Club News, July 1938

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etia• /lewd

FORD ENTHUSIASTS’ CLUB

A very successful Film Show was held at the Club’s headquarters, the Millbrooke Dining Club at Putney, on June

24th. George Monkhouse, of Kodak Ltd., showed his slides and film ” Motoring With Mercedes,” and gave his inimitable running commentary, and James Brymer projected the motoring comedy, “The G.P. de Pozzo.” On July 17th another Croydon Rally will be held, at the Autodrome School of Driving, Carlton Road, South Croydon, under the organisation of Messrs. Allard, Hutchison, Canham and Boddy. Entries close at 1.30 p.m. on July 15th, at 10/per car for invited clubs and 7/0 per car for members. A series of driving tests will decide the event, each driver being allowed two runs, and the best time counting towards results. Excellent awards will be offered. There will be classes for Ford Eight, Ford Ten, Ford V8

and other marques. An interesting innovation is the offer of a prize to anyone who cares to bring a passenger-type Model T Ford along under its own power and take it through the tests. The Autodrome provides excellent facilities for onlookers, and a small charge will be made for admission, while it is hoped that time-boards, a buffet and a restlounge will be in operation. The N.W. London M.C., Kentish Border C.C., J.C.C., Essex Ford Owners’ Club and G.W.M.C. have accepted invitations to compete.

The Club, which goes from strength to strength under the care of the well known trials and competition drivers, K. N. Hutchison and S. H. Allard, has been invited to the Kentish Border C.C. Gymkhana on July 31st.

Hon. Secretary: S. H. Allard, 15, Millbrooke Court, Putney, S.W.15 (Putney 2333).

BUGATTI OWNERS’ CLUB

Prescott hill-climb is now an established fact and the Club should be blushing as a result of its enterprise.

Eighteen new members were elected between March and May last. Another issue of ” Bugantics ” will be published this month. The May issue contained a very readable account of the Opening Rally at Prescott by J. D. Aylward, a poem by Monro, an article on ” Bugattis I Have Owned” by J. K. W. Baines, and a most interesting account of a Parisian holiday with a Type 49 8.8-litre Bugatti by C. W. P. Hampton. The magazine is fully illustrated and beautifully printed.

The new subscription rates are announced: L2 2 entrance fee and. £2 2 annual subscription for Bugatti owners ; 3 8 entrance fee and 9 8 subscription for non-Bugatti owners. Life membership : 20 gns.

The next fixture is the next Prescott open hill-climb on September 25th, a Sunday.

Hon. Secretary : E. L. Giles, 2, Queen Street, Mayfair, W.1.

SOUTHPORT M.R.C.

The meeting scheduled for July 80th has been cancelled.

MIDDLESBROUGH & D. M.C.

On Whit-Monday some attacks were made on the car record for Swaiuby Hill. This record stood at 17.2 secs., and H. Souter, driving a 2,227 c.c. Hutch Special, established a new record very comfortably with a run that occupied 15.8 secs. Guy Warburton’s Allard-Special took 18.8 secs. and J. Steavenson’s SteavensonSpecial 19.4 secs.

BENTLEY DRIVERS’ CLUB

The Bentley Drivers’ Club is extremely active at the present time, as is evidenced by the following. Recently there was a tea at The Shoes (Lalehaan)—a very successful “do.” Then a picnic party to Savernake Forest especially blessed by the clerk of the weather. This was followed by an evening meeting at Chertsey Bridge Hotel. So much for the social side.

A Gymkhana, the first of the Club’s, is to be held on Saturday, 2nd July, at Leverstock Green near St. Albans. Details and entry forms will shortly be circularised to members.

The Secretary’s address is as follows : A. C. Clark, 809, Regent Street, W.1.

J.C.C.

The Yorkshire Centre recently held a rally over a route of 75 miles, from Thirsk to Scarborough, embracing some very fine North Riding scenery. On the Sunday morning this run was followed by a stiff trial.

