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AC ACoustics - AC car engine sounds on CD

AC
ACoustics

triple audio CD

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AC ACoustics CD cover
AC car engine sounds recorded mostly at ACOC events in the 1980s/90s.

Originally produced as a piece of self-indulgence by the recordist, but...

...if you like the sound of real AC Cobras, then you are in the right place. If you like AC cars generally, then you'll like this even more. And if you attended AC Owners' Club events in the 1980s and '90s, then this will be quite nostalgic. Between some great engine sounds, are snippets of conversation picked up by chance, of some of the nice folk I knew.

AC models include: Sociable, Empire, 16/70 4 Seater Sports, 16/80 Competition, 16/90, 2-4-6 FHC, 2 Litre Saloon, Buckland, 2 Litre Sports Tourer, Ace, Ace Bristol, Ace 2.6, Aceca, Aceca Bristol, Aceca 2.6, Greyhound, Cobra 289, Cobra 289 Mark III, Cobra 427, Frua 428, 3000ME, Cobra Mark 4.

3 discs. 239 recordings.

Note that the first half or so of this album was recorded in mono, but has been digitally enhanced - including a pseudo-stereo effect. The remainder is in hi-fi stereo.

Highlights include:

*** Hans Grief with his red Cobra 289 (4 double-choke Webber carbs).
*** Aiden Mills-Thomas motoring all the way around Bruntingthorpe in his Cobra 289 Mark III.
*** 2 Ace 2.6s absolutely blasting down a country lane.
*** Andy Shepherd spinning off in the orange Cobra 289 at Ragley Hall.
*** A ride in the late Derek Bray's 1935 16/70.
*** Riding in my AC 2 Litre Saloon in a parade around Silverstone.
*** Cobra parade and race at Donnington, 1990.
*** National AC Day at Brooklands - AC factory and Brooklands Museum and track.

£15.00

Price includes worldwide postage.

3 discs supplied in 2 cases.

Download the free illustrated playlist:
AC ACoustics playlist PDF


Sample sound (mp3), track 1 disc 1:

Two AC Ace 2.6s blast down a road.

Here is the full recording list:


Disc 1

Introduction:
1 - After a National AC Day meeting at Stonor Park, Brian Clarke leaves the venue in a hurry, in his dark blue Ace 2.6. A following light metallic blue 2.6 is determined not to let him get away! The full length version of this is heard on track 67. 19th July 1987.

National AC Day, Birtsmorton Court, 20th June 1982:
2 - A red 428 Fastback rumbles passed over the gravel driveway as it leaves. It's followed out by a Greyhound and an Ace. (Edited sequence).
AC 428, Birtsmorton, 1982


3 - A trio of ACs heading home along the driveway, a black 246 FHC, a black 4 seater sports and a light metallic blue Ace 2.6.
4 - A black Greyhound leaves.

National AC Day, Old Warden, 3rd July 1983, in hot sunny weather:
5 - A metallic blue mark 2 Cobra backs up then departs.
6 - A dark blue Cobra 289 mark 3 revs up and leaves (just visible to the right of the photo below).
COB 1 at Old Warden, 1983

7 - The infamous "COB 1" of Rod Leach, a twin turbo-charged 700bhp 427 Cobra. It revs and backs up, pauses, and sets off for home. An MG Midget is also heard. (Edited sequence).
8 - Now recording from the main car-park, a blue Ace and a white E-Type pass on their way to the exit. Meanwhile, the mark 2 Cobra heard previously backs out of a parking space and leaves.
9 - Tony Morpeth in his white pre-war drophead coupé approaches, but is overtaken by a cream Aceca Bristol before they both pass by. A gold Ace Bristol approaches but pulls over and parks.
10 - A maroon 2 Litre Saloon (LXT 848) sweeps by with a smooth sound, and then the gold Ace Bristol starts up and departs.
11 - Brian Harman in his deep blue 2 Litre Saloon (PKJ 483) draws alongside and says his farewells to my Dad and myself, and leaves.

AC visit to Hendon RAF Museum, 29th April 1984:
12 - The Booth brothers bright green Cobra mark 2 leaves.
13 - A silver Aceca revs, as its owner explains the loud sound it makes, and then leaves. Following up behind is a red Ace.
14 - Brian Gilbart-Smith speaks briefly to someone before setting off for home. Then Ian Castle's dark green 3000ME accelerates away briskly as the sun goes down.
AC 3000ME, Hendon RAF Museum, 1984


