Peter Collins Runs Away With Maserati-Dominated "Daily Express" International Trophy Race at Silverstone
Parnell Wins Sports-Car Race for Aston Martin. Hawthorn’s Mark VII Jaguar Takes Touring Car Honours. Bueb (Cooper) Leads the 500s.
Horrible weather for practice gave way to a beautiful day at Silverstone on May 7th and an enormous crowd gathered for the “Daily Express”-sponsored B.R.D.C. International Trophy Meeting, a day of varied, interesting competition.
The great teams of Mercedes-Benz, Ferrari, Lancia and Maserati were absent, although this was certainly not due to indifference on the part of the B.R.D.C. or Mr. Asher of the “Daily Express.” An aeroplane actually took-off for Italy when Ferrari intimated that two of the new Ferraris would race, but had to return empty when the entry was withdrawn. In fact, we do not think this marred the race. When two or three or all four of the big Continental teams are entered, loss of one will lessen the interest, but had Ferrari alone come to our shores with his cars they could but dominate the race. As it was, before K. D. Evans dropped the Union Jack, the big race was an open affair between the new Vanwalls, the new Connaughts, a Gordini and a range of older Maserati cars. Of these, Fairman ably showed the great merit of the new G.P. Connaught, holding third place for 27 laps before retiring, and the Vanwalls showed promise, only to succumb to mechanical failures, so that it was a thousand pities that Wharton re-entered the race and crashed seriously when victory was quite out of his grasp — the car was practically scrap and commiserations go to Tony Vanwall over this calamity.
For a while a truly furious duel was waged between oil-soaked Salvadori and Collins, but then the disc-braked O.R.M.A. car entered by R. Mays ran out ahead to a brilliant victory, its engine and cockpit as clean as when it started, Salvadori second, Bira’s aged Maaerati a cool third.
In the sports-car race Hawthorn was unassailable until his Jaguar let him down, whereupon Parnell won for Aston Martin — deservedly, for he displayed every ounce of his old fire. He was followed home by Salvadori in the other disc-braked 3-litre Aston Martin, with which Rolt’s larger-engined D-type Jaguar couldn’t cope. The touring-car race was a lot of races in one and the results repay careful study. Hawthorn won in a Mark VII Jaguar saloon. The usual ding-dong battle enlivened the 500-c.c. race, which was a Cooper-benefit for Bueb, who staved off Russell and S. Lewis-Evans. During the meeting new lap records were set up, as follows, assuming that the shape of the corners, now marked by low fences, has not altered so that the former records do not count: —
500 c.c.: Bueb (Cooper), 89.3 m.p.h. Sports cars: Hawthorn (Jaguar), 96.67 m.p.h. F1: Salvadori (Maserati), 98.48 m.p.h.
The equipment which brought success was as under: —
Collins’ Maserati: B.P. fuel, Energol oil, Weber carburetter, Marelli ignition, Lodge plugs, Dunlop tyres, Dunlop disc brakes.
Parnell’s Aston Martin: Esso fuel, Castrol oil, Weber carburetter, Lucas ingition, K.L.G. plugs, Avon tyres.
Hawthorn’s Mark VII Jaguar: Shell fuel, Shell oil, S.U. carburetter, Lucas ignition, Champion plugs, Dunlop tyres.
Bueb’s Cooper: Esso fuel, Esso oil, Amal carburetter, Lucas ignition, K.L.G. plugs, Dunlop tyres.
The practice periods were marked by high wind, heavy rain and a number of unwanted episodes. Duncan Hamilton overturned the Gordini, escaping injury but damaging the car. Shattock had an almighty accident in the R.C.S.-Atalanta, but was able to get it repaired before the race. Less fortunate, Baron de Portago crashed his Ferrari at Club Corner, fracturing a leg. Prason took out Bira’s Maserati and spun off at Becketts, and immediately afterwards at Stowe Corner, uprooting an Antone loud-speaker, after which the Prince replaced him!
During practice for the touring car race Wharton’s Ford Zephyr with Mays’ head, stopped at Stowe for no apparent reason: Wharton climbed from the special armchair dicing-seat, threw a coat round his shoulders, repeatedly pressed the starter button, the engine fired and he was away. Less happy was Derrington, whose Ford Consul boiled furiously.
The practice periods closed with fastest laps as follows: —
Touring cars: Hawthorn (Jaguar) and Titterington (Jaguar), 80.44 mph.
Sports Cars: Hawthorn (Two Jaguars), 95,75 m.p. h.
F1 Racing cars: Salvadori (Maserati) and Hawthorn (Vanwall), 97.57 m.p.h.
