When Jem Marsh started building racing cars, he probably hadn’t thought of ice racing in Sweden. That is however what Swedish race driver Anders Josefsson had in mind when he visited the 1964 racing car show looking for a small GT. Current owner Hans Johansson relates: ‘He got the car just in time for the Swedish race season and won his first race. During the first year, the car was equipped with a Cosworth 998cc engine and a five speed Hewland 5-speed gearbox. He very often had the pole position, but engine problems spoiled the success’. Later on the engine was upgraded to 1070cc and the back axle swapped for a BMC A-series unit. During the winter, the racers swapped the circuits for frozen lakes, and Joseffson won a couple of events, finishing 3rd in the championship.
After a short spell with second owner Allan Bonde Bengtsson, who raced the car in 1966, it has been with its current owner Hans Johansson since 1967. It survives in very good original condition in Sweden with a 1500cc engine, but still with its rare Hewland gearbox.
Per Hagermark met Bengt Ebbeson at a Swedish car show a couple of year ago and let me know: ‘It was fantastic to meet Bengt Ebbeson at the show. Bengt used to live in Halmstad 20 years ago but emigrated initially to Switzerland and then about 10 years ago to Florida. He comes home every now and then to look after his 1800 IRS which he has owned since new in 1964. He must be one of the few 1800 owners who has owned their cars since new. Bengt told me one interesting story about how the order was placed for his car at the 1964 Racing Car Show. Anders Josephson´s (Fastback #3015) mechanic ordered both the Fastback and Bengt´s 1800 at the show. He recalled that Jem was very arrogant and wondered if Anders Josephson was skilled enough to drive the very sophisticated Fastback. Bengt didn´t take delivery of his car until October 1964 while Anders´ car was shipped over in March 1964. He reckoned that the Fastback was not a brand new car but a refurbished 1963 season race car. I have tried to find out which car in that case it could be and come to the conclusion that the one A.G. Pope raced could well be the same one. Anyone of you guys who could imagine that would be the case?’