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Antoine Godschalk - Member no 927
Based in Vinkeveen, Holland.
I was originally a club member in 2002 and travelled to the Stoneleigh Show in England with a group of Dutch Speedster enthusiasts with my original Ruby Red Chesil Speedster - eventually sold in 2005. (see my old membership page)
I live in the picturesque Dutch village Vinkeveen. I’m a lawyer and consequently technically impaired, but it was my childhood dream to build my own car. In 2006 I decided to let that childhood dream come true and it had to be - of course - a Speedster. So I started to look for a suitable VW-chassis.
When I turned 40 I started the build of my Speedster (that was in 2007) -because I had found a 1967 ‘one year only’ VW Beetle chassis in perfect condition- not knowing it would take 6 years to complete it. The build was like a rollercoaster ride and it encountered some major set backs, mostly due to my impairment induced errors (‘2 steps forward, 1 step back’), the health of my girlfriend (who has Cystic Fibrosis) and a time and money consuming move to another house I bought in 2010 which needed serious renovation. Add to this that I wanted to do everything myself (including the wiring, the paintjob, et cetera) and that I ‘m a real perfectionist, that doesn’t contribute to a quick build either.
But… My car is road legal since April 2013!
I had a clear picture in my head of how my car should look like: I wanted to recreate a SCCA race car. I made an extensive library of SCCA racing Speedsters in my Photobucket ... and started to make a list of features for my car. Then I started to build the car with those features in mind (everything had to be as light and basic as possible) and I knew exactly how it should look like: I even knew in 2007 what colors the car would get and because the distinctive color scheme it would get my girlfriend came up with after some drawings I had made of how the car was going to look- the nickname Black Betty; a name that suits the car perfectly in my opinion…
click on image to enlarge
A guy I knew for years had started to build a small series of Speedster-bodies (he had his own mold made from a genuine 356A Speedster) and I asked him to change, adjust and convert one of those bodies to an ‘as bare as possible’ racing body, using lighter material for the subframe, using partly carbon fiber instead of glass fiber and making the body less thick. He agreed and made a ‘one of a kind’ body exactly to my specifications and wishes. The space where normally the hood goes was closed and a head fairing was made, giving the car its distinctive looks. To stiffen the body and subfame I’ve used aluminum tubular struts, creating triangles that reduce flexing of the car to nearly zero. The whole set-up works as planned: the car handles as a go-kart!
A special car screams for a special engine and in my opinion it has got it: the engine is a type 4 AT (1800cc) with an Engle 316’ racing cam, double 40mm Weber carburetors and a Riechert horizontal cooling system (a 901 fan is mounted horizontally above the engine). The engine produces 104,5 bhp and 146,8 DINtrq and the car weighs 660 kilograms; a combination that makes the car seriously fast! As you can imagine, it’s a blast to drive and after every trip I have to wipe bugs and flies off my teeth because I have been smiling from ear to ear the whole time!