GO 52, GO 53, GO 54 and BGH 23

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As Anthony Blight’s four Talbot 105s are mentioned rather prominent in “On the Road” in this issue, following their fine team performance at the B.O.C. Coppa Costantini Race Meeting at Thruxton, some technical notes on these cars are worth adding. All three of the GO registration team cars have original engines and gearboxes (including gears) as installed at the beginning of the 1932 racing season, the last in which they took part, until their re-emergence in V.S.C.C. and similar events. At least two of the cars have their original crankshafts, all have their original con.-rods. The only major modernisations are the use of Zenith carburetters of a type not available before 1934 and “Blydensteined” cylinder heads. The engines have compression-ratios ranging from 8.75 to 9.5 to 1, run on 99-octane petrol, and develop from 125 to 130 b.h.p., or maybe a bit more power than a modern 3-litre B.M.C. power unit in similar tune. They pull 4-to-1 axle ratios and are capable of about 105 m.p.h., or 110 m.p.h. with windscreens folded down. At Thruxton all three drivers—Blight, Morris and Curtis—were reaching a maximum of 92 to 93 m.p.h. without fully extending the cars in the Team Handicap. Incidentally, there is some justification for the alterations made recently to the cylinder heads of GO 52, GO 53 and GO 54, because Talbot themselves had similarly modified the head of the single-seater 105 in 1932 and the head of BGH 23 in 1937.

Blight also owns GO 51, which he hopes to produce next year, in 1931 form with the engine installed for that year’s B.R.D.C. 500-Mile Race.

BGH 23, the “enlarged” 105 with which Mike Cooper lapped Brooklands at just under 130 m.p.h. in four-seater form, now has the twin S.U. carburation system devised by Arthur Fox in 1933 for his own 105, a dual exhaust system (soon to be changed to a single tail-pipe to quieten the car), a mild Blydenstein camshaft and a Laystall replica of the special crankshaft used from 1937 onwards. This gives some 170 b.h.p. at 5,000 r.p.m., and the 3.4-litre engine runs smoothly up to 5,500 r.p.m. What the Blight mods. amount to is getting the pre-war performance on a cr. of 9.5 to 1, enabling 99-octane petrol to be used, whereas for Brooklands the car had a c.r. of 11.4 to 1 and used special fuel. At Thruxton BGH 23 was reaching 5,000 r.p.m. on big tyres and an axle ratio of 4.6 to 1, or 104 m.p.h.

These Talbots are truly fine p.v.t. sports/racing cars, and Georges Roesch, who designed them, must be as proud of their performances today as he was of their showing in pre-war races.—W. B.

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