THE SECOND DONINGTON MEETING
THE SECOND DONINGTON MEETING
T. P. CHOLMONDELEY TAPPER (1i-LITRE BUGATTI) BREAKS LAP RECORD-GOOD DRIVING BY R. F. TURNER, A. H. L. ECCLES AND E. K. RAYSON-MANY “PROCESSIONS ” BUT A GOOD 25-MILE HANDICAP EVENT. , FIFTEEN non-starters out of a total entry of 44 is not a good opening to any race meeting, and when 10 out of the remaining 29 take part in one race only then the chance of the meetingbeing a complete suceess is rather remote. This is what happened at Donington Park on May 12th, incl somewhat nega tived all the benefits of good organization, perfect weather, and the fact that at Donington the spectators have a clear
view of the road at all points of the course. The practice periods: provided some excitement when Eason Gibson’s Riley suddenly decided to crack its frame (with dire results to the steering gear) while travelling flat out on the straight leg of the circuit. The car visited the grass verge on both sides of the road in a series of lurches before being skilfully brought
to rest by the driver. A crowd of usual Donington pro portions was comfortably spread out round the two miles 1,000 yards course, picnic lunches under the shade of the huge oak trees being the order of the day, There were plenty of refreshment tents, and altogether the spectators were well provided for as to their comfort and general view’ of the road. Incidentally the new stand which is in course of erection overlooking the Starkey hairpin is a magnificent affair, and quite puts to shame the tiny ” stand ” on the Paddock
Side of the Fork at Brooklands. The racing started with a. five-lap event for unsupercharged 850 c.c. cars.
There were seven starters, all M.G.
Midgets, except T. C. Harrison’s 8h.p. Ford. Harrison, W. G. Everitt and J. R. Grice got away quickest, and reached the first corner together. In the pack behind there was nearly a good pile-up, for L. Levy lost control of his blue Midget, turning right round. in the path of T. J. E. Shute and P. H. Lim. These two cleverly dodged the offending vehicle, which ran slowly down the steep bank On the inside. Levy got back on to the road, but retired after completing
one lap, as did Harrison with the Ford. From then on the race lay between Everitt and Grice, both of whom drove fast and well. Everitt’s car was just a little (picker, and he won by a comfortable margin. The other drivers toured round, and were minutes behind at the
end of the race.
Event 1. Result.
1. W. G. Everitt (M.G.), 14m. 12s.
Speed 54.2 m.p.h.
2. J. R. Grice (M.G.), 14m. 20 1/5s.
Speed 53.75 m.p.h.
3. T. J. Schutte (M.G.), I6m. 37 4/5s.
4. P. H. Lim (M.G.), 16m. 50 4/5s.
5. M. J. Else (M.( ), 17m. 4s.
Fastest lap, W. G. Everitt, 2m. 47 2/5s. An innovation, which was functioning exceedingly well, was a system of tele phones from various points of the course,
connected to the broadcaSter’s room. In this way it was possible to check the progress of the cars all round the circuit, thus greatly adding to the enjoyment
of the racing.
Event 2 produced a field of five cars. There might have been six, for Fred Allen actually came to the line on the M.G. which he inverted SO spectacularly at Southport the previous week, but for some reason or other he drove hack into the Paddock. R. F. Turner, G. H. Goodson and C. D. Parish, all on Austins, were in the front row. On the fall of the flag these three rushed towards the corner, Goodson getting a slight lead, but Turner
reaching the goal first. Turner built up a long lead in the first lap, and soon he appeared at the top of the hill leading down past the Paddock. With only a short cut-out he hurtled round the difficult down-hill curve in a steady slide. Two gear changes brought him to Hairpin Bend, round which be slid in characteristic style, a long way ahead of the field. Goodson was in front of Parish, with the aluminium Cutler
Special away back. On the next lap Parish passed Goodson, and A. R. Samuel (NI.G.) retired from the fray. Turner continued to lap with
complete regularity at a tremendously high speed. His cornering is about the -finest ever seen at Donington, and his handling of the little dark red Austin amounts to nothing less than genius. To watch that long downhill slide was
worth the journey from London alone. And so the race finished, Turner winning
by nearly a minute from Parish.
