HANS STUCK AND AUTO-UNION Sir,
The following is a translation from the German sports weekly ” Deutsche Sport Illustrierte ” issue number 40 (Stuttgart, October 5th, 1937), but concerns only the latter half of an article on the Donington Grand Prix entitled : “Auto-Union Wins with Berndt Rosemeyer and Loses Hans Stuck.”
” Hans Stuck and the Auto-Union have dissolved their contract on a basis of friendly understanding in order to give Hans Stuck the opportunity to devote himself to other plans. Already at the Masaryk Race Hans Stuck will not take a part in the Auto-Union Team.”
Such is the brief wording of a long story which began with a little disappointment in Brazil [when Stuck arrived 7 secs. after C. Pintacuda (AlfaRomeo) to take second place in the Rio De Janeiro G.P., June 6th, 1937 (the italics are mine)] continued with the two-edged success of Hans Stuck at the Schauinsland (Grosser Berg-preis Van Deutschland. Freiburg, Aug 1st, 1937) by which—not that one could reproach him for that in the slightest, particularly at a hill climb— he kept the already secure German Championship title from Auto-Unions and his team-mate Rosemeyer, and which tale finally ended after the Grand Prix of Monaco, Switzerland, and Italy in reciprocal discords. As an outsider one had the impression that Stuck was chagrined with the disposition of the racing management and the, according to his opinion, insufficiently prepared vehicles, whilst in turn AutoUnions were similarly displeased with the alleged no longer battle-eager Stuck
So one arrived at the somewhat precipitate “friendly understanding” for the purpose of dissolving the contract.
The Auto-Union has quit definitely lost more in Hans Stuck thafl one would like to believe true at the moment ; he was always fair and a likable sportsman who hung with his whole being to his dangerous calling and more than once pulled chestnuts out of the fire for AutoUnion, by a final and most exacting effort. There remains only the hope that neither Stuck nor Auto-Union will have to rue this parting.
Stuck has made a present of his famous silver “Hans,” in which he won the majority of his successes and in which all those world’s records gained with this vehicle during the 1934-87 period are engraved, to Auto-Unions.
What fashion are the plans which now engage the time and sporting love of Stuck ? Quite apart from the hotly debated and recurrent rumour that he is to attack the world’s land speed record with a German super-car, it is probable that Stuck will accept an offer to attack the world’s water speed record, which Camp
bell lately Secured for himself with a performance of 208.40 k.p.h., during the coming spring. Stuck has already made himself familiar with the subject in Locarno, only ane can not as yet say who is behind these
matters. In any case we wish Hans Stuck ” Hals mid Beinbruch ” (a German colloquialism, in the nature of a good luck wish, actually signifying ” Neck and Leg Fracture to You “) and will follow his sporting passions with interest always.
I found this facet of the German H. O. De ‘hane Segra. ‘s retirement from motor-racing so interesting that I have troubled to translate it into our native tongue for the benefit of other MOTOR SPORT readers who may, like myself, have read the book ” Das Autobuch ” in its English form, and also greatly regret his no doubt enforced cessation from active car competition, which thus becomes quite apparent. I am, Yours etc.,
RALPH E. P. SECRL:TAN.
London, W.2. A READER’S CRITICISM Sir, You will possibly remember that I
wrote you before the opening of this season, expressing a hope that the new road circuits at Brooklands and the Crystal Palace would not attract the wrong type of motor-racing spectator, and now, in the light of what the first season has revealed, I should like to say that I am keenly disappointed. The Brooklands Road Course has been
the scene of some good racing, but it seems a thousand pities that the B.A.R.C. are not intending to repeat the experiment of the Campbell Trophy next year, since, presumably, it was not a financial success. I am not surprised. The attitude that the average Englishman takes to motor-racing is pitiable in the extreme. Supposing there was staged a grand competition between electricity and gas, every article such as refrigerators, irons, fires, ovens, etc., being run in full public view on each of the aforesaid powers, and points allotted to each if, say. it boiled a .chicken in a shorter time than the other, so that the public could gather a good idea of what really is the comparative merits of these two, don’t you think that every housewife and married man in the land would sit up and take notice ? For about fifty years, motor manu facturers have been striving to better the car of J. Citizen, Esq., and a large percentage of the advance has been due to racing. Why, then, does the said J. Citizen take no interest in our sport ? The answer, so far as I.can see, is a thing which makes miserable reading. Football, speedwayracing, dog-racing, horse-racing, and, lately, that abomination,” doodle-dicing” (dreadful term), have cultivated in our would-be motor-racing spectator a dreary,
morbid, commercialised point of view, a blood-thirsty love of a crash, even if it be only something to chat about a week afterwards. Now, Messrs. Road Racing Club, you are bringing this cheap state of affairs into motor-racing. Please, in the name of everything that is good in our sport, keep off it. If you want a nutshell summary of everything that you have done wrong in the past season, that disgusting loudspeaker commentary at the Imperial Trophy supplies it. For heaven’s sake
stop spoiling motor racing. Thank heavens I still have a copy of “Full Throttle” on my shelf, to bring me comfort after watching one of your race meetings.
