“Thunder at Shelsley Walsh” – that might well be the title of this review of the first post-war Shelsley, the first International event on the British Calendar since hostilities ceased. The rain was torrential and spoilt any chace of fast times. Nevertheless, the crowd was quite up to pre-war standards; indeed at half-time a line of cars a mile long awaited admittance to the famous Worcestershire venue.
To qualify to run in the afternoon, certain entrants had to clock 50 seconds or under during the morning, and this took heavy toll of the 117 entries. The 500-c.c. cars and Edwardians were exempt, but with the exception of the Lightweight Special, none of the remaining seven 750-c.c. cars qualified and so there was virtually no 750-c.c. class. Other classes suffered a similar loss of runners and, in the end, only 65 cars competed in the afternoon. The programme concluded quite late, even so, so maybe the organisers are right, but it would seem better to either set a more lenient qualifying time for the smaller cars, certainly in wet weather, or else let in the faster cars on their qualifying times irrespective of a set standard. Strength is lent to this argument when you consider that, out of 65 runners, only 38 exceeded 50 sec. on their best runs, in the event proper.
The Paddock, fortunately now having covered bays for the competitors, was very crowded with racing machinery and exuded all the beloved sounds and scents. Lady helpers, really doing jobs of work, were in evidence, and everyone was mightily cheerful in spite of the promise of more rain.
News of non-runners began to get around. The dirt-track Skirrow Midget wasn’t present. Woodall’s White Riley was absent; Southon’s F.W.D. Alvis was without bearings, new ones not being ready to schedule; Ansell’s Bugatti and Maserati were out; likewise the Peugeot Rivers-Fletcher was down to drive; Allard couldn’t get his Allard ready; Hutchison had hit a wall in the Jeans Cup Trial and did not produce his Allard; “Fuzzi,” now with V8 Ford engine, couldn’t be completed in time; C. A. N. Mays’s Ford was missing, and there were a few other gaps.
Snooping round we discovered much to intrigue. Geoffrey Taylor was warming up the transmission of the ex-O’Boyle Alta on jacks, and the new 2-litre engine. had something very special about its induction arrangements. The G.N. “Wasp” was having its front cowling fitted and had a coil ignition distributor at the front of its crankcase, fed from a, Lucas motor-cycle battery. Its old V-twin G.N. engine had a downdraught, T.T. Amal carburetter to each “pot” and hairpin valve springs. The Dowson Special drew a big crowd to admire its lines and take in the Type 4 Zoller supercharger driven by twin chains, the 45° downdraught S.U. carburetter and, again, coil ignition by Lucas motor-cycle battery. The B.H.S. Special sported a Frazer-Nash-type chassis with dural side-members, a Ford V8 engine and an Armstrong-Siddeley self-sorting gearbox. One chain drove the rear axle and there was a single seat above a sort of dural platform at the back. The Norris-Special comprised a very clean F.W.D. Alvis 4-cylinder engine with Roots blower and Solex carburetter, cooled by a “12/50” Alvis radiator, in a Frazer-Nash chassis. The Carlrnark-Special had a new body, tiny coil springs to look after its front suspension and no rear springs of any sort, the rear-placed V-twin J.A.P. engine being relied upon to keep the back down. “Mephistophelgatti,” A. T. Norton’s car, was a ponderous structure built round a shortened Type 30 Bugatti chassis and a V12 Lincoln “Zephyr” engine. Instone’s G.N. was there, of course, its Zoller-blown J.A.P. engine having a two-float T.T. Amal carburetter, transverse B.T.H. magneto and very long inlet piping. The Hudson-engined Skinner-Special, now known as a Triangle-Special, bore in its steering-wheel centre the plaque “Balken Sobraine Smoking Mixture.” Baillie-Hill had brought a Shelsley-Special built in four days — Ford V8 engine in Frazer-Nash chassis. It had hardly any right steering lock and didn’t run, being towed away behind a 3-litre Bentley. Pollock’s Frazer-Nash was a “Shelsley” with Blackburn Six engine; “Chatterbox,” the four-wheel Morgan, had typical two-chain final drive, and George Symonds was there with the ex-Brettell Austin Seven single-seater. The hose on the inlet pipe of the Wharton-Special (blownM.G. engine in Austin Seven chassis) pulsed happily and a boot-polish tin full of oil looked after blower lubrication. Buck, in a lurid shirt, was running a 1925 Type 35, straight-eight G.P. Bugatti.
