Considered by many to be the classic control line racing event, team racing is boosted today through various nostalgia events.
"Classic B is 5cc Team Racing at its best! Today's event mirrors the memorable days of the late 50's and early 60's when Class B was without doubt the premier control line racing class and at the Nationals, the Advertiser Trophy Race for Class B was one of the highlights."
So writes enthusiastic competitor and promotor of this event, John Hallowell. Some of the original racers of those memorable days are:
1. "100 mph for 53 laps!" trumpeted the O.S. Engines advertisement on the back page of Australia's Model News magazine describing the performance of Les Squires' Grassfire, painted in British racing Green. One of Les' genuine original Grassfires is pictured in this photo, minus its engine and spinner. A big, bulky model compared with racers developed later, Grassfire had 60mm diameter sponge rubber wheels suitable for the grass flying circles of its time.
2. Tony Farnan's black and red Kanga, a very competitive Class 2 teamracer developed during the late 50's by Athol Holtham and Peter Ellis. The genuine original is pictured in this photo.
3. The sleek lines and attractive colour scheme of Athol Holtham's "Galaxie" graced Australian Class 2 teamracing circles in the early 1960s. The genuine original is pictured here.
4. Replica of Cresendo, a well known Class 2 design from the late 50's by Ken Taylor. A superb flyer, this high aspect ratio elliptical design has won many races. The OS 25 FP that powers this vintage racer today was not available when the original Cresendos flew. A picture of an early nineteen sixties Crescendo can be seen on this page.
5. John Hallowell's triple nats winning Flying Purple People Eater. Inspired by the late 50's hit record by Sheb Woolley, this latest Classic B racer features a lifting section tail plane with its purple and clear finish.
6. Razzamachas replica. A British Class B racer with impeccable pedigree. Designed by Charlie Taylor, a living legend who is still flying and winning Nationals at around 70 years of age!
7. 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.
8. New in 2003 is this bright orange Swooper, built by John Hallowell for OS 25FP.
9. Charlie Stone's 2004 Dalesman replica, resplendant in an original Wharfedale colour scheme and powered by an Eta 29 Mk6c. The air scoops at the bottom of the cowl are as shown on the plan. They are an attempt to feed some cooler air around to the back of the cylinder head where it is hottest.
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.
John Hallowell writes:
"Classic B is 5cc Team Racing at its best! Today's event mirrors the memorable days of the late 50's and early 60's when Class B was without doubt the premier control line racing class. At the Nationals, the Advertiser Trophy Race for Class B was one of the highlights.
"Around the mid 60's David Kidd set a race time of 6.35 with his Joker to win the Victorian Northern District Championships. I bet he'll be surprised to learn learn that the same race was won in 1999 with an OS 25 in exactly the same time. The aim is to re-create the past ways we flew in Australia... and the results clearly show we are right on track.
"With all due respect to our English friends, it is our own Australian team racing heritage we must respect. It doesn't matter much to most of us what happened more than 12,000 miles away with a set of rules that were only in use for about 12 months! So the proposed Vintage B is not the answer.
"Now the Victorian modelers and members of the Ipswich Club in Queensland have embarked on a joint initiative to set up these rules for the rest of Australia. The rules shown here are based on those currently flown in the USA. Similar rules have also been tried and tested by many competitors over seven years of strong competition in Victoria, including many State Championships.
"The Classic B event at the 2000 US Nationals was won by an OS 25 FP, a motor many people use in Australia. This event also caters for a wide variety of engines, both vintage and modern. This means you don't have to go out hunting for an old engine relic that is long past its use by date and is probably unreliable. Leave these motors for the collectors. As long as they fly on 60 foot lines, all models built to the British Vintage B rules are eligible. So we have the best of both worlds.
"Australian Class 2 is now super fast, expensive and high tech. With this in mind, there is a very real need for a strong national class of 5cc racing that is relatively inexpensive and has the potential for loads of fun. That has got to be Classic B. An extra bonus is that these 5cc racers will easily fly in winds that would ground most other models."
REGULATIONS & RULES for AUSTRALIA for year 2000 onwards are based on 1965 USA Rules. Click here to see the complete rules.
For more pictures, see our Classic / Vintage Teamracer Replicas page.