Letters from Readers, July 1948
Radio contact in racing
With reference to your mention on page 187 of the June issue in which you state that “This was probably the first race in which radio contact was established between cars and pits,” you may remember that the Lagonda team with, I believe, Alan Hess, tried radio communication between the cars and the pits during a long-distance race at Brooklands in 1937 or 1938. I was there on that occasion and I was told that communication was never entirely satisfactory, but was at its best when the cars were at the most distant portion of the track, and contact was almost impossible when the cars were passing the pits.
I am, Yours, etc.,
Jack M. Reiss
Radio communication between car and depot was also tried by Edge on the Spyker in 1922, by Alvis in 1923 and by the Evans for their M.G. team a few seasons before the war. But Clark’s seems to have been the first successful racing radio transmitting station.–Ed)
From Capt. The Hon. J. C. C. Cavendish
I notice under Club News on page 84 of your March issue that Richards Bros. are interested in the present whereabouts of the third car of the old ” Musketeer ” M.G. N-Magnette team. In case the paragraph escapes the notice of the existing owner, I append some notes that may be of interest, and which you may care to pass on to Richards Bros.
I acquired the third car “Aramis” in early 1939, more or less in its original form, with a view to trials the following winter. It had a completely reconditioned engine following a “blow-up” and, after a little essential work on the chassis by Dyke-Acland at Thame (with whom there was a rather embryonic idea of running the cars as a team again) decided to run it in before preparing it for the trials season. This process was still going on when the war began, and I soon laid the car up with all due precautions. (I was incidentally assisted in this by H. Urban-Emmrich, the son of the erstwhile very exuberant Czech dicer of M.G.s. The former unfortunately was killed on a Coastal Command patrol in 1948, and the latter “died in hospital under Gestapo supervision” at an earlier date.)
The car was well looked after during its rest and my absence, and was put on the road again in August, 1945, with surprisingly little trouble, and run with the supercharger removed and replaced with two S.U.s. It competed at Elstree on Easter Monday, 1946, with inconspicuous success, and some time after was sold to G. M. Pentony, who I think intended to use it himself. He must have changed his mind, as I saw the car in Wokingham in July, 1947, then belonging to a Mr. Earley, of a Wokingham firm of estate agents whose name escapes me. It appeared to be in the same trim as when I sold it.
I trust that these few notes may be of some interest and assistance to someone, and that I am not wasting your time in submitting them.
I am, Yours, etc.
Praise where due
In the opening remarks of your report on the meeting at Luton Hoo, in the May issue of Motor Sport it is stated that the Vintage Sports Car Club gave us the first post-war speed event (Elstree) and the only post-war English race meetings (Gransden).
I am aware that these claims have been made by the V.S.C.C. themselves, and with all due respect for the club, and for the enjoyable events for which they have been responsible, I would point out that neither claim can be substantiated by the facts.
The first post-war speed event was at Naish Hill, near Bristol, in 1945, nearly six months before Elstree; it was organised by the Bristol Motorcycle and Light Car Club and saw what I believe to be the first appearance of Gerard with an E.R.A. F.t.d. was made by the late W.O. Watkins with his Watkins-Nash. This meeting was quickly followed by the “Filton Sprint,” run by the Bristol Aeroplane Company Motor Sports Club. This meeting also was held at Bristol, Gerard putting up f.t. d., the fastest motor-cycle being Jock Horsfall with a Vincent-H.R.D. “thousand.” Gerard’s car was that once owned by the late Pat Fairfield.
With regard to the second claim, it is high time that tribute was paid to the Yorkshire Sports Car Club for the organisation and “laying-on” of circuit-racing at Tholthorpe in September of last year. Little publicity appears to have been sought, or given, for this event, in which the organisation, both from the spectators’ and competitors’ angles, was first-class.
I am, Yours, etc,