National AC Day, Dyrham Park, 24th June 1984:
15 - We initially met for lunch at The Compass Inn, Tormarton. Ray Morley pulls away in his white Fiat 126, and then Ray Wilkinson reverses his metallic red 428 Fastback into the vacated space.
16 - Bruce Sandeman-Craik arrives at the inn, with a blue Empire.
17 - A lively sounding blue Ace arrives at the inn, and turns out to be the prototype 2.6. The owner of a Sunbeam-Rapier is heard correctly identifying the engine in the Ace, and chatting with my Dad (Cyril Strange).
18 - Now at Dyrham Park, a silver Greyhound arrives and motors across the field and parks.
19 - The blue Empire stalls on the hill, re-starts, and pulls away again.
20 - After having its photo taken for an AC calendar, the blue Empire pulls away downhill. Photographer Graham Murrel along with Ian Castle, hitch a lift up the hill courtesy of Marie Wilkinson in her cream Buckland.
AC Empire, Dyrham Park, 1984
21 - A black vintage Invicta sets off up the steep hill.
22 - Gold Ace Bristol accelerates up the steep hill.
23 - Mike Smith starts up his dark blue Buckland, then another (green) Buckland (or 2 Litre Sports) also starts and revs. Both ACs draw forward, reverse and then depart.
24 - A green Ace 2.6 is heard in the background as Cyril Strange chats with Brian Harman about brass radiator caps and top hoses.

National AC Day, Shugborough Hall, 13th July 1986:
25 - Steve Hulme says his farewells to me, and drives off in his 2-tone brown 2 Litre Saloon.
AC 2 Litre, Shugborough Hall, 1986
26 - A cream Sociable potters around in the background as Hans Grief starts up his red Cobra mark 2. With 4 double-choke Webber carbs, his engine sounds superb as he revs it up and makes his way to the exit.
27 - A red Ace idles in the foreground as Chris Browning fires up his ferocious (bare aluminium) mark 2 Cobra and sets off. A couple of Aces and a purple Cobra (Liz Atkins) are heard in the background. A snippet of conversation is picked up between David Hescroff, Ray Morley, and others, about a forthcoming meeting at David's home, the annual “Dorset Sunday”.

RSSOC Sprint, Bruntingthorpe, 7th September 1986:
28 - A red 3000ME, a blue mark 3 289 Cobra (Aiden Mills-Thomas) and a dark blue Ace Bristol (Paul Stafford).
29 - A pale metallic blue Aceca 2.6 (Tony Jackson), then a dark blue Morgan Plus 8.
30 - Aiden starts up his Cobra mark 3 and joins the queue for the circuit, followed by the Aceca 2.6. (Edited sequence).

ACOC Sprint, Bruntingthorpe, 21st September 1986:
31 - Chris Browning starts up his Cobra mark 2 as he queues up for the circuit, and is followed by an Ace.
32 - Mike Smith in his dark blue Buckland, starts his first lap, followed by Mike Berrisford in his light green 2 Litre Saloon.
33 - J. Armatage's light blue Ace.
34 - Chris Browning in the silver Cobra.
35 - David Wakefield in his red Ace.
36 - A silver Aceca 2.6 followed by Ray Wilkinson driving Chris Browning's Cobra.
37 - A silver Ace with a 3 litre BMW engine, starts its lap. The silver Cobra can be heard in the distance, and then we hear shocked reactions from spectators as they see the Cobra spin several times scattering hay-bales, on the final bend. The Cobra then returns with only minor damage.
38 - A silver Ace.
39 - A silver 3000ME revs eagerly and starts its lap.
40 - Chris Browning in his Cobra blasts towards the start line, stalls, re-starts and begins his timed lap. In the background, Aiden Mills-Thomas arrives late in his blue Cobra mark 3.
41 - David Hill in his blue PVT Special starts a timed lap.
42 - Aiden Mills-Thomas in the paddock with his Cobra 289 mark 3. You can hear its broken exhaust. His arrival was delayed due to a front wheel falling off! A further delay ensued due to a puncture. Let's hope he gets it fixed in time...
43 - A dark blue 3000ME starts its lap.
44 - Mike Smith in his dark blue Buckland.
45 - Mike Berrisford makes a "proper racing start" in his light green Saloon.
46 - A red Ace.
47 - Good news! Although Aiden returned after the sprint had finished, the organisers allowed him to do some timed laps. We hear the blue mark 3 Cobra start up and head towards the start line.
48 - Aiden is on the start line, and the sun is so low that the marshall has to shout out when the light changes to green. He starts his first lap and in the peace of the evening, we hear the Cobra go all the way around and back to start his second lap.
49 - Mike Berrisford sets off for home in his Saloon, as a Porsche 911 pulls up nearby.
50 - Mike Smith's Buckland is loaded up with 7 people! They depart.
51 - David Hill gives a ride to some 3000ME owners in his PVT Special, around the circuit.
52 - David Hill heads for home in his blue PVT Special.
53 - Aiden checks the steering on his mark 3 Cobra by driving in a clockwise circle and then a figure-of-eight into an anti-clockwise circle, then motors off across the paddock, switching the engine off and coasting.

