Our TR3A by Wyndell E. Burden
Talking to other Triumph owners I find my story not to be much different from others. I bought my first Triumph, a 1959 TR3A, in Dec of 1958, moving up from a 1957 MGA. Over the years Olivia and I have gone through many autos covering the globe, moving in and out of British autos. Olivia’s first encounter with a Triumph was with a TR7. One was a blue coupe and later a green roadster. Her introduction to the TR3 was when we located our 1959 TR3A in Lexington, KY.
The TR3 had been listed for sale on a website. When Olivia and I went to look at the car, we found the body was in a garage in Lexington and had been restored and painted. Four wheels and the steering wheel. A vision of what the car would look like when fully restored made it a pretty easy decision to buy it there on the spot. The rest of the car was located in a dirt floor garage on a farm outside of Carlisle, KY, a small town northeast of Lexington. After purchasing the car, we made arrangements with the man that had restored the body to deliver the car to us. About two weeks later on a beautiful June day, our car arrived with parts in several large boxes. It was inventory time and then the fun began having to decide what to buy and what to do first.
Restoring the car has taken just a little over two years and it has been a labor of love. We would be remiss in not thanking our friends for their innumerable help. There were some ups and downs but it was enjoyable most of the time. After working out some bugs and getting it on the road, we drove around Ozark (Alabama) and ventured to a couple other towns nearby and felt like it would take the trip to Jekyll Island okay. A couple of days before we left for Jekyll Island, we decided that it might not be a good idea to drive the little car that far. We put it on a trailer and were relieved of the worry of a possible breakdown.
It felt good that our hard work putting the car together and getting it to an event was so well received by other Triumph owners. We appreciated the many compliments on the color of the car and the overall color combination. We felt like we had finally arrived.
We had no plans of entering the TR in any competition. We were just excited that after two years of being in the Temple of Triumph Car Club that we were finally taking a Triumph to an event. Our friends, Obin and Marilyn Hamrick, gently encouraged us to enter the car into the Concours. We had no real knowledge of the judging rules until after we returned home and Olivia looked them up on the Internet. We were happy to have received 314 points out of a possible 400, considering that we knew so little about the competition, i.e. not knowing that we were suppose to display our top by having it up. There were some other no-no's that we now know have to be corrected. A third place trophy was an exciting position for someone that did not know what the judging score sheet was.