Event 2. Result.
1. R. F. Turner (Austin), 13m. 4s.
Speed 58,9 m.p.h.
2. C. 1.,) Parish (Austin), 14rn. 2/5s.
Speed 55 m.p.h.
3. G. H. Goodson (Austin), 15M. 43 4/5s. 4. R. J. Richardson (Cutler Special),
Fastest lap, R. F. Turner, 2m. 3 1/5s. A much better field turned out for the third race, for cars blown or unblown up to 1,100 c.c. After the usual hectic start the cars strung out, and by the time
the new Starkey hairpin was reached E. K. Rayson had gained a very comfortable lead. His Riley has become accustomed to the ” 33/180 ” Mercedes supercharger; and sounded very fierce. Two ” L type” M.G. Magnas came next, driven by C. E. Martin and H. L. Maddick, and they were followed by E. Hodges, on a pale blue Le Mans Singer, V. W. Derrington (Salinson), J. R. Grice (M.G. Midgyt), and Pat Fairfield (Riley), who took to the grass in order to pass
A. K. Samuel (M.G.) and A. J. Corinack (Alta). Cormack, however, was not to be disposed of so easily, and his supercharged Alta displayed great acceleration in passing Samuel, Fairfield and Grice on the short stretch before the road rejoins the old circuit with a left-hand bend. Soon after this Fairfield retired, and Derrington did likewise when he reached
New Starkey on the second lap. The order of the rest of the cars remained the same. Lap 3 showed a change, for Cormack (Alta) had slipped past Hodges when the latter skidded on to the grass at New Starkey. On the very last lap Cormack passed Maddick (M.G. Magna), and Samuel got ahead of Grice, but otherwise the order remained as before, with Rayson wknning very easily by 49 seconds from Martin.
Event 3. Result.
1. E. K. Rayson (Riley), 13m. 1/5s. Speed 59.28 m.p.h.
2. C. E. Martin (M.G.), 13m. 495. Speed 55.8 m.p.h.
3. A. J. Cormack (Alta), 13m. 52 3/5s. Speed 55.5 m.p.h.
4. H. L. Maddick (M.G.), 13m. 53 1/5s. Speed 55.6 m.p.h.
5. E. Hodges (Singer), 14m. Speed 55.03 m.p.h.
6. A. R. Samuel (M.G.), 14m. 27s. Speed 53.5 m.p.h.
7. J. R. Grice (M.G.), 14m. 33s. Speed 53 m.p.h. Fastest lap, E. K. Rayson, 2m. 33 4/5s.
The next race was for 1,500 c.c. cars unsupercharged, and produced a keen struggle between those old protagonists, Frazer Nash and Bugatti. H. H. Porter Hargreaves (Frazer Nash) made the best getaway and led for the first lap, closely followed by T. P. Cholmondeley-Tapper (11-litre Bugatti) and Roy Eccles (Frazer Nash). Astern came C:Richardson (Riley), E. Hodges (Singer), S. C. Holloway (Riley) and J. R. Grice (M.G. Midget).
On the second lap CholmondeleyTapper took the lead from PorterHargreaves, with Roy Eccles pressing his car to the limit just behind. Richardson’s Riley passed out and retired at the pits, and Hodges did some lurid work at New Starkey. On one occasion he rushed on to the grass backwards, put his foot hard down to make a rapid departure-and promptly made another complete circle instead I The leaders remained in line-ahead formation, the white Bugatti vanquishing the two Frazer Nashes by a margin of four secs.
Event 4. Result.