500-c.c. cars: S. Lewis-Evans (Cooper), 80.44 m.p.h.
It was learnt as Friday’s storms abated that the following would be absentees on the morrow — Stewart (Jaguar), Schell (Ferrari), Cliff Davis (Maserati), Keen (Cooper-Bristol); Coombs (Lotus), Scott-Russell (Lotus) and Parker (Kieft) amongst the sports cars: Willis (VW), Bulmer (VW), Feldman (Simca), Rendell (Borgward) and Warren (Morris Minor) amongst the touring cars; Marr (Connaught), de Portago (Ferrari), Farina (Ferrari) and Trintignant (Ferrari) of the F1 cars; and Marsh (Cooper), Fergusson (Cooper) and the two new Martins of Sanderson and Veronique of the half litres. Don Beauman was put on as Jaguar reserve driver, Raymond Mays nominated Peter Collins as O.R.M.A.’s Maserati driver and Pollet was to have Hamilton’s Gordini if it was ready.
Practice produced the usual feverish and intriguing scenes. Moss arrived fresh from his epic Mille Miglia victory in his Type 220 Mercédès-Benz saloon. Hawthorn was in his Lancia Aurelia, B.M.C. brought Eyston’s M.G. record car, which was to give a demonstration, in the new Competition Department Morris Appleyard-bodied van from Abingdon-on-Thames, while the Ecurie Bernoise Cooper 500 arrived in a Peugeot D.M.B. van, Hansjorg Gilomen and his staff seemingly indifferent to the stinging rain.
The special cylinder heads and multi-carburetters of the production touring cars were enlightening, Wright’s Morris Minor, for instance, having ram-pipes for its twin S.H.s and Rogers’ Riley Pathfinder an air-scoop protruding coyly forward.
The Ecurie Ecosse Jaguars, arriving in two advertisement-decked ‘buses, attracted much attention by reason of their smart appearance. They have cleaned-up instrument panels this year. The works D-type Jaguars of Hawthorn and Hamilton had no tail-fins, these being of no value on Silverstone according to”Lofty” England, but that on Rolt’s car had not been removed.
The Aston Martin DB3S cars were another attraction for the Paddock prowlers. Those of Collins and Peter Walker had no radiator grilles; Parnell’s and Salvadori’s were the disc-braked cars. Early on Saturday morning John Wyer put Parnell and Walker through some practice Le Mans starts in a quiet corner of the Paddock; Reg had this nicely buttoned-up, but Peter found gear-selection and clutch-engagement difficult.
Anthony’s Lister-Bristol wore a rabbit mascot, Rodney Clark’s Austin Princess was in great demand for towing McAlpine’s G.P. Connaught about the Paddock and two young women in skin-tight trousers and using long umbrellas were in demand by Press cameramen for posing before the racing machinery. In contrast to the sleek transports was Peter Gammom’s decidedly utility Volkswagen
International Sports-Car Race. 40 Laps. Approx. 120 miles:
This race, which obviously lay between the D-type Jaguars and the 3-litre DB3S Aston Martins, was actually divided into four classes, up to 1,500 c.c., 1,500-2,000 c.c., 2,000-3,000 c.c. and over 3,000 c.c. Rolt got away to a good start, but his tail-finned Jaguar was overtaken by Hawthorn’s Jaguar after four laps. Behind, Parnell was doing his utmost and after 14 laps displaced Rolt, while by lap 19 Salvadori in the other disc-brake Aston Martin was close up on Rolt, and in third place by lap 20. It looked extremely improbable that Parnell could catch Hawthorn, but with four laps to go and the Jaguar in an unassailable position water cascaded over Hawthorn’s legs and Parnell went into the lead. Hawthorn somehow contrived to keep going to the end, in fourth place, his average speed still within 0.43 m.p.h. of Rolt’s!
Wharton’s Aston Martin retired early, and Chapman’s hard-tried M.G. engine in his Lotus tried to eject its crankshaft via a cracked crankcase at Stowe Corner in the first fifteen minutes’ racing. Alan Brown seemed to find the H.W.M.-Jaguar something of a handful and broke, a valve after five laps, while Abecassis retired his H.W.M. Jaguar due to overheating, and Whitehead’s Cooper-Jaguar. never in the picture, stopped to check an oil-leak.