Ragley Hall Hillclimb, 22nd March 1987:
54 - A silver Aceca 2.6 starts its practice run, followed by the yellow 3000ME light-weight of David Womak.
55 - A red Ace Bristol followed by a silver Ace with a BMW 3 litre engine. Then David Hescroff in his dark blue 3000ME.
56 - A dark metallic red Triumph Stag of Ray Wilkinson, followed by the light-weight ME again.
57 - A dark blue Ace.
58 - The Shepherd brothers in their orange FIA Cobra 289, head out of the grounds at lunch break. The engine is sounding rough, and they were unable to compete that day.
59 - For the timed afternoon runs, wet weather had set in. The dark blue Ace starts its run, and a dark metallic grey Ferrari Dino roars up to the line, and begins its attack on the hill.
60a - The orange Cobra departs (a Scimitar is heard in the background).
60b - The orange Cobra is heard outside the main entrance. Andy Shepherd checks under the bonnet as a metallic tapping is heard. With brother Bill in the driving seat, Andy gets back in and they leave.

Norwich Union Classic Car Run, 24th May 1987:
61 - John Atkins in his purple Cobra 289, blasts up the hill through Castle Gresley in Derbyshire.
62 - In a country lane near Wootton, Oxfordshire, a nickel coloured E-Type coupé passes, pursued by a dark green Ace 2.6.
63 - At Silverstone, John Atkins starts up his purple Cobra and leaves.
John Atkin's Cobra 289


Motory Sunday, Pontefract Racecourse, 7th June 1987:
64 - While sitting in my own 2 Litre Saloon, John Thring chats briefly before driving off in his dark blue 2-4-6 FHC.

National AC Day, Stonor Park, 19th July 1987:
65 - Recorded from inside my Saloon, as fellow Saloon owner Barry Gray, and Buckland owner C. Holmes, have a poke around my car and ask questions. John Mirch's green Cobra 289 is idling in the background and then finds a parking space. (Edited sequence).
66 - Someone was standing neatly between the tail-pipes as John Mirch starts up his Cobra. He pulls away, but stops to chat with someone. Then starts up, pulls away... stops to chat with someone else. Finally he gets under way, heading down the long driveway. (Edited sequence).
67 - We are now outside the main entrance. Pam Clarke heads passed in her white 3000ME. Her husband Brian is not far behind in his dark blue Ace 2.6, and as he blasts down the road to catch up with his wife, another Ace 2.6 (light metallic blue) is determined to keep up.
68 - Colin Dunn passes in his metallic grey 2 Litre Saloon, in convoy with a Range Rover.
69 - Quite a convoy is heard leaving: Yellow 3000ME, ordinary car, Jensen Interceptor convertible, Brian Gilbart-Smith shouts across from his blue Aceca Bristol, followed by his blue Ace Bristol, a silver Aceca, B. Booth in his bright green Cobra mark 2, David Wakefield in his red Ace, 3000ME, red 2 Litre Special of Bob Loftstadt, 2 ordinary cars, cream Aceca Bristol, pale metallic blue Aceca 2.6. A few seconds later, David Hescroff shouts across to me as he passes in his white 16/90.

Inter-Marque Challenge at Donnington, 6th September 1987:
70 - In pouring rain, Aiden Mills-Thomas rounds Woodgate in his blue Cobra mark 3 289, followed by a Ferrari.
71 - Steve Hitchins' white Cobra (driven by someone else), passes cautiously in slippery conditions.
72 - The white Cobra passes again pursued by a gaggle of Porsches.

Goodwood Sprint, 2nd August 1987:
73 - A black Cobra mark 2 and then a bright blue 3000ME start their timed laps.
74 - Brian Clarke in his dark blue Ace 2.6, starts his first lap.
75 - Cars crossing the finish line and doubling back along the exit road in the foreground: Black mark 2 Cobra, blue 3000ME, yellow 3000ME, dark blue Ace 2.6.
76 - Red 2 Litre Special (Bob Loftstadt) and dark blue Buckland (Mike Smith) start their laps.
77 - Off the start line are: M. Jones in a dark red Aceca Bristol, B. Howsley in a cream Aceca Bristol, M. Apse in a red Aceca, and B. Clarke in his dark blue Ace 2.6.
78 - Crossing the finishing line and returning along the exit road, are: Shepherd brothers' orange Cobra, Aiden Mills-Thomas in his Cobra mark 3, the black Cobra mark 2, and a red Ace Bristol.
79 - Leaving the start line are the red 2 Litre Special and the Acedes Montlery.
80 - In the paddock, the orange Cobra starts up and drives onto 4 bricks, to allow a jack to fit underneath.

