Miscellany, January 2003

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It was a bit of a surprise to find BBC Radio 4 putting on a piece about Brooklands in its Archive Hour in November. It was composed by Ashley Jones, from Museum archive material, of memories by many people such as Kay Petre, who spoke sensibly, Oliver Stuart, who rode with Miller in the Viper, Norton Bracey who raced an MG, and several aviation workers. But Ashley did not let anyone speak of the Brooklands Society, without which access to the Track post-war and the Museum would never have happened.

* * * *

Writing of oils last month, I didn’t include Yacco, as I was thinking in terms of what we used here. In France, Yacco was a well-known lubricant, and the company backed long-distance record bids at Montlhery by Citroen, Matford and Austin. In 1933, Citroen and Yacco could claim class records of up to 13 days at nearly 77.6mph. Indeed ‘Rosalie’ was almost always going round, doing 80,000 miles at 64mph for instance. This continued, with Citroens ‘Petite Rosalie’ and ‘Agatha’, of 1.5 litres and 3.6 litres, the former’s driver replacing a broken bearing after 5000 miles, and a single-seater 1452cc Citroen Ten, Yacco oiled, managing 68,000 miles, day and night. ‘Rosalie’ stopped after 133 days and nights, or 185,353 miles, at better than 58mph, with 296 records to its credit A 7-million-franc stake was put up if anyone beat this. But there were no takers.

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