The 1 ½-itre class was led by Leston’s Connaught for a time, but Bueb’s very fast 1,100 Cooper-Climax replaced him. Moss was delayed at Stowe Corner when the ignition distributor of the Beart Rodger faulted, the Scintilla rotor-arm proving troublesome, but Stirling cheerfully cured the trouble himself and continued. Scott-Brown went splendidly as usual in the 1 ½/2-litre class with a lap at 90.84 m.p.h. until the head gasket blew, although he had been careful not to over-rev. Brooks then took the lead in the taper-snout, helmet-winged de Dion Frazer-Nash, which proved more than a match for Crook’s Cooper-Bristol. Parnell, of course, led Class D as well as the race, the Jaguars of Rolt and Hawthorn. Hamilton and Titterington, the latter breathing down Duncan’s collar, being between the Aston Martins of Collins and Walker, whose ordinary brakes may or may not have made them some two m.p.h. slower than the Parnell/Salvadori cars. Sparken’s Ferrari was a disappointment on this circuit and the classes suffered from the paucity of runners. Mayers, using this race as a try out for the coupé Lester, politely waved faster men on; he fell out before half-distance with suspension trouble.
Parnell deserved his victory, for he really made David Brown’s car motor, especially when on lap 30 he threaded between Gammon and Sulman’s Aston Martin at Stowe and when he passed inside Titterington at this corner! Sears escaped injury in a spectacular crash in the Lister-Bristol and Shattock, after holding off Macklin’s Austin-Healey for a time, retired with a broken oil pipe from the rear main bearing of the old-type Jaguar sump.
1st: Parnell (Aston Martin). 1 hr. 15 min. 04 sec., 93.38 m.p.h. 40 laps completed.
2nd: Salvadori (Aston Martin), 1 hr. 15 min. 25 sec., 93.15 m.p.h., 40 laps completed.
3rd: Rolt (Jaguar), 1 hr. 15 min. 33 sec., 92.98 m.p.h. 40 laps completed.
4th: Hawthorn (Jaguar); 5th: Hamilton (Jaguar); 6th:Titterington (Jaguar); 7th: Collins (Aston Martin); 8th: Walker (Aston Martin): 9th: Sparken (Ferrari); 10th: Bueb (Cooper); 11th: Leston (Connaught): 12th: Brooks (Frazer-Nash); 13th: Whitehead (Cooper-Jaguar): 14th: McAlpine (Connaught); 15th: Crook (Cooper-Bristol); 16th: Moore (Lister); 17th: Macklin (Austin-Healey): 18th: Sulman (Aston Martin); 19th: Moss (Beart-Rodger).
Manufacturers’ Team Prize: Aston Martin.
Fastest lap and new Sports-car record: Hawthorn (Jaguar). 96.67 m.p.h.
Class winners’ equipment: Rolt (Jaguar): Shell fuel, Shell oil, Weber carburetter. Lucas ignition, Champion plugs, Dunlop tyres. Brooks (Frazer-Nash) Shell fuel, Shell oil, Solex carburetter, Delco ignition, K.L.G. plugs, Dunlop tyres. Bueb (Cooper): Esso fuel, Esso oil, S.U. carburetter, Lucas K.L.G. plugs. Dunlop tyres
International Production Touring Car Race. 25 Laps. Approx. 75 miles.
This was in five classes, up to 1,100 c.c., 1,200-1,500 c.c., 1,500-2,000 c.c., 2,000-3,000 c.c., and over 3,000 c.c. Entries could have been more representative.
Nothing could stop the works Mark VII Jaguars from leading comfortably, Hawthorn dominating the race. These big cars rolled and wallowed round at the speed of F3 racing cars, but Appleyard’s private entry, his white saloon, retired with water-pump failure, a Jaguar malady that day.
Behind the Jaguars Grace’s Riley led Wharton’s Ford Zephyr, but after four laps the Ford went ahead, lapping at over 77 m.p.h., to take fourth place when Appleyard retired. Crook had his very racy sounding Bristol 405 in sixth place. Rogers was throwing his Riley Pathfinder round, tyres sending out smoke clouds in protest, until a big-end failed. Gelberg’s older Riley was slow and sheared a fan-blade.
In the 2-litre class Derrington’s Ford Consul retired with loss of cooling water and Buckley’s Bristol 405 couldn’t hold Crook’s. The M.G. Magnettes, led by Jacobs’ works car, held off Smith’s Peugeot 403 and the Borgward.