Disc 2

Bentley Drivers' Club Silverstone Meeting, 29th August 1987:
1 - In the paddock, the Cobras head off to join the AC Race. Paul Channon in his red mark 2 and John Atkins in his purple Cobra mark 2. Aiden Mills-Thomas starts up his blue mark 3 289, turns around and idles nearby, as Steve Hitchins starts up his white mark 2, departs, and Aiden follows up.
2 - During the AC Race (heard at Copse Corner), the Cobras of Channon and Hitchins lead, followed by a Bentley Special, then the silver Cobra of Gordon Bruce, Mills-Thomas' blue Cobra, and Bill Shepherd in the orange Cobra.
3 - 2 laps further on and Channon is being challenged by Hitchins, followed up by some Bentleys.
4 - The Hitchins’ white Cobra is driven onto its trailer in the paddock.
5 - Aiden starts up his blue mark 3 Cobra 289 in the paddock and drives off, as Steve Hitchins passes comment.
Cobras in Silverstone paddock, August 1987


6 - During one of the handicap races, Paul Channon blasts around Copse Corner in the red Cobra.
Paul Channon, AC Cobra 289, Silverstone, 1987

7 - In the paddock, Bill Shepherd is wished best of luck as he starts up the orange Cobra and heads off to join the final race of the day.

Ragley Hall Hillclimb, 27th March 1988:
8 - Bill Shepherd in a red 428 Fastback, gets away from the start line.
Bill Shepherd, AC 428, Ragley, 1988


9 - David Hescroff in a 16/80 short chassis starts his run.
10 - The Shepherd brothers' orange Cobras blasts off the line.
11 - John Atkins' purple Cobra snarls its way up the hill.
12 - The orange Cobra starts its run up the hill.
13 - John Goose in the blue prototype Greyhound gets away from the start line.
14 - With the bonnet open, Bill Shepherd tries to start up the orange Cobra, but the starter was only engaging intermittently. Andy Shepherd's voice can be heard. The Cobra starts and is revved up as Andy checks it over. There was a problem with mis-firing during the timed runs.
15 - The orange Cobra, with both Shepherd brothers onboard, revs up and then heads out at lunch-break. Someone comments on the engine revs reached as the Cobra blasts down the road in the background! (Edited sequence).
16 - Andy Shepherd in the orange Cobra starts his timed run. Trailing a lot of tyre smoke, he leaves a pair of 45 yard black lines before spinning off to the left! He rejoins the track as marshalls sweep up the mud.
17 - More ACs getting off the start line: Red Aceca, purple Cobra of John Atkins, and the orange Cobra (Bill Shepherd).
John Akins, Cobra, Ragley 1988

18 - Heard outside the main entrance, the Shepherd brothers depart in the orange Cobra and red 428.
Shepherd brothers, AC 428 and Cobra, Ragley, 1988


Norwich Union Classic Car Run, 29th May 1988:
19 - Between Bruntingthorpe and Walton villages in Leicestershire, a dark blue Ace accelerates passed.
20 - At Silverstone after some torrential rain, and now sunshine and rainbows. A silver Cobra 289 starts up, and gets some wheel-spin, assisting its turn, as the back skips sideways a little.

National AC Day, Pendock School (near Tewkesbury), 24th July 1988:
21 - Jan Heuten from Germany starts up his light metallic blue Cobra 289, and departs.
AC Cobra 289 at Pendock School, 1988

22 - A red Cobra mark 4 starts up and leaves.
23 - David Hescroff starts up and revs his dark red Cobra 289, as some friends of his arrive somewhat late for the event.
24 - David takes one of his friends for a ride in the Cobra.
25 - Recorded from onboard my light green 2 Litre Saloon, David Hescroff arrives again and says his farewells to me. I start up my AC and drive across the field and join the minor road. My tyres slip and spray some gravel, which I hope did not hit the 3000ME behind me (sorry if it did!).

Bentley Drivers' Club Silverstone Meeting, 27th August 1988:
26 - AC race laps 1 and 2. Blue Cobra mark 3 (belonging to Aiden Mills-Thomas but driven by John Atkins), red Cobra 289 (Channon), black Cobra (Mills-Thomas), silver Cobra 289 (Bruce), silver Cobra mark 2 (Boswell), orange Cobra 289 (Bill Shepherd), Ace Bristols of Stafford and Walsh, other cars, and David Hescroff at the rear in his white 16/90.
27 - Lap 6. The Cobras driven by Mills-Thomas, Shepherd, Atkins, Bruce, Channon and Boswell.
28 - A silver Cobra 289 (Bruce) arrives back at the paddock after the AC Race.
29 - Aiden starts up the black Cobra, does a 3 point turn, and motors off towards the refueling point.
30 - The blue mark 3 Cobra and Bruce in the silver Cobra, leave the refueling point.
31 - Aiden starts up the black Cobra and leaves the refueling point.
32 - Out in the carpark, I discovered a real 427 Cobra (CSX3328). I believe it is the one featured in magazines in the early 1970s, when it was painted silver? Now painted dark blue with white stripe, it is heard in an edited sequence of recordings. It starts up and moves off. Then (now recorded from the open window of a following car), it exits the circuit entrance, then moves in a slow queue along the minor road. Finally, it joins the main road and is quickly gone.
AC Cobra 427, chassis CSX3328, Silverstone, 1988


