Clem Dwyer was a hugely enthusiastic driver and mechanic who started racing in 1936 at the age of 21 and did not surrender his licence until 2004 at the age of 89.
Clem Dwyer was a hugely enthusiastic driver and mechanic who raced for the first time in 1936 at Lake Perkolilli (near Kalgoorlie) at the age of 21 and did not surrender his CAMS licence until 2004 at the age of 89.
In 1937 he finished fourth in the Albany Grand Prix in a supercharged MG-BP. That same year he bought the remains of a nearly new, but badly damaged, 1937 Plymouth. Between 1938 and 1939 he proceeded to build what would become known as the Plymouth Special in which he took many wins.
Dwyer was one of the founders of the Caversham race track when, in 1945, he acquired the keys to the front gate of the then aerodrome. He drove his mother’s Morris Eight around the runways and dispersal roads and realised the potential for motor sport and the airstrip was turned into a race track.
In 1998, Dwyer returned to Caversham with some members of the VSCC. He said the purpose of the trip was to “go up and tell some lies about how fast we went around!”
Dwyer also had success on two wheels. He enjoyed early road racing victories after bolting the supercharger
from the MG-PB onto a Triumph 5T Speed Twin and, in 1952, on a friends 1000cc Vincent, he broke the Australian Record for the standing quarter mile sprint in a time that was not bettered for 23 years. The same day he broke four other national records and 15 state speed records for motorcycles.
The flamboyant, fun loving and sometimes mischievous racer had a genuine and apparently insatiable desire to be behind the wheel, and it showed in his eyes whenever the subject was bought up.
Thanks to Alex Forrest and Don Hall