Last issue’s revelation of the curious and totally ineffective Spagis has prompted a stream of correspondence on Spagforth’s predictably futile efforts to capture a section of the niche market. Peter Addison, who has conducted numerous new model road tests for OBA, is a student of ludicrocity as applied to motorcycle engineering and constantly trawls the world searching for examples of fatuous two-wheeled creations. Recently he unearthed what he believes to be a photograph of the Jagforth (also known as the Spaguar) which was the offspring of a short-lived liaison between Sir Carruthers Spagforth and Sir William Lyons.
Both titled gentlemen were patrons of WAFT (Working Against Flatulence & Tympanites) – a royalsanctioned society that conducted its bi-annual meetings at Le Casino de Monte-Carlo. After a strenuous session discussing the effects of polysaccharides on intestinal gas production, Spagforth and Lyons switched the topic to the products of their respective factories, and specifically the possibility of incorporating excess Jaguar XK120 engines into similarly stockpiled Spagforth Lurcher chassis. Initial work on the Jagforth was undertaken by a team selected from engineers representing both companies, but after an all-in brawl when Spagforth boffin Hugh Jelbows accused his opposite number, Arthur ‘Bluey’ Zarzoff of plagiarising the former’s white paper on Juglans Regia Combustion (using walnut kernels as motor spirit), the team was disbanded and development and construction of the Jagforth – consequently renamed Spaguar – was taken over by Edgar Jessop himself. The Lurcher frame, which had originally been designed to house the cadaverous 98cc Spagforth Limpit engine, coped surprisingly well with the 3.4 litre six-cylinder XJ120 engine, possibly due to the fact that its frame tubes had been purloined from sections of the decommissioned Severn Bridge when it was replaced with a modern concrete structure. Work progressed at a typically woeful pace, with little in the way of resources, human or otherwise, being placed at Edgar’s disposal. Eventually, a thunderous memo from Sir Carruthers, demanding the Spaguar’s completion prior to the next WAFT meeting, resulted in Edgar taking the creation to the nearby Santa Pod Drag Strip for shakedown tests. Just one run was made, resulting in a standing quarter mile of 1.21 seconds with a terminal speed of 916 mph. It took the Spaguar crew hours to locate the projectile, which covered a further eight miles whilst decelerating – its hapless pilot ejecting along the way and licking his wounds in the Weasel & Stoat Inn.
Not surprisingly, the Jagforth/ Spaguar failed to reach production, joining a long list of doomed dalliances between once-great organisations.
With great trepidation, Edgar Jessop manoeuvres the Spaguar towards the staging area for its one and only test run.