THE SILVER SPRINGBOK TROPHY MEETING
A very successful meeting was held at the Lord Howe Circuit on the outskirts of Johannesburg recently.
This is a very tricky course and gives motor-cycle and motor-car racers full opportunity of displaying their skill, and most thrilling racing was witnessed by a crowd of approximately 16,000 people. The meeting opened with a fifty-mile motor-cycle dash for 350 c.c. machines. Joe Sarkis, winner of ten South African T.T. races, astride his Norton, with his usual perfect timing and cornering won this race in the excellent time of 47 mins. 1 sec., at an average speed of 65.79 m.p.h. The second man, Alan Reeve (Norton) came in second 53 secs. later. (Reeve was killed in a collision with a motor-car on his way back to Pretoria after the meeting. This will be a great loss to South Africa, as Reeve was one of our best riders, with considerable
overseas experience.) J. K. High= (Norton) was third, R. D. Ramsay (Norton) was fourth. Nortons took first six places in this race. The next event was Race A, for the Silver Springbok Trophy. Twenty cars lined up for the start. They were as follows :
1. A. Bernadi (750 c.c. Austin).
2. M. Short (700 c.c. D.K.W.).
3. A. S. du Toit (1,122 0.0. Morgan 4/4).
4. F. Brodie (1,287 c.c. M.G. Magnette).
5. D. Woodhead (1,287 c.c. M.G. Magnette).
6. H. T. Coombes (1,089 c.c. Riley).
7. V. O. Barrange (1,089 c.c. Riley).
8. J. Sarkis (2,200 c.c. Willys).
9. J. J. de Beer (3,015 c.c. Ford).
10. J. Whitehead (3,000 c.c. Renton).
11. W. Gore Graham (3,000 c.c. Maserati).
12. H. W. Bruce (3,400 c.c. Terraplane).
14. J. McNicol (1,500 c.c. Talbot, supercharged).
15. W. Le Roux (3,800 c.c. Ford).
16. F. Smith (3,600 c.c. Ford).
17. P. Roberts (2,000 c.c. Bugatti, supercharged).
18. E. Govoni (2,000 c.c. Bugatti, supercharged).
19. W. H. Roderick (2,800 c.c. Alfa-Romeo, supercharged).
20. ” Mario” (2,300 c.c. Bugatti, supercharged).
21. H. F. Hooper (3,300 c.c. Bugatti, supercharged). All started off well with the exception of J. McNichol whose car would not start. ” Mario ” was soon out of the race with a broken propeller shaft. Hooper came to grief on the tortuous ” Howe’s Choice” corner. When travelling at high speed, he missed the corner, ran over the bank and somersaulted three times; fortunately he was thrown clear and only superficially injured. At this point the D.K.W. was leading. On the seventh lap the D.K.W. had been passed by Berrange in the fast Riley bought from Austin Dobson. Then on the twelfth lap the Riley had transmission trouble and was out of the race. From the thirteenth lap it was clear that barring accidents D. Woodhead in a black M.G. Magnette stood a good chance of winning. Following hard on his tail was the white Terraplane driven superbly by H. W. Bruce. Bruce was lapping consistently and taking corners with easy grace. During the fifteenth lap the crowd had some thrills when Smith in his Ford V8 skidded badly, when travelling fast, and rushed at the spectators, who were only saved by his skilful driving. Soon another thrill occurred when P. Roberts, who was going well in his Bugatti, turned right
round in the centre of the track and was narrowly missed by Gore Graham in his fast Maserati. In the eighteenth lap Bruce passed Woodhead and came home an easy winner with Woodhead second, Whitehead third, and Roderick fourth. Bruce’s average speed was 61.08 m.p.h. Roderick set
up the fastest lap at 62.77 m.p.h.
As an interlude, during the lunch interval, an interesting contest took place between J. Sarkis (Norton) and “Mario” (Bugatti) over two laps and ended with Sarkis the winner.
In the Rand 50-mile Dash for 500 c.c. motor-cycles Sarkis on his 350 c.c. (Norton) was again first. Seventeen cycles made a massed start. Vlok
Norton set a fast pace and led for the first five laps ; gradually Sarkis gained on him and finally in a magnificent burst of speed shot past him. Sarkis was in even better fettle than in the previous race and came home an easy winner with Vlok second and Aitken (A.J.S.) third.
For the last race for motor-cars there were thirty entries. Never on the Howe Circuit has so close a finish delighted a crowd. The first two were separated by a few yards at the finishing point, first place went to Bruce who just managed to take the race from Woodhead. J. J. De Beer came third, not far behind, and then another exciting duel was fought within sight of the finishing line between A. S. Du Toit and Whitehead. Whitehead just managed to beat his opponent at the last moment.