ONLY TWO CLEAN PERFORMANCES IN THE COLMORE TROPHY RACE
GUY WARBURTON, driving an eight-cylinder Allard-Special, won the Colmore Trophy in the annual event held on February 26th, in the Cotswold hills. Allard-Specials, the latest in trials machines, scored a striking suc cess, for S. H. Allard. himself, designer of the cars, was the only other competitor
besides Warburton to lose no marks, and Allard-Specials -figured prominently in winning both the team prizes. The event was organised by the Sutton Coldfield and North Birmingham A.C., and if all trials were as well run, there
would be no need for any popular clamour to reform this branch of the sport. A. H. Langley, the Clerk of the Course, deserves every congratulation. The double circuit system was used, with a variation
from that originated on the Inter-‘Varsity Trial, for competitors started off in threes on alternate circuits. This enabled members of teams to start together, and run in company throughout the trial. A drizzling rain fell at intervals during the day, and most of the hills, neither really wet nor dry, were in their most difficult condition. Competition tyres and solid axles were both allowed, but even so wheel grip was never easy. Two of the worst hills were on private land, and were used by permission of the owners. In spite of the large number of failures, there was never more than ten minutes delay at any point, and the trial finished exactly on schedule—a re markable feat in an event of such severity. Warren Hill, which caused the greatest number of failures, was new to car events, though it has been used for some years in the motor cycle Cohnore Cup trial. Competitors approached along a muddy track, which itself was difficult
going, and was marked as a provisionai observed section on the route card.
In view of the extreme difficulties which followed, however, a free passage was allowed on the approach. The hill itself had a sharp right-hand turn, on a slanting, muddy surface. If competitors came up too fast, their front wheels, refusing to answer to the steering, merely slid straight ahead, and they finish up in the bank. If they turned the wheels early, they had to mount the steepest portion of the corner. The correct tactics
were to approach quite slowly, and in the middle of the corner to lock over and give the engine full power, in order to swing the tail round. The first section ended just round the corner, but only twelve competitors,
out of eighty entries, reached this point. Curiously enough, six were successful in the morning, and a similar number in the afternoon. However, in the morning only one driver managed to keep going after the corner. This was T. H. Cole,
driving a supercharged Austin Seven, a tine effort when so many other doughty drivers were beaten by wheelspin. In the afternoon the first of the Allards to tackle the corner was K. N. Hutchison’s
twelve-cylinder Zephyr-engined machine. He got past the first section, turning on all the power, so that the trees for yards round were plastered with flying mud. Then, unexpectedly, wheelspin brought him to a stop. He restarted with slight assistance, and charged up the rest of the section in a most impressive. manner,
It seemed possible that Hutchison ‘s immensely powerful car had shifted so much mud that for a time it had made the corner easier, for Allard himself kept going in fine style, and cleared both sections. Then came Warburton, whose throttle control was beyond praise. He was the only driver who really made the difficult mancruvre look easy. The next car, I,. G. Johnson’s Frazer-Nash-B.M.W., also nearly succeeded on the second section, but at last he stopped, and there were no more successes for the whole hill throughout the day.
As regards the bottom section, however, several made valiant efforts, notably J. M. Toulmin with one of the new “
Cracker” M.G.s, which have the 11litre engine in the T-series chassis. P. S. Flower with his M.G. also came near success for both sections, and a really determined corner by E. Lloyd-Jones with his old T.T.-type supercharged LeaFrancis just got him to the end of the first section. G. H. Beetson took the corner skilfully, but found his Riley on the steep part on the inside, so that he failed. J. Terras, with a blown ” PB ” M.G., displayed lunch enterprise, and got well into the
second section. H. I. Wilkes, having stopped on the corner, had to reverse to take the slip-road, and a stone was rammed up the exhaust. The obstruction was loosened with a screw-driver, and at last was shot out by the engine with great eclat. Ten marks were lost by failure on the first section, but only five if a car cleared the corner and stopped higher up, an admirable arrangement. Those success ful on the lower part were :—
T. H. Cob O (Austin), G. Warburton and S. 31; Allard (Allard Specials), both sections : It N. Hutchison (Allard Special); C. 1.). Buckley, W. S. Sewell (Austins); J. A. Bastock, E. J. Haesendonek, P. S. Flower, J. M. Toultnin, J. Torras (M.G.$); L. G. Johnson (-Fraz.er-Nash7,B.M.W.•). Warren Hill was one of those on private land, and the owner had even gone so far as to remove one of his fences to make a way out for competitors. The other private hill was Leckhampton, but this was easier than usual, and about thirty cars were successful. Notably fast climbs were made by the other M.G. team, the Musketeers, comprising R. A. Macdermid, J. A. Bastock, and A. B. Langley. The system that fewer marks should be last by a car that nearly reached the top,
compared with one that failed in the mud at the bottom, was again used. In this way 1′. L. McDonald gained sonic reward for a good effort with his Singer, as he did not stop till within a few yards of the summit.
