WB Rumblings, July 2005

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It is worth noting that the Midland AC, which was founded in 1901 and has since 1905 held the famous Shelsley Walsh hillclimbs, has also trials and other events on its fixture list. This year’s Clee Hills Trial was held successfully in spite of extreme winter weather facing the 75 starters. The winner was Adrian Marfell (VW Beetle). Four of the class winners drove VWs, the others a Morris-JAP, a Dutton, a Ford Escort, a Wolseley Hornet and a Troll. The Shelsley Walsh Gala Centenary Dinner is on August 12.

***

Among recent VSCC events, Alan Lupton won the Northern Trophy in the rally of that name on April 30, driving his 1928 Lea-Francis, and the following day speed trials were held at Curborough, at which FTD went to Tom Walker in the 1926 Parker-GN, which was also the fastest pre-war car, beating the ERA R14B by 0.87sec. In The John Harris Trial on May 12, the Dick Batho Trophy went to Barry Clarke (A7), the Patrick Marsh Trophy to David Saxl (Riley 12/4 Special).

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It is commendable that the 50th anniversary of the 1955 Mercedes Mille Miglia victory by Moss with Jenkinson was so widely celebrated. Although having no direct connection with Brooklands this epic win was recognised by the Museum Trust, when appropriate cars assembled in the paddock — no problem, as all kinds of them from small Fiats upwards took part in that race. This assembly was a foretaste of seeing appropriate items of art and memorabilia in the Brooklands Museum, followed by a dinner and a talk by Peter Stevens, MD of the MG SV supercar project and stylist of the McLaren F1 road car. If you are puzzled as to what connection he has with the Mille Miglia, his uncle was Denis Jenkinson. Sir Stirling Moss OBE could not attend as he was in Brescia  ” lining up for the event in the same Mercedes-Benz”, but his memories of 1955 were video-relayed. Does one, perhaps, sense a bit of DaimlerChrysler influence behind this memorable event?

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Lord March has invited Gerald Firkins to bring to the Goodwood Festival of Speed the truly exciting LSR 1905 V8 200hp Darracq for which he has made a very authentic chassis in which to install the original engine. This will be a very much appreciated exhibit: static it may be, but don’t forget that Sir Algernon Lee Guinness drove it at over 121mph on Saltburn sands 97 years ago!