THE INTER-UNIVERSITY HILL CLIMB.
C kMBRIDGE DEFEAT OXFORD BY 38 POINTS.
. year the annual inter-University hill-climb took place as before, at Ewelme Down, on March 3rd, and resulted in a complete triumph for Cam
. bridge, the scores being 61 to 23.
There is no doubt that the Cambridge team were mounted on very much faster machines, as a whole, than their Oxford rivals, and were, in addition, perfectly adequate to handle their swifter vehicles.
The venue at Ewelme Down is very excellent for an event of this nature, offering ample natural parking space and safe view points for spectators. The hill itself is about 1,240 yards long, and of rather deceptive gradient. The steepest portion is about 1 in io, while the average gradient must be about I in 14.
The hill commences with a rolling start of twenty yards—which is in effect a standing start—and continues on the level through a left-hand bend, a righthand bend, and then a long straight rising steadily to the steepest part with an awkward, long, right-hand bend at the top, and then the finish.
Competitors were allowed two runs, fastest time to count, the even numbers represmting Oxford, Cambridge carrying the odd.
On March 3rd the day was perfect, the sun beating doWn with appreciable heat ; but the gravel road was wet under the surface, becoming rapidly cut up—being especially loose on the top bend. This was obviously the section calling for the most skill in driving, and here we therefore took our stand. The programme opened with the class for 350 C.C. solos, the first man up being H. W. Taylor (Cantab),
A. J.S., who opened the proceedings by making fastest time of the day on his first run-66.i m.p.h. His riding was in a class by itself, and was an outstanding example of hill-climb technique.
C. R. Horton (Oxon) on an A. J.S. was five seconds longer on the course, but secured second place, the third falling to 0. Williams (Oxon) on a 347 single-port Sunbeam.
In the 5oo class, K. Dobson (Cantab) made a very spectacular climb on a 494 Douglas, taking the first bend flat out, nonchalantly holding the bars from underneath and banking flat. T. G. Moore (Oxon), Rudge, was also very fast, and secured second place to Taylor (A. J .S.) , who won all three solo classes. In the unlimited Solo class, L. Currie (Cantab) on a 998 Brough was but two seconds slower than Taylor’s 38.35 secs, making a very thrilling ascent, footing on the top bend in the loose gravel.
J. S. Antony (Cantab), Scott, fell off on the top bend through his goggles sliding off his hat—indicating what an absurd place it is to push them—and apparently crossed the line on his neck.
Then followed the Racing Car class, which also provided good sport and many displays of skilful driving. The first man up (but only just) was R. A. Beaver (Oxon) on an antique G.N., followed by R. J. Lockett (Oxon) on a little Fiat which sounded nice, but did not ‘go very quickly. Next an Austin Seven in the hands of M. J. Morgan (Oxon) hummed up quite well, followed slowly by I. H. Leschallas (Oxon) on a Rover. The next climb was the more dramatic for the dull ones previous to it ; there was the high-pitched whine
THE INTER-VARSITY HILL CLIMB-concluded.
of a six-cylinder, with the shrill scream of a supercharger, and an Amilcar ” Six ” driven by A. S. Llewellyn (Cantab) howled round the bend in a shower of gravel with his rear wheels slithering in a diverting manner. ,
Another Cambridge supercharged Amilcar, driven by A. A. Arnold, next came up very fast, and was rather more hectic on the bend. Next followed Ellis (Cantab), Austin Seven, quite good ; E. C. Peel (Oxon) Amilcar, slow ; C. Winslow Taylor (Oxon), Frazer-Nash, fast and unspectacular ; T. G. Moore (Oxon), 4i litre Bentley four seater, very fast and very spectacular. Followed E. K. H. Karslake (Oxon) who rejoiced the hearts of all beholders with his stripped “Alfonso “-an Hispano-Suiza of pre-war vintage, which came up very impressively, if not very
G. M. Miller’s (Cantab) supercharged Amilcar was missing, Williamson’s (Cantab) V.B.S.-a weird hybrid motor–was good ; then C. W. Arnott (Cantab) on his Alvis created the next diversion by manfully keeping the taps open despite broadside skids, hitting the bank and nearly overturning. How the photographers enjoyed themselves!
The last of the first run was a Ballot, missing badly.
, The fastest on the first run was Moore’s Bentley, with Llewellyn’s Amilcar second.
The second run was a more decorous version of the first. Llewellyn was faster and very steady, Moore was still rather lurid, ” Alfonso” went quicker, -Arnott saved the seconds he wasted on the previous run, while both the V.B.S. and Miller’s Amilcar were going much better.
The second run reversed the positions, leaving Llewelahead of Moore.
The name of “T. S. Constantapoulos ” (Oxon) filled the crowd with jubilation, but this gentleman and his Morgan failed to materialise. Perhaps this ” Greek ” had met another Greek.
The three-wheelers’ second attempt was disappointing in that Currie’s Brough was not going so well and misfiring badly. Collins had not cured this defect in his Rudge, and F. E. Buckland towed up, something having spoilt his run lower down. Naylor made a still better climb, with his Morgan very steady on the loose gravel.
The new class for touring cars was easy meat for Moore’s Bentley, which ran with such touring adjuncts as hood, spare wheel and screen. Shenstone’s Bugatti (Cantab) was good, but seemed to trouble the driver with his change down on the first run.
The next class was that for three-wheelers, and produced an excellent flat-out climb by L. C. Currie (Cantab) whose Brough and sidecar swept round the bend in one colossal skid, his forks visibly flexed under the strain.
Twist’s New Imperial (Cantab) was slow, T. G. Moore, this time on a Rudge, was fair, while Collin’s Rudge (Cantab) was missing. Naylor (Cantab) produced a good Morgan climb, and was steady on the bend, apparently cutting out twice. D. H. Thornton (Oxon), Isolta-Franschini, made a very majestic ascent in a large coupe, C. Hamilton
Turner (Oxon), Frazer-Nash, was steady M. V. Craik (Cantab) drove his Alvis quite well, and R. A. Norman (Cantab), Frazer-Nash, was quite fast.
Altogether a very enjoyable afternoon, and the organisation could hardly have been better, except for the rather extended intervals between the climbs and classes.