post to the Forum, but have not been able to locate the Courier he raced back in the 1960/1 period.
Maybe you can help??

Tom wrote .. " Just found your website and it was a trip down memory lane. In 1959 while in graduate school at the University of Florida I got my SCCA license and ordered a race prepared TR-3. While waiting for the car I saw Charlie Kolb racing an E production Elva Courier. I cancelled the Triumph order and bought a 1960 Courier from Charlie in Baltimore MD. I drove it back to FL where it was my daily transportation for the next two years. I raced on local courses, including the then new Daytona infield course/banked oval. Maintained the car myself with help from friends in the university sportscar club. Had the 1600 MG engine balanced by legendary Big Daddy Don Garlitz of drag racing fame and fabricated a tuned exhaust. Boy, would that engine rev! Went on my honeymoon in that car in New England in 1962 and raced at Bridgehampton NY and other NE tracks. Never had a mechanical breakdown or DNF. My wife and I needed bigger car for our return to FL and I traded it for a brand-new Volvo PV544 to a Volvo dealer who had seen me race and was impressed with the car. Said he had a customer who would buy it immediately. Deal completed and we left for FL. Weeks later I learned the Elva was still on the dealer's lot: He let one of his salesmen drive it home the day I traded it and the guy over-revved and blew the engine dragging an Oldsmobile at a stoplight .. remember the Don Garlitz engine balancing? When they tore the engine down to rebuild and saw all the expensive custom work, they decided it wasn't worth it and rebuilt to overbore factory specs. The interested customer was no longer interested and I have no idea what happened to the car after that. It wasn't very practical on the road, but was a lot fun to drive. I wish I had it now.

I have no paperwork on the Elva. However I did find some old photos (Elva 1-4, attached) Unfortunately none of me actually racing. I don't think I had any friends with a camera.
Nos 1 and 2 are right after I got the car and had the racing stripes added. Hardly ever used the top because it was too hard to put up, always leaked, and the side curtains were impossible to see out of. The tonneau cover worked fine in any weather.
No 3 was at a race in Florida. We're all probably trying to figure out why we had to replace the Lucas points and condenser for the third time in 10 minutes.
No 4 was my new bride and I off on our honeymoon. There is a roll bar under the top by this time. We ripped the exhaust system off in a construction zone in Bath, Maine, and had to have it replaced at a local welding fabrication shop. Only took about two hours, as I remember, just enough time for lunch. "

Gary Cossaboon has been helpful as always but Tom is not showing on the present Registry so hopefully there is a present Courier owner who has a history file listing Tom as a previous owner. The chassis number is unknown.
Tom receives a brief mention in the ELVA book (page 145) alongside Harry Washburn and Pete Harrison.
Others info at .. ... n-USA.html
The Janos database shows .. (UK date format)
26/06/1960, Daytona, SCCA, race No.27
30/11/1960, Daytona, SCCA, race No.27
05/03/1961, Fernandina Beach, SCCA, race No.27? Win!
30/07/1961, Norridgewock, SCCA, race No.27
05/08/1961, Bridgehampton. SCCA, race No.27
Do please make contact via if you can add to the story.

image.jpg [ 48.13 KiB | Viewed 1981 times ]
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Sun Oct 23, 2016 2:38 pm
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Joined: Tue Mar 09, 2010 6:25 pm
Posts: 87
Location: Albany, NY USA
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Post Re: Tom Parkinson loved racing his Courier .. Where is it no
Its interesting that the car has many Mk2 features, wheels, engine, screen, rockers? but retains the early front marker lights.

Tue Oct 25, 2016 11:57 am
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