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Dunlop Tyres History

dunlop tyres history

RJ Mecredy napkin Ring

RJ Mecredy napkin Ring

This is a family heirloom. It was my great grandfathers. See below
From the archives of Bob Montgomery, motoring historian

THE LITERATURE OF IRISH MOTORING: Several readers have asked me about Irish motoring publications which are worth collecting.

If one leaves aside more recent books and magazines, then one undoubtedly has to start with the publications of RJ Mecredy, that colossus of Irish motoring.

Mecredy started Motor News magazine as a fortnightly in 1900. It went weekly in 1903 and was published until 1939. It was a fascinating publication, filled with accurate comment and well illustrated for the time. If you're lucky enough to come across copies of it or its sister publication, The Irish Cyclist, they will undoubtedly become the most prized items.

Mecredy was also a prolific author - his books turn up quite regularly at book fairs. The best, The Motor Book, was first published in 1903 and reprinted as a facsimile edition in 1970. It's a delight, Mecredy at his best.

Harder to come by is his De Dion-Bouton Motor Carriages - Their Mechanism and How To Drive Them. The De Dion company was so impressed by Mecredy's down-to earth approach that it made this the official De Dion-Bouton handbook.

The other Mecredy book worth having is his Encyclopedia of Motoring. Reprinted many times after its first edition in 1901, this book is a fascinating insight into motoring in the first decade of the last century.

The early story of the pneumatic tyre is told in John Boyd Dunlop's History of the Pneumatic Tyre, completed by his daughter Jean after his death, and Arthur Du Cros's Wheels of Fortune. Although both accounts differ significantly, they are worth seeking out.

Motoring Life was founded in 1949 by Austin Channing who remained its editor until the mid-1960s. Channing was very much the spiritual successor of Mecredy and the Motoring Life issues of the period contain much of historical importance.

Among the regular contributors were Maxwell Boyd (then a student at Trinity College), L J K Setright, the inimitable Ted Bonner and the talented artist, T Y Ballance.

That doyen of Northern Ireland motoring writers, W A McMaster, was probably the first person to attempt the history of Irish motorsport which he did in his 1969 publication, A History of Motorsport in Ireland 1903-1969. Basil Brindley's series of books, On Two Wheels and Four, covered the sport for the years 1956-58 in very readable fashion.

Wheel Patter by the irrepressible Dudley Colley was published by the Talbot Press in 1951. This charming account of Irish motorsport has become a classic, beloved particularly by Frazer-Nash enthusiasts the world over.

A significant number of books devote large passages to Irish motorsport. Chief among them is Charles Jarrott's marvellous Ten Years of Motoring and Motor Sport 1896-1906 which contains an account of his eventful participation in the 1903 Irish Gordon Bennett Race.

Noteworthy also are the accounts of the Irish Grand Prix contained in George Roesch and the Invincible Talbot, Anthony Blight's masterwork.

Finally, Bits and Pieces by 'B Bira' is a wonderful snapshot of a long-disappeared way of life. First published in 1942, it contains several Irish motor racing adventures.

Formula 1600

Formula 1600

This was a support race. 1.6 liter race cars. Much slower than the Formula 1 cars but faster than a street car.


One of the Quebec crowd favorite open-wheel series, Formula 1600, is returning to the Canadian Grand Prix as a support series for the June 11-13 weekend of activities on Circuit Gilles Villeneuve. Octane Racing Group, promoter of the event, is happy to announce today that close to 40 drivers from Quebec, Ontario and the North East of the United States are expected to take part in the two races scheduled for Saturday afternoon and Sunday morning. A regular feature on the Grand Prix program, Formula 1600 last competed during an F1 weekend in 2007.

"If there is an open wheel series where Quebec drivers are plentiful, it's in the Formula 1600 Series," said Francois Dumontier, president of Octane Racing Group and promoter of the event. "Not only does this group of motor racing passionates always put on a great show on the track, they also make their presence felt in the Canadian Grand Prix support paddocks with great social gatherings with family, friends, and fans. We are happy to support them once again with an opportunity to be part of our event. Our numerous Quebec supporters can relate in many ways to the drivers of that series, and it is important that a local motor car series be part of our race weekend. Despite many drawbacks, those who oversee the Formula 1600 keep this open wheel series running with seasoned veterans clashing against up and coming drivers."

"We are happy to return to the Canadian Grand Prix. For all our drivers, team members and their sponsors, this is great news," remarked Marcel Lafontaine, driver and also President of the Formula Tour 1600. "Everyone loves to run at Circuit Gilles Villeneuve, and to know that we will be sharing the same track, the same podium on the same weekend as Formula One drivers is an extraordinary source of motivation. Once again, I am convinced that the level of competition will be very high. I think that this announcement will draw close to 40 drivers from Quebec, the Atlantic Provinces, Ontario and the United States to come and compete at the Canadian Grand Prix."

This type of series has a long and glorious 40 years of motor racing history. Michael Schumacher, Jenson Button, Mark Webber, Pedro de la Rosa, and Adrian Sutil of the current field of Formula One drivers have all excelled in this series at the beginning of their career. Former World Champions Mika Hakkinen, Damon Hill, James Hunt, Nigel Mansell, Jody Scheckter, and the great Ayrton Senna, just to name a few, have all made their marks in this open wheel series. The current Canadian version of the F1600 championship uses spec engines and tires. The wingless open wheel cars are powered by a four-cylinder Ford engine, and are shod on Dunlop treaded tires used for dry and wet track conditions. To illustrate the range of ages of drivers that compete in Formula 1600, fans could see at the Canadian Grand Prix 16-year old up-and-coming Quebec driver Jerimy Daniel locking wheels with racing enthusiast Lewis MacKenzie, born in Truro, Nova Scotia in 1940.

dunlop tyres history

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