Non- Standard entrant

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Some time back I marked out a standard as an unusual make to be raced at Brooklands. But, would you believe it, another joined in, in 1927. This one was even more improbable as it appeared to be a Standard Ten to which a supercharger had been added.

I do not know much about such Standards, apart from once buying a 1929 worm-axle Nine saloonjenlcs accompanying me. The house smelt strongly of cats, causing DSJ to say “Hand the money over quickly, Bod, and let’s get out”. This I did, but the car smelt even worse…

It had been snowing so I opted for avoiding Birdlip Hill, butlenIcs insisted; luckily the old Nine climbed steadily, past modems which had gone into the ditches. However, the end came not long afterwards, when I was intent on winning the distance award in a local car-jolly, and the brakes and axle objected.

Back to the improbable Standard racer. It appeared in October 1938, in a Campbell-circuit Handicap. The owner of the magazine for whom I worked at Brooklands had a 1934 Standard Ten saloon, smartened up with Ewart wheel-discs. But it was never thought of as racer material.

But a Mr J M Powell had entered this 1131cc supercharged Standard. The handicappers must have feared it was a secret experimental arrival, as it had to start the 11mile race round the ‘road’ course with Michael May, that dashing driver of a rather special Alvis Silver Eagle, successful at Brooklands and winner of the Irish GP. He had a small garage at Ripley, and when war came he put his lathes to turning out nuts and bolts for the RAF, expecting they would be worth about a penny each, but the Government costing chaps put a much higher price on them. The local Debs, who didn’t wish to be called up as Land Girls or factory hands, came to help, and I understood that a good time was had by all…

Back to the lone Standard. It was given only a 5sec start from a s/c 2.3 Monza Alfa and Fane’s very quick 328 FN BMW. No way! Poor Mr Powell did two of the five laps at a pedestrian 49.62 and 54.41mph and then gave up. He was never seen again. It was left to a 1.1/2-litre Bugatti to win, with a fastest lap of 65.29 mph. So what was this mysterious Standard, which had made its bow some eight years after the catalogue Ten had gone out of production?

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