Adventure In Spain

by Alan Cadwell

(October, 1967 Gazette)

 cadwell ad


I didn't believe the price, but went to see the car anyway. The ad. was reasonably correct, the steering wheel was on the Left hand side even if the instruments were on the right. It was British Racing Green except for the large spots of zinc chromate primer, it did have nearly new Clnturatos and a roll bar which appeared, to have been tested. The engine had just been overhauled in the base hobby shop and herein lay the problem --  the head had been improperly torqued and was warped beyond belief; when the engine was hot there was at least a sixteenth inch gap between the center of the head and the block and...very little oiI pressure.


I bought it! I also bought two tubes of Permatex. After several hours of drying time, the head was tight enough to maintain oil pressure after an hour drive in temperatures of l00 – 115 degrees F, which is pretty good for any MG.


The next day was the 4th of July and wonder of wonders there was going to be a Gymkhana at the base; let's run.


When I arrived it looked like a strong field, two Minis, a Vette, several MG's, and a few specials. Oh well – it should be fun anyway. It was a huge course, roughly square, with a figure eight in the center, a wild slalom on the back side, along with many tricky little jogs thrown in. To top it off, the course was nice dry concrete. We drew for starting numbers and I came up with #3, no practice -- just three consecutive timed runs. The first car out was a Mini and I knew the course was faster than he was running for he looked like he was out for a Sunday drive. Car # 2 couldn't make the start line. NO slow lap to find the course for me, full bore all the way, after all I've got a roll bar and can't go all that fast in second anyway!


The rubber flew and the pylons fell -- but my 3rd lap was clean and 23 seconds faster than the Mini's.


Back in the pits I was told that they just didn’t drive that way over there, the cars driven by most of the people, were the only ones they owned because of the Spanish tax laws. They couldn't afford to treat them the way I had just treated my stalwart mount. 

cadwell mga new

The people who told me this were proven wrong by the second Mini -- he beat me by .3 second to take first in this one-class Gymkhana. After a year of trying at home and abroad, I had earned my first gymkhana trophy.


The ltttle BRG monster transported me 100 miles a day to work and back for 8 weeks and then one Monday morning while I was on the way to work my Permatex blew out and the oil poured from the engine. This sturdy machine ground to a halt beside the road between Seville and Moron. The wheels and tires were easily sold for $60 and the body was left to rust. . . . . . Next day it was gone; I hope it found a good home.

AIan Cadwell

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