WSM - News 2016

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WSM S2 WSM S2 introduction and price list . .

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Updates on WSM's in competition in the current year . .
The History
The story from conception of WSM in 1961 to present day . .
In Competition
Pictorial file in three parts of WSM's in action from 1962 to date . .
04 05 06 07 08 09 10 11 12 13 14 15
News archives 2004/05/06/07/08/09/10/11/12/13/14/15 . .
Bentley to Sprite Pictorial file on almost everything bar WSM's that DW-S drove . .
Douglas Wilson-Spratt In Memorium . .

Harewood Hill . .

WSM 405 and Geoff Hill were in action at the Yorkshire hill climb again after making some adjustments with springs and differentials. Times were very similar to previous, and the diff alteration made the gearing just right for fewer changes. With Caterham's and Sylva Striker's in the modified class, the WSM was unlikely to upset any apple carts, but times in the 72s bracket are'nt hanging around and compare favourably with other hot machinery of the day. On the road, the fastest WSM on record now has a Jekyll and Hyde character as the hooligan acceleration is complimented by fast and relaxed cruising . .

Bo'Ness Hill Climb . .

Sometimes known as Kinneil hill climb, and active on and off since the 1930's, the Scottish venue hosted the ninth event since it's revival in 2008. Newly resident north of the Border, WSM402 with Lorraine Noble-Thompson at the helm was entered in the Saloons & Sports Cars 1961-1973 up to 1499cc, the largest Class of cars on the entry list.

Goodwood Revival 10th September . .

Great win in the wet Freddie March Memorial Trophy from 19 year-old Richard Woolmer. Pedalling the unique 1954 HWM-Cadillac after qualifying third in the dry, he held off the Aston Martin DB3's of Rob Hall and Steve Boulbee-Brooks in a thrilling finish with just over a second separating the top three. Click on here for highlights

July - Brexit Bonus . .

The WSM Sanction 2 build manifest reached the half-way point with a confirmed order from Antwerp, Belgium yesterday. Initially the interest was aroused by Simon Goldsworthy's article in a 2014 edition of MGEnthusiast magazine, and the timing may have something to do with the weakness of the pound after the EU vote. The road-going GT will be the second left hand drive Sanction 2 after 403 was exported to Florida in 2012 - three LHD were exported of the original 1963 cars - and is designated WSM 404. A 1969 MG Midget contributes much of the running gear, and the WSM build is a much deserved retirement reward . .

Yorkshire Post Motor Show . .

Recently associated with Harewood as a venue, the show moved to Castle Howard for the 2016 event. Lorraine Noble-Thompson's WSM 402 looked superb, and Geoff Hill's rakish 405 equally stunning within such photographic surroundings. Geoff has been a judge at the event for 5 years, and persuaded the organisers to put on a show of competition cars. The draw proceeds for rides in the respective machines helped the RNLI bucket collection, and they had the Grace Spitfire performing a display also. Geoff is optimistic there may be agreement to host a sprint next year, or even re-instate the original hill climb last used in the 1970's . .

June - TT Lap at 128mph on four wheels . .

One of us pictured left is about to take a Subaru WRX around the Isle of Man TT mountain course at an average speed of 128.730mph . .

This is the third year that Manxman Mark Higgins has upped the record. In 2011 he beat his hero Tony Pond's time for the 37.73-mile lap with a 19m 56.67s, although Pond was driving a Rover 827 Vitesse to 22m 09.1s in 1990 to achieve the first four-wheeled lap at over 100mph. Higgins returned in 2014 to raise the bar to 19m15.88s which equated to 117.51mph, and both laps were set in largely standard Subaru WRX STIs.

This year Subaru USA tasked Prodrive with building the ultimate WRX. Based on the running gear from a 2008 World Rally Car, but with a bigger turbo to produce 600bhp and 800Nm of torque, it also ran on pure Dunlop slicks for the first time. Without completing a full lap in practice, Higgins posted 17m 49.75s on the first day of TT 2016 competition last Saturday, and two days later went even quicker with a 17m25.139s. Mark was optimistic that 130mph was within reach, but weather delayed the Senior race day programme to such an extent that the scheduled attempt at the end of racing was scrapped.

