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Discussion Starter #1
Does anyone knows the VIN of the John Norwood's Siata 300BC?

Here are 2 pics: one at Lockbourne in 1954 and the other at Watkins Glen in 1955. I believe the car is the same. In my opinion it might be the ST422BC...but i didn't find any confirm. Thank you.
 

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Hello

Could be the same car, Norwood has been entered in several races with siata 300, see below

But affirming that it is 422, I don't know, 422 has been very well restored recently in holland, I would imagine that if it had such a history, they would have made it clear ?
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Thank you very much. Yes, the car recently restored is the 422, but the question still stand: was the Norwood's Siata 300 the 422? By the way, where did you find that list on the web?
 

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Thank you very much. Yes, the car recently restored is the 422, but the question still stand: was the Norwood's Siata 300 the 422? By the way, where did you find that list on the web?
Not on the web, I assembled information grabbed here and there about siata 300 BC in races from 51 to 62 with 430 entries in races. Some of them identified with driver / car / chassis / photo, some of them with nothing ;)
 

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Discussion Starter #5
WOW that's impressive! I'll let you know if i'll find some news. Please, write me your address in PM.
 

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John Norwood & Siata 300BC

If we had access to as-found photos of ST*422*BC, perhaps we might be in a better position to say something meaningful. I have tried to learn more from former owners of the car since it first appeared to my studies almost forty years ago.

John Norwood seems to have owned two 300BC but probably not at the same time. I agree that the two photos opening this thread very likely show his first car, but I have to think it is probably not ST*422*BC. The difficulty with ST*422*BC from an historically descriptive point of view is that it was found with very little to identify its origins and very little was shared by the guy who found it. He acquired it after advertising a Siata Spring for sale and the owner called him. There were reportedly no mechanical parts that could be considered original in any way. I did learn some details from others that seem likely to dove-tail with earlier times but not into the 1950's.

I invited myself to go see the car to gather details about instrument locations, mirror locations and other modifications as well as other details that varied from one portion of the build sequence to another. Some modifications (drilled holes as an example) can act as fingerprints. I was never able to see ST*422*BC … or ST*435*BC which he also owned, but which I'd seen very briefly with a prior owner.

Here is what I can pretend to know thus far of ST*422*BC:

It was almost certainly delivered by Siata to the USA (through Tony Pompeo or Ernie McAfee, the latter perhaps more likely than the former?) probably set up to receive a Crosley engine. McAfee fitted a few cars with engines other than Crosley before and after their sale(s) to their first owners. ST*420*BC received a Barker engine. Another received two Triumph motorcycle engines joined and then supercharged. Another received a Jowett Jupiter engine but perhaps not when new. McAfee imported ST*433*BC which had a Siata-built Fiat 1100 engine and this seems to be the only Fiat-powered car that came to California when it was new.

The earliest owner reported for ST*422*BC was identified as "John" of the Cupertino/Monte Sereno area of California. I have had the name, "John Bales - Sunnyvale" in my "to be determined" list for 300BC cars since about 1980 and can only guess that he might be the "John" that was referred to by the next owner, Bruce Gillespie of San Jose. John Bales' car had reportedly come from the Los Angeles area and was missing many parts. See also a reference to a "Harley biker & druggist" for a car that has also been vaguely described since the 1980's, as it matches the description of ST*422*BC when it was found.

Bruce Gillespie contacted me only a few years ago as the result of a discussion either here on the AlfaBB or perhaps on Bring a Trailer. He is the person who sold the car to Jere Brown. The car was described as a "body/chassis shell with five Borrani wheels and a Toyota engine accompanying it. There was no suspension nor original mechanical components. There was a "water tubing” roll bar. A story accompanied the car. "It had been rescued from the garage of a couple who had split up. She told him to get the car out of her garage and he did not. It went to a doctor near San Jose who put it into a barn." I have determined that the doctor was Bruce Gillespie. Jere Brown told me that he had been given a Siata Spring in exchange for some work. He repaired the Spring and drove it a bit. Jere advertised it and the owner of the 300BC called him. Jere sold the project (and ST*435*BC) to Holland where it has been "restored" by folks who stole a Lancia Appia GTE from my father … which makes me rather loathe to promote them at all. Even so, I have to acknowledge that fitting a supercharged Fiat 1100 engine should make for quite a fun driver … even if it is not historically "appropriate" for any 300BC. Perhaps we should all supercharge our Fiat 1100 engined examples?

John Norwood (Rye, New York), after racing 1953 in a supercharged MG-TC, purchased a 300BC for 1954. It was fitted with a Fiat 1100 engine and my studies show he raced the car during 1954 and 1955 before moving on to Arnolt Bristol and more. The attached document shows what I have gathered about his use. I've not compared my notes to those of Screensmoke, so you may wish to doublecheck? Please note that there are an astonishing number of references collected for similar cars that cannot yet be identified by chassis number. Although I have edited out many of them for the purpose of this study, there are a few that may refer to ST*422*BC in California that I've also edited, since this is nominally a study of John Norwood's cars. I have left references to the early cars that are not yet described at all, as a reminder that there is still a lot to learn about certain individual cars that are completely undescribed. ST*439*BC and ST*440*BC are also unknown, but were almost certainly Motto-bodied examples, which Norwood's was not.

Here are a few images to make this more interesting than my blather.

Many similar studies remain to be done!
 

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For some reason ...

The attachments seem to have failed to make the transition … to be rectified
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Thank you very much, John, for updating us.
I'm investigating about the 422 and because you wrote in your book John xxx as first owner, i assumed he was Norwood because his racing career withe 300BCs. John R.Bales is 66 years old and he couldn't race with it. I assumed also that an US guy never bought at McAfee's garage a Siata 300 to go for shopping in 1953, but to run in the SCCA. And because Norwood raced with a Siata-Fiat 1100 between May 1954 and September 1955, as Frederic reported, i assumed his car was the 422 excluding the numbers before and after it. Strange the car hadn't the Crosley... Actually the car has a FIVA card as 422 with a 1100B engine and a MAG compressor. I have to make some phone calls to the USA and I'll update you here or by mail.
 
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