This traditional event, dating from 1939, this year reverted to the 200-mile navigational road-run on the Saturday for cars less suitable for the Sunday trial. Thus, of the 38 entries, 32 were standard cars, whereas for the trial, out of 94 applicants, only 25 ventured the hills in such vehicles, the rest using Modified or Special ones. But, fittingly, all were pre-1939.
The road run over, people accepted Douglas Blain’s invitation a tour of Monaughty, a house dating from around 1562, an experience which was not to be missed. There were many interesting cars assembled in the courtyard, such as a sporting-looking 40/50hp Rolls Royce, a Buick in the exciting idiom of the Edwardian American Raceabout, a very fine large open Delage, an aircooled four finned-cylinder 1908 Franklin, recently imported from the United States, a 1903 two-cylinder Lanchester tonneau, the same one in which George Lanchester himself drove me too fast for the VCC rules in the 1948 Brighton Run.
I then took the famous old gentleman to his London hotel in MOTOR SPORT’s own Vauxhall Ten. The trial embraced well-known sections such as Lloyds (extremely slippery) and The Smatcher, with considerable numbers of onlookers at Pilleth, the free car parking field simply filled with their cars, showing that vintage cars in action appeal to rather more than just the VSCC membership. They were treated to the roar of Wiseman’s V4 GN which was going well, and the great grunt from Roger Collings’ mighty 19-litre Mercedes Maybach, from which more power was released as Pilleth One became steeper.