I. Ireland (Lotus) leads M. Charles (Jaguar-D) by one point in Motor Sport Brooklands Memorial Trophy Contest
A considerable attendance and a dry track until the last race contributed to a good afternoon’s sport at Goodwood on May 11th.
In the first five-lap scratch race for 1,250.c.c. non-s/c. sports cars Ireland’s Lotus-Climax was chased earnestly by Greene in a Cooper-Climax, these two running well clear of an enormous field of Lotus-Climax cars. Len Gibbs spun his Lotus at St. Mary’s, Mathieson emulated him next lap, and Duckworth went through the chicane wall and damaged his old-model Lotus. Ireland won by 0.8 sec. at 81.2 m.p.h., both he and Greene making fastest lap, at 82.76 m.p.h. Bristow’ s Cooper-Climax was a poor third, splitting the strong Lotus opposition — but he held a nasty slide at Woodcote with skill and beat Hick’s Lotus for the place. Threlfall’s Tojeiro-Climax had clutch trouble.
The five-lap Novices’ Handicap was amusing because Coleby’s tiny Goggomobile, entered by Rob Walker, had one minute plus one credit-lap start. It went very well, rolling a bit out of the corners, lapping at 51.92 m.p.h., but Baker-Courtenay’s T-type M.G., with Marshall blower and 1¾-in. S.U., took the lead after two laps and won by no less than 74.6 sec., at 68.03 m.p.h. The Hon. Fitzalan Howard (Lotus) came through the field well to finish second, setting fastest lap at 76.32 m.p.h. The manner in which he overtook Palmer’s H.R.G. between Woodcote and the chicane on lap four was masterly. Martyn’s Lotus-Climax was third. Rothman’s TR2 retired.
The up-to-1,500-c.c. five-lap scratch race was mainly composed of 1,098-c.c. Lotus-Climax cars. Although Tommy Sopwith had a 1½-litre (single-cam) Cooper-Climax, his brakes were less effective than those of Ireland’s 1,098-c.c. Lotus-Climax. The result was a stirling battle, Sopwith ahead along the straight, but overtaken before the corners. It was touch and go until the last lap, when Sopwith lost time at Levant Corner, leaving Ireland undisputed victor for the second time that afternoon. He won by 2.8 sec., at 83.62 m.p.h. Sopwith set fastest lap, at 85.88 m.p.h. Blond was third in Sieff’s noisy Cooper-Connaught, which seemed rather a handful, tyres protesting through the chicane: Zervudachi’s Lotus-Climax succumbed.
A five-lap handicap came next, with two Berkeley-Excelsiors making a race debut. Goddard-Watts failed to secure the bonnet of his Berkeley properly and stopped to tear it, and the screen, off, later retiring. Graham’s Berkeley set a 350-c.c. class lap record of 57.37 m.p.h., stealing this from the smaller saloon Goggomobile, but was “swamped” by the back-markers after three laps, in spite of a start of 170 sec., and was unplaced. The finish was pleasantly octagonal, Foster in Jacobs’ aero-screen M.G. MGA winning, after a good drive, by 0.2 sec. from Arundell’s fully-equipped TC M.G. The M.G. MGA averaged 72.5 m.p.h. Arundell drove rather wildly as his lead diminished and Foster had to pass on the right before the pits because the TC went wide out of the chicane on the exciting run-in to the photo-finish. North’s TR2 beat Hurrell’s TR3 into third place: A very interesting if undistinguished-looking entry was Murdoch’s 740-c.c. Crosley Special from America; alas, it retired after a front-end prang. Fastest lap was made by Freeman’s 2-litre Aston Martin, at 75.13 m.p.h.
It was a reflection on how fast the cars were in the next five-lap handicap that Salmon, in the rebuilt Le Mans C-type Jaguar that crashed on the way to the 1954 race, was on “limit.” Patsy Burt’s Cooper-Climax, from the same mark, led it off the line but Salmon led thereafter for the opening laps, until Charles’ tail-finned D-type Jaguar, with which the handicappers were lenient, came by, to win by 17 sec., at 83.52 m.p.h.; Patsy Burt’s 1,100-c.c. car a game third. Sopwith’s Cooper-Climax actually beat the lot on fastest lap speed — 85.04 m.p.h.
A five-lap contest for closed cars brought out the “hot-boxes.” Barker’s Marshall-blown Ford had an Aquaplane head, much was expected of Oldham’s triple-carburetter Laystall-conversion Ford Zephyr, Sparrowe’s 948-c.c. Morris had an Alta head, Cuff-Miller’s Ford an Elva i.o.e. head, while Meisl’s and Turner’s Ford Populars were L.M.B.-suspended, the former with 100E copperised head, 8.5-to-1 compression-ratio, four-branch exhaust system, twin 11/16-in. Amal carburetters, 100E steering box, 5.20 by 15 Michelin tyres and a close-ratio three-speed gearbox. Davies’ “limit” Standard Eight led reasonably steadily until the last lap, when Jean Bloxham’s DB2 Aston Martin, beautifully-driven, the Hon. P. Lindsay’s DB2/4 Aston Martin, and Barker’s Ford all came past it, Mrs. Bloxham winning, at 72.31 m.p.h., by 8 sec. She deserved to win, and she also made fastest lap, at 75.13 m.p.h. Oldham’s Ford damaged its transmission, Cuff-Miller also retired, and the L.M.B. Fords lifted their inner rear wheels spectacularly at the corners but were unplaced.
Two more five-lap handicaps concluded the meeting. In the first Sargent’s XK120 retired, Thomas made rather poor use of his XK120 from his “limit” start, and Blond motored off the course and through a fence at Fordwater, damaging the H.W.M.-Jaguar and cutting his face. Cuff-Miller drove a nice race in the ex-Peter Waring 4½-litre Lago-Talbot, the 1939 “works” car later driven by Lord Selsdon, which the commentators mistook for the ex-Walker car. However, Baillie had his “Monza-record” Jaguar D-type well wound up, braking fiercely to follow the old Talbot through the chicane on lap four, to win by 2.2 sec., at 78.95 m.p.h., from Charles’ D-type, the Talbot a gallant third. Charles, a driver to watch evidently, set fastest lap, at 84.54 m.p.h.
In the last race the “limit” car, Averil Scott-Moncrieff’s Lotus-M.G., had to be flagged in after it had started because a van was on the circuit, a happening unprecedented at Goodwood! This allowed rain to wet the course and the drivers found great care essential when the race restarted. Page (Lotus-Climax) came through to win at 75.03 sec., comfortably ahead of Bristow’s Cooper-Climax, Fowell’s Lotus-Climax in third position. Page lapped fastest, at 78.12 m.p.h. — W. B.
Leading in the Motor Sport Brooklands Memorial Contest (£150 in prize money) is I. Ireland (Lotus-Climax) with eight points, from M. Charles(Jaguar-D) with seven points and C. Bristow (Cooper-Climax) with six points. The next round is due to be contested at Goodwood on June 22nd.