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Bristol

   
 

Ok, so I've added extra Union Jacks to the Bristol as it is now the only thoroughbred car made and owned in Britain!. It is also one of the few thoroughbreds that does not have a pre-war history, coming as it did as a way to use redundant facilities belonging to Bristol Aircraft following the war. Surprisingly it is not a very well known marque in the UK but it has always had a discerning following. The early models were effectively BMWs and that is only too plain looking at the grills.

I was taught to race cars by a local farmer/racer called John Muirhead. He had a 403. I had lived with my father's furious driving all my childhood, but nothing would prepare me for drives in his Bristol! I had no idea that anyone would and could drive a car that fast on public roads. He would teach me the finer points of four wheel drifts on the bye lanes to Burnham on Crouch, the car hanging out beyond belief. On occasion he would also go 'market gardening', but I was quite used to this by now.

I considered the Bristol a true great, although I could never warm to its styling, an issue with Bristol for much of its production. I was never altogether sure how good the Bristol really was. John had recently won an unlimited sports car race at Snetterton Circuit in a Ford Thames van! He was subsequently disqualified on the grounds that a van was not actually a sports car. This 'fine point' seemed difficult to get across to John as he sure got a lot of sport from this van!

The new Bristol models are still real thoroughbreds and I hope that they will continue to supply to their discerning market for a long time to come.