MATTERS OF MOMENT, March 1951
MATTERS OF MOMENT
THE MONTE CARLO RALLY
Another highly successful Monte Carlo Rally has come and gone, and it has done no harm at all to British prestige. Indeed, outright victory in the 11-litre class by the Jowett Jupiter team is a matter for national congratulation. The Jupiter impressed with its class win at Le Mans last year, and its Rally success proves it a very worthy WI-rounder, eminently suitable for long-distance motoring at advanced throttle-openings. Greatest credit of all, naturaLb , goes
, goes to Jean Trevoux, who, with R. Crovetto, won the Rally for Delahaye. The Delahaye star is high in the Monte Carlo firmament, for Louis Chiron’s was Placed fifth, and fastest of all in the ” road race” final test, where its average speed of approximately 51 m.p.h. and maximum of around 100 m.p.h. proved Delahaye brake, and engine stamina to have suffered not at all in 2,000 miles of pretty merciless pressing-on across Europe in winter. Had Chiron not had gearselection hesitancies in the acceleration-reversing test on arrival at the Principality, the great pioneer French marque of Delahaye could well have Occupied the first two places in General Classification. As it was, ,a Portuguese, the Comte de Monte Real, accompanied by co driver M. J. Pahna, proved again the
practicability of the Ford as a long-distance rapid touring car, by finishing second, a mere 0.35 marks behind Trevoux. Both started from Lisbon.
It is with undisguised pleasure that we announce that third place amongst all finishers went to a Mk. V Jaguar saloon. ably conducted by the Irishman C. Vard, with A. Young, who, starting from Glasgow, completed the ordeal with 27.43 marks. only 0.67 in arrears of the victorious 41-litre Delahaye. lie won the R.S.A.C. Cup and W. Waring’s Jaguar the B.T.D.A. Award. This proves the Jaguar to be a truly great car even without recourse to the wonderful twin o.h.c. engine of the XK. 120 and Mk. VII.
Going another three places down the final list of fifty, praise proves well-bestowed, with a comfortable, roomy Citron Six fourth (some atonement for two others of its kind losing vital gearbox internals during the acceleration-reversing test !), another Delahaye and, tying for sixth place, a Jupiter and a Ford Pilot encountered. Ken Wharton piloted the last-named and went notably quickly in the ” round-the-houses ” test, and the Jupiter of
Ellison and Robinson won the i /-litre class, with Gordon Wilkins and Raymond Baxter’s Jupiter runner-up.
Clearly then, these makes, Delahaye, Ford, Jaguar, Citron and Jupiter have been proved, by the 1951 Monte Carlo Rally, eminently suited to the most arduous forms of high-speed, long-distance travel. Other good performances were put up by the little rearengined Renault saloons (of which the Rosiers pere el frere Lrought theirs home 15th, a grand achievement), these ears soundly trouncing the Dyna-Panhards,
soundly Dyna-Panhards, themselves no sluggards, in the 750-c.c. class, by the 1,089-e.c. Simcas, first and second in the 750-1,100-c.c. category, and by the Peugeot 203 that secured the Coupe des Dames for Mmes. Hustinx and Francois-Sigmnd. The Recces’ Ford Anglia saloon, too, did well to finish third behind the Simeon in the 750-1,100-e.e. class, a performance which will please those who daily get good service from the least expensive of British ears—but we wonder if anyone occupied the back seat on the run to Monte Carlo’ and if so, how they felt on arrival! We were impressed profoundly by the way the Anglia got round corners and through the fog after leaving the Llamirindod control. This year weather conditions were less severe than in 1950, but the
long road section took its toll— only Ill out of 337 starters retained clean sheets, and 54 definitely retired, including a Jowett with gasket trouble, Joy Cooke’s Vanguard with nothing to drive its ignition distributor, a Vauxhall with fuel-feed maladies, and many from accidents of varying degrees of severity. Some lost many marks for navigational miscalculations, among them Mrs. Vaughan (A.C.), who may have mistaken Continental time for British, and certainly many cars were very sick which did arrive at the finish, the crew of one Hillman Minx, for instance, being compelled to use their legs for reversing in the first special test, the gearbox no longer being adequate for this manoeuvre ! The last. test caught out others, including a Hotchkiss which ” blew-up well and truly, and a Baby Renault that blew its gasket.
Chiron was first in the regularity-cum-speed test, runner-up being Gautruche’s Citroen Six. Trevoux was fastest in the first test in 22.0 see., Franklin’s V12 Lagonda, an obsolete model, runner-up in 22.9 sec. Trevoux won the Monaco Cup for best performance in the teats as is whole. The Monte Carlo Rally, as usual, proved a truly adequate test Of man and his motor car. Apart from the severity of its road
section, the tests and inspection that finally decided the issue could hardly have been better devised to constitute not only an exacting measure of driving skill (in which British trials-exponents seemed nicely at ease) but a searching examination of all those qualities so essential to a car that is to perform equally well in crowded city streets and on long high-speed journeys. The Monte Carlo, with the Swiss Alpine Rally, is the most valuable production-car road contest there is.
For that reason we can be all the more proud that Ford, Jaguar and Jupiter figured so high in the results. Their achievements, particularly that of the Jupiters—which led home the hot-stuff Simms, whose only consolation was that they were giving away 267 c.c. in the 14-litre category, and won the L’ Action Automobile 14-litre team-prize—will not go unnoticed in dollar markets. In the Comfort Contest, Mike Couper’s 44-litre Bentley took the Grand Prix, and Jaguar, Daimler, Humber, Hillman and Sunbeam-Talbot shared other honours.
Greatest praise of all, however, goes to the 4,455-c.c. and 8,557-c.c. Delahayes for taking the Charles Poreux Team Trophy, the Equipe Trophy, and to that great racing driver Jean Trevoux for his fourth Monte Carlo Rally victory. Besides the H.S.H. Prince Rainier Cup, Trevoux went home with the A.C. de Portugal Cup, Monne° Cup and Anthony Noghes Challenge Trophy.