Goodwood Sprint, 29th September 1988:
33 - Paul Channon in his red Cobra, passes during his practice runs.
34 - A dark red Aceca Bristol and Mike Smith in his dark blue Buckland, get off the start line.
35 - 4 Cobras get off the start line: Purple Cobra (John Atkins), orange Cobra (Andy Shepherd), a dark blue 289 mark 3 originally owned by Geoffrey Dempsey (reg. GD 100), and a metallic blue mark 4.
AC Cobra 289 Mk III, Goodwood, 1988

36 - The above Cobras finish their laps, except that the orange Cobra has crashed. The 3 remaining Cobras double back down the exit road in front of the mic.

Ragley Hall Hillclimb, 5th March 1989:
37 - At the start line, we hear a red Ace Bristol.
38 - Leo Archibald gets off the line in his red 2 Litre Special.
39 - Heard from half way up the hill, a silver Ace Bristol of David Hescroff makes its practice run.
40 - A blue Ace Bristol.
41 - John Atkins in the purple Cobra.
42 - A green Ace 2.6.
43 - Alex Boswell in his unpainted (naked!) mark 2 Cobra.
44 - At the start line, Sam Smart gets away quickly in his black mark 4.
45 - Alex Boswell gets off the line in his Cobra, and keeps the wheel-spin under control.
46 - Heard from half way up the hill: A red Ace Bristol, then the purple Cobra.
47 - Bill Shepherd in the red 428 Fastback.
48 - Leo Archibald in his 2 Litre Special.
49 - A convoy of ACs heads back down the hill, led by Boswell in his Cobra.

Norwich Union Classic Car Run, 28th May 1989:
50 - Edited sequence: A silver Cobra mark 2 cruises passed after departing Bruntingthorpe Proving Ground. A few minutes later, it repeats this departure, but over-takes a gold Sunbeam Rapier and rockets passed!
AC Cobra 289, Bruntingthorpe, 1989


51 - A black Cobra mark 2 passes by followed by another car, and then a light metallic blue Aston Martin DB5 convertible.

Goodwood Sprint, 12th August 1989:
52 - A silver Ace Bristol and a blue Ace pass by during their practice laps.
53 - 4 Cobras get off the line in turn: A dark blue mark 4, a red mark 4, Paul Channon in his red mark 2, and a bright green mark 2.
54 - The first 3 of the above Cobras pass by during their practice laps.
55 - Aiden Mills-Thomas in his blue mark 3 289 Cobra, gets a tyre-smoking start. A red mark 4 follows up.
56 - The above 2 Cobras pass by the start/finish line.
57 - A white Metro 6R4 shoots by, followed by Aiden's blue Cobra, the red mark 4 and the bright green mark 2.
58 - The Shepherd brothers' red 428 Fastback gets off the line, followed by a dark red Aceca Bristol.
59 - During lunch break, a white 428 Fastback starts up in the paddock, reverses out of its parking space, and motors off.
60 - Lunch break continues as Clive Bowyer in his white short chassis 16/80 and Colin Dunn in his metallic grey 2 Litre Saloon, drive onto the circuit as part of their official duties.
61 - The orange Cobra followed by a red mark 4, get off the start line.
62 - The above 2 Cobras shoot by over the start/finish line.
63 - David Hescroff starts his run in his dark red Cobra mark 2.
AC Cobra 289, Goodwood, 1989

64 - David Hescroff shoots passed in his Cobra.
65 - The dark red Aceca Bristol, a cream Aceca Bristol and Mike Smith's dark blue Buckland, start their respective laps.
66 - A black Ace, the 2 red Ace Bristols, followed by blue Greyhound, all starting their laps.
67 - Starting their respective laps are: Orange Cobra, Channon's red Cobra, a yellow 428 Convertible stalls and re-starts, and then the bright green Cobra.
AC 428 Convertible, Goodwood, 1989


68 - Aiden in his 289 mark 3 and a red mark 4 cross the finish line.
69 - The red 428 followed by a blue 3000ME (Eric Gates) get off the start line.
70 - Aiden Mills-Thomas crosses the finish line and returns along the exit road.
71 - The yellow 428 Convertible idles in the paddock (bonnet open), as a helpful gent assists the owner to remedy some mis-firing.
72 - Crossing the finish line (and returning along the exit road in the foreground) are: The blue 289 mark 3 (Mills-Thomas), the orange Cobra, and the red mark 4.

