Reports of Recent Events
Kentish Border Sporting Trial
Thirty-seven competitors started under watery sunshine from the "Spring Tavern," Wrotham Heath.
The route embraced four observed hills, one bonus hill, one special test and one timed climb.
All competitors got off to a good start, the first two hills and special test offering no difficulties, except to those whose motors were definitely unsuited to reliability trials. The third hill, Harp Farm, proved to be the first real hazard, failing nine out of the first twelve competitors. Total failures amounted to eighteen.
J. Appleton, in his 4,000-c.c. supercharged Allard, made a clean and beautifully-controlled ascent round the steep "S"-bend and gained the summit with power to spare. Morrish (Frazer-Nash), Birkett (Austin Seven), Palmer (supercharged Austin-Ford), Readings (Lancia "Lambda"), Waring (Allard), and Christmas (M.G. "Cream-Cracker") all made excellent climbs.
After the lunch stop, Pollyfield, a bonus hill in five sections, drew a great crowd of local spectators. The hill surface was spongy grass, tracked fairly deeply by farm carts and particularly "dicy" in parts. Appleton again showed what 125 b.h.p. could do and made an ascent which was deemed the prettiest piece of driving of the day. This was the only clean climb. Yates (Austin-Ford), Morrish, Price (Allard), Chapman (Austin), Palmer, Birkett and Readings all made good climbs into section three, the remainder getting little more than 20 yards in the first section.
The Trial ended with a timed climb at "Allington," the best time being put up jointly by Appleton and Wick (Allards) in 19.20 sec., closely followed by Morrish at 19.40 sec.
The Alexander Bronze for the best performance of the day, irrespective of Class, to a K.B.C.C. member only: J. Readings (Lancia "Lambda"), 96 points.
The Visitors' Cup for the best performance of the day, irrespective of Class, to a visiting competitor: J. Appleton (Allard), 100 points.
The Alexander Trophy, for the best performance of the day in Class "A", up to 1,100-c.c.: H. Birkett (Austin Seven), 94 points.
The Best Cup, for the best performance of the day in Class "B." 1,101-c.c. to 2,000-c.c.: A. Day (H.R.G.), 92 points.
The J. B. Taylor Cup, for the best performance of the day in Class "C," 2,001-c.c. and over: D. Price (Allard), 96 points.
The President's Cup, for the best performance of the day by a Cemian Motor Club Member only: I. Palmer (Austin-Ford), 92 points.
First-Class Awards: E. Frost (Allard), 92 points; M. Wick (Allard), 92 points; W. Waring (Allard), 92 points.
Second-Class Awards: R. Davis (Austin), 92 points ; D. Wootton (Austin), 91 points; I. Palmer (Austin-Ford), 92 points; R. Christmas (M.G.), 92 points.
The R.A.C. Championship Trial
This S.U.N.B.A.C. event, held in the Cheltenham area, was a great success. The start was from Birdlip, and the first hill, Longridge, failed 17 of the 44 starters on its upper reaches. A timed restart was required on Stancombe, f.t.d. being made by Newton's H.R.G. in 3.8 sec. Onslow Bartlett's Mercury and Hankin's Ford Ten tied for second best time, in 4.0 sec., and Burgess and Wick, in their Allards, for third best, with 4.4 sec. Burgess subsequently inverted his car in tackling the hill and had to spend a brief sojourn in hospital. Fifteen failed here. In a cross-ways driving-skill test Hunt's blown Ford Ten Special was best, in 15.2 sec., followed by Mallock's Ford Ten-engined Austin Seven in 15.4 sec. and Bailey's Riley-Special, in 16.2 sec. Mackhouse was used as a timed ascent of its second acclivity, Wilde's Ford Ten recording 8.2 sec., Sydney Allard's Allard and Best's M.G. 8.4 sec. and Newton's H.R.G. 8.6 sec. The only competitors to climb Breakheart were Holt, Wharton (Ford-Austin Special), Hunt (Ford Ten Special), Mallock, Best and Bailey. Nine cars got up Ford I, Ford II was fairly easy, Camp Hill not too difficult but rather narrow. Then came Juniper, which defeated all save Wharton, Clegg (Ford Ten Clegg) and Holt. Only Wick's Allard, with transmission trouble, stopped on Brotheredge. This was a really classic trial, Earl Howe, Col. Stanley Barnes and Maurice Toulmin attending the prize-giving that evening. It was the first R.A.C. trial since 1924 and Earl Howe called it the new Blue Riband of trials, taking a place beside the R.A.C. Hill-Climb Championship. Ken Wharton took the Championship title for 1948, winning the Gordon Crosby bronze racing car trophy that used to serve as the trophy for the Brooklands Mountain Championship.