Over forty competitors turned out. The best visitor was T. C. Wise (Ford V8), and of the J.C.C. Yorkshire contingent the best performance was made by F. A. Rhodes (B.M.W.).

C. P. Glanville smashed a gear selector during the rally tests, and his 1930 Morris Minor was obliged to retire.

In a stop and restart test during the trial C. D. Hubbard (Riley) established fastest time.

The Evening ‘r on May 22nd attracted an entry oL forty-seven. The hills were all in an easy-to-ascend state.

CALEDONIAN M,C.

A recent standard type trial attracted an extremely good entry. The Premier Award went to T. W. Stewart, whose T-type M.G. only lost one point. W. S.

Miller (Hutchison-Special) won the opposite class. First-class awards were won by W. K. Elliot (T-M.G.), G. MurrayFrame (T-M.G.) and R. Mickel (T-M.G.). Second-class awards went to R. Chassels and E. Johnstone (Riley).

BERKHAMSTED & D. M.C. & C.C. AND HERTS COUNTY A.C.

A speed trial at a new venue at Studham was run off on June 26th. As usual, the organisation was excellent and the setting, in beautiful parkland, is certainly ideal. The 300-yard slightly winding course is loose surfaced, rather narrow, and flanked by odd trees of considerable dimensions and rigidity.

The Frazer-Nash brigade made some excellent steady runs, but an AlmackAustin was inclined to snake, and neither Rogers’s Montlitery M.G. nor Synunond’s R-type M.G. was cracking correctly. Wilkes did some very fast work with his really magnificently turned-out stripped chassis G.N., which has chain-driven o.h. camshafts and Austin Seven hubs. Watson’s rakish twin push-rod G.N. was not running healthily and Perring’s Talbot did not go fast enough to blow its driver’s headgear away. The saloon cars, including a Talbot and a big Buick, looked very impressive with clouds of dust flying in their wake. Wilkes ran his 12/60 Alvis, which tows the G.N., in the sports classes.

Fastest time and course record went to Haesendonck’s blown PB M.G. Midget, with the Wilkes G.N. as runner-up. We hope to attend many more events at this very pleasant venue.

GENERAL NOTES

For once, Shelsley provided an uneventful journey, in heavy rain in a Vauxhall saloon. The next day a four-speed Austin Seven took us first to inspect a speed-trial course, which led to the discovery of a G.W.K. and a small SizaireBerwick in a couotry-breaker’s yard, and then to inspect a 1908 Rover, owned by Messrs. Rice Bros., the Ford agents of Horsham, a car which we had hoped to use in a Hospitals’ Veteran Rally and probably would have used had the event in question taken place. In spite of the fact that the afternoon was well advanced when we had disposed of the Rover, we cheerfully set off on a long and involved cross-country run to Maidstone, where we arrived in time to see the last car complete the tests that concluded the Maidstone and Mid-Kent M.C. Rally. This seemed a bad business, especially as, ever since the negotiation of the very Continental-to.. .; Tunbridge Wells, we had been sadly conscious that we had neglected thc inner man since rather early in the morning, when truly excellent coffee and scones had been partaken of at a favourite port-of-call at Milford— which I hope does not disclose either the identity of this spot, or that of what may turn out to be a quite promising speed trial venue ! Seeking to appease the inner man, we joined up with a party of fellow enthusiasts and soon found our

selves at Maidstone Zoo. A short but incredibly terrifying ride on a smallgauge railway, in close and swaying proximity to some very hard-looking trees, the ” locomotive ” energised by a lusty Morris-Oxford engine, and we were escorted to a meal of most satisfying diversity and proportions. Alas, we were under the impression that Mr. Jupp had contrived a free feed for the Press, and accordingly we ate long into the evening, only to find that a bill was tendered, though the charge really did reflect immense credit on the Zoo’s catering arrangements.

