This 85x120mm single cylinder Aster engine appears to be NOS as there is no evidence of water ever in the cylinder or cylinder head. There is also no wear on the piston, rings or big end. When you roll it over, upon reaching bottom, there is a beautiful "bounce" indicating a really tight lower end. Close examination of the rod assembly upon the crank shaft shows no evidence of wear. The top of piston has some minor staining, micro machine marks are very evident and the top is stamped with a star marking (see photos). There is a small crack in the head that is definitely not a freeze crack, but looks like an original casting error. This may explain why the engine was never used.
PARIS-TOULOUSE-PARIS 1900 RACE :
Reference: Racing Voiturettes - Kent Karslake
Louis and Marcel Renault entered 4 cars, 3 of which were De Dion Bouton powered and the 4th car driven by Oury and Schrader was Aster powered. Louis Renault, in total darkness, had an accident and abandoned his car, taking over Marcels car. Apart from the 3 Renaults no other voiturettes completed the outward journey. Oury finished with the ASTER engined car.
Eight voiturettes started and three finished, all of them Renaults, and the fourth car from Billancourt was only put out by an accident.
This performance set the seal upon the fame of Renault Freres.