The small class was remarkable for the splendid performance of the 896 c.c. three-cylinder two-stroke D.K.W. cars. Brooks did a lap at 68.87 m.p.h. and actually led the larger Peugeot, Borgward, de Matto’s Ford Consul, the Fiat 1,100 TV and other cars. We timed it round Stowe Corner, where it was half-a-second faster than Hawthorn’s winning Jaguar and 0.2 sec. faster than Wharton’s Ford Zephyr, while Burn’s was just as steady and effortless but, having not quite so much “tune,” was not quite so fast. We believe that £50 or so covered all the “mods.” to Brooks’ car, which was the sensation of the race, snatched against other cars with expensive special heads, manifolds, axle-ratios. etc. Michael Christie’s Morris Minor, a works entry presumably with full Alexander modifications, ran its bearings after 13 laps, and the Fiat 1,100 TV was a lap behind the slower of the two D.K.W.s !
1st: Hawthorn (Jaguar). 55 min. 38 sec., 78.92 m.p.h.; 25 laps completed.
2nd: Stewart (Jaguar), 55 min. 40 sec., 78.87 m.p.h.; 25 laps completed.
3rd: Titterington (Jaguar), 55 min. 54 sec., 78.51 m.p.h.; 25 laps completed.
4th: Wharton (Ford); 5th: Grace (Riley): 6th: Crook (Bristol); 7th: Sims (Riley): 8th: Buckley (Bristol); 9th: Jacobs (M.G.); 10th: Nickols (Ford): 11th: Foster (M.G.); 12th: Waller (M.G.); 13th: Smith (Peugeot); 14th Brooks (D.K.W.): 15th: Potter (Peugeot): 16th: Fairman (Borgward); 17th: De Mattos (Ford); 18th Burn (D.K.W.); 19th: Easton (Fiat); 20th: Wright (Morris Minor); 21st Westley. (Austin); 22nd: Williamson (Ford); 23rd: Rogers (Riley).
Manufacturers’ Team Prize: Jaguar.
Fastest lap: Hawthorn (Jaguar). 81.06 m.p.h.
International Trophy Race. 60 Laps. Approx. 180 miles.
On the starting grid the front row was occupied by Fairman’s new G.P. Connaught, Moss’ Maserati, now with Weber carburation again, Hawthorn’s Vanwall and Salvadori’s Maserati, the last two having made practice laps of 1 min. 48 Sec.
Behind were Beauman’s remarkable F2 Connaught, Manzon’s 2 ½-litre Gordini, and Collins in the modified O.R.M.A. disc-braked Maserati. In the next row stood Keen’s fuel-injection Cooper-Alta. Parnell in a Rosier blue Ferrari, Wharton’s Vanwall and Bira’s Maserati, the fourth row containing Riseley-Pritchard’s F2 Connaught, Gerard’s F2 Cooper-Bristol and McAlpine’s new G. P. Connaught, which had been 6 sec. slower in practice than Fairman’s.
The field as made up of Rosier’s Maserati, Holt’s F2 Connaught, Simon’s Maserati, Brown’s F2 Connaught, Pollet’s Gordini, Emery’s Emeryson, Brabham’s F2 Cooper-Alta and Coombs’ F2 Connaught.
First round was Salvadori, followed by Collins, with Fairman third. The new Connaught held everyone’s attention and Fairman set a new lap record of 96.67 m.p.h. on his sixth lap. Moreover, Hawthorn was next up in the Vanwall, in front of Moss, who was followed by McAlpine. Maserati, Maserati, Connaught, Vanwall, Maserati, Connaught, and all F1 cars! However, although for 25 laps Salvadori led Collins with the latter creeping closer and closer, to lead for two laps before Salvadori repassed, the others were less fortunate; Moss retired on lap ten with serious engine trouble and Hawthorn likewise on lap 15, his legs soaked with oil.
This put the order to Salvadori, Collins, Fairman, Bira, McAlpine, Manzon and the G.P. Connaught had put in a lap at 97.57 m.p.h.
For once Gerard’s Cooper-Bristol had faltered and he lost four minutes and later two minutes having plugs and carburetter chokes changed, before going at his usual rapid pace. Brown’s Connaught had retired, and Wharton’s Vanwall had lost two minutes for attention to its carburation.
After 20 laps the leaders were as before, but Simon had ousted Rosier from sixth place. The old Gordini transmission trouble retired Manzon, Wharton’s Vanwall was given new plugs, the Emeryson stopped racing, but Salvadori led, and broke Fairman’s lap record, with a circuit at 98.48 m.p.h., regaining his lead from Collins on lap 28. Alas, on the preceding lap Fairman’s altogether splendid drive came to an end, when the Connaught’s throttle-linkage came unbuttoned. This made the leaders Salvadori, Bira, Simon, Beauman — who had come up strongly — and Rosier.
