THE GRAND PRIX OF PAU MARCEL LEHOUX (BUGATTI) WINS OPENING RACE OF THE SEASON, SNOWSTORM MAKES CONDITIONS SEVERE.
ROUND-THE-TOWN races have the advantage of being a concentrated test of the endurance of cars and drivers alike. At first regarded as” miniature” circuits, they have become recognised as placing a severe strain on engines, gears, transmission and brakes. First Monaco, then Nimes and Nice, and finally Pau. The latest race to be run on these lines is the Grand Prix of Pau, which opened the racing season on February 19th, and attracted an entry of 17 cars, made up of 13 Bugattis, 3 Alfa Romeos, and 1 Maserati. The race was the culminating event of a week’s motor sport, including a Rally and Concours d’Elegance. For many days practicing was carried on by most of the competitors, and good times
Organisers: L’ A.C. Basco-Beamais.
No previous w;uners : First time race held. Length of lap : 2 km. 649 m.
Length of race : 211 km. 920 in. 80 laps.
Count Czaikowski (Bugatti). Philippe Etancelin (Alfa-Romeo).
Marcel Lehoux (Bugatti). Honore Lormand (Bugatti). Jean Delorme (Bugatti). Louis Trintignant (Bugatti). Pierre Felix (Alfa Romeo). Guillaume Moll (Bugatti). Benoit Falchetto (Bugatti), Paul Morand (Bugatti). Robert Brunet (Bugatti). Rene Dreyfus (Bugatti). Jean Gaupillat (Bugatti). J. de Maleplane (Maserati). J. P. Wimille (Alfa Romeo). Marcel Jacob (Bugatti). Guy Bouriat (Bugatti).
were recorded by Etancelin, who was the fastest with 2m. 2s. and Dreyfus and Lehoux who each recorded 2m. 3s. Fine weather prevailed throughout the week before the race, but on the Saturday night snow began to fall, and continued to do so most of the next day, making driving conditions appallingly difficult.
Sharp at 2 o’clock Charles Faroux gave the signal to start, and, Wimille being a non-starter, 16 cars leapt forward en masse. At the end of the first lap Moll was in the lead, followed by Felix (his partner in the front pair of starters), Czaikowski, Etancelin, and Gaupillat. Trouble began early, Falchetto failing to appear, and Delorme pulled into his pit— a fatal stop in a short race. The speed of the cars was not quite so fast as in practice, Moll getting round in about 2m. IN.. his Bugatti being that used by his fellow Algerian, Lehoux, last season. In spite of the steadily falling snow the race was witnessed by a vast crowd, every vantage point being filled. The drivers were finding visibility poor, although some seemed to cope with the snow better than others. As the race wore on the faster drivers had a chance to pick up from their positions in the rear pairs of the massed start, and Etancelin got into third place. Moll, with a clear path, maintained his lead, with Czaikowski second. Just as the Alfa Romeo hopes were rising Etancelin came into his pit with a misfiring engine, which was caused by melting snow on a plug lead. Dreyfus was also in trouble with the snow, but fora different reason, as he could not see through his snow-covered visor, which he cleaned at a hasty pit-stop. At 20 laps, or quarter distance, the order was :
1. Moll (Bugatti), 43m. 41s.
2. Czaikowski (Bugatti), 45m. 56s.
3. Gaupillat (Bugatti); 44m. 7s.
4. Lehoux (Bugattl), 44m. 57s.
5. de Maleplane (Maserati), 45m. 31s.
6. Bouriat (Bugatti), 45m. 33s.
7. Morand (Bugatti), 45m..49s.
8. Trintignant (Bugatti), 45m. 51s.
9. Dreyfus (Bugatti), 47m. 10s.
10. Lormand (Bugatti), 47m. 37s.
11. Etancelin (Alfa Romeo).
12. Jacob (Bugatti).
13. Delorme (Bugatti).
14. Felix (Alfa Romeo).
Then the snow stopped, and a change of places occurred, LehouT taking the lead from Moll, who lost another place when he was passed by Czaikowski. Etancelin, away once more, was lapping at great speed in a gallant attempt to catch the leaders, breaking the lap record with a time of 2m. 4s. Lormand retired with gear-box trouble, while Brunet’s car could be seen abandoned at the vinage de la .Gare. At half distance the order was :
I. Lehoux (Bugatti), lh. 27sa. 56s.
2. Moll (Bugatti), 1h. 28m. 29s.
3. Czaikowski (Bugatti), lh. 20m. 3s.
4. Bouriat (Bugatti), lb. 29m. 7s. .5. Gaupillat (Bugatti), 1h. 29m. 16s. 6. Morand (Bugatti), lb. 30m. 3s.
7. Trintignant (Bugatti), lh. 30m. 9s.
8. Dreyfus (Bugatti), lh. 30ra. 37s.
9. de Maleplane (Maserati), lh. 30m. 58s.
10. Etancelin (Alfa Romeo), lh. 31m. 16s.
11. Jacob (Bugatti), lb. 32m. Its.
12. Felix (Alfa Romeo), lh. 41m. 12s.
13. Delorme (Bugatti). As will be seen, Lehoux now had a clear lead, but Etancelin and Dreyfus both were putting on a great spurt. After being equalled several times the lap record was equalled by both the holder, Etancelin, and Dreyfus. A little later, however, the latter put in some really magnificent laps, lowering the record to 2m. 3s. and then to 2m. Is. Both of them were picking up places quickly so that at 60 laps, or three quarters distance, the order was :
1. Lehoux (Bugatti), 2h. I 1m. 14s.
2. Moll (Bugatti), 2h. 12m. 2s.
3. Bouriat (Bugatti), 211. 12m. 40s.
4. Etancelin (Alfa Romeo), 2h. 13m. 25s.
5. Dreyfus (Bugatti), 211. 13m. 16s. 6. Czaikowski (Bugatti(, 2h. 13m. 27s,
7. Trintignant (Bugatti), 2h. 14m. 14s.
8. de Maleplane (Maserati), 2h. 19m. 58s.
9. Jacob (Bugatti), 2h. 21m. 33s.
10. Delorme (Bugatti).
Czaikowsld retired, as did Felix, who had been dogged by trouble with his Alfa Romeo. Etancelin had the sympathy of the crowd, who cheered him heartily all round the course as he strained every nerve to reduce the gap between himself and the leaders. But it was not to be, and the Algerian driver, Marcel Lehoux, was finally flagged over the line, a popular winner of the First Grand Prix of Pau.
I. Marcel Lehoux (Bugatti), 2h.54m. 6 4/5s. 43.38 m.p.h.
2. Guillaume Moll (Bugatti), 211. 55m. 6 3/5s.
3. Phillipe Etancelin (Alfa Romeo), 2h. 55m. 24 1/55.
4. Rene Dreyfus (Bugatti), 2b. 55m. 36s.
5. Guy Bourtat (Bugatti), 2h. 56m. 50s.
6. Louis Trintignant (Bugatti), I lap behind.
7. J. de Maleplane (Maserati), 4 laps behind.
8. Marcel Jacob (Bugatti), 5 laps behind. 9. Jean Delorme (Bugatti), 11 laps behind. Record lap : Dreyfus (Bugatti), 2m. Is. Winner’s equipment: Dunlop tyres, K.L.G. plugs