1. C. Tapper (Bugatti), 13m. 41s. Speed 56.3 m.p.h.
2. H. P. Hargreaves (Frazer Nash), 13m. 45s. Speed 56.03 m.p.h.
3. R. Eccles (Frazer Nash), 47 4/5s. Speed 56.5 m.p.h.
4. E. Hodges (Singer), 14m. 5 Speed 54.7 m.p.h.
5. H. L. Maddick (M.G.), 14m. 27s. Speed 53.5 m.p.h.
6. J. R. Grice (M.G.), 14m. 43 1/5s. Speed 52.4 m.p.h.
Fastest lap, H. H. P. Hargreaves, 2m. 42 2/5s. 13.in
The next race was, with the possible exception of the last, the least interesting of the whole programme. Rayson’s Riley easily had the measure of Cormack’s Alta, Grice’s M.A. Midget and P. Maclure’s Riley. After two laps the latter fell out, and for the rest of the race the order remained unchanged. Rayson’s car sounded very impressive as it roared through Holly Wood from Red Gate Lodge. Grice’s Midget decided to call it a day, and ran a big end.
Event 5. Result.
1. E. K. Rayson (Riley), 13m. 15 2/5s. Speed 58.1 m.p.h.
Fastest lap, E. K. Rayson, 2m. 37 3/5s. Then came the event of the day, to wit, the 25-Mile Handicap Race for cars blown or unblown up to 3,000 c.c. After much sorting out the field was gradually spread out on the road before the Paddock,
2. A. J. Cormack (Alta), 13m. 48s.
Speed 55.9 m.p.h.
3. J. R. Grice (M.G.), 15m. 32 4/5s.
although much frenzied work had to be done to Hodge’s Singer before it could be persuaded to engage its gear ratios in the required order. At last some nineteen cars were lined up, while marshals informed the drivers of their handicaps-which were not according to programme. L. Levy was the first to start, with his blue M.G. Midget, quickly followed by E. Hodges (Singer). Then A. Powys-Lybbe (Alvis Silver Eagle) and T. C. Harrison (8 h.p. Ford) shot away together, and a moment later an M.G. battle occurred when C. E. C. Martin and H. L. Maddick
unleashed their green Magnas. C. Ti). Parish had a ” solo start ” with his black Austin, but C. H. Goodson (Austin) and C. Richardson (Riley) scrapped hard for the corner. Another one-make battle-this time Frazer Nash-occurred when H. H. Porter-Hargreaves and J. D. Greaves were given the word ” Go ! ” but the starter seemed a little worried at this stage as to whether the cars were being dispatched in their correct sequence. For the first time three cars went away together, T. S. Tresilian’s 2-litre Bugatti, G. A. Mangoletsi (Lea-Francis) and V. W. Derrington (Samson). Then two of the best Donington drivers were waiting to join the fray, R. F. Turner (Austin) and T. P. Cholmondeley-Tapper (Bugatti). The Austin rounded the corner first, but not without taking to the grass in order to do so. Another pair, E. K. Rayson (Riley) and N. Embiricos (Bugatti), and then the scratch man was alone on the line, A. H. L. Eccles, with his black 2-3 litre Bugatti. Fred Craner dropped his flag,
the tail of the Bugatti rose in the air as the wheels spun furiously, and then Eccles was away in pursuit of the 18 cars ahead of him.
