HEAVY rain did its best to wash out the first of this year’s four B.A.R.C. Members’ Sports-Car Race Meetings, but an excellent attendance was secured nevertheless. The entry was also good, numbering 110.
The 10-lap scratch race for cars up to 1,250 c.c. non-supercharged had an exciting finish, as Campbell-Jones (Lotus-Climax) sought to overtake K. A. Greene, who had led throughout, on the run down to Woodcote. He got within half a length of being level with Greene’s Lotus-Climax, slapped on his brakes and spun off. He continued this exciting episode by immediately running towards the Paddock. Greene won by 22.2 sec. at 83.79 m.p.h. from Taylor’s Lotus-Climax and Westcott’s Lotus-Climax. The crashed Lotus had made fastest lap, at 86.75 m.p.h.
A 5-lap Closed-Car Handicap proved interesting, Hopkinson’s Speedwell-tuned Austin A35 going very well, to catch Marriot’s Morris Minor two laps from the end, winning at 61.28 m.p.h. Barker’s blown Ford Anglia was third, followed by a Hillman Minx, a VW and an Austin A35 with twin S.U.s and high compression-ratio. The blown Ford achieved fastest lap, at 65.65 m.p.h.
The 10-lap Marque Scratch Race saw Fletcher’s A.C. Ace gradually get away from Hurrell’s Triumph TR3, to win by 4.4 sec., at 70.59 m.p.h., after fastest lap, at 72.85 m.p.h. Looker in his hardused Morgan Plus Four looked like closing on the Triumph, fell back, was almost caught by Pacey’s Morgan Plus Four, then speeded up again.
A 5-lap Scratch Race for cars up to 1,500 c.c. non-supercharged was very exciting; on account of Bristow’s attempt to win in Payne’s Hume-Lotus-Climax. Leading from the start, Bristow spun off at St. Mary’s, Arundell also leaving the course in avoiding him. Bristow then set off in pursuit of the leaders; got up to second place, then overdid it again, spinning off at Lavant Corner on the last lap. He and Arundell were disqualified for spinning, a cautious B.A.R.C. rule, leaving Greene winner again, by 7.4 sec., at 75.85 m.p.h., from Westcott and Taylor, all, inevitably, in Lotus-Climax cars. Not surprisingly, Bristow had the reward of lapping fastest, at 81.2 m.p.h. on the wet course.
In the following Closed-Car 5-lap Handicap Uren’s Ford Consul, with single S.C., 8.5-to-1 compression-ratio and other engine and chassis mods by Lincoln cars, sat behind Wadsworth’s well-worn Riley-Healey through the corners but hadn’t the Healey’s speed on the straights. Wadsworth won at 66.79 m.p.h. Corner’s A.C. Aceca was third, Jean Bloxam, leaving her escort’s side for a while, fourth from scratch in her noisy Aston Martin DB3S, which made fastest lap at. 74.61 m.p.h. Miss Massey and A. Hopkins in Jaguar XK150s raced for last place.
The sixth race, a 5-lap Handicap, had a sensational finish, when Staples, in the Ecurie Knut Lotus-Ford, which had led all the way, slid across the course beyond Woodcote Corner and was struck by Dashwood’s Frazer-Nash with de Dion back axle. Dashwood lost his near-side back tyre but held the resulting slide, limped through the chicane, and won the race, at 71.0 m.p.h., retiring just after crossing the line. Steele was second in Miss Steele’s Cooper-Zephyr, Barthel’s Aston Martin DB3S third. Dashwood even mode fastest lap, before his prang, at 75.39 m.p.h.
In another 5-lap Handicap Mrs. Naylor, in the Lagonda Rapier prepared for racing by her husband and herself, led for four laps, after which Arnold’s Triumph TR2 and Ewer’s Triumph TR2 passed her on the final lap, Arnold winning at 68.97 m.p.h., also setting fastest lap, at 71.17 m.p.h. Murray kept the hood of his Triumph TR3 up; he spun off before the chicane. Graham’s Berkeley retired with clutch failure.
The final race of a very wet afternoon was another 5-lap Handicap. Rosemary Seers, in the Zephyr-powered Cooper, drove exceedingly well, glancing at her off-side back wheel coming out of the chicane, but on the last lap Rye’s Lotus-M.G. passed, to win at 69.12 m.p.h. On the run-in to the finish Smith (A.C. Ace-Bristol) tried to take Miss Seers in the chicane but she bravely kept her line, just beating Smith to second place. Barthel’s ex-works disc-braked Aston Martin DB3S couldn’t use its power in the wet but made fastest lap, at 75.26 m.p.h.
The leaders in the MOTOR SPORT Brooklands Memorial Trophy Contest (next round, June 14th) are : K. A. Greene, 8 points; M. Taylor, J. F. Westcott, 5 points each; G. M. Hopkinson, P. G. Fletcher, S. A. Hurrell, E. B. Wadsworth, J. Dashwood, P. H. Arnold and R. Rye, 4 points each.