Lot 231 - 1951 J.P. Mk. Ib 500

Lot 231 - 1951 J.P. Mk. Ib 500

Lot 231 - 1951 J.P. Mk. Ib 500

Lot Number 231
Registration n/a
Chassis Number 131
Estimate £20,000 - £24,000

The 500cc racing fraternity can trace its roots back to before the Second World War when enthusiasts formed local clubs to compete in amateur races in small capacity, lightweight cars. In 1946, the clubs amalgamated into one, the 500 Club, the emphasis being on members building their own cars. Many famous drivers started racing with 500s; the most notable being Sir Stirling Moss. In the late 1950s, the formula declined but in 1968, a group of enthusiasts joined forces and formed the 500 Owner's Association. In more recent times, and encouraged by the introduction of the Goodwood Revival, the 500cc Formula 3 has flourished with many new and young drivers discovering the joy and excitement of this relatively low cost sector of motor sport. From the early post war days, many marques were born; the most well known being the Cooper 500s and Kiefts; however, owning and running a lesser known car has its benefits and may certainly attract an invitation to Goodwood due to their individuality.

We are delighted to offer this 1951 JP Mk. Ib. 500 designed by Joe Potts, a Scottish Engineer, and Willie Rogerson.  The car was similar to the Cooper 500 Mk. IV but with a more advanced chassis with longitudinal tubes; a design not adopted by Cooper until much later. It features an all aluminium coachwork over the original-designed Joe Potts steel chassis. The suspension is of the classic front and rear transverse leaf design with adjustable Protech shock absorbers on each corner.  In 1957 (please see black and white picture of 131 in 1957 at the Bo'ness Speed Hill Climb) chassis designation 131 was fitted with a different style of bodywork with a four cylinder engine; however, in 2009-10, Vernon Williamson built the car as you see it today which is very much how number 131 would have started life in 1951. A JAP 4B power unit, fuelled by a Dell'Orto GP race carburettor, was rebuilt by the much respected Jan Nycz in 2011 and is mated to a Norton AMC four-speed gearbox, an option preferred by many for its smoother gear selection. A set of Dunlop R5 racing tyres are fitted and safety features include a new set of RSA harnesses and a plumbed-in fire extinguisher system. Number 131 has been campaigned by the vendor since 2011 in various hill climb and sprint events and has the advantage of being complete with a number of spares worth several thousand pounds. These include a complete JAP engine, a rebuilt Norton Dollshead gearbox, new clutch plates, two spare wheels and Dunlop racing tyres, a Shackleton Racing built power starter, a set of Talon primary drive sprockets enabling a choice of ratios whether hill climbing or sprinting and, most importantly, a period, refurbished, Don Parker Trailer with winch, ensuring easy transport to and from events and, due to its size, is easily parked, even in a single garage. Further items included are engine valves, an Amal concentric carburettor, a set of carburettor jets and spark plugs. Interestingly, the ignition switch is the navigation light switch from a Supermarine Spitfire. Currently, JP 500 number 131 is set up for the track and comes with a history file complete with event photographs from 1957, a history of J.P. cars by Vernon Williamson and Douglas Turner (which includes this 500), 500 Owners' Association VIF registration and MSA log book. 

One of very few JP 500 racing cars on the current racing circuit, number 131 provides a remarkably adaptable package, capable of not only providing the flexibility for various circuits, but is also great fun and surely a contender for invitation to the premiere events such as the Goodwood Revival.

Interested parties should satisfy themselves as to the description and condition of each lot prior to the sale. Buyers are advised to inspect the car in person or use a professional to carry out this service.

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