Finally, may I please deliver a hearty hand-clap to the Donington authorities, a magnificent season, and my best wishes for next year. My best wishes, too, to MOTOR SPORT, a magnificent paper, there is no other word, bred in the best traditions of motor-racing. A long and healthy life to it. I am, Yours etc.,
Wallington, C. L. DgNSRAM. Surrey. [While these may be the views of our reader, it does not necessarily follow that they are those of MOTOR SPORT.—Ed] Sir,
I enclose herewith some experience regarding the “hotting up” of an elderly Bulluose Morris Cowley.
The car was purchased for the princely sum of 50/and when the annual holiday came round a week was set aside to add a little ” pep ” to ” Ghaudi,” as the car was nicknamed.
Some of your readers might be interested to know what was done as -eery little cash was available.
First of all the valves were ground in thoroughly and the surface of the cylinder heads was transformed from a rough casting to a mirror finish by means of much patience, a lot of energy and a considerable area of emery paper.
It was found that the inlet pipes were all coated with about an eighth of an inch of carbon which was duly removed and the induction pipe smoothed off.
Next several corners were removed from the tops of the valve guides and from the underside of the bridges between the grouped inlet ports. to provide a better gas flow to cylinders one and four. A Smith 5 jet type carburetter was standard equipment and the five corresponding pipes (one per jet) were smoothed off and polished. The flap throttle control was reduced in thickness, also the corresponding bar to which it was attached. A thin gasket was fitted to raise the compression and the engine was then rebuilt with the main and big-end bearings taken up. 5 x ’19 tyres were fitted to rear wheels and were
kept at 42 lb. pressure to give the highest possible gear-ratio and incidentally the cornering capabilities were much improved thereby. If it had been possible to expend a little money I should have liked to have raised the compression-ratio considerably higher and to have fitted stronger valve springs. However the maximum speed
was increased from 48 m.p.h. to 58 m.p.h. by a speedometer that was definitely not fast and. the acceleration was very
much improved. A celluloid windscreen was improvised by cutting up the sidescreens.
The first long trip was made to She’sley Walsh Hill Climb. Three friends were duly collected at an unusually early hour of the morning and ” Ghaudi’s ” radiator was set in the Shelsley direction at between 45 and 50 m.p.h. Our first stop was made at a
wayside café where we imbibed hot coffee —much needed by the dickey-seat passengers—and worked out our average speed for the first half of the journey.
During the first hour we covered just on 40 miles and our over-all average so far was 38 m.p.h. The latter part of the journey there was accomplished at slightly slower speed
as the driver was reminded by the passengers in no uncertain terms that they were hoping to return by car the same day, nevertheless a little tail-sliding was indulged in to liven things up. The return journey was accomplished in a similar fashion until lighting-up time when the lamps of oncoming traffic made visibility through the celluloid windscreen impossible, thus necessitating much peering round the sides. A sug gestion from one of the passengers that we should just miss the lights coining towards us proved of great help at times I
The run ended without any mechanical trouble whatsoever and was thoroughly enjoyed by all aboard.
Thus ” Ghaudi ” travelled 260 miles at an average speed of just on 40 m.p.h.
The rear wheel brakes, although up to standard, were not very efficient when compared with modern braking systems and a stop-light winking on a car in front had to be treated with great respect.
But how we envied the drivers OF the Frazer-Nashes, Bentleys, and M.G.s, etc., that passed us en route.
” Ghaudi ” was later sold for 47/— depreciation 3/-.
A 1927 Lea-Francis 13 h.p. is being purchased and this will also undergo a cheap hotting-up process, and if your readers are interested I shall he pleased to let you have particulars at a later date. I am, Yours etc., Beddington, Surrey. E. W. BELL. [Are any readers interested ?—Ed.1 HERR NEUBAUER’S THANKS TO THE DONINGTON AUTHORITIES Dear Mr. Craner,
Many thanks for your kind letter of the 20th inst., from which I have seen, first of all, that you have taken my wishes into consideration. Again many thanks for what you have done in this respect. As regards your racing course and Castle Donington, I must tell you that all members of our Society have marvelled at the most beautiful situation of the
course. We have learned to know a landscape which we greatly appreciate. Such a track lying uninterrupted in a
park offers great advantages over circular courses in which use is often made of ordinary traffic roads. I should wish that the racing track in Donington was still better built, and should hold it especially necessary that the track be in parts a little wider and more uniform in surface, i.e. without undulations, while, however, maintaining the rough covering, because it affords greater safety to the drivers in wet places. It would also be of advantage if the
straight did not end at the deepest point of the present hairpin curve, where it is not absolutely necessary that the racing track should be continued farther in a straight line. Only, such a sharp turn as now appears in the racing course should not follow such a sharply sloping part of the track. A lengthening, with a light angle and a hairpin curve on the next hill, would seem to me better to answer the purpose. I further wish to thank you most
sincerely for all the trouble you have so kindly taken, and especially for the great kindness that has been shown us by the members of the Derby and District Club, in connection with which I cannot omit to mention that all our drivers and members of our racing party were exceedingly satisfied with their accommodation at Castle Donington and in Nottingham where the drivers stayed. In closing this letter I wish to express
the hope that interest for the Donington Grand Prix will always become greater, and we look forward to taking part again, in 1938, in your splendid racing. Yours very faithfully,