A Facet of History

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It is commonly supposed that the last public-road speed-trial took place in this country in 1925, the year in which the RAC ban was enforced, following the accident at Kop involving Francis Givecn’s Brescia Bugatti and a spectator. Two such events, one near Hereford and one near ‘Favistock, took place just after this, on April 4th, just beating the Ban. After that, no more…? Except that Mr. Pat Thornton, whose Austin Chummy I drove at the 750 MC Knebworth Press-Day, tells me that, on June 25th, 1927, the Kettering & District MC ran an event up Grafton Hill, off the village of Ellington, on the A604 Kettering-Huntingdon road, with the permission of the Hunts Police. In those happy days, says Mr. Thornton, officials were allowed to compete and although he was one of the organisers, he won a medal, driving his Aero Morgan. Perhaps not suprisingly, this event does not seem to have been reported in the motoring Press. In the same week (curiously, on the Thursday) sand-racing was held at Seaton Carew, near Hartlepool. The crowds intruding onto the course caused W. B. Thompson’s Frazer Nash to roll over and a child spectator and the car’s passenger had to be taken to hospital. – W. B.