On the first lap there were few alterations, but Richardson drew into the “pits” to retire. Cholmondeley-Tapper was ahead of Turner, and PorterHargreaves had dropped back a bit. On the run down to Hairpin Corner, Tresilian looked a little hectic when he got into a series of skids after passing Derrington, but he controlled his Bugatti well and made the corner successfully. Hodges was as irrepressible as ever, and shot across the grass towards the dangerouslyplaced tree, missing its burly girth by a hair’s breadth. At the end of the second lap Hodges (Singer) was in the lead, a feat for which he received applause, and behind him came Powys-Lybbe (Alvis), Harrison (Ford), Levy (M.G. Midget), Martin (M.G. Magna), Maddick (Magna), Parish (Austin), Goodson, (Austin), Greaves (Frazer Nash), Tresilian (Bugatti), Chohnondeley-Tapper (Bugatti) Mangoletsi (Lea-Francis), Turner (Austin),
Embiricos (Bugatti), Rayson (Riley), Derrington (Salmson) and Eccles (Bugatti). During the ensuing lap Powys-Lybbe pushed ahead with his black 4-seater Alvis and appeared in the lead with Hodges a good second. Martin retired at Starkey, so Maddick was now fourth behind Harrison. Cholmondley-Tapper was making great Strides, handling the
• Bugatti with cool and determined skill. Greaves, too, was driving a good race, while Eccles had jumped up from last place to 11th. Another lap was covered, and still Powys-Lybbe clung to his lead, but then the old car gave up the fight and came to a halt at Starkey. This let Hodges back into the lead once more, a position he deserved for his spirited driving. Eccles was drawino-b nearer and nearer, however, and on the 8th lap he was in the van, a burst of applause coming from the excited spectators as he rounded Hairpin Bend. Hodges was now second, with
Maddick third and Cholmondeley-Tapper fourth. Behind came Harrison, Rayson, Turner, Tresilian, Embiricos, Parish, Goodson, Mangoletsi, Levy and Derrington. Both Frazer Nashes had retired. Rayson was the next man to come into the picture, and on the 9th lap he passed Cholmondeley-Tapper and Hodges, to take second place behind Eccles. Then on the very last lap a cloud of blue smoke came from the Riley as its engine disintegrated violently, blowing the valve
caps off in the process. And so Cholmondeley-Tapper got his ” second ” after all, with Hodges a good third. Fourth came Turner, and fifth Harrison. All three drivers deserved their places, and Eccles gave a clean, impressive display in coming through from scratch. After the race it was found that Chohnondley-Tapper had broken the lap record with a time of 2m. 25s. as against the 2m. 3 1.2s. figure of A. H. L. Eccles at the first meeting. This represents an extraordinarily fine performance with an unblown one-and-a-half litre car.
Event 6. Result.
1. A. H. Eccles (Bugatti), 24m. 58 2/5s. Speed 61.8 m.p.h.
2. T. P. Tapper (Bugatti), 25m. 49s. Speed 59.6 m.p.h.
3. E. Hodges (Singer), 27m. 29s. Speed 56.1 m.p.h.
4. R. F. Turner (Austin), 26m. us. Speed 58.9 m.p.h.
5. T. C. Harrison (Ford), 27m. 23s. Speed 56.2 m.p.h.
6. H. L. Maddick (M.G.), 27m. 20s. Speed 56.4 m.p.h.
7. N. Embiricos (Bugatti), 26., 23s. Speed 58.3 m.p.h.
8. S. S. Tresilian (Bugatti), 27m. 10 3/5s. Speed 56.7 m.p.h.
9. C. D. Parish (Austin), 28m. 37s. Speed 53.8 m.p.h.
10. G. A. Mangoletsi (Lea Francis), 28m. 43s. Speed 53.7 m.p.h.
11. G. H. Goodson (Austin), 29m. 17 3/5s. Speed 52.7 m.p.h.
12. E. K. Rayson (Riley), 28m. 32s. Speed 54 m.p.h.
13. L. Levy (M.G.), 31m. 05s. Speed 49 m.p.h.
Fastest lap, T. P. Tapper, 2m. 25s. (Record Lap).
The organisers would have done well to cut out the last race entirely, for by comparison with its predecessor it was extremely dull. T. S. Tresilian (2-litre Bugatti) led from start to finish, and although pressed by A. J. Cormack (Alta) on the first lap, he had little difficulty in keeping ahead. The only other runner was A. R. Samuel (M.G. Midget), whose car had not been functioning efficiently earlier in the day. Now he remedied the trouble, and he drove well in a race which proved to be a poor finale.
Event 7. Result.
1. S. S. Tresilian (Bugatti), 13m. 11 3/5s. Time 58.6 m.p.h.
2. A. J. Cormack (Alta), 13m. 22s. Speed 57.9 m.p.h.
3. A. R. Samuel (M.G.), 14m. 31 2/5s. Speed 53.3 m.p.h. Fastest lap, S. S. Tresilian, 2m. 35s.