|"It's 1957 and I first saw the T-Barnes
Spl. run at the Speed Week at Dillingham Field on Oahu. I was 13
years old. The car was driven by a fellow named Chuck Daigh.
I got close enough to touch the car, after it beat Ferraris, Maseratis,
Mercedes Gullwings and I don't remember what else.
The T-Barnes went 161.? miles per hour
in the Flying Mile, beating all others, which seems strange, today.
It was powered then by an o/head Ford Police Interceptor 352 ci block that
Chuck Daigh said last year was a left over motor that Ford had sent for
some other racing program.
|(5-28-08) From website visitor
"Minor point, sort of. The OHV engine
wasn't a 352 Interceptor in 1957, as the 352 wasn't introduced until 58.
Per an old Sports Car Illustrated article the engine was a Ford 312 bored
and stroked to 342 cubes, which was pretty much the max for the old Y-block."
Six years later, 1963, I just finished
high school here in Hawaii. The T-Barnes was bought after the 1957
race by Jimmy Pflueger from Mr's Troutman and Barnes, motor went to local
racer Bill Lacy in a 1957 T-Bird Spl. Pflueger purchased a Keith
Black 331 cid small block Chev. 3 carbs, Vertex mag. Pflueger raced
the T-Barnes in Hawaii from '57 to '63, with time out in 1959 for Chuck
Daigh to race the car at Riverside in 1959 against the Scarab and other
more advanced machines.
For Riverside a "Scarab" Chev. motor
was installed. According to Chuck Daigh, had he not gotten
a flat tire on the last lap, "Momma" T-Barnes Spl. would have beaten her
"babies" the Scarabs.
Car bought by me from Mr. Pflueger in
1963, no engine or trans, left axle sheared off due to heat fracture from
rear diff. being "weld-locked" for traction. Local oriental machine
shop (samurai sword concept) heat treated and re-joined axle pieces, car
re-powered by 327 Chev. F.I. motor and trans. Drag Raced in Hawaii
because no road racing.
Back to Dick Troutman in 1986 for re-do,
and again in 1989 to re-power with hi-tech Ford Flathead. Raced at Monterey
Historics 1987, 1999 w/Chuck Daigh at wheel, 40 years after he last drove
it at Riverside in 1959. Car when not in Hawaii has been displayed
at Reno Auto (Harrah's) Museum and/or Petersen Auto Museum. Many
Photos, many wonderful people send copies of their favorite photos of the
T-Barnes Special. Still happily owned by me almost 40 years."