Gentlemen, the Edwardians

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The more lively Edwardian cars have caught public imagination in his year of Cavalcade, and speed-trial spectators can confirm that the presence of some of these great cars does much to enhance the sprint meeting. That such cars were very popular before the war and have appeared again in this year’s events gives us considerable satisfaction. For it was in Motor Sport, in 1929, that an article from E. K. H. Karslake’s pen first aroused real interest in the discovery and restoration of the larger and more potent veteran cars, as distinct, that is, from the “Brighton runners.” Karslake it was who hit upon the happy idea of writing-up such cars in a “Veteran Types” series of articles — writing them up, not as cars out of history (interesting as that can be), but as existing veterans sufficiently hale and hearty for him to undertake a brief road-test before putting quill to parchment.

In this issue John Bolster continues the series, at our request, by describing his very beautiful 1911 “Silver Ghost” Rolls-Royce. And we intend to publish further articles in this series, from time to time throughout the coming year. Meanwhile, here are some rather nice photographs of some of these “Edwardian” cars which have so pleased their owners and the spectators at various events of recent times. One sometimes hears comic remarks about them from the uninitiated. As “I guess it’ll crack up before it gets half-way,” of the thunderous “Sixty” Itala at Brighton. In sober fact these fine old cars have frequently vanquished modern sports cars, even racing cars, in spite of their rear brakes and small-section tyres. Perhaps it is that which so endears them to the onlooker.

Those wishing to study this cult may like to know that the following cars have already been covered in the “Veteran Types” series: – “Chitty Bang Bang II” (Oct., 1930); a 1914.T.T. Sunbeam (Nov., 1930); a 1903 “Sixty” Mercédès. (Dec., 1930); a 1924 “Coppa Florio” Itala (Jan., 1931); a 1902 6-h.p. De Dion Bouton (Feb., 1931); a Boulogne G.P. “Brescia” Bugatti (April, 1931); Wallbank’s 1914 T.T. Humber (May, 1031); a 1914 “Alphonso” Hispano-Suiza (July, 1931); a 1900 Benz (Nov., 1931); a 1914 Grand Prix Opel (Dec., 1931); a 1904 Darracq “Flying Fifteen” (June, 1932); a 1913 “80/90 Mercédès (Dec., 1932), a 1908 Grand Prix Itala (Feb., 1935); a 1908 single-cylinder Sizaire-Naudin (Aug., 1935); a 1909 9 1/4-litre Daimler and the 21 3/4-Iitre Fiat “Mephistopheles” (April, 1937); a 1921 3-litre G.P. Ballot (July, 1937); the 1912 G.P. Lorraine-Dietrich “Vieux Charles Trois” (April, 1938); the 1913 5-litre Bugatti “Black Bess” (Aug., 1939); a 1910 90-h.p. Fiat (Jan., 1938); a 1919 5-litre Indianapolis Ballot (Dec., 1939); Heal’s 1914 T.T. Sunbeam (Sept., 1940); a 1914 G.P. Mercédès (Oct., 1940); a 1911 Coupe de “l’Auto” Delage (Feb., 1941); Neve’s 1914 T.T. Humber (Jan., 1942); a 1903 “Paris-Vienna Replica” De Dietrich (Sept., 1942); a 1924 G.P. Sunbeam (Nov., 1943); a 1908 “Four-Inch” Hutton (May, 1944), and a 1914 “Prince Henry” Vauxhall (Jan., 1946).

Cecil Clutton also wrote about the driving of such cars in November, 1939, and recounted how they had become a factor in modern sprint events in Motor Sport for January, 1943. Gentlemen, The Edwardians . . .

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