VSCC's Second Silverstone

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The VSCC’s Silverstone Meeting on June 13, dedicated to the memory of Mike Hawthorn, went very much to plan and pattern. The racing opened with the Bill Phillips six-lap scratch race, which Bronson’s Riley won by 1.7s from Burrell’s always-impressive Bentley Special, the Riley recording fastest lap at 74 mph. They were followed home by the Alvises of Spiers and Roscoe.

Another scratch race, over one lap less, came next, with Thompson’s Lagonda racing Dunham’s historic Alvis into first place, having done its best lap considerably quicker, at 70.8 mph to Dunham’s 69.5. Upston’s Frazer Nash was third, comfortably ahead of Painter’s Maserati.

So to the Hawthorn 12-lap race for pre-war racing cars, the peak of any VSCC meeting. As anticipated, Mayman was the victor in the ERA-Delage, but Sir J Venables-Llewelyn tried hard in his ERA R4A, lapping faster than Mayman, at 82.4 mph to 82.1, although at the line they were separated by as much as 54.6s. Closer to R4A was Ure’s R9B, with Jaye’s Alta fourth and Day’s ERA R14B fifth. That over, there was a five-lap handicap to watch; it was an A7 benefit, won by Goode, with Asplin and Bukin the placemen.

The Hawthorn 12-lap event for post-war racing cars saw AJ Mayman again invincible, the ERA-Delage finishing six seconds ahead of Drake’s Lotus, which had had no problems holding off Beasley in the Cooper-Bristol. This time Mayman increased his lap speed to 83.8 mph, winning at around 81 mph (no decimal points are now quoted for race distance).

The interesting 10-lap Boulogne Trophy Race was another that was easy to predict namely, that Julian Majzub would win it, in his ex-Malcolm Campbell Type 35B Bugatti. This he duly did, at 75 mph, from Nick Mason’s similar Bugatti and Boswell in the fearsome V8 Bequet-Delage. Majzub had the legs (or wheels?) of both, at 78 mph. Craig Collings managed fourth in the Bentley, leading in Harper’s Morgan three-wheeler by 0.4s, with D Caroline in the other Morgan a long way behind its type-mate.

Seber’s hard-trying Wolseley Hornet then took a five-lap handicap from Thompson and Dowle in his Bentley, before the ‘modern’ sports classics had their race, 10 laps of it, with Sytner’s Jaguar beating those of Pearson and Harper, at a speed of 78 mph. Lister having lapped quicker, at 82.5, before dropping to fourth place. Those spectators who stayed to the end saw Davis win another five-lap scratch contest devoted entirely to Rileys, 25 of them, supported by the Gillow Special, from Dunn and Bailies, and Freeman concluded a long, oldtime day’s sport by securing the final five-lap handicap in the Aston Martin, from Pollock’s AC and Seber. W B

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