VSCC Colerne speed trials

The VSCC sprint at this RAF airfield occupied the afternoon of April 24, in reasonably good weather. David Baldock in the 2-litre Alta made excellent starts and deserved his FTD, in 23.15 sec, although the engine was boiling before its second run, not good for this particular car I would have thought! But its times for the 1/4-mile were identical, the overall time only 0.67 sec slower, and the published time through the speed-trap 146 mph.

Donald Day's ERA R14B clocked 24.34 sec (133 mph), Hulbert's vintage supercharged Alvis Special 26.49 sec (125 mph). But the Colerne Trophy for fastest vintage car went to Ben Collings in the 8128 cc Bentley (26.47 sec: 128 mph), the opposition fading when the four-SU-ed Bentley-Royce seized a piston, after Sally Burrell had done 29.06 sec, fastest time by a lady driver, in it and second in class to Collings. Tim Llewellyn was running his 8381 cc Bentley in the racing class but, letting in the clutch at the customary 1200 rpm, its 3.3 to 1 crown-wheel and pinion cried enough, in a matter of feet from the line, after the engine had stalled at the first go. . .

Class winners were: Anable Jones (vintage Frazer Nash), in 35.95 sec (87 mph) after a poor first run, Green's 4-1/2-litre lnvicta, both runs in 31.68 sec, with vintage best by Miss Moss's Invicta (35.53 sec), J Mowatt's Riley engined Morgan 4/4 in 29.79 sec, Mrs Walker's Frazer Nash taking vintage honours here (33.77 mph), Ben Collings as aforesaid, 1.23 sec slower than brother Craig's 1992 class-record, Forster's MG in 33.77 sec, Lake's Amilcar-Riley with a fresh vintage racing-car class-record of 28.73sec, and Baldock and Hulbert in the over 1501 cc racing car division.

Dan Margulies, whose Maserati had been second to Sean Danaher's Maserati (a record 24.52 sec: 132 mph) in the 1-1/2-litre racing-car class, was a lone runner with his AFM in the post-war historic racing car class (29.92 sec), and of six Edwardians, Harold Smith's Indy Sunbeam was again the fastest (35.62 sec, 87 mph), the 21-litre aero-engined Metallurgique winning on handicap. President Barry Clarke drove his FN/GN, secretary David Franklin rode a Scott in the motorcycle demonstrations, and Chris Gordon had the ex-Emery/Stoyel Meadows Frazer Nash out for the first time in 30 years, after problems the "Chain Gang Gazette" described as "break, fail, snap, puncture, split, warp and become incontinent." It managed 37.87 sec (81 mph). The Halford Special was unwell. (41.14 sec, 66 mph) but the 200 Mile Race Alvis did 36.05 sec, 87 mph, on consistent runs. There was an interval when the VSCC took on the role of a pedal-cycle racing club. Another happy VSCC day! W B