Some horrific adventures occurred shortly afterwards in an endeavour to take into our possession an early small car, an A.B.C. being finally unearthed at a breaker’s, driven to London, and prepared for a run to Prescott. That run terminated at Stoken.church, the wrong side of Oxford, when the big-end bearing flew through the crankcase, after the speedometer had recorded a velocity as high as 68 m.p.h.—but that is another story, which may be told some day. The next week-end we took an old Austin Seven and went to Birmingham via Oxford and Chipping Norton, with the object of inspecting a 1922 Rhode, whose history may some day grace the pages of this paper, if all goes as planned. The long day’s motoring left behind pleasant memories of true hospitality on the part of those who were enthusiasts and those who were not. We inadvertently went to Chipping Norton via Charibury, a route embracing a very charming piece of country, which you may care to investigate one of these days when you are not in a hurry to get to or from Prescott or Shelsley. After much diving around Birmingham, up one-way streets and either side of islands in other most imposing one-way thoroughfares—we never go near B’ham without getting lost–we filled the sump for the second time that day, tanked up, blew up a subsiding tyre, and settled down to a non-stop run home which, in spite of negligible lights and poor brakes, to say nothing of astonishing road-holding, in the sarcastic sense, took only about three hours for 100 miles, so that we were in London town again by midnight, pondering, as so often before, on the very moderate cruising speeds adopted by drivers of rapid moderns possessed of first-class brakes and impeccable” chassis

qualities.” When we looked in what serves the Austin for a tonneau we found therein a large 30 m.p.h. sign studded with glistening reflectors as with precious stones–but I disclaim any knowledge of how that came to be there . . . A subsequent afternoon was spent visiting Brooklan.ds in a white FrazerNash-B.M.W. Type 55 driven by J. Eason-Gibson, who thereby regained former prestige, for we had last seen him carrying a cat, encaged in a basket, in so sober a vehicle as a Morris 25 saloon, following his return from driving an H.R. G. in the Scottish Rally Next came a delightful evening taking a 4+-litre Bentley down to Milford for the J.C.C. Evening Trial, the immense acceleration and 80 m.p.h. cruising, allied to very powerful braking and variable suspension, characteristics enabling us to cope very effectively with the congested roads, in direct contrast to the car’s silent negotiation of the mass of traffic in the region of Putney Bridge. The run home, the winged-B mascot on the big filler-cap rising and falling in the beam of the big headlamps, the speedometer indicating 90 m.p.h. along the straights, and no sound save the rush of wind disturbing our manner of going, emphasised very adequately the charm

of the modern Bentley on deserted open roads, when bed begins to call and you are still far from home. In direct contrast the Bentley was used in London traffic the next day, and one smiled at the thought of the immense acceleration and speed in command, as passers-by glanced admiringly at the graceful lines of a car which ran at walking pace in top gear with only a low murmur from the exhaust; the undulations of London’s hard-used thoroughfares vanished under suspension now used with the over-ride control at “soft.” Only when a V8 challenged away from traffic lights would come a temptation to flick in a lower ratio and bring into play the full power of the engine, and even then only little bursts of road dust from the rear wheels and the slight protest of tyres as the servo brakes thereafter subdued the pace to the legal 30 m.p.h. indicated to an enthusiast amongst the passers-by what fun we were having . . .

A trip was made to Studham to see the Berks’s new speed trials, the surrounding countryside being quite charming on a sunny, lethargic Sunday afternoon, part of which was also spent watching the gliding on Dunstable Downs, a spot which you should certainly visit if you have not already done so. There is a pleasant lack of officialdom, no admission charges, and onlookers are obviously welcomed. Getting lost in suburbia with the Austin we came upon a most interesting 90 V-twin oil-cooled (2 gallon sump I) Belsize Bradshaw two-seater, which, we learnt, was still giving excellent service in the hands of a dance-band drummer. The flywheel was situated at the front of the quite intriguing twin-cylinder engine and the magneto had been replaced by an eightcylinder distributor with six of its contacts blanked out. The owner was most enthusiastic, finding this old small car quite sound transport, and possessed of solid bodywork and good accessibility. Deep in thought, we proceeded on our snaky way, grappling with steering a mere half-a-dozen summers old . . .