We now saw one of the most intense duels ever seen at Silverstone, even by Continental aces, as Collins came to grips with Salvadori. They were all but literally tied together, those two Maseratis, and Collins would pass going into a corner, Salvadori would fend him off, yet Collins would repass on the inside on that same corner. Whether Salvadori was tired by this intense driving or whether Collins had begun to use superior brakes and speed, the fact is that he took the lead on lap 35 and was never re-challenged. He drove on to an impeccable victory, from Salvadori, with the wily, calm Bira in third place, a lap behind, Simon a lap farther behind in fourth place. Rosier still further back.
Of the others, Wharton was virtually out of the race after another pit stop lasting 19 minutes with only 18 laps coverd. McAlpine’s steady drive in the other G.P. Connaught terminated by fuel feed failure after 27 laps, with a loss of 13 minutes while a pipeline and union were repaired. Beauman’s oil-pressure vanished and put an end to a gallant drive in a F2 car, after 14 laps. Other cars were in trouble, but they were scarcely in the count. Some required fuel and oil, and Simon a fresh near-side back wheel.
To all intents and purposes the race was run and it was exceedingly unfortunate that when Wharton’s Vanwall restarted it proved very fast and was driven so, for Wharton lost control of it at Copse Corner and it hit the 100 yards sign, uprooting the concrete base. This threw the car into the air, the broken de Dion tube ripping under-shield and fuel tank, so that the car burst into flames. Wharton jumped out with considerable burns, and a fractured wrist. The crowd surged forward but order was soon restored by the mobile police and marshals. Unfortunately the small fire-extinguishers could not quell the blaze and when the foam-hoses had been laid the firemen thought it prudent first to extinguish flames in the grass and going towards the track, so that Tony Vandervell’s car was badly damaged aft.
The race ran on to the following result:
1st: Collins (Maserati), 1 hr. 49 min. 50 sec., 95.94 m.p.h.: 60 laps completed.
2nd: Salvadori (Maserati), 1 hr. 50 min. 29 sec., 95.37 m.p.h. 60 laps completed.
3rd: Bira (Maserati) 1 hr. 51 min. 39 sec., 94.38 m.p.h.; 59 laps completed.
4th: Simon (Maserati); 5th: Rosier (Maserati); 6th: Riseley-Pritchard (Connaught); 7th: Brabham (Cooper-Alta); 8th: Holt (Connaught); 9th: Coombs (Connaught); 10th: Gerard (Cooper-Bristol).
Fastest lap: Salvadori (Maserati), 98.48 m.p.h.
International 500-cc. Race. 17 Laps. 50 miles.
The new Martins were non-starters. The Coopers of Leston, Allison, Bueb and S. Lewis-Evans occupied the front row of the grid, the last-named having made fastest practice lap, in 2 min. 11 sec. Burgoyne drove the four-cylinder Turner-engined Kieft.
Bueb led the first four laps, then Lewis-Evans who had fallen back to third place behind Russell came up to lead for one circuit Immediately Bueb and Russell repassed and on lap nine Bueb led Russell. These two duelled to the end, Bueb only regained the lead on the last lap. Lewis-Evans shot over the bank at Copse Corner, slightly hurting a luckless spectator and Taylor, Headland and Ingham all left the road at this notorious point. Headland breaking both his legs. Lewis-Evans had set a new F3 lap record of 87.81 m.p.h. before he took to aviating, but this was easily wrested from him by Bueb, on his 15th lap. Russell had also elevated the lap record. Retirements were numerous, including Davis, Swaelens, Texidor. Naylor, Lones and Moor, whose Cooper dropped a valve.
1st Bueb (Cooper). 34 min. 20 86.96 m.p.h.; 17 laps completed.
2nd: Russell (Cooper), 34 min. 86.87 m.p.h.; 17 laps completed.
3rd: S. Lewis-Evans (Cooper), 31 min . 32 sec., 86.15 m.p.h.; 17 laps completed.
4th: Allison (Cooper); 5th: Parker (Kieft); 6th: Fenning (Staride); 7th: Wicken (Cooper); 8th: Gilomen (Cooper); 9th: Leston (Cooper); 10th: Boshier-Jones (Cooper): 11th: Tyrrell (Cooper); 12th: Truman (Cooper); 13th: Bridger (Kieft); 14th: Bicknell (Revis); 15th: Symonds (Cooper); 16th: Greenall (Cooper).
Fastest lap: Bueb (Cooper); 89.30 m.p.h.
So concluded an interesting if not intense day’s racing. The enormous crowd went home dry (externally) and rejoicing that the new C. P. Connaught in Jack Fairman’s hands has made an excellent start in F. 1 racing. Traffic control got the vehicles away expeditiously, al all events from the Paddock and main-entrance enclosure — W. B.