I was most interested in the article on the 1939 British Empire Trophy race at Donington and it is possible that I may be able to add a few scraps of information on a couple of the cars which participated.
First the ex-Earl Howe 2.9 Maserati which was driven by Hyde in this race. After the war I purchased this car which, as you rightly say, had an ugly two-seater body fitted. This body was reputed to have come off an Alvis roadster. I enclose a photo of the car taken outside my works in Pembridge Mews, which may be of interest. I sold the car to Gavin Maxwell, who, incidentally, at the time was writing the biography of Guiliano the Sicilian bandit. Now we come to the confusion! This car was already fitted with a pre-selector gearbox when I sold it to Maxwell.
Now the BHW, I also purchased this car and can certainly confirm that it needed careful handling to control it. I remember Reg Parnell advising me to get rid of it “otherwise Brian, you’ll break your bloody neck”. The engine in this car, as you so rightly say, came from the Kay Don Grand Prix car, and this car was maintained and prepared for Don by John Cooper senior, father of the present John Cooper. The chassis was sold to John Willment who fitted a Ford VA engine to it and although I tried several times to buy the car front Willment I never succeeded.
I had better stop rambling on, but it’s quite fatal for me to read these interesting articles about them.
Ferring-by-Sea BRIAN FINGLASS