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Can you trump a sports-racer with an Escort?

Ah, the long summers of 1976/77. Drought, James Hunt versus Niki Lauda, the Queen’s Silver Jubilee, weird-looking teenagers walking round in clothes held together with safety pins… And, for any boy who was in the late stages of primary school, trump cards.

It was a simple yet devastatingly effective new craze, and the world of cars (and, more importantly, racing cars), lent itself perfectly to it. All of a sudden, boys aged nine to 11 were talking about horsepower, cc, cylinders and something called r/min (we all thought he was a Ugandan despot). Top Trumps were the market leader, if you like, but look further on the shelves of your local paper shop and you’d find offerings from other companies including, in this case, Ace Trumps.

To this lad’s delight, Ace Trumps’ ‘Super Racers’ cards, totalling 32 (the most desirable among them was the Alfa Romeo 33 TT12 sports-racer), included eight Super Saloons, all illustrated with what look suspiciously like shots taken from the inside of the same corner during the 1975 British Grand Prix support race at Silverstone.

That was one of many races won by Gerry Marshall and ‘Baby Bertha’ — stars of this month’s issue. Only a short while earlier, most of the F1 field had skated off-track in a downpour. Then the sun came out and the Super Saloons raced on a dry circuit. Everything was right in the world again — and it became even better over a game of trumps!

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