As I was reading Mr. Mallock’s “aggressive but not warlike” article, I suddenly found myself gripping the chair with indignation over his remarks about the August 26th meeting at Oulton Park. So before I said, “- – – – – to Mallock,” I decided to write and relate another “now it can be told” story.
The winner of that race (6.8 sec. ahead of Matlock) was Christopher Lawrence, in an equally unproved Junior, the Deep Sanderson. The Deep Sanderson that day was down in power, due to carburation troubles, and was wetting plugs if any attempt was made to let the engine idle. In fact, one plug fouled in the Paddock just before the start, and there was a frantic search for the spare plug box. A spare was fitted in time, but it was obvious that the trouble might happen again, on the line before the starter dropped the flag.
There was no time to do anything but hope, and my heart was in my mouth as the cars lined up, with the Deep Sanderson in pole position. All the engines were cut. The 15-sec. board went up and everybody started their engines, with their eyes fixed on the starter, except Chris Lawrence, who sat with his eyes on the second hand of his watch. The cars started to inch forward, and I was certain that Christopher had left it too late, but as the starter dropped the flag, he pressed the button and the engine fired. Christopher arrived at Old Hall in the pack but by the end of the opening laps was “only” breathing Scott-Bloor’s spray; he went on to a well-deserved win.
I must say that Christopher Lawrence had practised, having already notched another win in his Morgan, and although he started from the front rank, and not the rear of the field, it was not a start without some anxiety!
You must have gathered by now that I am a Chris Lawrence fan, but anyone who has witnessed his wonderful self-control, demonstrated again in the T.T., at that heart-rending moment when the starter failed, after lying in second class position, cannot fail to admire such a person and driver.
So although, Mr. Mallock, you had a fine drive, you were 6.8 sec. behind the winner!
I am, Yours, etc., D.F. Richards. Harrow.
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