THE-SORROWS OF A SCRAMBLER—continued.
after, a well-known lady rider is overtaken, bumping merrily along with her usual cheery smile. We then slide down a vertical drop with locked wheel, only to find at the bottom that we are progressing at a horrid speed with the throttle shut ! Shall we go on ? And if so, shall we not be able to go faster owing to our inability to shut off ? No! Discretion demands a stop for investigation. It is then that the effect of the frightful bumping is felt, for our wrists and hands are almost too weak to use a tool. The trouble is due to a throttle wire being nipped by the front forks, and
fifteen precious minutes are wasted in freeing the cable and screwing up an oil pipe union, what time all the later starters bounce by. On trying to restart we find that bottom gear has quietly faded away, without any warning or complaint from the gear box.
No kickstarter is fitted, but after about half-a-dozen attempts a restart is made, and with despair in our heart we continue. A bog is negotiated at an involuntary but necessarily high speed owing to the 7 to i second gear, with the aid
of a little clutch slip. Did we say a little clutch slip ? On the ensuing rise the ruin set in in earnest and a smell of burnt cork begins to pervade the air. Wild and Woolly ! A hurricane drop down a precipitous slope and a corresponding ” zoom ” up the other
side, but all in vain ; we stop with hopeless clutch slip and are pushed dyer the summit. Shortly afterwards we again find ourselves in a deep valley surrounded by unclimbable hills, with not a soul in sight. We cannot remember how we ever got out, unless it was by faith! So it went on, we were roped up the new hill and told that only Alec Jackson, the Northern crack, had made a clean climb. It was impossible to rush this hill owing to a twisty approach, and we made several abortive and unsteady attempts before we got high enough for the rope to be attached. On the next slope, of only about one in ten gradient, clutch slip is so bad that we dismantle the clutch and dip the parts in a neighbouring pond to cool them ; reassembling with a little best
Camberley sand, to aid the grip. This proves fairly effective, and we continue until the rise immediately preceding Red Road, where we strike a bump over which the machine will not jump. The machine stops, but we have no such scruples and sail on in a beautiful parabolic curve, falling heavily.
We are now an hour and a half late, our clutch is burnt out, our lowest gear is about 7 to 1, the throttle is still sticking and the footrests point at twenty-five minutes to five, viewed from the front, and are approximately parallel to the chain stays viewed from above.
We hate to be beaten, but don’t you think we might now retire without dishonour ? So back to Victoria Hotel by the easiest route, to hear similar tales of woe from other luckless competitors and whispers of phenomenal performances by the “stars.”
Battered and weary we dawdle home, annoyed at our bad luck, but having enjoyed ourselves thoroughly.
No wonder motor-cyclists are considered mad ! .
RESULTS OP THE S. MIDLAND CENTRE SOUTHERN -SCOTT SCRAMBLE, MARCH 20T1r. ” SCOTT” TROpHY, FOR THE FASTEST MAN.—E. Mainwaring
(5,96 h.p. Scott—N.). Times :—xst circuit, 45 mins. 32 secs. ; 2nd circuit, 45 nuns. 20 sees.
” SOUTHERN ” CUP, FOR THE FASTEST NORTHERNER.—E. K. Langton (4.98 h.p. Scott).
” NORTHERN ” CUP, FOR ‘DUE FASTEST SOUTHERNER.— C. Harman (3.48 h.p. O.K.). THE ” Two HUNDRED ” Cup, Pox THE FASTEST RIDER OF A MACHINE VP To 200 c.c.—-L. C. Christensen (1.72 h.p. Francis
B arnett .
THE ” ” Cup (up TO 350 C.C.).—F. L. Hall (2.46 h.p. New Imperial—S.).
“THREE-Filly'” Cup (350 C.C.)—A. Jackson (347 Sunbeam). N.
THE” SIN HuNDRED CUP (up TO 600 c.c.).—W. E. McClure (4.92 h.p. Sunbeam—N.).
THE ” THou SAN D Cur (ovER 600 c.c.).—F. J. R. Heath (13.01 h.p. Henderson—S.). THE “
VENUS” CUP, FoR THE FASTEST LADY RIDER.—Miss M. Cottle (3.48 h.p. Raleigh—N.). THE ” BLACKDOWN ” Cup, FOR THE FASTEST TRADE TEAM.— The Sunbeam Team (A. Jackson, G. Dance and G. B. Goodman),
THE ” CORDwALLES ” CUP, FOR THE FASTEST CLUB TEAM.— The City and Guilds M.C.C. : J. F. McKenna (4.99 h.p. Triumph), G. M. Buxton (4.99 h.p. Rudge) and H. R. B. Waters (5.96 h.p. Indian).
THREE SILVER CUPS, FOR FASTEST PRIVATE TEAM.—E. K. Langton, P. Dean and W. Clough (Scotts).
SECOND FASTEST LADY (five gallons of ” Luberine “).—Miss E. Foley (4.99 h.p. Triumph—N.).
SILvER CASKET, FoR FASTEST Two-STRoKE.—E. Mainwaring (5.96 h.p. Scott—N.).
SPECIAL PRIZE. FOR THE FASTEST ScoTT.—E. Mainwaring (5.96 h.p. Scott—N.).
North. S. = South.