National AC Day/ACOC 40th Anniversary Concours, Cotswold Wildlife Park, 10th September 1989:
73 - While sitting in my 2 Litre Saloon, Alex Boswell starts up his dark blue Cobra. He turns the Cobra around and speaks to me briefly before going off for lunch.
AC Cobra, Cotswold Wildlife Park, 1989


Bentley Drivers' Club Silverstone Meeting, including the AC parade marking the 40th anniversary of the ACOC. 30th August 1989:
74a - Onboard my light green 2 Litre Saloon in the paddock, queuing to join the circuit for the AC parade during the lunch break between races. You can hear a Cobra and a Greyhound ahead of me. Brian Spooner hitches a ride.
AC 2 Litre, Silverstone paddock, 1989

74b - On the starting grid (left-hand lane), the parade gets under way. As I hand my camera to Brian, I find that the other ACs (75 of them!), are racing away a tad fast, so I change down to third and try to keep up. An Ace over-takes and then is heard back-firing a few times. We turn sharply at Becketts corner into the Club Straight, rather than the Grand Prix circuit as another Ace over-takes. With Aces, Cobras and MEs charging into the distance, I decide to limit my speed to about 75mph, but I catch up at each corner and hang onto the other ACs. You can hear the commentary over the p.a. as we pass the starting grid again. A black 3000ME comes alongside giving me a brief race. After Copse Corner, a light metallic blue Ace over-takes, during our second lap. I try taking Becketts in top gear (a bad idea!). To our surprise, we get a third lap. At Becketts for the last time, the only AC not ahead of me was a dark green Buckland loaded with 4 adults. He takes Becketts on the inside, with our ACs side by side, and I out-accelerate him down the Club Straight. As we slow down, we pass a 3000ME and then a vintage AC with the club photographer (Graham Murrell) mounted high on a small platform (Brian calls out to him).
AC 2 litre in parade, Silverstone, 1989

75a - AC race lap 6: Black Cobra (Mill-Thomas), orange Cobra (Bill Shepherd), red 428 Fastback (Andy Shepherd), some Aces, and white Cobra (Hitchins).
75b - AC race lap 7: Black Cobra (Mill-Thomas), orange Cobra (Bill Shepherd), white Cobra (Hitchins), other cars, red 428 Fastback (Andy Shepherd), some Aces.
76 - AC race lap 8: Red Cobra (Channon), silver Cobra (Bruce), Black Cobra (Mill-Thomas), orange Cobra (Bill Shepherd), white Cobra (Hitchins).
77 - AC race lap 9: Black Cobra (Mill-Thomas), orange Cobra (Bill Shepherd), Morgan, white Cobra (Hitchins).
78 - Event no.8, handicap race for larger engined cars: Lap 1 gets under way with cars starting in groups at intervals. A Lister-Jaguar followed by another car and Hitchin's white Cobra driven by Pete Stafford. Then another Lister Jaguar almost drowning out the red Cobra behind it, two more cars, and then we hear the black Cobra changing up through its gears, followed by MGs.
79 - The above race continues, with the white Cobra, white Lister-Jaguar and the red Cobra.
80 - Towards the end of event 8, the black Cobra is followed by the red one.
81 - Back in the paddock as Paul Channon parks the red Cobra.
82 - In the paddock area where the parade ACs are parked, a bright light blue PVT 4 seater sports starts and departs. Then Steve Hall leaves in a similar PVT painted silver.

Disc 3

A ride in Derek Bray's grey 1935 16/70 4 Seater Sports, around the Leicestershire countryside. 2nd October 1989. Note that there is some electrical interference from the AC's ignition system, although I've removed as much as I can:
1 - Travelling from Oadby towards Stoughton.
2 - Approaching Stoughton.
3 - After getting out of the AC, Derek starts the engine and pulls away, near Stoughton, then passes by. (Edited sequence).
4 - Back onboard the AC, we pull away again.
5 - Near Illston, Derek motors passed down a hill, heard from the roadside.
6 - Derek brings his AC back up the hill.
7 - Back onboard, we travel from Kings Norton, pass through Great Glen, and on towards Oadby. (Edited sequence).
Derek Bray's AC 16/70, in 1984


Oadby, Leicestershire, 8th October 1989:
8 - The sound recordist drives his light green 2 Litre Saloon up the hill in Rosemead Drive.

Ragley Hall Hillclimb, 25th March 1990:
9 - David Hill starts up his blue PVT Special.
10 - David Hill gets his PVT Special off the start line.
11 - Recorded half way up the hill, Frank Sytner drives his white Cobra 289.
12 - A red Ace Bristol of D. Emmans.
13 - Bill Shepherd in the orange Cobra.
14 - At the start line, we hear David Hill's PVT Special, and then the orange Cobra generates some tyre smoke as it queues up!
15 - Andy Shepherd in the red 428 Fastback.
16 - A red Ace Bristol.
17 - David Hescroff in his silver Ace Bristol.
18 - A black 3000ME.
19 - A dark blue Greyhound.
20 - A cream coloured Aceca Bristol.
21 - A metallic blue Ace.
22 - A dark green Ace 2.6.
23 - The orange Cobra.
24 - Heard half way up the hill, a metallic blue Ace Bristol of M. Keefe.
25 - The orange Cobra.
26 - The red 428 Fastback.