Yes, this was Shelsley Walsh all right! Apart from “specials,” some very modern and famous racing machinery was present, and the old G.N. “Spider,” due to be handled by Basil Davenport himself, sat lonely and unattended in a far bay.
Gerard’s E.R.A. had a double-choke Weber carburetter and a square fuel tank under the scuttle. It was nice to see the ex-Percy Maclure blown 1 1/2-litre Riley with André-Girling i.f.s., and with a neat, new body, out again, driven by L. H. Davenport.
Rain began to fall heavily two minutes before the climbs were due to start, and the 500-c.c. cars opened proceedings in fearful weather. Lones took “Tiger-Kitten” away steadily, slid about somewhat, held his little car, and did 53.86 sec. Strang followed, steadier, but working at the tiller, to clock 54.12 sec. Dowson then came up untimed, having missed the “spoon,” sliding near the finish. The Appleton-Special was really quick, taking 15 sec. to the crossing but sliding badly out of the S-bend – 47.1 sec. R. Turner, with Gerard’s four-Amal-carburetted “Brooklands” Riley, noisy with its stub-exhausts, clocked 50.97 sec., and then Weir (M.G.) came up cautiously in 51.99 sec. Richards came rapidly into the S-bend in the “Brooklands” Riley, sliding and blipping (54.12 sec.); Harrison won the class with the Sports “Ulster T.T.” Riley, and Instone gallantly fought “Martyr” to the top in 55.03 sec. Claridge’s G.N.-chassis Frazer-Nash looked slow (52.97 sec.). These cars — the classes were deliberately run jumbled to sustain interest — now descended the hill and the crowd gave signs of liking the 500-c.c. ascents,and Lones’s in particular.
Gerard then brought the E.R.A. up, experiencing tailslides and the rear axle juddering as he turned on the heat out of the “S.” His time was 45.47 sec., and Ansell’s E.R.A. couldn’t beat it (46.24 sec.); although he got away well, he raised the mud from the outside bank leaving the “S.” Then Mays-arms working furiously, looking sedate through the “S,” and with that hurtling acceleration up to the finish. The black 2-litre E.R.A. sent out quite a bit of dark smoke and a boot-polish tang. We held our breath and waited-yes, 43.75 sec., which was fastest of all the first runs.
That excitement over, Basil Davenport, white crash-hat perched on his head, made a terrific come-back with the ancient G.N. “Spider.” All over the road, he struggled mightily with the little righthand gear-lever and never lifted his foot for a fraction more than was absolutely essential. His 47.65 sec. was richly deserved.
Bolster then occupied the centre of the road in a scuttling “Mary,” a fine start and rapid upward changes on the straight resulting in a time of 50.77 sec. Cowell’s black 2-litre all-independent Alta was beautifully handled, although it just grazed the bank beyond the “S” (45.81 sec.), and the old Skinner-Special, sliding beyond the start, and most of the way thereafter, did 48.64 sec. Its rear wings were in place, incidentally. Geoffrey Taylor climbed carefully in clouds of spray (the rain now absolutely torrential), in 50.68 sec. Another cloud of spray proved to be Kenneth Evans in the “2.9” Monoposto Alfa-Romeo, with which Nuvolari once won the German G.P. It looked slow and proved very quick – 46.61 sec. Peter Monkhouse then came up on a fine, untroubled ascent in his Type 51 Bugatti, still with the familiar strip wings, in 43.8 sec.
