Club news, April 1952

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We hear

Phil Hill’s Alfa-Romeo, well known in American races, is a short-chassis 2.9 not a 3.8 as stated last month. A 11/2-litre twin ohc racing Austro-Daimler, one of which was driven by Malcolm Campbell, in the nineteen-twenties, is safely stored in London. A two-stroke three-wheeler Harper Runabout is awaiting restoration in the South, and we believe that its originator and his son are restoring another in the North of England.

FJ Brymer, the photographer, has opened an office at 170b High Street, Lewes, where he will be pleased to see old friends. P Tarufli’s International Class E 50-mile record of 144.00 mph, with his 1,720-cc Italcorsa, has been officially recognised by the FIA—congratulations.

SF Gough, 71 High Street, Bognor Regis, seeks a companion to share expenses and driving his jaguar XK120 on tour in France, Switzerland and Belgium next July. The telephone number of Bridge Motor Works, where the HWMs are made, is now Walton-on-Thames 2404-5-6. We are informed that if the owner of the Tracta d/h coupe JD 725 cares to contact the Alpha Garage & Eng Co, Westergate, Aldingbourne, near Chichester, he can have a spare engine free of charge.

A reader-sleuth tells us that the green vintage car of Stokes, of the Oxford boatrace Crew (see page 128, last month), is in fact a Hyper Lea-Francis, Another reader reports an Ansaldo, with Studebaker body, running in the Manchester area.

N Ledson seeks technical data on a recently acquired 1913 25-hp Argyle. Stradling—he of the yellow Unic—has unearthed the actual 1913 Pipe in which Parry Thomas installed his experimental Thomas electrical transmission—quite a find !

John Vessey has saved a 1912 38-hp Cadillac from, as he puts it, “atmospheric destruction in a field.” The car made its last run, from Land’s End to John o’ Groats, and then presumably to its field, in 1926.

Amongst the 750 Formula cars this year will be the Stoneham 750, run by “Steve” Stephens in conjunction with Stoneham’s Rolls-Royce mobile motor book-shop. This is an Ulster Austin Seven with de-blown Ulster engine modified by Colin Chapman, a three-speed Ulster gearbox, non-ifs suspension with softer springs than standard, an Ulster chassis with sub-structure at the back and alloy body panels on a tubular steel sub-frame.

In a recent article in the News Chronicle on the Rolls-Royce factory it was stated that Lord Hives was the first man to drive at over 100 mph on Brooklands Track—in sober fact he was forestalled of this ambition by some three years. A complete Model-T Ford tourer, circa 1923, is believed to reside in a shed in the West Country. JW Crouch, designer and builder of Crouch cars, died in Coventry recently. Tom McCahill, writing mainly in praise of the Singer Roadster in  Mechanix Illustrated, admits that “the first time I saw the post-war English Singer, the little sack of bolts didn’t send me.” (!—Ed) In the course of his test report he also contrived to refer to the Singer as a “self-propelled egg-crate,” “hot tornatoe,” “egg-beater” and “no ball of fire.” (! ! !–Ed). But he is warm in his praise for the quality of finish and sums it up as ”a swell small car.” Incidentally Mechanix Illustrated is another American paper which publishes figures for speedometer-error in its road-test reports.

RAC. Recent important RAC announcements correct the erroneous impression that the RAC has had any hand in suggesting a change from Formula I racing, as at present constituted, prior to 1954. The RAC has stated that medical certificates will be required for races only, not for sprints or hill-climbs. It has issued the following lists of trials in which those wishing to compete in the Fifth RAC Trials Championship on December 20th may qualify—-by being placed in one of the first three places in the general classification of any two, or in one of the first six places in general classification in any three. (Entry in the Championship will be by invitation, up to December 12th, and the entry fee is £1 1s).

The Notwen oil people have again issued the RAC list of 1952 car fixtures in this country as a handy little booklet, which also contains useful addresses, a list of locations of British circuits and speed venues, etc. It is available free of charge front Dick Wise, Competition Manager, Ernest Newton & Co, Ltd., Faraday Chemical Works, Holt Street, Birmingham 7, mentioning Motor Sport. It should be in every enthusiast’s wallet.

A change of name. The NW London MC, which was founded in 1904, has become known as organisers of the tougher type of trials, but during the last year has considerably altered its appeal to the club-type motorist, and the great success of the London Rally last year has prompted it to enlarge its sphere of activities, which will include this year the same London Rally under an International permit, the Little Rally on April 19th, two gymkhanas, and a standard car trial. Membership has almost doubled in the last twelve months and members can no longer be said to live largely in North-West London.

Consequently a decision was reached at the AGM on February 28th to rechristen the club, which will henceforth be known as The London Motor Club. The club magazine will continue to be known as the Nor’wester and the Gloucester, Lawrence Cup and Coventry Cup trials will continue as heretofore. The club has enrolled as Vice-Presidents Lt-Col AT Goldie-Gardner, OBE, MC, and Stirling Moss, both of whom have expressed keen interest.