Continental Notes, August 1934

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The Barcelona Race.

Pressure of space in the July issue prevented me from including a description of the Grand Prix Penya Rhin, which took place on the Montjuich circuit, near Barcelona. To many readers, however, MOTOR SPORT is a sort of history of motor racing, and for their benefit a short account of the race is given here.

A first class entry list was obtained, including three Alfa Romeos from the Ferrari stable in the hands of Varzi, Chiron and Lehoux. Spain was represented by Villapadierna (Maserati), Palados (Maserati), Zanelli (Alfa Romeo), Tort (who drove at She’sley a few years ago, now on an Alfa Romeo), and Delmo (Bugatti). The rest of the field consisted of Brunet (Bugatti), Falchetto (Maserati), Nuvolari (Maserati), and Hamilton (Maserati). The practising periods were enlivened by a duel for best time between those old rivals, Varzi and Nuvolari, and a spectacular accident to Peter de Paolo, the American. Nuvolari held the existing record, but was deprived of it by Varzi on the first day. Tazio got it back again, however, on the second day, and made sure of it by recording 2 min. 10f secs. on the final practice. It was on this day that de Paolo came to grief. He had just completed an arrangement with the Braillard-Falchetto group to drive for them during the rest of the season, and was accustoming himself to the handling of a 3-litre Maserati. After putting in a lap in 2 mm. 14 secs. he got into difficulties on a corner and piled up in a sensational manner. On being admitted to the Corachan hospital it was found that he had a fractured skull and a damaged arm. After being unconscious for two days he made a sudden turn for the better, and

I am glad to say that my latest news is that his convalescence is proceeding normally. The race itself was marked at first by a fight between Nuvolari and the Ferrari drivers, Nuvolari seemed to have regained all his old dash when he came round in the lead after the first lap had been completed, but next time round showed Chiron at the head with Nuvolari right on his heels. And this was not all, for in subsequent laps both Varzi and Lehoux passed the Maserati. From then until half-distance Nuvolari stayed in fourth place, but at this point he retired with mechanical trouble.

Varzi was now leading from Chiron, and Lehoux, and this order was maintained for the rest of the race. There were no untoward incidents, but Villapadierna executed a hair-raising skid when passing the stands on one occasion, a predicament from which he fortunately extricated his Maserati. Hamilton retired with engine trouble when well placed.

Result (70 lupe).

1. A. Varzi (Alfa Romeo), 2h. 33m. 8s.

2. L. Chiron (Alfa Romeo), 2h. 34m. 23s. 3. M. Lehoux (Alfa Romeo), 2h. 35m. 19s, 4. Palacios (Maserati),

5. Zanelli (Alfa Romeo).

6. R. Brunet (Bugatti).

7. de Villapadierna (Maserati).

Von Brauchitsch Insured.

The Nurburg Ring is the one course above all on which accidents can be expected to happen, for it is well-nigh impossible for drivers to remember accurately the innumerable corners round its 13 miles length. Manfred von Brauchitsch found himself in difficulties recently when practising for the German Grand Prix, and lost control of his Mercedes when emerging from a corner. The car left the road and turned over, with the result that von Brauchitsch was removed to hospital with an arm and five ribs broken. He is progressing quite satisfactorily.

Kesselburg Record Broken.

The German hill-climb of Kesselburg was held on June 17th, glorious weather making the event a popular success. Considerable interest was aroused by the appearance of von Stuck on a P-wagen Auto-Union, and von Brauchitsch on a Mercedes Grand Prix car. Fastest time of the day and a new record for the hill, was made by the former with a time of

3 mins. 44 secs., the Mercedes clocking 3 mins. 49 secs. Castelbarco carried off the 1,500 c.c. class with a Maserati, and an English victory was made in the 800 c.c. category by the M.G. Midget driven by Hans Kolrausch. The fastest sports car was a 2.3-litre Bugatti handled by the Swiss driver, Huf.

Rheineck—Vaisenhausen.

The young Swiss racing driver, Hans Ruesch, scored a popular victory at the 7 kilometre hill climb of RheinechValsenhausen, near Zurich. This event, by the way, counts towards the championship of Switzerland. Ruesch’s time with the Maserati which holds the world’s standing kilometre record, was 5 min. 8.8 secs., his nearest rival-being 1VIaa.g on a 1,500 c.c. Maserati, in 5 mins. 14 secs. Kessler was third on a similar car, sixtenths of a second slower. Maag was successful in the sports class on a Bugatti, and the fastest touring car was Zwimpfer’s Chrysler.

The Italian Grand Prix.

After the disastrous Grand Prix of 1933, when Campari, Borzzacchini and Czaikowski were all killed on the same day, it was decided that the Monza track should not be used for this year’s Italian Grand Prix. The Montenevo circuit was mentioned as an alternative, but mature consideration has resulted in a decision that Monza should be used after all. In order to satisfy all who dread a repetition of the fatalities last year, a new circuit consisting of part of the road and part of the track has been devised. Monza is admittedly a dangerous place—many experienced drivers have been killed there on Its half-banked corners—but the accidents last year were undoubtedly due to oil on the track and nothing else.

The Alfa people are again experimenting with a 16-cylinder machine. Whether it is a modified version of the car raced a few years ago is not known, but as far as my memory serves me, the only one of the latter type was completely written off when Arcangeli killed himself on a practice run at Monza.