At this point Earl Howe consulted with Leslie Wilson about a stream of mud which was running down the right-hand side of the course. Nothing much could be done about it, and after some delay the motor racing continued – the B.B.C. having come back to Shelsley as golf and tennis were, very literally, “washed out”!
A very good ascent by Mrs. Mortimer in her husband’s 1 1/2-litre Alta ended the break, her time being excellent (50.69 sec.), and then Lady Mary Grosvenor, in the black Allard which Sydney Allard used to drive so fast, did her usual tour up the course (59.35 sec.). Brooke, on the now body-less Brooke-Special with 1 1/2-litre E.R.A. engine, exhaust flashing back, drove well (50.27 sec.), and Dowson did splendidly on his re-run (47.7 sec.). The Triangle Special, with Cozette blown Meadows engine, clocked 53.21 sec., after a good start, and Parnell, with the 16 valve ex-Wakefield Maserati, held his car well through the “S,” went close to the bank leaving the corner, and recorded 46.73 see. A very brave Carlmark now came up all over the road, having gone up the bank near the start; front wheels flapping wildly, throttle foot hard down when lesser men would have braked – 48.24 sec., fastest in the 751-1,100-c.c. class. Sir Clive Edwards then toured up in his 1 1/2-litre Singer-engined sports H.R.G. (62.29 sec.).
Came Whitehead in the E.R.A., said to have a Z.F. differential. He cut close in entering the “S,” diced madly, starting handle swinging with the car’s movements, hit the upper bank and roared away to the finish, all in 46.77 sec. Steadier, also swifter, was Abecassis in the silver 1 1/2-litre Alta, now so well on form as to do 44.09 sec. The ex-Maclure Riley blipped its way up in 49.24 sec., and Williams in the ex-Hunter 1 1/2-litre Alta made a sensible climb, displaying fine acceleration (49.57 sec.). Newton, who had had the head (deflector type!) off the old Baillie-Hill Meadows H.R.G. in the morning, suffered bad pinking, but managed 52.42 sec. A. Parnell, as we have come to expect, was polished with the ex.”Bira” Delage, blipping through the “S” to exactly equal Newton’s time, while some real motoring came with Hampshire’s ascent, the elderly six-cylinder 1 1/2-litre Maserati clocking 45.44 sec. Vaughan adopted a new position on the line with the amazing Becke, slid wildly out of the “S,” held the skid skilfully and snaked his way to the finishing banner – 46.61 sec. Then Mortimer, fighting wheelspin in the Alta, came up in 47.2 sec., sufficiently quicker than his wife’s time to obviate any domestic inferiority!
Shaw-Taylor then had a party with Ansell’s E.R.A., going on to the grass at Kennel-bend, and hitting both banks at the “S” (46.0 sec., nevertheless). Whincop used great exertion to extract 48.71 sec. from the ex-Shuttleworth “2.3” Bugatti. Noel Carr, on the ex-A. J. Cormack blown 1 1/2-litre Alta, possessed excellent acceleration but drove cautiously (49.16 sec.), the A.C. Six-engined, sports-bodied, Kaiserwagen had its steering wheel sawed-at unmercifully (50.57 sec.), and Lloyd-Jones, with the ex-Fane single-seater, twin-blower “Shelsley” Frazer-Nash which once held the record, forgot that such a car needs air-pressure in its fuel tank (52.49 sec.). Claridge then showed us how to slide a Frazer-Nash (51.58 sec.), Harrison held a bad skid going into the “S” with his ex-Dixon 2-litre Riley (47.43 sec.), and Gordon Wilkins slid about in his “328” B.M.W., the engine seeming to get drowned as he negotiated the “S” (53.62 sec.). Unfamiliar in a crash hat, Leslie Johnson treated us to his usual sliding technique into the corners, the “328” B.M.W. clocking 48.97 sec., and then Bear, in the four-carburetter, 3-litre Bugatti, provided the first real incident, skidding round as he entered the “S “bend and running forwards across the road and up the bank. He reversed out and continued – 62.37 sec. Gerard’s 6-cylinder, 1 1/2-litre Riley, with six Amal carburetters, was rather wild, but skilfully handled (49.07 sec.); Fairman’s Type 35C Bugatti made a good get-away (51.4 sec.), and Newsome’s special, twin-rear-wheeled S.S. seemed to fluff, but did 47.8 sec., a fine show. Bear then ascended in yet another Bugatti, his Type 51, going off the road near the finish on a really fast, class-winning climb (45.17 see.), and Noel Carr, now in the ex-Beadle 2-litre Alta, went over the grass near the start and hit the bank beyond the finish (45.72 sec.) The Mercury-engined “Spook” came up steadily, one tail-wag easily held, to win the 3-litre class (46.67 sec.), Whalley’s 4-seater V8 Ford was slow (54.51 sec.), and then Windsor-Richards treated us to a real dice in his S.S., of strident exhaust note, to clock a very praiseworthy 50.13 sec. Lord Waleran’s S.S. wasn’t much slower (50.71 sec.), but Davenport’s ex-Dixon 2-litre Riley experienced a front wheel slide and went up the bank at the “S”-bend. Neve drove the 1914 T.T. Humber splendidly (61.07 see.), and then a squeal of brakes and Sam Clutton appeared in the 1908 Itala, in a great slide. This he corrected and, collecting no banks (but only just!), thundered away from the “S,” disappearing momentarily from view as he stooped to heave another gear in (54.03 sec.). Peter Clark was very steady in the authentically-white 1914 G.P. Mercédès (56.7 sec.), Leslie Johnson’s ex-Lace, ex-Connell Darracq, removed some soil from the landscape leaving the “S” (49.68 sec.), and then Bolster, his 1911 Rolls-Royce relieved of its headlamps and hood, toured up in majestic silence in 85.23 sec. Heal placed the big 1910 Fiat very nicely indeed through the “S” (51.81 sec.), winning, the big-car class; Marcus Chambers did not need to ease up appreciably at the bends with the 1908 Hutton (75.21 sec.), and Rodney Clarke’s beautiful chain-drive Bugatti, of 1913 vintage, accelerated like a young thing, to do 58.9 sec. Dr. Ewen finally ascended nicely in the Itala, in 56.2 sec.
That concluded the first half, and almost at once Lones opened play again. This time Strang just beat him, to win the 500-c.c. class. Dowson, snaking along the final straight, improved his time to 46.76 sec., but Appleton, although slower than before, won his class. Most people did improve on their first runs, and the times listed at the end of this report, compared with those already given, will show whether this was so or not.
Parnell broadsided in starting the Delage, the “Spider” did a truly rousing 45.65 sec., fastest unblown time, and then Abecassis clocked fastest time yet in his Alta – 43.17 sec.- modestly ignoring the acclamation of the spectators as he returned. Whitehead was very rapid in spite of skids, the E.R.A. doing 44.28 sec., but it was, of course, left to Raymond Mays, on a truly polished drive, to show everyone the way-he managed 42.79 sec. over a wet course on his second run.
Gerard, with the ex-Wilson E.R.A., lost time due to the front end going straight on, poor Moor never got the “Wasp” going at all, and Shawe-Taylor was again wild, hitting the bank twice, yet clocking 44.92 sec. Cowell was steady and really fast (44.87 sec. – .03 slower than before); Bear’s 3-litre Bugatti clouted the bank hard, beyond the “S,” but won its class nevertheless – Bear’s second class-victory; Evans snaked the Alfa-Romeo up in 46.11 sec., and Newsome’s S.S. did a terrific 46.95 sec.
The Skinner-Special motored well and truly up the bank and got immense spin in re-starting after the episode; Carr’s 1 1/2-litre Alta was faster than his 2-litre on a fine run occupying but 45.39 sec.; Heal’s Fiat was slower away this time, and Leslie Johnson, using his special cornering technique with the Darracq, made fastest sports car time in 47.44 see. Carr’s 2-litre Alta had trouble on its second ascent.
