The Rally — First Stage

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Folkestone, 10 a.m., January 25th

Weather conditions were not too arduous for the Glasgow contingent, but icy surfaces caused some difficulty and fog extended for about 20 miles near Newark. Not far from the start, Lt.-Col. Finnigan’s Standard Vanguard hit a lorry and crumpled its off-side front wing but was able to continue. Some of the Jowett Javelin drivers experienced skids, and Wise’s car seemed to have a big load in the boot, but was actually the first to reach Folkestone, followed by the Hall-Heath V12 Lagonda. As the cars were hoisted aboard the Dinard old-time scenes prevailed, many carrying B.A.R.C., B.R.D.C. and Monte Carlo badges, while Mrs. Harman’s Alvis had a spade strapped to its spare wheel and the Hillman Minx team of 1948 dropheads were nicely appointed, with spade and fire-extinguisher mounted over the boot. Many cars carried luggage on the roof, including Wharton’s Ford Pilot, with comp.-shod spare wheels, Page’s Riley, with sledgehammer across the front, and the A.C. saloon. Fowler’s odd-looking Healey saloon appeared to have little ground clearance for Rally work. Sydney Allard checked in early at Folkestone. Black was driving an early Sunbeam-Talbot tourer with hood and screens erect; Allison a Lancia “Astura”; the Bristol was a left-hand drive saloon; while Potter’s Allard was well provided with lamps, Harper’s, Vauxhall Velox had competition tyres all round, and Descamps, with the baby Renault, wore white helmet and true Continental garb. The Dinard sailed 41 minutes before its scheduled 10 a.m. departure, under a sunny sky, most of the cars’ crews snatching some much-needed sleep.