EMPIRE TROPHY AFTERTHOUGHTS.
TO plan an entirely new circuit at Brooklands and then run a handicap race for cars from 750 c.c. to
3,000 c.c. was a task which must have given Harry Edwards, of the British Racing Drivers Club, many sleepless nights. But everyone who was present at Weybridge on Saturday, June 23rd, must surely agree with us when we vote the British Empire Trophy a really successful event.
The straw bales, which replaced the usual sand banks, gave the artificial bends a much nearer representation of the real thing, and, in spite of poor John Houldsworth’s regrettable accident, they have been proved on the Continent to be as safe a barrier as it is possible to construct —especially if they are not packed too close together. From the drivers point of view this circuit was certainly the most road-like that has yet been seen at Brooklands. And now we should like to voice a little constructive criticism. In the first place, the arrangements for score boards could have been a lot better, but we fully realize the difficulties here. The main trouble is, of course, that the spectators are watching from so many different
positions. The only solution to the problem as far as we can see would be to have something really massive, either on top of the Vickers Sheds or high up on the Members Hill.
It was a great pity the race had to be run on a handicap basis, but, of course, that could not be avoided. It is essential to have, at the very least, 15 starters to make a good race, and as it was there were only 11 entries in the big class, two of whom were non-starters.
In the smaller class the 1,100 c.c. blown cars were as fast as the 1,500 c.c. unblown cars, so that these two classes could really be run as one.
It might be possible next year to run three separate races, the first starting at about 10 o’clock in the morning and ending about 12 noon, the second starting at 12.30 and ending at about 2.30 in the afternoon, and the last race, which would be the big event, starting at 3 o’clock. The distance of the three races being 100 miles for the smallest class, 150 for the middle class, and probably 200 miles or more for the big cars.
But to get back to the actual race we have just witnessed. If ever a man deserved to win the trophy it was George Eyston. For years now he has put up a good performance in all our big races. His driving has been fast and, at the same time, unspectacular. Frequently his name has appeared among the first half-dozen past the winning post, but, somehow, he has very seldom been the actual winner. Whitney Straight’s driving was, as usual, a joy to watch. On every lap the car took exactly the same course
at the corners and always looked completely under his control. On the whole the standard of driving was good, but the fairly fast bend at the Members Bridge certainly gave one an excellent opportunity of sorting the sheep from the goats, a driver who showed up particularly well at this point being Penn Hughes.
Congratulations to Eyston on his win, and Edwards and his colleagues on organising a first class event.