Sun, Ray and British Racing Motor

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Speaking at the Publicity Club of Wolverhampton Luncheon last November, Raymond Mays, Director of BRM, Ltd, made particular reference to the new Grand Prix Formula decided upon last October and to be introduced in 1954. He said that the new Formula had been largely influenced by an Italian tyre firm.  Alfa-Romeo themselves were opposed to it and it was indeed a great blow to the BRM. The new Formula meant that the present system of 1/2-litre supercharged cars and 41/2-litre non-supercharged would have to be scrapped.

Supporters of the new Formula, said Mays, had pointed out that Grand Prix Formula cars had reached such terrific speeds that engine capacities would have to be reduced ; he personally thought that this was a retrograde step and that the answer was that engines and all accessories should be built to withstand those high speeds.

Mays dealt at some length with the troubles which had beset the BRM and in particular difficulties they were experiencing due to rearmament, but said that “There is no better way of waving the flag for this country in the interest of British engineering and car sales than by producing a successful team of Grand Prix racing cars.”

In admitting that possibly the BRM took on too ambitious a job for the money and the time at their disposal, Mays said the project was still very dependent upon finances, which caused him considerable concern from the development point of view.

As an example of the hard luck bogey which seemed to dog the BRM, Mays said that they had recently returned from testing the car, at Monza where they had achieved “terrific speeds” but had been forced to abandon the trials owing to the floods. The very day the BRM returned to this country the weather changed and they had continuous sunshine in Italy, but there was nowhere in this country to continue the trials of the car at the high speeds necessary.