M.M.E.C Silverstone Meeting (June 20th)

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Run off under ideal weather conditions before a crowd small enough to be intimately enthusiastic, the Midland M.E.C. put on some good racing, at times almost impossible to follow on account of a credit-lap system of handicapping about which the luckless commentator wasn’t given a clue. Threlfall netted three wins during the afternoon, driving his Lotus.

The meeting opened with a 10-lap sports-car Scratch Race in which Mayman’s Lotus-Climax led for two laps, then spun off at Becketts, damaging the near-side rear hub and depriving Mrs. Mayman of her drive in the next race. Thus the lead passed to Threlfall’s Lotus, which pulled away from White’s 1½-litre Lotus and, after White fell out two laps from the finish, won at 78.10 m.p.h. from Belcher, whose Lotus had spun at Woodcote on the first lap.

First heat of the Sports Car Handicap went to Woolfe’s rough-sounding C-type Jaguar, at 75.81 m.p.h., from Lovett’s TR2, which had a credit lap, and Spellman’s Speedwell Sprite. Bader drove his four-Amal “Brooklands” Riley Nine with Aquaplane external oil-cooler, Smedley a Type 35 Bugatti with virtually untuned Austin A70 engine.

A 10-lap Scratch Race for open cars up to 1,100 c.c. and unlimited saloons was led throughout by Sim’s well-driven Yimkin. which averaged 68.47 m.p.h. to hold off Rodger’s Peerless with cool-air box to its twin S.U.s. The Yimkin is a multi-tube space-frame car with double wishbone i.f.s., coil springs all round and a modified A35 power unit with two 1½-in. S.U.s. Elwes’ Alexander Sprite was third. Spellman spun his Sprite, as did Moore the D.M.G.. which has a tubular space-frame, rear suspension by coil-spring dampers and a modified PB M.G. engine. Two VWs performed, Harris’s having twin Zenith carburetters, Harrison’s being standard except for a 7.5 to 1 compression-ratio, both being on normal Michelin tyres.

The second heat of the Sports Car Handicap was won by Threlfall’s Lotus at 69.48 m.p.h., after Pantlin’s Lotus had spun at Woodcote amongst a lot of traffic. Mallock drove his Austin-Ford splendidly, out-cornering the Yimkin — when will this talented driver get a drive in a works Cooper or other fast car?

Very good was the 10-lap Racing Car Handicap, composed of “500s,” F. 2 Coopers, Connaughts, etc. Ellis’ 497 c.c. Cooper took the chequered flag from Mould’s Lister-Jaguar sports-car, Richardson’s F. 2 Connaught third. Race average was 73.79 m.p.h. The F. 3 cars then had their own eight-lap Scratch Race, which Robinson’s Stuart-Cooper won at 75.45 m.p.h. from Ellis and Luke.

Mould got his reward in the 20-lap unlimited Sports Car Scratch Race, leading all the way, to win at 80.04 m.p.h. Woolfe’s Jaguar went well until flagged in, and Keens did splendidly to finish second in his 1,100-c.c. Lotus, ahead of Mackie’s D-type Jaguar. Sturgess worked hard to keep his XK120 on the road and the Austin engine in the Bugatti, now driven by Nash, got very tired. Mould found greater opposition and perhaps was tiring, for in the 10-lap Formula Libre race he fell back to fourth, after leading on the opening lap, G. N. Richardson driving his noisy Connaught splendidly to win convincingly at 83.36 m.p.h., from B. Whitehouse (F. 2 Cooper) and R. M. Carter (F. 2 Cooper). Berridge (Lotus) rotated at Woodcote but continued and the Chronicle Motors’ Cooper retired. We liked the Blakemore entry, Ecurie Chaos, which we assume is not even a poor relation of the Ecurie Ecosse!

The small sports cars now had a 10-lap Scratch Race in which Threlfall’s Lotus swept past Keens and Belcher going into Woodcote on the second lap and went on to yet another win, this time at 79.15 m.p.h., Belcher beating Keens for second place during lap five. The meeting closed with the Final, over 10 laps, of the Sports Car Handicap, in which Searles’ A.C.-Bristol was victorious, at 73.21 Woodley’s Lotus second, Lovett’s Triumph TR2 third. Hill took the fast Peerless but slid round at Woodcote and retired a few laps later. — W.B.