More on Miers
Clarrie Miers was a big man and took no nonsense or advice from anyone. He was very prone to shout down people he did not agree with. Clarrie was my back fence neighbour and we got on great if you agreed with him. I learnt quickly. In my small engineering ship, ‘Matchless Engineering’, I manufactured many parts for Clarrie. I made the first six sets of flywheels for him from R4, one of the highest high-tensile materials available at the time. The flywheels were machined all over, including the counterweight holes, suitably positioned and sized to accommodate the balance factor. The flywheels were dimensionally as per D.T.R. – J.A.P. and suitably made to suit the same mains and big end – accurately made and successful. I made a batch of spindles – from memory, the cam followers operated on them. I delivered these to him and all seemed well. The next morning, a raging bull, more like a bison, entered my workshop, shouting expletives and telling me what I could do with my spindles. With that, he threw them at me, and some connected. To this day, I do not know what the problem was, if any. It was a frightening experience – the only customer of mine to become so enraged in thirty years. As a footnote, Clarrie was an expert electric motor re-winder as well as magnetos, generators and coils. In retrospect, it may have been best if he stuck to what he knew and was good at. John Finglas Brisbane, Qld. Sidecar TTs at its first attempt.) The gent in the suit with the watch-chain is Perc Williams (Pat Hobbs’ father.) The other gent nearby, also in hat and suit, is Reg Williams. The gent in the hat further to the right is ‘Mitch’ Marks, who was P&R’s accountant. I met Mitch at Amaroo in 1979, as per the attached photo above, looking at my ex Tony Batros 350 AJS (which was modified for speedway by Syd Napier and Bill Smith of P&Rs). Mitch is in the dark hat, Joe Wilson, in sunglasses, and myself, fourth from left. The Williams concern were also agents for Morgan 3-wheelers. In 1929 there was a sports car race at Penrith racecourse, (The NSW Sports car championship) and the regulations stipulated that a passenger must be carried. Jimmy Thoms entered, (with P&Rs sponsorship), in his Super Sports Morgan, powered by a 1,000 cc OHV vee twin JAP engine. After practice, Jimmy’s passenger declared he had had enough and refused to get in the Morgan for the race. Mitch told me at Amaroo that one of the Williams brothers said to him, “You get in, Mitch.” Mitch protested “But I’m just the accountant!” “Doesn’t matter, get in.” So a reluctant Mitch became a racing passenger, and a successful one at that, for they won the championship. Fast forward a few decades, and the Morgan, minus motor, was put up for sale. Joe Wilson of Brisbane bought it and fitted an 8-valve Anzani motor, which had been brought to Australia by one Cromwell Cadlolo, for fitting to a Busy Bee light aircraft, which never eventuated. To round out the story, Joe Wilson in the Morgan/Anzani, with his son Andrew as passenger, competed in a sidecar race at, of all places, Amaroo. After witnessing this event, I can understand Jimmy Thoms original passenger bowing out! Paul Reed Stanthorpe, Qld
The Mierson M.S.M. Magnum (Photo: Paul Wilkins)
Mitch Marks (in the dark hat) at Amaroo Park.