My father, Fred Butterworth raced one at Belle Vue along with Jack Bottomley the motorcycle dealer, Eric Pickup and Derek Bennet who went on to build the Chevron racing cars. I have a feeling that Oliver Hart also raced at the time, but am not sure. He cetainly raced stock cars. JAP engines, rwd with no brakes.
When Mike Parker made an attempt to get Speedway running in Italy, some time around 1966 or 67, about six of these cars were sent out with a group of bike riders. The idea was to run a mixed programme of cars and bikes with the riders sharing the car driving duties. They were based in the Rimini area but the venture was not a success. The cars were stored for some years after the venture in the lockups behind Mikes offices in Whalley Range, Manchester.
Post by administrator on Apr 12, 2011 19:16:49 GMT 1
Somewhere!!!! I have photos of Mike Parker's midget car when it was placed in the care of an enthusiast - whose name I cannot recall at the moment. The hunt is on to find them. When I do I'll put them on site. The car was in pristine restored condition when the photos were taken somethime late 1980s or early 1990s. I think the car was also featured in 'Short Circuit' magazine.
John, I cant remember the guys name either, but do we agree that the one pictured above is Parkers own car, I remember his widow telling me what happened th the rest, she was very upset....I believe there was a condition imposed or the person who had/has possesion of it that it should be restored, and never raced. I also remember, although it is now hazy, that it should still remain Mrs Parkers property. Also, there were several clubs up and down the country racing this style of Midget, and many drivers built there own cars. While M P was obviously a major force for them, I don't believe he was responsible for many car builds....It may be a good time to remember that "Parker Midgets" were not built by Mike Parker, but built in a small garage in South Manchester.
Last Edit: Apr 13, 2011 2:51:43 GMT 1 by rodpashley
Post by haflinger121 on Apr 13, 2011 9:25:02 GMT 1
If you meant to put "name" Rod, no he didn't - it's a coincidence. Although to us here in modern times and looking back at who pushed and promoted them and often drove himself, it seems obvious that Parker Midgets are so called because of Mike Parker. In fact, I do believe he caused them to be built in the first place, but I'm not 100% sure about that. The cars were actually built by a guy called Bob Parker, as detailed in the thread The Forgotten Midgets. Quote: The prototype 500cc midget was built and designed by Bob Parker. He was no relation to Mike Parker, who was involved in both driving and promoting the cars.
So, I would say he did commision them (unless someone else knows better?) but wasn't originally responsible for what they got called although to all intents and purposes today, he might as well have been!
Thanks, that sounds probably right, there a couple of garages along the stretch of road where they were built, I keep intending to call in and ask if thats were they were built The area has changed out of recognition over the years, but these two garages are still standing. From memory, (I was only about 10 or 12) the cars racing at Belle Vue all looked different to each other, I have always thought that they were home built. Could do with a spellchecker on these pages
Post by administrator on Apr 17, 2011 11:43:13 GMT 1
The car was indeed at one time in the custody of Ian Paskin, who used to show it regularly at various car gatherings. However, I also seem to recall that it passed from his custody back to the original owners - or something akin to this - and at the time I lost track of what happened. This must have been at least 15 years ago.