That concluded one of the wettest of Shelsleys. Racing cars were tied to towcars, loaded on to trailers or pushed into their vans, and wet drivers and mechanics sought their divers items of bedraggled kit. Spectators threw sodden coats and umbrellas into the back of saloons and tried to get out of the car park, assisted by a hard-worked tractor, for which a charge was made. A bad show that, especially as many cars had to be abandoned until the Sunday. That was Shelsley Walsh again-and all it means to thousands of enthusiasts. Thank you, Leslie Wilson
Fastest Climb: Raymond Mays (2-litre E.R.A., S.), 42.79 sec.
Second Fastest: George Abeeassis (I 1/2-litre Alta, S.), 43.17 sec.
Fastest Unsupercharged: B. H. Davenport (1,496 twin-cylinder Frazer-Nash). 45.65 sec.
Fastest Unsupercharged, “Not a Special”: T. C. Harrison (1,986 Riley). 46.36 sec.
Fastest Sports Car: L. G. Johnson (4-litre Darracq), 47.44 sec.
Fastest Climb by a Lady: Mrs. C. Mortimer (1 1/2-litre Alta, S.), 50.60 sec.
Fastest “Shelsley Special”: C. P. Vaughan (1,272 Becke-Powerplus, S.), 45.25 sec.
Fastest Veteran Car: Anthony Heal (10-litre Fiat, 1910), 51.21 sec.
Special Awards for Vintage Sporting Car Club Members: 1, C. P. Vaughan (Becke-Powerplus), 45.25 sec.; 2, A. R. Parnell (1 1/2-litre Delage, S,), 47.26 sec.; 3, J. E. G. Fairman (2-litre Bugatti, S.), 50.66 sec.
500-c.c.: C. H. Strang (499 Strang “500 “), 52.46 sec.
750-c.c. S.: J. M. P. Dowson (747 Dowson Lightweight Special, S.), 46.76 sec.
750-c.c., U/S.: No runners.
1,100-c.c., S.: R. .T. Appleton (1,100 Appleton Special, S.), 47.10 sec.
1,100-c.c., U/S.: H. D. Carlmark (998 Carlmark Special), 48.24 sec.
1,500-c.c., S.: G. Abecassis (1 1/2-litre Alta, S.), 43.17 sec.
1,500-c.c., U/S.: B. H. Davenport (1,496 Frazer-Nash), 45.65 sec.
2-Litres, S.: R.. Mays (E.R.A., 8.), 42.79 sec.
2-Litres, U/S. : T. C. Harrison (Riley), 46.36 sec.
3-Litres, S.: K. W. Bear (2.3 Bugatti, S.), 45.17 sec.
3-Litres, U/S.: K. W. Bear (2.9 Bugatti), 47.28 sec.
5-Litres, S. : No runners.
5-Litres, U/S.: 3. Northway (3.9 Mercury-Nash “Spook”), 40.59 sec.
Ulimited, S. or U/S.: A. S. Heal (10-litre 1910 Flat), 51.21 sec.
Best Times by Classes
500-c.c.: 1, 0. H. Strang (499 Strang), 52.46 sec.; 2, H. C. Lones (490 Tiger Kitten), 53.78 sec.
750-c.c. (one runner): 1, J. M. P. Dowson (747 Dowson Lightweight Special, S.), 46.76 sec.
1,100-c.c.: 1, R. J. Appleton (Appleton Special S.), 47.10 sec.; 2, H. D. Carlmark (998 Carlmark), 48.24 sec.: 3, R. M. Turner (1,100 Riley), 50.97 sec.; 4. .J. R. Weir (M.G., S.), 51.99 sec.; 5, H. A. Richards (Riley), 53.15 sec.; 6, C. R. Instone (998 G.N. Martyr), 55.03 sec.