Abbey Park, Leicester, for the annual Leicester Mercury Historic Transport Pageant, 20th May 1990:
27 - Derek Bray starts up his 1935 16/70. Marie Bray (my first school teacher back in 1971) can be heard speaking to me before they set off for home.

Norwich Union Classic Car Run, 27th May 1990. Cars are heard leaving Bruntingthorpe Proving Ground:
28 - Steve Hall in his silver 4 Seater Sports PVT.
29 - A cream coloured vintage AC (a Royal, maybe?).
30 - A dark metallic green Ace followed by a dark green Jaguar XK150.
31 - A Ferrari 275GTS can be heard in the background on the Bruntingthorpe runway. Meanwhile a dark green Ace passes in the foreground.

Donnington Park Circuit for the Cobra parade and race, 22nd July 1990:
32 - Out in the car park, Alex Boswell goes by in his dark blue Cobra mark 2 (fitted with a 302 engine).
33 - A famous Cobra 289, reg. 39 PE (red/white stripe), arrives at the paddock. This is the Cobra that won its class at Le Mans 1963.
AC Cobra line-up at Donnington, 1990
34 - Over 20 Cobras start up in the paddock ready for the Cobra parade. David Hescroff's dark red 289 is heard initially, just before 39 PE starts up nearby to the left (photo below). Another Cobra is heard in the background to the right, then a black Mark 4, reg. SAM 87 (left), a red Mark 4 reg. 820 R (left), Paul Channon's red 289 reg. 676 COB (right), a 289 Mark 3 reg. WON 7 (left), bright green 289 reg. 6960 AC, passes right-to-left, red 427 reg. TEC 779 in the background (left), a couple of unidentified Cobras, and then Boswell's dark blue 302 engined mark 2 starts up with a deep throaty roar in front of the mic. The higher pitched sound of John Atkin's purple 289 is heard (left), a metallic blue 289 reg. MYT 555 (left), a dark green 289 belonging to Andy Shepherd (but driven by someone else) is heard next to the mic (right), a dark blue/white stripe 289 (visiting from France), reg. 47AC97 starts up, drowning out everything, parked way over to the right, and then motors passed. It is followed up by another 289 in similar colours, reg. COB 289 of Steve Hitchins.
AC Cobras at Donnington, 1990
35 - The French Cobra, 47AC97, enters the Media Hall to access the circuit.
36 - The Cobra parade gets under way from the starting grid with 24 Cobras. The 2 (very loud!) blue and white Cobras bring up the rear.
37 - The 24 parading Cobras cross the start/finish line at the end of their second lap.
38 - The French Cobra 47AC97 arrives back at the paddock, followed by Andy Shepherd's dark green 289.
39 - Recorded inside the Media Hall as Cobras enter and queue to join the circuit for the Cobra race. The loudest Cobra heard is 47AC97 which revs up and switches off. Cobras then re-start their engines and exit the hall onto the circuit. The last car heard leaving is John Atkins' purple 289. (Edited sequence).
40 - Aiden Mills-Thomas had been racing against the clock to repair his Cobra's clutch and just made it in time. We hear him driving his blue 289 Mark 3 around the hair-pin during a slightly late warm-up lap.
41 - The Cobras get under way from the starting grid, with Mills-Thomas heard joining at the rear.
Cobra race at Donnington, 1990
42 - The rest of the Cobra race is heard near the hair-pin, with Cobras approaching the bend at the far side, and then exiting in the foreground. This recording is from lap 1, with Bill Shepherd leading in the orange FIA 289, Steve Hitchins in the blue/white 289 (COB 289), B. Peruch in the very loud 289 (47AC97), N. Hulme in the red/white ex-Le Mans 289 (39 PH), Andy Shepherd in his dark green 289, John Atkins in the purple 289, plus more Cobras (19 altogether).
Cobra race at Donnington, 1990
43 - Cobra race lap 2. In the same order for the leaders. A poorly sounding purple Cobra sees Atkins limping into the pitlane. Alex Boswell comes passed next in his dark blue Cobra.
44 - Cobra race lap 3. Same order as lap 2, excluding Atkins.
45 - Cobra race lap 5. Still no changes at the front.
46 - Cobra race final lap.

International Concours, Tatton Park, 19th August 1990:
47 - On a very wet day, Mike Smith's dark blue Buckland splutters into life. The Scottish accent of Eddie Wojtanek (2 Litre Sports owner) is heard. The Buckland departs as Mike Blincoe (2 Litre expert and owner) greets Eddie.
48 - An uprated light-weight Mark 4 Cobra painted metallic grey with a blue stripe, departs. It is followed by a white Morgan Plus 8.
49 - Eddie starts up his pale grey 2 Litre Sports, (Buckland style body built by AC), and gets some wheel-spin on the wet grass. A white Buckland then departs.
50 - After leaving Tatton Park on board a car travelling south on the M6, we came alongside the Mark 4 Cobra. In this edited sequence, the Cobra is in a slow moving queue.