R.A.C. British Trials Drivers' Championship Trophy (best performance): K. Wharton (1,190-c.c. Wharton). Northern Zone.
SUNBAC Runner-Up Award: G. R. Holt (1,172-c.c. G.R.H. Special). Northern Zone.
Third Prize: J. Clegg (1,172-c.c. Clegg). Northern Zone.
Zonal Awards. — North: K. Wharton (1,190-c.c. Wharton). South: L. O. Bartlett (3,917-c.c. Mercury). Ulster: C. F. C. Lindsay (3,917-c.c. Ford).
Special Souvenir Awards: R. E. Holt (3,622-c.c. V8) (N.); M. Wilde (1,172-c.c. Ford)(N.); L. O. Bartlett (3,917-c.c. Mercury) (S.); K. Rawlings (1,172-c.c. Rawlings Special (N.); G. T. Hankins (1,172-c.c. Ford) (N.); H. E. Appleton (4,000c.c. Allard) (S.); T. C. Harrison (1,172-c.c. Harford) (N.).
Berhkamsted & D.M.C. Lockhart-Bossingham Trial
In this trial the best performance up to 1 1/2 litres was by C. D. F. Buckler (Buckler) who lost no marks, winning the Bossingham Cup and B.D.M.C. award. T. Mooney won the Lockhart Cup with a loss of 20 marks and B. H. Brown's Ford V8 Special, which lost 22 marks, the cup for best unlimited performance by a Berkhamsted member. The Appleton-Wick-Potter N.W. London M.C. Allard team took the team award, Appleton and Potter netting the Team Two-Some. First-class awards: Birkett (Austin), Chiles (Austin), Chapman (Austin), Yates (Austin), Edgar (Alvis-Riley) and Potter (Allard). Second-class awards: Harter (M.G. Midget), Hughes (Austin-Ford), Biggs (H.R.G.), Wood-Dow (H.R.G.) and Wick (Allard).
Liverpool M.C. Jeans Gold Cup Trial
Forty-six started and Gully proved the worst of the hills. J. Clegg (1,172-c.c. Clegg) made best performance, losing not a single mark, and won the Jeans Cup, R. E. Holt's Ford V8 lost two marks, winning the opposite class and the Wade Cup. The best Liverpool M.C. member was A. M. R. Mallock (Ford-Austin), who lost no marks, while in the opposite category H. D. Pritchard's Allard lost five marks, heading the list. Beardshaw (A.M.B.) won the Novices' Award with 15 marks lost. Holt and Clegg won the under-1 1/2 litre Team Award for the Lancashire and Cheshire C.C. Other awards were as follows, figures indicating marks lost:
First-Class Awards: T. C. Harrison (1,172-c.c. Hanford), none; G. R. Holt (1,172-c.c. G.R.H.), four; C. Corbishley (1,172-c.c. C.C. Special), two; K. Bancroft (1,172-c.c. Bancroft Special), two; A. S. Eadon (1,485-c.c. Rover), five; E. J. Newton (1,497-c.c. H.R.G.), three; G. Tyrer (1,911-c.c. Frazer-Nash-B.M.W.), six; D. G. Flather (1971c.c. B.M.W. Special), six; L. Poetter (3,622-c.c. Allard), eight.
Second-Class Awards: J. G. Lister (Austin), nine; C. L. Bold (1,080-c.c. Bold), ten; C. A. N. May (3,622-c.c. Ford), ten; A. B. Rogers (3,622-c.c. Rojar), eleven; H. Murray (G.H.), eight.
Third-Class Awards: A. M. Beardshaw (1,172-c.c. A.M.B. Special), 17; H. W. Begley (1,172-c.c. Ward Special). 13; H. C. Bramley (760-c.c. A.G.S.), 15; J. R. Bothwell (3,622-c.c. Singer Special), 15; B. Lomax (Riley), 13.
