Last month, in the Correspondence columns, Cecil Clutton took me to task for criticising the oversize tyres used on the back wheels of his 1908 Grand Prix Itala when it competes, as it does very effectively and magnificently, in VSCC events, in my article about those who race the older cars, titled “Why Do They Do It?”. In fact, when referring to the modern rubber-mixes used for modern racing tyres I wasn’t even thinking of the Itala, Adrian Liddell’s Straker Squire, or any other venerable racer that has had its original rear tyres replaced by more durable covers! I am aware of how easy it is to pull a beaded-edge tyre from the rim when racing such cars and how costly these tyres are to replace, a problem I have found to a lesser degree with a vintage light car used only on the road, with a solid back axle.
What I was trying to say was that the ERAs and similar pre-war cars which are being raced today seem to go faster than they did pre-war, and that to some extent more “clinging” rubber may be helping to this end? Because most, if not all, the circuits over which such cars were raced before the war have been closed, comparisons are not directly possible and I confess I made my comment with only visual evidence of the driving of chaps like Martin Morris, The Hon. Patrick Lindsay, Hamish Moffatt and others to support it. — W.B.