RACING NEWS OF THE MONTH.
By E. K.
Entries for the A.C.F. Races.
IN pursuance of their usual policy of waiting till the
last possible moment, manufacturers are only sending in their entries for the A.C.F. races very slowly. This policy must be very trying for the organisers of races, but presumably manufacturers do not like parting with the money for the entrance fees until it is absolutely necessary.
The first entry for the French Grand Prix was the Halford Special, entered by Powerplus Ltd. This car, which has already shown great promise, has now been acquired by G. E. T Eyston, who will drive it in the race. Its troubles in the past have been with the transmission system, which was only designed to stand up to an engine developing 45 h.p., while of course the 6cylinder Halford engine developes very much more. The gearbox has, therefore, been redesigned to give very much greater strength, and the whole of the transmission reconstructed. It is hoped also to revise the four-wheel braking system considerably in order to make the car more suitable for road racing.
The Delage Company has also entered with three cars. These racers are the same as those used last year, but considerable modifications will be made, as the result of the lessons learnt last season. The exhaust, which it will be remembered caused the drivers so much inconvenience in the European and British Grands Prix, has now been carried over to the left-hand side of the cars, while arrangements have been made to dispose of the fumes from the engine. A single supercharger driven at the front of the 8-cylinder engine will be used this year, and the braking system is undergoing revision. The Delage drivers will probably be Robert Benoist, Bourlier and Louis Wagner.
There are many rumours current as to the other runners in the great French race. Mr. Louis Coatalen has stated that the three 8-cylinder Talbots will run, while Bugatti and O.M. are also looked on as certain starters. Fiat as usual is being mysterious, but it is hoped in some quarters that Duesenberg will enter a team. The accident to E. A. D. Eldridge has probably disposed of the possibility of the Miller as a starter, and it is thought that it is unlikely that Itala and SimaViolet will be ready for the race.
The Coupe de la Commission Sportive (fuel consumption race) does not seem to be attracting very much enthusiasm. An 1100 c.c. B.N.C. has, however, been entered by its owner, while the Peugeot Company has entered two cars to be driven by Boillot and Rigal. The return of Peugeot to French racing may be regarded as something of an event, as in spite of their wonderful reputation before the war, they have lately confined themselves to the Targa Florio and touring car events.
The Targa Florio.
It seems that this year the chief interest in the Targa Florio will centre round the smaller cars. Fiat have announced that they will start in the Sicilian race with a team of supercharged super-sports editions of the
9 h.p. model. A number of the ordinary sports 9 h.p.’s have already been sold, and it is intended to market this supersports model with a super-charger also. As well as these, the Itala people are hoping to have some of their 12-cylinder 1100 c.c. racers ready in time for the race ; Amilcar, Salmson and B.N.C. are also regarded as certain starters in the 1100 c.c. class. There will also be in all probability some twin cylinder aircooled Tatra cars. These cars, which are built in Czecho-Slovakia by the Nerseldaf Company, won the 1100 c.c. class in this race in 1925.
The Targa Florio Bugattis will be entrusted to Minoia, who was second last year, Dubonnet, the well-known French amateur, who was fourth last year, and Count Conelli. The cars will again be straight-eights of 2,300 c.c., and may be supercharged. Peugeot will start with a single car driven by Andre Boillot. There is also a rumour that Ballot may enter this year.
The rules for the race disclose that no mechanic may be carried, so that drivers will have to face the 67 miles of the circuit without help in case of a breakdown. It will be remembered, however, that last year when mechanics were allowed, the Delage drivers elected to start alone.
Grand Prix d’Endurance.
The rules for this year’s 24-hour race at le Mans prove that the event wll be even more difficult than its predecessors. Cars up to 1100 c.c. must have 2-seater bodies, those under 1500 c.c. 3-seaters, and all the larger cars must carry full 4-seater bodies. Only ordinary brands of petrol may be used, but the most strenuous rule of all is undoubtedly that no tool or spare part may be used during the race, which is not carried on the car throughout. This makes the reliability factor a very important one. With regard to wheels, each car may only have six, and of the two spares, one can be carried on the car and
the other left at the pit. If a punctured tyre is left at the pit in exchange for the sixth wheel, the pit personnel may change the tyre on the wheel left with them. The driver may also use a jack which is left at the pit, to assist in changing a wheel.
This year the cars will have to be painted in their national colours : green for England, blue for France red for Italy, etc., which is an innovation in this race.
Bugatti is apparently thinking of entering for the Grand Prix d’Endurance with one of his Grand Prix cars, if he can manage to fit a 4-seater body to it. It would then be sold at the end of the race with a guarantee of 119 m.p.h.