1,500-c.c. : 1, G. Abecassis (Alta, S.), 43.17 sec.; 2 D. A. Hampshire (Maserati, S.), 44.13 sec.; 3, P. N. Whitehead (E.R.A. S.), 44.28 sec.; 4, B. N. Shawe-Taylor (E.R.A., S.), 44.92 sec.; 5, R. E. Ansell (E.R.A., S.), 45.00 sec.; 6, F. R. Gerard (E.R.A., S.), and R. Parnell (Maserati. S.), 45.47 sec.
2-Litres: 1, R. Mays (E.R.A., S.), 42.79 sec.; 2, R,. M. Cowell (Alta, S.), 44.89 sec.; 3, Noel Carr (Alta, S.), 45.72 sec.; 4, T. C. Harrison (Riley U/S.), 46.36 sec.; 5, G. Taylor (Alta, S.), 47.57 sec.; 6, I. G. Johnson (B.M.W.), 48.94 sec.
3-Litres: 1, K. W. Bear (2.3 Bugatti, S.), 45.17 sec.; 2, P. R. Monkhouse (2.3 Bugatti, S.), 45.26 sec.; 3, K. D. Evans (2.9 Alfa-Romeo, S.), 46.11 sec.; 4, K. W. Bear (2.9 Bugatti, U/S.), 47.28 sec.; 5, A. C. Whincop (2.3 Bugatti, S.), 47.98 sec.
5-Litres (No Supercharged Runners): 1, J. Northway (3.9 Mercury-Nash, “The Spook”), 46.59 sec.; 2, S. H. Newsome (3.5 Jaguar “100”), 46.95 sec.; 3, L. G. Johnson (4-litre Darraq), 47.44 sec.; 4, E. Lloyd Jones (4-litre Triangle-Skinner Special), 48.64 sec.; 5, Lord Waleran (3.5 SS “100”), 49.81 sec.; 6, C. Windsor Richards (3.5 Jaguar “100”), 50.13 sec.
Unlimited (No Supercharged Runners): 1, A. S. Heal (10-litre Fiat, 1910), 51.21 sec.; 2, C. .Clutton (12-litre Itala, 1908), 52.68 sec.; 3, Dr. G. A. Ewen (driving the same Itala), 56.20 sec.; 4, R. E. Clarke (5-litre Bugatti, 1913), 58.90 sec.; 5, M. Chambers (5.8-litre Hutton “Little Dorritt,” 1908), 75.21. sec.; 6, J. Bolster (7.4-litre Rolls-Royce, 1911), 80.67 sec.
Held during the morning before the hill-climb proper. Only those climbing in less than 50 sec. were qualified to drive in the afternoon’s event.
Qualified: R. J. Appleton (Appleton Special 1,100, S.), 48.74 sec.; T. C. Harrison (1 1/2-litre Riley), 49.99 sec.; L. G. Johnson (B.M.W. 2-litre), 47.65 sec.; G. Crossley (2-litre B.M.W.), 49.61 sec.; T. C. Harrison (2-litre Riley), 45.79 sec.
Failed to Qualify but Climbed Under 55 Sec.:
G. H. Symonds (747 Austin, S.), 50.27 sec.; M. Chambers (747 Austin, S.), 52.77 sec.; F. C. K. Wharton (Wharton Special, S.), 53.59 sec.; R. Salvadori (747 M.G., S.), 52.66 sec.; E. W. K. Lund (939 M.G., S.),.54.81 sec.; R. B. Maltby (1,500 Riley), 51.09 sec.; J. B. Norris (1,500 Norris Special, S.), 54.05 sec. R. E. Wright (1,500 Frazer-Nash), 54.73 sec.; T. A. D. Crook (1,971 Frazer-Nash-B.M.W.), 50.16 sec.; G. Tyrer (1,971 Frazer-Nash-B.M.W.), 52.67 sec.; M. A. H. Christie (3,622 Price Special), 53.16 sec.; O. Moore (1,971 B.M.W,), 52.05 sec.; C. C. D. Miller (1,808 Riley), 52.27 sec.; G. F. Yates (2.9 Maserati, S.), 50.49 sec. J. D. Im Thum (4,398 Bentley), 52.92 sec.; G. Slater (1,500 Riley), 51.83 sec.; S. J. Gilbey (2.9 Alfa-Romeo Sports 53.34 sec.; B. E. Bradnack (3.5 Jaguar), 51.77 sec,: L. Potter (3.8 Allard), 51.98 sec.; J. Marshall (7.3 Leyland Thomas), 51.53 sec.