The next most difficult hill to Warren was Juniper, on the other eh :Mt. J ‘wiper is never to be despised, but it was not expected to cause so many failures. Only fourteen drivers made clean climbs, and whereas the Cra..ker INI.G.s of J. .;%1 . Toulmin, H. K. Crawford, and J. E. S. Jones were successful, all three of the Musketeers stopped. A notable success was that of the Austin ” Grasshopper” team, driven by W. H. Scriven, C. D. Buckley, and W. S. Sewell, thus repeating a good performance by this make on Juniper in the Gloucester trial. W. H. Depper’s Austin also made the Climb, but T. H. Cole, the hero Of Warren, spoilt his clean sheet. All three of the Allards were sucessful, though F. D. Gilson’s ” independent” Allard stopped, and Flower made another good climb with his M.G. The remaining
successes at Juniper were made by M. S. Soames (Ford V8), W. J. Green (M.G.), and H. G. Symmons (I. M.B. Special). This left only seven who had climbed Juniper and the first section of Warren, and only two with a 100 per cent. performance (Warburton and Allard).
Nailsworth Ladder was another hill to cause an unexpected number of failures. It was in rough condition, and 60 per cent. of the entry came to grief, including, surprisingly enough, J. A. Bastock with his M.G. It will be remembered that Warburton, after a fine performance in the ” Gloucester,” unexpectedly stopped at Nailsworth, and he must have heaved a sigh of relief when he topped it successfully. It was in the special test at Guiting, where competitors had to reverse at a cross-roads, and stop after crossing the finishing line, that Warburton nearly lost the Cohnore Trophy. He forgot to stop, and went on much too far amid frantic shouts ! No marks were lost here, but the times, added to those at the Lypiatt test, were to decide any ties. However, his only rival, S. H. Allard, made the opposite error through stopping much too soon, and having to restart
to cross the line. By a strange coincidence, both these diverse tactics resulted in exactly the same time, 23 secs. At Lypiatt Warburton took 121 sees., and Allard. 12 secs., and the former therefore won the Trophy.
There were four special tests in all. At Lypiatt A. B. Langley, approaching the scene of operations, ran into the ditch, and his car had to be lifted out. Best times were those of J. A. Bastock (M.0.), 111 secs., A. B. Langley (M.G.), 12 secs., and K. N. Hutchison and 0. Warburton (Allard-Specials), 121 secs.
At the Guiting test, D. E. Harris (M.G.) -took 191 secs., K. N. Hutchison (Allard), 191 secs., and L. G. Johnson (Frazer-Nash-B.M.W.), 19t secs. At Gypsy Hill, on the reverse side of Gypsy Lane, H. K. Crawford and W. J. Green, both with M.G.s, tied with 51 secs., and six other drivers took 5t secs. Here a distance of about 30 yards,
including a bend, had to be covered in a maximum of 7 secs. On Stancombe there was a timed climb, and G. Warburton (Allard) excelled with 141 sees. C. D. Buckley (Austin) took 15i sees., and N. V. Terry (Frazer-Nash
B.M.W.) 151 secs.
Colmore Trophy : G. Warburton (Allard Special).
Club Team Trophy: Ford Enthusiasts’ Club. K. N. Hutchison, S. H. Allard (Allard Specials), M. S. Soames (Ford V8).
Committee Team Prize : Tail Waggers Club. K. N. Hutchison, S. 11. Allard, G. Warburton (Allard. Specials). Sneh Cup : C. D. Buckley (Austin), 5 marks lost. Rhode Cup : W. J. Green (M.0.), 10 marks lost. Bernard Norris Cup : S. II. Allard (Allard Special). Cream Crackers Award : 11. G. Symnions (L.M.B.),
10 marks lost.
Trial to Trial Trophy : E. Lloyd-Jones (LeaFrancis), 10 marks lost. Class Awards :
750 c.c. : W. H. seriven (Austin), 10 marks lost. 1,100 c.c. : P. S. Flower (M.O.), 12 marks lost. 1,500 c.c. : E. Lloyd-Jones (Lea-Francis), 16 marks lost.
2,000 c.c. S. M. Toulmin (M.G.), 5 marks lost. Over 2,000 c.c. : K. N. Hutchison (Allard Special), 6 marks lost.. No first-class awards :
Second-class awards : M. S. Soames (Ford), T. U. Cole (Au6tin), H. K. Crawford (M.G.), J. E. S. Jones (1,1.0.), 10 marks lost.