Ulster A.C. Victor Ferguson Trophy Trial
The final trial in the year's series to determine the winner of the Premier Award for the season's best performance was held over a short course in County Down. After a map-reading section, eliminating tests were held in a quarry near Newtownards. They included tests of manoeuvrability, judgment and a speed-test of three laps round a large pile of stones — a very exciting spectacle of fast driving on a loose surface. The trial was won by C. S. Porter (H.R.G.), the present holder of the Victor Ferguson Trophy, but C. E. Robb (F.I.A.T.) — who came in fourth in the trial — maintained his leading position and returned a total of 29 points against Porter's 28 to win the trophy. First-class awards (80 per cent. of the winner's marks) go to C. S. Porter (28 points), H. H. Cowzer (27 points) and C. F. C. Lindsay (24 points). C. F. C. Lindsay also won the Ex-Servicemen's Cup, and the Montgomery Cup was retained — and has been since 1937 — by Mrs. E. Dowling, driving her 22-year-old Buick. The results of the trial were:
1st. C. S. Porter (H.R.G.) 87.8 marks lost; 2nd. S. Durbidge (M.G.) 97.4 marks lost; 3rd. W. Henderson (Austin Seven) 97.7 marks lost.
New Class I Records
The Italian, Pietro Taruffi, has broken the International Class I f.s. kilometre, f.s. mile, five kilos, five miles and s.s. mile records, driving an unsupercharged Guzzi-engined car of unconventional form. The new speeds, for the two-way runs, are, respectively, 128.8, 126.7, 126.4, 123.9 and 79.9 m.p.h. This is a fantastic show, for Gardner's M.G. records are beaten by nearly 10 m.p.h. without resort to forced induction. Taruffi's Guzzi engine relied on British Lodge plugs.
N.M.M.C. Autumn Sporting Trial
Seven observed sections were included in this N. Midland M.C. event, as well as two special tests for deciding ties. The length of the course was approximately 15 miles. The entries numbered 37 but only 25 competitors presented themselves at the start.
(Note: No competitor finished the course with a clean sheet, nor were there any ties to be decided by the special tests.)
Members' Trophy: T. C. Harrison (1,172-c.c. Harriford), 8 marks lost.
Committee Cup: J. Clegg (1,172-c.c. Clegg Special), 5 marks lost.
Norton Team Trophy: "The Tacklers" — R. E. Holt (3,622-c.c. V8), 27 marks lost; J. Clegg (1,172-c.c. Clegg Special), 5 marks lost; G. R. Holt (1,172-c.c. G.R.H.), 18 marks lost.
First-Class Awards: T. C. Wise (3,622-c.c. C.W.8), Y.S.C.C., 12 marks lost; K. Bailey (1,503-c.c. Riley), L. & C.C.C., 18 marks lost; G. R. Holt (1,172-c.c. G. R.H.), N.M.M.C., 18 marks lost.
Second-Class Awards: B. K. Thompson (1,172-c.c. Ford Special), L. &. C.C.C., 20 marks lost; R. H. Hunt (1,172-c.c. Ford Special), L. & C.C.C., 21 marks lost; J. G. Lister 1,172-c.c. Austin), Y.S.C.C., 21 marks lost.
Bugatti Owners' Club
A. C. Whincop won the 1948 Victor Ludorum Trophy, which was duly presented to him at the annual dinner at Grosvenor House, on December 4th — we offer him our belated congratulations.
Hants & Berks Point-to-Point
C. D. F. Buckler ( Buckler) won the Hants & Berks M.C. Point-to-Point contest held on December 12th.
Hagley & D. L.C.C. Winter Trial
The premier awards were as follows:
Super Sports Cars: —
Whittington Cup. — K. Wharton (1,190-c.c. Wharton). First-class Awards: L. J. Oliver (747-c.c. Austin), R. W. Merrick (1,172-c.c. Dellow, S.). Second-class Awards: 3. W. Cox (1,172-c.c. M.G., S.).
Open Cars: —
Grove Cup. — P. Atkinson (747-c.c. Austin). First-class Awards: W. A. Penn (1,172-c.c. Dellow), G. A. Waldron (1,172-c.c. Dellow). Second-class Awards: J. de Blaquiere (747-c.c. Austin), S. Cracknell (933-c.c. Forstin).
Saloon Cars: —
Siddaway Cup: F. D. Lawton (993-c.c. Austin).