THE UNITED HOSPITALS SPEED TRIALS
Eric Fernihough’s startling performance at Brighton in the recent speed trials held there was repeated on Saturday. November 9 at Gatwick, when the United Hospitals A.C. organised a similar event run over the entrance road to the race-course. The highlights of the day apart from the magnificent run put up on the Brough were those achieved by “Bira’s” glistening 14-litre E.R.A., Frank Beast’s J.A.P. engined Grindlay ridden by H. Waite, also glistening until it was sent back to the start after its first run, via the waterlogged field used as a return road, and the ” Mary Tudor ” handled by its in
ventor, John Bolster. His brother was prevented from competing as his car was not passed by the Scrutineers, which is surprising as the B.A.R.C. had passed it for an event at the track. The soaking wet condition of the tarmac road made the getaway very difficult for the first really quick machine
the Grindlay handled by Waite. His back wheel spun a little, the machine swerved towards the fence, then the rear tyre bit and he was off down the course like a streak to clock 14.74 seconds. A. J. Rawlance appeared with his Manx Norton and managed 15.32 seconds, while R. C. Roland represented the best in the sidecar line with a time of 19 seconds for his Zenith. The Brough, about which ene could write a story of its own, simply snaked away from the line at sickening speed to record the best time of the day, 12.58 seconds. Unfortunately the sports-cars appeared immediately after this, which was a distinct anti-climax, but the ‘,driving was first-rate and some of the Frazer-Nashes went very fast indeed. According to the rather sketchy timing arrangements now in use, N. G. Watson on one of these cars went up in under 19 seconds while a beautiful Milk Miglia replica Magnette recorded 18.2 seconds, both excellent times. But the crowd was really thrilled when “Bira” started up the E.R.A. and disappeared amidst that terrific blare from the exhaust. His time would have been better under decent conditions but in any case his enthusiasm was rewarded, his time was 15.8 seconds, giving him the best car performance of the day. There followed sundry specials, the most amusing, though unsuccessful, being an affair called the Appleturnover sponsored by the Appleton brothers, which was composed of a Riley Nine engine in a G.N. chassis. Unfortunately the engine proved too much for the chassis and when the clutch was let in one of the cross-shaft bearings snapped across. A fire was also started under the bonnet of the ” Spider ” after that veteran had done a run in 18.6 seconds but this was quickly subdued when all the high tension leads had been burnt off. Then in deadly earnest appeared three competitors determined to better their own times. With car-splitting intensity the Grindlay J.A.P.’s time was brought clown to 14.2
seconds and Waite made way for John’
Bolster. ” Unmentionable Mary ” was running with only one of her engines, to bring the capacity within the 14-litre limit. In spite of this she managed the second fastest time of the day, 16.79′ seconds, giving a clear second to D. L. Briault who ‘brought proceedings to a close with his supercharged Alta which put up an excellent run in 17.75 seconds.
RESULTS. President’s Cup: D. L. Briault (1,074 c.c. Anode.), 17.75s., (50.70 m.p.h.) Hospitals Cup: E. Fornihough (99(3 c.c. BroughSuperior mfr.), 12.58s., (73.55 tn.p.h.)
Touring Cars. Unlimited c.c. G. Harwood-Yarred (Riley), 23.84s.
Sports Cars:-850 0.0. A. Maconochic (M.G. .12)24.94s ; 1,100 c.c. 850 c.c. s/c., D. N. Leon (M.G. Psic.) 20.48s.; 1 500c.c.1,100 c.c. s/c., L..1. Turner (M.G. K3 s/c.), 18.24s.
Racing Cars:-1,100 0.0. 750 c.c. s/c., J. Bolster (981 c.c. Bolster Special) 16.79s., (53.60 m.p.h.) : 1,500 0.0. 1.100 c.c. sic., D. L. Briault (1.074 c.c. Alta s/c.,) 17.75s., (50.70 m.p.h.); 1.500 c.c. s/c., “B. 13ira” (1,488 c.c. E.R.A.) 15.80s, 06.00 ni Handicap Event:—J. D. Cargill (1,496 c.c. AstonMarti n ) 24. Of; .