Before the afternoon runs commenced, Orlebar was filmed by the news-reel men, driving up the hill behind their van in his A.C. Six-engined Frazer-Nash Special, “Rabelro.”
Gilbey’s “2.3” Alfa-Romeo had a semi-aerodynamic body.
Marcus Chambers, following John Bolster’s lead, loaded all his kit on to the 1908 Hutton and towed his Austin Seven racer behind it.
Kenneth Neve had lights and wings on the 1914 T.T. Humber and, after the meeting, was eating in Worcester and then driving that night to Hereford.
Vans containing racing cars were still encountered going London-wards at 2 a.m. on the Sunday.
Gerard’s van, containing his E.R.A. and assorted Rileys, stuck on a hill near the course and caused an immense traffic jam.
“Jerry-cans” were noticed in the Paddock labelled “For racing car only.”
Raymond Mays was lent a huge umbrella to shelter under as he received his token at the “S”-bend after the meeting. Afterwards the E.R.A. accelerated away to the Paddock with much humanity clinging to it.
Leslie Johnson now takes a good view of the Darracq. He refused to scatter the soaking crowds walking down the road after the last climbs, saying, “That would hardly be fair today, would it! “
In the Paddock the row of beer glasses on the bonnet of Neve’s Humber was a stimulating sight!
Kenneth Evans’s Alfa-Romeo arrived in a plain van.
R. L. Walkerley, Harold Nockolds, Motor Sport, lots of ladies and, towards the end, anyone who was about, crowded the sagging Press tent, very glad of its protection.
Lady Mary Grosvenor’s Allard lost its fan belt in practice.
Lesile Wilson used a Wolseley saloon to patrol the course. It was the slowest Shelsley since September, 1936, due to the rain-on that occasion Mays could not manage better than 43.31 sec., again due to conditions.
How nice to see the Frazer-Nash “Spider” out again – it held the record in 1926, 1927 and 1928, clocking 46.2 sec. the last-named year. This time it did 45.65 sec., fastest unblown time, and in the wet! Some “come-back”!
The announcer quoted some times from the start to the crossing, and Motor Sport hand-timed nearly all cars through the “S”-bend, on their second runs, from points not entailing much braking or final acceleration. As a matter of interest these are given hereafter. By our timing, the fastest driver through the on the second runs, was Vaughan in the Becke-Powerplus, in 6.8 sec. Newton (H.R.G.) and Dowson (Lightweight) took 7.0 sec., and Claridge (Frazer Nash), Whitehead (E.R.A.), Hampshire (Maserati), Davenport (“Spider”), Abecassis (Alta), Leslie Johnson (B.M.W.), Bear (Type 51 Bugatti) and Windsor-Richards (S.S.) all took 7.2 sec. Raymond Mays was timed at 7.6 sec.
Those using twin rear tyres were :
Mays (E.R.A.), Abecassis (Alta), Whitehead (E.R.A.), Cowell (Alta), Shawe-Taylor, Ansell (E.R.A.), Bear (Type 51 Bugatti), Vaughan (Becke), Carr (1 1/2 litre Alta), Gerard (E.R.A.), Parnell (Maserati), Mortimer, Mrs. Mortimer (Alta), Carr (2-litre Alta), Northway (“Spook”), Appleton (Appleton-Special), Parnell (Delage), Bear (3-litre Bugatti), Williams (Alta), Taylor (Alta), Carlmark (Carlmark), Davenport (Riley), and Lloyd-Jones (Frazer-Nash).