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The Cars I've Raced and Loved: Lee Talbot Shares His Faves

I've raced so many cars over 60-plus years that picking favorites is difficult. If pressed, I'd select the following: one vintage, three factory team race/rally cars, one personal racer, and the non-competition car that started it all.

First, a red 1967 Ginetta G4—my "mistress," according to my wife. The Ginetta is responsive, fast, and sensuous. When I decided to race Vintage I went for the Ginetta because I considered it the best and most beautiful car I had ever competed against. It took two years to find a suitable one and nine months to restore, and she has served me incredible well in the subsequent [14] years of racing.

Second is the sleek, white, and aerodynamic 1956 MGA I raced successfully for British Motor Corporation for nearly four years. Although somewhat primitive by today's standards, she was very competitive in the 1950s.

Third is the cheerful 1978 Factory Racing Opel Kadett. She was cheerful and full of character, though not exactly beautiful in her "Bumble Bee" factory racing colors, yellow and black. But she often put me on the winner's podium during about four years of international circuit races and rallies in Europe, reaching speeds of over 170 mph.

Fourth is the 1961 Humber Super Snipe, with a dignified blue body, white top, and soft leather. Normally an ambassador's staid luxury car, the Humber competently took me to a class win in the East African Safari, racing over 3,400 miles of what was then the world's roughest motor event.

Fifth is the silver-with-red-stripes 1969 Zink Formula Vee, built in the basement of my crew chief, Grant Reynolds. Simple and basic, she provided years of successful, low-maintenance racing.

Finally, there's "Betsy," my first car, a royal blue 1946 Ford convertible with a Mercury V8 engine. I bought Betsy in 1947 and made extensive modifications. Although not a competition car, she gave me five years of fun and driving adventures across the United States, Mexico, Canada, and even up the Alcan Highway to Alaska.

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