There we were, walking past the Monster Energy show, and girls accosted Noel and I to have their photographs taken with us. Then would you believe it, the same happened at the Dunlop enclosure . .

Cincinnati Success . .

WSM 403 S2 dazzled the judges at the second oldest Concours de Elegance in the USA. The 39th Austin Healey Conclave event at Ault Park in Ohio featured the WSM amongst the Donald Healey Special Presentation, and won Best British Sports Car. Floral city resident Bill Emerson is racking up the awards and the miles . .

May - MG European Tour . .

WSM 402 S2 impressed in Le Touquet at the week-end. Lorraine Noble-Thompson cleaned up amongst 399 entries after shipping the car in Doug's superb BMC transporter . .

April - Closed Foreign Sports Car Champ . .

After driving over 400 miles from Floral City, Florida to South Carolina for the Kiawah Ocean Park Concours, WSM 403 owner Bill Emerson found there were no hoses available to wash the car before the Concours de Elegance. A trip to the local hardware store provided a watering can which was used to clean the car before the April 17th show.

Displayed amongst E-Type Jaguar, AC Coupe, Jaguar XK140, Bizzarrini and De Tomaso, WSM 403 was examined by three judges for almost 20 minutes. The car was fired up, lights checked and bonnet opened for engine scrutiny. The judges asked many questions concerning the car and pored over the interior in great detail before moving on to the Ferrari 308 next door.

When the awards were announced, WSM 403 was driven up and Bill presented with a large trophy shaped like a pineapple - this is the South Carolina symbol for hospitality. To say Bill was pleased with the result may be a slight understatement . .

Young Gun . .

Superb drive from Richard Woolmer at the Goodwood Members Meeting last week-end. Qualifying 24th in Matthew Collings HWM Cadillac-powered beast before rectifing a misfire, he recorded, in Autosport Marcus Pye's words ' the save of the week-end' when he clipped a grass verge on his way to third place in the Peter Collins Trophy. Woolmer was only half a second off Boultbee-Brookes Aston Martin DB3S in the race-shortened 11 minute thrash, recording second fastest lap to winner Sam Hancock in the Cunningham C4R . .

London Perfect . .

WSM 3000 owner Robert Waterhouse has the ideal metropolis runabout. Nicknamed Roxy, the green 1950's Ford Prefect serves the school run having been fitted with rear seatbelts. The WSM on completion in the summer might be a rival for Robert's affections, but there is a soft spot for the drum-braked cutie . .

Best In Show . .

Congratulations to Bill Emerson with WSM 403 who triumphed at the Inverness Elks concours show in Hernando, Florida. Amongst American muscle, hot rods, custom cars and European entries, 403 was voted Best In Show . .

Jaguar XK150S . .

A new 1/43rd model addition arrived of the Jaguar shooting-brake completed by WSM in 1967. After a 5-year restoration by Peter Janssen and Jacco Mol, it was sold to dealer Aaldering in Brummen in 2003, and then to Judy A Reyes in Singapore who kept the car in Germany. The car now resides near Zurich in Switzerland with Eugen Schmid having purchased in 2005.

Allan Cameron . .

Geoff Hill contacted on Monday with the sad news of Allan's demise. Unbeknown to me since last seeing him in 2015, Allan had been fighting cancer. He was competitions secretary at the Bugatti Owner's Club, and an Austin-Healey specialist. With sons Neil and Drew he built and raced cars, and at circuit paddocks throughout the country I was one of many to appreciate requested advice. Condolences to all the family.

Autosport Show 2016 . .

January at the NEC is motorsports annual gathering ahead of the new season, and Geoff Hill's WSM 405 featured on the GTMA Engineering stand. The car will be campaigned again this season at hill climbs around the country, and Geoff is hoping the changes made during the off-season will prove successful. Already perhaps the fastest accelerating WSM ever produced courtesy of the healthy 1800cc 'K' series under the bonnet, Geoff is looking to better all times made last season.

Sprint Licence . .

This girl does'nt get any slower. Motor-bike riding Lorraine Noble-Thompson has obtained a licence to hill climb and sprint. We can expect to see WSM 402 in action this season, including at the Bo'ness event in September. The Falkirk track celebrates a 9th Revival meeting, and advertises Scotland's largest historic motorsport event.