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Friends Reviews

Graham Robson talks to Erik Carlsson and Stuart Turner 

13 April 2013

SAAB is a manufacturer that will be remembered for countless rally successes, many of which involved Erik Carlsson at the wheel of their ’92-96’ models from 1957-1970. Stories were told of how drivers and navigators managed to stay awake on the longer competitions, the borrowing of suspension parts from a couple’s car on route and the swapping of panels from a support car to avoid damage penalties at the end of the rally. Erik had to retire from rallying all too early due to a long- standing back problem, not helped over the years by bouncing around in rally cars not only on the wheels but occasionally on the roof too! 

Peter Brewer, Friends Liaison Committee

Sammy Miller, MBE – What makes him tick? 

9 March 2013

In an interview conducted by Mike Jackson Sammy told of his many different jobs as well as his career in Grand Prix racing and trials riding. He also spoke about his own purpose built motorcycle museum in New Milton which houses many rare bikes, a collection he has built up over many years. So, what does make Sammy tick? The answer came at the end of the evening when he told us: “Looking to the future and the opportunities it may hold, and not living in the past is what keeps me going.”  

Peter Brewer, Friends Liaison Committee

The Design and Development of Bluebird K7 

Donald Stevens pictured at the National Motor Museum Collections Centre

Donald Stevens at the National Motor Museum Collections Centre (image by Bruce Elder)

16 February 2013

Friends were privileged to hear Donald Stevens give a rare insight into what lay behind the development of K7 and how his career took him from a junior draughtsman at Norris Brothers to the Project Design Engineer for CN7.

Donald explained the development of K7 and the way the craft had evolved from the studies of Cobb’s fatal crash during his attempt on the Water Speed Record. From this information they produced a configuration and shape for K7 that eventually led to a successful design that enabled Donald Campbell in 1964 to take the record for jet-powered boats to 276 mph.

A film illustrating the design concepts and the Water and Land Speed Record attempts was shown. Donald also revealed that K7 indicated the class of the vessel, whereas CN stood for Campbell Norris in the record breaking car. (Commit this information to memory – you never know when it might come in handy).

John Hough, Chairman, Friends Liaison Committee


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