BROOKLANDS IN A HEAT WAVE.
A Successful Handicapping .Innovation.
(By our Special
IIROOKLANDS sweltered in the heat of the tropics during the British Motor Cycle Racing Club’s ” Fifty ” programme, on July 12th, and the Weybridge track can be very hot indeed at times I do not think that the fork stands have ever been so well filled as they were on that day by those who sought the comparative cool of the shaded places.
Officials and Pressmen worked in their shirt sleeves with no more garments on than decency demanded, and the coolest men at the track were the competitors who rode with open tunics.
An innovation was the introduction of sealed handicaps in connection with the races, and this scheme proved highly successful, not because of any particular interest in the results thereof, but because it made every competitor a “trier.” However a man was placed in the field, he could not know his position on the sealed handicap, with the result that it was up to him to” tread on the gas.”
There were three fifty miles races, and a three-lap handicap, and they were all interesting. Victor Horsman was the hero of the meeting, on his record breaking Triumph. He secured the 500 c.c. fifty miles race and the passenger event over the same distance, incidentally beating the world’s record for the distance with his sidecar. Lieut. W. T. Jameson, a sporting naval officer, brought off a fine performance. Obtaining short leave, he left Devonport on the morning of the races and rode up to Brooklands just in time to compete in the Private Competitors’ Handicap on a 2i h.p. o.h.v. Sunbeam. In this he received i min. 21 secs. start. This did not
seem particularly generous, and he was an outsider in the betting. But he got away to a fine start, secured the lead on the second of the three laps, and won in a canter.
Herbert Le Vack, after his terrific exploits in Prance, was expected to “do things,” but after winning the first of the fifties he cracked up in the other two and failed to finish.
The fifty miles events were scratch events in classes, with time allowances on a cubic capacity scheme, based on the records in the various classes. Thus, in the 350 C.C. race, the 250 c.c. machines had a start of 5 mins. 22 secs., but no individual ” 250 ” had a start from any other machine of the same capacity.
Fifty Miles (350 c.c.) Race.
Le Vack went away with the “two fifties” and went into the lead right away. He had covered three laps before the Juniors started, and after six laps he still led, with the lightweights occupying all the places, but Wright and Mallet, on Zeniths, were overhauling the smaller machines very well. On twelve laps, Le Vack was still in front, but Wright had come up into second place and there were three juniors among the first six. At the finish, Le Vack was well over a lap in front of Wright who, in turn, was well ahead of Mallet. The first six men were : I. H. Le Vack (248 c.c. New Imperial J.A.P.)
42 nuns. 2 secs. ••• ••• Speed 71.35 m.p.h.
3. R. A. Mallet (344 c.c. Zenith) ••• ••• 72.64 m.p.h. 4E. A. Dedham (348 c.c. Matador-Bradshaw) 71.66 m.p.h.
5. E. S. Prestwich (248, c.c. Zenith) … •.. 61.75 m.p.h.
6. G. L. Werts (348 c.c. O.K. Junior) ..• 68.58 m.p.h.
2. J. Wright (344 C.C. Zenith) … SEALED HANDICAP RESULT: . J. Wright (Zenith)
2. R. Mallet (Zenith) … 3. E. A. Dedham (Matador-Bradshaw)
‘2 ttlin. 42 secs. 3 min. 32 secs. 3 min. 3 secs.
The Fifty Miles (Unlimited) Race.
Only nine starters faced up for this event, in which the only two L000 c.c. machines, Herbert Le Vack’s Brough-Superior and McEvoy’s Anzani, conceded 3 mins. 57 secs. to the seven 500 c.c. competitors. R. 0. Lowe, the amateur Norton rider, got off to the best start, but Horsman on the Triumph passed him behind the members’ bridge and led from there to the finish. Le Vack was disappointing. He started when Horsman had nearly completed three laps, and he did not pick up a lot. After six laps he stopped, and after a brief delay, resumed, only to finish another lap and then retire.
Meanwhile Horsman was setting a warm pace, and was a certain winner if he could finish. Glover and Lowe provided some excitement with a fine duel, neither of them, however, being anything like good enough to hold the Liverpool crack, who, averaging over 85 miles an hour for the full distance, won by nearly four miles. Glover on the Douglas was second at 80.07 m.p.h., and R. 0. Lowe (Norton) third at 79.8 m.p.h. SEALED HANDICAP RESULT
i. Horsman (Triumph) … ••• 4 min. 30 secs.
2. Glover (Douglas) 6 min. i8 secs.
3. Lowe (Norton) … 6 -min. 6 secs.
The Fifty Miles Passenger Race.
In the fifty miles race for passenger vehicles, two Blackburne-engined Morgans were at scratch to ten sidecars. As events proved they did not get a “look in.” The 350 c.c. combinations had 7 mins. 44 secs. start, the 600 c.c. sidecars had 6 mins. 33 secs. S. J. Bassett on an Austin Seven had 2 MillS. i sec., and the 1,000 C.C. sidecars, 36 secs.
The 350’s got away well enough, and Baxter on the Rex Acme led until Horsman, going great guns, passed him to secure a lead which, as in the solo race, he held to the finish. Only the Rex Acme had retained a place on six laps, Horsman being first, Baxter second, and J. Newbourne (Norton) third. Le Vack lasted only two laps, and then came in with plug trouble. The little Austin Seven went splendidly, and to everybody’s surprise Beart was faster than Norris. It was soon obvious that nobody could catch Horsman unless he stopped, but the Triumph went on with the regularity of a train and he was over two laps to the good at the finish. Both he and Bassett on the Austin broke the fifty miles records in their classes. The Results were : i. Victor Horsman (599 C.C. Triumph) Time :
40 mins. iø 1/5 secs. • • . • .. Speed : 76,95 m.p.h.
2. G. N. Norris (1,096 c.c. Morgan-Blackburne) 84.23 m.p.h.
3. S. J. Bassett (749 C.C. Austin) ••• 77.70 m.p.h. 4. J. Newbourne (499 c.c. Norton) 5. V. Baxter (344 c.c. Rex-Acme) 6. E. C. Baragwanath (976 C.C. P. & P.)
Horsman’s and Bassett’s times stand as world’s records. SEALED HANDICAP RESULT –I. Bassett ; 2. Horsman ; 3. Norris.
Private Competitors’ Handicap (81miles).
L. W. E. Dickson, on “The Nipper,” was the limit man, and with 2 mins. 15 secs., established a big lead. Jameson made a fine start, and was chasing “The Nipper” with R. M. N. Spring on his heels. At the end of a couple of laps Jameson got in front and Spring dropped out, to give place to R. 0. Lowe on a solo Norton. Eventually Jameson crossed the line an easy winner at 69.08 miles an hour, with Lowe second and Spring on his Norton sidecar third.