On this page we feature some twenty first century racers built to capture the flavour of classic and vintage teamracing.
1. West Australian state champion in Vintage A racing for 2002 is this near scale model of a Hawker Tempest fighter raced by Norm Kirton (pilot) and Charlie Stone. The Tempest is one of Charlie's favourite aeroplanes. You can read what he has to say about it below.
2. This Classic B version of Galaxie was finished mid year 2001 by John Hallowell. Suitably modified for OS 25 power, the model achieved 107 mph for close to 50 laps on its first flights, a performance almost identical with Athol Holtham's original.
3. The new Mark McDermott Galaxie with OS FP 25, specially built during 2002 in Brisbane for the upcoming Albury Nats by Master Builder Dennis Prior.
4. Athol Holtham's original Galaxie of 1963, for comparison. In a colour scheme yet to be improved upon, the original also looks different from the modern day replicas because of its bigger spinner and cockpit. Elevators unfaired at the fuselage are another detail not retained by the replicas.
5. Bearing some resemblance to his Purple People Eater racer is John Halowell's new 'Grassfire' replica pictured late 2002. John writes:
"The original Grassfire has been brought 40 years into the future. It is powered by an OS LA 25, instead of an OS Max 111 29. First flights were around 110 mph.
"Wing and tail planform are about the same, but fuselage moments have been shortened and streamlined. The fin size has been reduced and the wing has a thinner section. The U/C and wheels are also reduced in size. I had the original paint matched in two pack (at a cost of over $70) at an automotive paint shop."
6. Les Squires original Grassfire of the late nineteen fifties, for comparison.
7. Victorian Keith Baddock's superbly built Voodoo 1, first flown mid November 2002. Voodoo is a class A racer developed through several varients and available as a kit in England. On its first test flights Keith's version achieved sub 20/10 for 50 laps. With its tiny wheels almost hidden by grass in this picture, Keith will be hoping for a smooth grass circle on contest days.
8. Norm Kirton of West Australia is responsible for this lovely Classic B, Eta 29 powered Dalesman, new in 2003. The Dalesman's attractive appearance in Ken Long's original 1960 Wharfedale colours made it one of Britain's favourite teamracer designs, although possibly not the fastest.
Click any picture at right for an enlarged view.
Anyone interested in the fuel technology applied to Classic B racing will find everything they want to know (but were too scared to ask) on this page.
More about the Tempest:
Charlie Stone writes:
"The Tempest is one of my favourite aeroplanes. So when I discovered the plans for a near to scale Tempest while digging through a 1955 Aeromodeller magazine I had to have another look. The design by C M Milford was intended as an attempt to bring some realism to Control Line racing and is drawn as a half A racer intended for ED Bee power. That would have been interesting, but not too fast if my ED Bee was anything to go by. It was unable to pull the skin off a rice pudding even if the bowl was tilted. As I studied the plan and the associated text I realised that not only was Mr Milford a clever chap with good taste in aircraft, but this plan was also for an A class racer. In the description published with the plans, it stated that if the plan is scaled up in the ratio of 4 : 3 it is the correct size for A class. So it is a legitimate published design that may be raced.
"The Tempest is different from the general run of racers and to my mind better proportioned for the job than some of the other 'scale' racers that have been tried (like the `Mew Gull') although the tip dihedral may weaken the wing a bit. So I built it and have painted mine in the livery of Pierre Closterman's 1945 Tempest 'Le GRAND CHARLES'. The last of his World War 2 mounts. This is not a scale model, but it is fairly close in general outline and mine is powered as usual with a standard Oliver Tiger. The weight is 14 ounces, which makes it a couple of ounces lighter than my late lamented 'Pluto' and it has rather less wing span too. It is a slippery little monster when it is covered with oil, because it sprang out of my clutches unexpectedly during our first practice. It accelerates fast too, probably due to it being a bit lighter than my other racers. Quite a few of the spectators commented on the look of the model in flight (they liked it) and especially the take offs. Whenever it was launched, the tail came up straight away and it ran on the main gear just like the real thing for some distance before lifting off."
If you have not already done so, see John Hallowell's Classic Teamracing page for more.