Full Programme for Montlhery.
A very full programme has been drawn up for the Montlhery track this season. The ball will be set rolling by the Grand Prix d’Ouverture on March 13th and followed by the Grand Prix de Printemps on April 3rd.
On April 17th there will be a race for 1100 c.c. cars and one for 2-litre cars on May 8th. On May 26th there will be a free-for-all race, and two more” Grands Prix” on June 6th and 12th. On July 2nd and 3rd there will be the A.C.F. races, an ordinary meeting on July 14th, and on August 14th and 15th a 24-hour race. On October 2nd there will be the Grand Prix de France motorcycle races, in conjunction with which will be run a race for light cars, while the 2nd Prand Prix du Salon will be run on October 23rd. With such a full programme as this everyone should find some race to suit his tastes and car, and very good sport should be witnessed.
—And for the Nurburg Ring.
The new German track will also be used extensively this season for bicycle, motor-bicycle and car races. The opening race will take place on June 12th and will
consist of a Grand Prix for sports cars, with prizes totalling 00,000. Then on July 17th there will be the German Grand Prix also for sports cars, and the touring Grand Prix on the 19th. On August 15th and September 10th there will be reliability trials for touring cars..
The German track, which is by far the most ambitious in the world, promises to be of an exceptionally sporting nature, and some thrilling races should be seen on it this year.
Indianapolis 24-Hour Race.
There is a proposal to run a 24-hour race in September this year on the famous square brick-track at Indianapolis. The engines of competing cars will have to weigh not more than 10,000 lbs., and run on ordinary grades of petrol and oil, but there will be no restrictions as to their capacity. Cars must be fitted with 3-speed gear boxes and have the standard American track and wheelbase.
A specially interesting point about this race is that it will be a direct break-away from the established policy of the Indianapolis track to hold only one race a year— the famous 500 miles race on May 30th. It has, of course, seemed that the track was somewhat wasted all the rest of the year, and this race being of an entirely different character, is not likely to detract from the importance of the annual 500 miles event.
Racing Track for Bucarest.
A project is said to be well advanced for the construction of a motor racing track on the outskirts of Bucarest. Those who have had experience of motoring in Rumania will know that neither the rough cobbles of the chaussee in Bucarest, nor the dust and potholes of the Ploesti road, make an ideal course for speeding, which is nearly as dear to the Rumanian as the other Latin peoples.
The track, therefore, should fulfil a considerable want. This will make the ninth race track in Europe, the others being Brooklands, the Brighton track, Montlhery, Miramas, Monza, Sitges near Barcelona, the Nurburg Ring, and the now disused Avus track at Berlin.
1100 c.c. Racers.
It seems probable that next year the greatest interest will be taken in the 1100 c.c. racing class, as many very interesting racers of this size have been built or are in course of preparation.
To begin with, there are the 6-cylinder Amilcars, which last year showed themselves the fastest racers in this class. Now, however, Salmson are building a team of 8-cylinder racers to replace the old 4-cylinders, which have obviously served their turn ; these new cars should be very serious contestants. Then there are the ingenious 12-cylinder Italas of which much may be expected, while a French firm is rumoured to be producing an exceptional 6-cylinder 1100 c.c. racer. Besides these Thomas is building an 1100 c.c. straighteight, and from him something distinctly fast should be expected, and behind them all looms the fact that Delage has got a 12-cylinder engine of under 1000 c.c. which attains 8,000 r.p.m. and is said to develop 200 h.p.
We congratulate Captain Malcolm Campbell on his deserved success in setting up a new world’s speed record.
The subject of our front cover illustration this month is an impromptu exhibition duel between J. D. Barclay (Vauxhall) and the late J. G. P. Thomas (Invicta) at the Cambridge University Speed Trials on February 19th in Hatley Park. The victor on this occasion was Barclay. Fastest car time was made by H. Martineau (Vauxhall), a visitor, while the fastest of the present club members was A. B. Machonochie on a Bugatti.
174 m.p.h. is a useful speed, but we feel sure that Capt. Campbell will not rest on his laurels until he has attained the self-appointed goal of 180 m.p.h.
On this and other pages will be found several pictures of the new 1,000 H.P. Sunbeam which has emerged from its preliminary tests with considerable success. In charge of Major Segrave, this car is shortly being taken to Daytona Beach, Florida, where it is hoped to attain a speed of 200 m.p.h. or more.
Good Trade in Yorkshire.
We hear that there is such a demand for the new” Flying Squirrel” machine that the Scott Motor Cycle Co., of Shipley, Yorks, is working a regular night shift. Trade in many places is looking up, but the Scott firm would seem to be quite the busiest at the present time.