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Triumph TR2 MACAU 1955

Sent in by Charles Kirkby (Malta)
... who is seen here sitting in the TR. Charles continues the story in his own words:

Courtesy of

Hi, I thought you might like a couple of old shots of my TR3A (originally owned by Dave Wall from 1973 - 1979) and registered TCH 458. In 1978 Dave took part in the Arctic Circle Rally. If any readers have additional race results for
TCH 458 please contact

In 1979 it was bought by Henry Tombs (Xanthos Lotus) and converted for track racing where it competed successfuly all over the UK.from 1979 to 1984. The first race being Aintree club circuit 1980, she was and is VERY fast - she won TR Drivers at Silverstone beating the famous Reg Woodcock in 1983;, 3rd place behind Derek Bell in 1981 and 82, Cheshire Cats 4 hour relay in 83 with team TR Register including Reg Woodcock, Daryl Upritchard, when Reg ran out of petrol!- I think they came 2nd. The photo below shows TCH 458 a lap ahead of a Porsche 356 at Donington in 1982.

Henry raced and developed the car very well, for HSCC and AMOC mostly, also Birkett 6 hour which I think they won in 1982? In 1984 at Cadwell park Henry was T boned by a novice driver and was lucky to survive, thanks to an illegal alloy rollbar built for him by Sheffield University.           (continues below)

The car was a write off. The chassis section, logbook and plates were sold to a Ferarri team owner with the same initials. YMA 333 caries all the original aluminium body and race hardware from the TR3A, on her own strengthened and lightened 1955 TR2 chassis.

Henry ran the car at Donington and recorded a 1:26 lap! He was then so busy with the Xanthos 23 (see below) that he retired the car from racing, keeping it until 1991 - when he sold her to support the company. It went to a friend by the name of Kinasten, who immediately sold her to fellow racer Michael Strauss (the OPEL Main Dealer Stuttgart)

I spoke with Michael Strauss, who had tried the car in Devon on a dual carriageway back in 1991. He was so shocked with how fast it went to 7k he bought it - 125 /135 MPH on a dual carriageway! He later raced the TR in Nurburgring and two other circuits. One time he started last on the grid and finished 2nd just behind a formula 2 car - everyone wase astonished.


Xanthos 23
The Xanthos 23 (1999) is an exact reproduction of the Lotus 23B using the same frame design as the 1960s original. Powered by Lotus-Ford Twin Cam or its Cosworth derivatives mostly mated to Hewland Mk.8 or Mk.9, it is still built by Xanthos Sports Cars in Liverpool UK


Charles also mentions that the "TR" did beat a Ferrari 212E Montagna
(the second car below and the only one ever built) and a Chevron B16 at the rear pictured below.

The Ferrari 212E Montagna (2nd car above) was a one-off spyder sports racing car produced by Ferrari in 1968. The car was built on a Dino 206S chassis and used a unique
2-litre, 48-valve, flat-12 engine, a development of the 1512 1.5-litre Formula One engine.
                                        Source - Wikipedia shown here at Malta

The TR came back to the UK in 2006, to Julian Schoolheifer classic car auction and after 2 quick owners, I purchased it from a dealer who was using the the car with his family in Malta on the local drag strip!

When I noticed the F1 BR front brakes, thats all I needed - I swapped an Alvis TD21 for her and began restoration.

 From there she lost her wide mouth TR3A nosecone and became a tubbed Macau body monoposto - still extraordinarily fast with amazing cornering, so much so that last year at the Malta GP, in the Thomas Smith hillclimb section we came 4th overall from 70 cars, not corrected time on age!...she beat much more modern front wheel drive and very light cars - she is a total joy, and a very big buzz to drive.

Charlie Kirkby

NOTE - The Malta Classic runs in October and they are always looking for more Triumphs.