SAND RACING AT SOUTHPORT.
GOOD PERFORMANCE BY J. FIELD (BUGATTI) AND P. STEPHENSON (AUSTIN).
THE Southport Motor Club were fortunate in the weather for the opening meeting of the year, held on March 4th. Although a cold wind was blowing along the course, the sun shone from time to time and altogether conditions were very pleasant. The attendance was very small, but well behaved as usual, so that no difficulty was experienced in keeping the course clear. There were 20 races for cars and motorcycles, but these events are contested by a small group of competitors who therefore have plenty of opportunity of deciding exactly who has the fastest motor-car on that particular afternoon. At this meeting two car competitors stood out above the rest. These were Jack Field’s single-seater Bugatti, that weird machine with a 2.3 litre engine in a small chassis, and lacking front springs, and P. Stephenson’s Austin Seven, a famous per
former at Southport, and always well handled.
The meeting opened with a series of straight-mile races, all classes up to 2,000 c.c. going to the all-conquering Stephenson. C. D. Parish and W. L. Thompson, two other regular performers at Southport, both on Austin Sevens, were unable to cope with Stephenson at all. The 3 litre and unlimited categories went to Field, the old G.P. Sunbeam driven by G. J. Jackson being slower in getting off the mark. The 3-mile races produced the same results, with the exception of the 2000, c.c. class, which was won by H. B. Prestwich (Frazer-Nash). In the eleven mile races J. Walker did well with his Bugatti, finishing second to Field, and winning the 1 litre class. Finally, came the 25 mile race, and Thompson’s turn to have his
long-awaited revenge on Stephenson. The cornering methods at the turns each end were always worth watching, and we noticed some particularly good performances being put up by J. Walker (Bugatti) and R. Sparrow (Austin). Field got so far ahead that he could afford to ease up, so that his cornering was safe and steady. Some of the others, however, were forced to accomplish the change of direction with an absolute minimum of wasted time, with corresponding interest on the part of spectators. Unfortunately Jackson’s Sunbeam had retired in the 11 mile Race, so that Field had things all his own way. In the smaller classes, however, a great struggle took place between Stephenson, Thompson and Parish, on Austins, the former keeping the lead right until the end, when be was forced to retire, leaving the honours in the 750 and 1,100 c c. classes to Thompson.