MOTORING SPORTSMEN. Mr. George Duller. By The Editor.

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36

MOTORING SPORTSMEN.

Mr. George Duller.

By THE EDITOR.

WITHOUT exaggeration it may be said that

Mr. George Duller, the famous jockey, is one of the most interesting personalities in the motor racing world, in which his achievements compare with those for which he is celebrated on the Turf. To many of our readers Mr. Duller is best known by his appearance at Brooklands during the last few years, though his successes in the recent classic road races have brought him well to the front. As a matter of fact, however, he is a motorist of very long standing, and was an expert driver long before finishing his racing apprenticeship under Mr. Schwind, the trainer, of Streatley and Goring.

During our interview with Mr. Duller at his Epsom residence we discovered that he has actually owned practically every make of car, besides being an amateur mechanic of no mean attainments.

Many years ago an accident while boxing a horse at Kempton Park resulted in serious injuries which incapacitated Mr. Duller for several months, during which time he put on so much weight that he wisely decided to abandon flat racing and take to the National Hunt Rules. As is well known, his great forte is hurdle racing, and his success in this direction may be largely attributed to his daring innovation of riding ” short ” instead of following the orthodox long stirrups used by other hurdle riders. One cannot but admire the pluck of our jockey-motorist, who, having been bred and born among successful horsemen, breaks away from tradition, adopts his own style of riding, and proves the value of his own ideas by a practically unbroken series of successes. As Mr. Duller explained, it is all a matter of balance and ” hands ” whether one is assisting a high-mettled horse over a difficult hurdle or persuading a fast racing car round a sharp bend with the foot hard down upon

the accelerator. Personally we are inclined to think that other qualities are needed, and Mr. Duller possesses more than the average amount of daring, whether he be niounted on a horse or behind the wheel of a ioo milean-hour car.

At one time Mr. Duller intended to take up racing on motor cycles, and would have done so had he not been warned by Herbert le Vack that the machine he proposed riding was far too dangerous for any high speeds. The warning was taken, and the rider who eventually ran this particular machine crashed on the first attempt, and only just escaped with his life.

Mr. Duller’s first appearance at Brooklands was on “The Silver Hawk,” a Swift chassis fitted with a 1,500 c.c. Coventry Simplex engine, on which he won several races at speeds averaging between 67 and 68 miles per hour. It was this machine which gave him some very valuable experience in tuning procedure, which came in usefully at a later date whilst ” hottingup ” the various racing cars he acquired. Here it may be mentioned that Mr. Duller has been the owner of most of the cars he has driven in races, and is a genuine amateur, indulging in the sport for the love of speed and as a relaxation from his professional duties as a jockey. Apart from the mere pleasure of motor racing, Mr. Duller finds the sport an admirable recipe for keeping fit during the summer months, his experience on road and track being very valuable in keeping his hands and nerves in condition for the strenuous business of hurdle racing. The illustration reproduced on this page is very interesting as demonstrating the Duller style of hurdle riding as compared with the orthodox manner, the leading horse being Golly Eyes, which, when ridden by Mr. Duller, was never beaten,

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