Jags to re­trace E1A pro­to­type’s Welsh tyre tracks

Classic Car Weekly (UK) - - This Week - Paul Skil­leter

As­e­lect group of Jaguars will visit the hills and val­leys along the scenic B-road route be­tween Bre­con and Car­marthen in Wales on 15 July.

They will be re­trac­ing the tyre tracks of an E-type an­ces­tor tested over the same route al­most 60 years ago. This first E-type pro­to­type, dubbed E1A, was built in 1957 and used to demon­strate all of the E-type’s no­table fea­tures.

A group of Jaguar en­thu­si­asts in Wales felt that E1A’s 60th birth­day needed to be com­mem­o­rated – es­pe­cially as E1A was loaned to

The Mo­tor mag­a­zine’s ed­i­tor, Richard Jennings MBE, in 1958. Driv­ing it over his favourite Bre­con-Car­marthen test route, Jennings av­er­aged an amaz­ing 67.7mph.

The Jaguars em­u­lat­ing this run in 2017 – al­beit at le­gal speeds – in­clude 77 RW, the ear­li­est sur­viv­ing E-type road­ster, cur­rently on long-term loan to the Jaguar Her­itage Trust. Owner Michael Kil­gan­non will be driv­ing, with for­mer Jaguar test­driver, Nor­man Dewis OBE – who tested E1A in the 1950s – in the pas­sen­ger seat. Jonathan Heynes, son of Jaguar’s first chief engi­neer Bill Heynes, will also be present, as will James Smith of RS Panels; James owns the pro­to­type’s re­mains.

Join­ing them are BUY 1, the ex­works rac­ing 3.4 sa­loon, and other cars from Jaguar’s sport­ing her­itage. A pre­view video of the event will ap­pear on www.face­ vis­it­wales later this week, with live cov­er­age of the start and se­lected other el­e­ments of the route. The Jaguars will reach Car­marthen by early af­ter­noon, and will be on dis­play in the town’s St Cather­ine’s Walk shop­ping cen­tre.

Cars con­firmed as tak­ing part in the run in­cluse the fa­mous Jaguar MkI racer, BUY 1 (car 12 here).

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