The High Speed Trial gives beginners a chance to try their hand at lapping the club circuit at any speed they like, competing against the VSCC by trying to qualify, as it is not a race. Of the 30 starters, eight failed to finish in the 40 minutes and eleven did not qualify, showing it to be harder than it looks. Successful were Mrs Gina Barker in the 328 FN-BMW, White’s Dixon Riley, Weeks’ 61/2-litre Bentley, Pryke’s Le Mans AM, Trisha Pilkington’s Alfa Romeo, Heelis’ Riley 9, Spence’s A7, Nye’s A7, Garner’s Ulster A7, Claire Threlfall’s Ulster A7, and Gunn’s Ulster A7; qualifying distances varied from 20 to 27 laps.
Sue Marsh entrusted her late husband’s ex-Seaman ERA R1B to Duncan Ricketts, who brought it in eighth in the Pat Lindsay Race, in which the top three were R11B, R2A and Mann’s P3. Sweet’s MG was fourth, now with a Rolls-Royce-made Parnell special twin-cam head, one place ahead of the German, Bascher, who got the ex-Earl Howe/Cholmondeley Tapper 8CM Maserati home ahead of the famous ex-Whitney Straight 8C driven by its owner, Heimann (DSJ was signing his book about No 3011 in the paddock). Bascher also lasted seven laps in the Allcomers race, in which the other Maser non-started.
Peter Gregory has rebuilt the Parnell/ Nicholls single-seater K3 MG with Lancia Augusta ifs, using a single-cam blown engine, as Sweet has the twin-cam head. The V16 BRM we saw all too briefly is the second of the MkII cars. The GB Star flew a small Union Jack to emphasise its British origins.
Not one Talbot contested the Fox & Nicholl Race, in which some improbable “sports cars” were the “GP” 1913 Schneider (for one lap only!), the V12 Bentley-Royce and the unusual 8CM Maserati. But it was nice to see an S-type 41/2-litre Invicta complete more than half-distance. Commiseratory cheers from friends greeted Randal Stewart as he drove in after damaging the Woodcote fence in his Bentley!
The 239 entries were a VSCC record, and BDC Chairperson Ann Shoosmith’s 41/2-litre Le Mans Bentley made an appropriate circuit-car. WB