Norwich Union Classic Car Run, 26th May 1991. Cars are heard leaving Bruntingthorpe Proving Ground:
51 - A dark green Ace absolutely blasts away, hotly pursued by a bright red Ferrari 275GTB. A white MGC Roadster follows up.

Norwich Union Classic Car Run, 24th May 1992. Cars are heard leaving Bruntingthorpe Proving Ground:
52 - A blue vintage AC (Royal or Empire?).
53 - A mark 1 Cobra fitted with a 289 engine, (red/white stripe) is heard idling as another classic car pulls away in the background. The Cobra then leaves, followed by a light metallic green Jaguar XK140.
AC Cobra Mark 1, Bruntingthorpe, 1992
54 - A dark red Aston Martin DB6 is followed by a dark green Ace.

National AC Day, 12th July 1992. ACs are heard on their way from the Red Lion Pub to Holdenby House:
55 - Brian Spooner passes in his blue 3000ME re-engined with a Rover V8. He is closely followed by a blue Triumph TR6 and then a dark blue 3000ME comes charging by.
56 - A white 3000ME almost drowned out by the following Mark 4 Cobra.

Goodwood Festival of Speed, Goodwood House, 20th June 1993:
57 - Heard from three-quarters of the way up the hill-climb, a red HW Alta-Jaguar passes by, followed by John Atkins in his purple Cobra 289.

National AC Day, Stanford Hall, 6th July 1997:
58 - Sam Smart parks his black Mark 4.
59 - A black Cobra 427, converted from a 289, arrives and pauses, while a silver 428 Convertible parks. The Cobra then finds a parking space. (Edited sequence).
AC Cobra 427, Stanford Hall 1997


A ride in Tony Levitt's dark red 1949 AC 2 Litre Saloon, 28th March 2012:
60 - An edited sequence starting in Hebden Bridge, West Yorkshire and heading north into the countryside, climbing a steep hill passed cottages, then a fast double bend out in the countryside between dry-stone walls. Finally another uphill climb in top gear.
AC 2 Litre ride, 2012
AC 2 Litre ride, 2012
AC 2 Litre ride, 2012
AC 2 Litre ride, 2012


National AC Day, Brooklands, 8th June 1991:
61 - At the new AC factory, a bright metallic blue/white stripe 427 Cobra arrives. This was one of the final chassis built at Thames Ditton, originally for Paramount Pictures to build a vintage style car. AC/Autokraft later rebuilt it as a 427 Cobra.
62 - A silver 428 Convertible revs up and idles, heard from behind its exhausts.
63 - A dark blue 4 door 2 Litre Saloon and a light green 2 door 2 Litre Saloon, both depart, as a train passes in the background.
64 - A dark metallic green 428 Fastback starts up and departs for the Brooklands museum.
65a - On board the dark blue Buckland of Mike Smith, riding in the back. There were 2 other gents as passengers. We set off from the AC factory, as the sound recordist is asked an awkward question! We bounce over some "sleeping policemen" before joining a main road.
65b - We buy our entry tickets as we arrive at the Brooklands museum, and park among the ACs. Someone observes the aircraft on display.
66 - Red/white stripe mark 1 Cobra, fitted with a 289 engine, arrives at the museum and parks.
67 - Bill Shepherd arrives in the orange Cobra, sounding more ferocious than ever! Red Mark 4 Cobra also arrives.
68 - Black Mark 4 arrives.
69 - The blue/white 427 Cobra arrives, reverses into a parking space, revs and switches off. Cobra lovers will be shedding a tear to this sound!
70 - The 427 Cobra departs.
71 - A silver Mark 4 sets off.
72 - David Hescroff starts up his metallic blue 16/80 Competition short-chassis PVT, and leaves.
73 - The red/white Mark 1 Cobra leaves.
74 - A white 16/80 Competition short-chassis PVT departs.
75 - A dark green Ace with a big V8 engine starts up, revs, and drives off.
76 - Bruce Sandeman-Craik kindly gives me a ride in his bright red Buckland. We drive up onto the preserved Brooklands banking, and speed our way along. There are huge pot-holes, and the rear axle bangs against the chassis. At the far end, the tyres make a bit of noise as Bruce turns sharply left, as we leave the circuit.
77 - Bruce has left me sitting in his Buckland, facing the embankment, with a splendid view of ACs passing from right to left. In the foreground, are cars heading down to join the circuit. One of them, a silver Aston Martin DB5 accelerates rapidly, but as it drops down over a step, its tail scrapes the ground. Ouch! A light blue Aceca passes along the banking, followed by some 3000MEs, and then an Ace. A metallic blue Cobra 289 blasts by, and then black-fires loudly as the driver lifts off!



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