THE: “LAND’S END” COMES OF AGE
21st. M.C.G. TRIAL TO LAND’S END FAVOURED BY PERFECT WEATHER AND A RECORD ENTRY. NEW HILLS FAIRLY EASY.
FOR the 21st London to Land’s End Trial the Committee of the M.C.C. decided that the famous event should celebrate its majority by some departures from usual practice. To begin with a new starting point was found, Virginia Water giving way to Heston Aerodrome, a change which is likely to become permanent. Then some new hills were included, notably, an extension of Lynmouth by taking the sharp right hairpin up the Lynton road ; a new climb in Lynton called Station hilt; and lastly, Gooseham, near Bude.
The new starting point at Heston Aerodrome has much to commend it. There is plenty of room, the club-house is comfortable and looked most attractive with its flood-lighting, and the adventurous can make 10/flights from the aerodrome, taking off and landing in the beam of the beacon.
The first car left at 11.17 p.m. on Friday night, and at minute intervals the competitors were sent off until 4.15 a.m., when the last man, E. N. Adlington with his Austin Ten took the road to the West. The night was, cold, but fine, and little incident took place en route to Taunton, the breakfast stop. L. G. Mussi’s old Riley Nine which has covered 140,000 miles, and has been re-bored three times, ran a big-end, and S. Sanders stopped for good on Hartford Bridge Flats with his M.G. Magna. Grabhurst was the first hill, but before the hill was reached G. H. P. Scott had a ” moment ” when the back axle of his Alta seized, causing much skidding. Although in good condition, Grabhurst caused quite a lot of bother through drivers being determined not to fail so early in the trial, with resulting overexuberance. Added to this, the sun was shining in competitors’ eyes, so that errors
of judgment were frequent. Several Morgans charged about, and many cars nearly ran down the spectators. Worst of all was Strong’s Patrick Hornet, which was duly damaged, while others who failed were Brynildson (Talbot) and Pig6Leschallas (A.C.) who got going again. D. West (Frazer Nash) broke a chain and charged the bank, while others who failed to steer a clean course were Marshall
(Hornet), Littlewood-Clarke (M.G. Midget), Pettit (M.G. Mark I), and Williams (M.G. Midget). The Singers were all safe and steady, while several Frazer Nashes
and Hornets came up quickly. The larger cars were good as a whole, notably Marker (Bentley), Driskell (V8 Ford), Hardwick-Sewell (Vauxhall 30/98), and, as usual, Whalley (Ford). • Porlock was not observed, but we heard that one small car, being driven too close to the inside of the hairpin, had turned over. Lynmouth, for the first part, round the bend up to the new hairpin, caused
only a few failures, always through lack of power. The new hairpin, however, caused many drivers to approach it with feelings of considerable alarm, not alleviated by the crowd assembled to witness their downfall. Altogether, 40 cars failed to round the bend without coming abruptly up against the cliff. Im Thum, on “Pies” old A.C. locked over too soon, straightened momentarily, and then got round alright. A. U. Kipling (Hotchkiss) came round much too fast, found his lock was insufficient, but was too late to brake, and so hit the cliff good and hard. C. J. Fryer (M.G. Midget) was very neat, but M-L. Curtis, obviously afraid of damaging tile badge-laden front of his V8 Ford, failed to rotind—the bend.,.
There was a certain amount of baulking caused by cars coming down, and H. Hillcoat restarted his V8 Ford unassisted. S. F. Seyfried, on a Talbot “90,” showed how the bend could be taken by a large car, but G. May (Alvis), J. Torrome (Standard Avon), R. R. K. Marker (Bentley) and A. S. Whiddington (Alvis Firefly) all failed. W. A. V. Davis (Wolseley Hornet) amused everyone by his anxious expression, and a non-competing Lancia sailed round in an effortless manner which. many competitors would have liked to emulate. The new hill, Station, proved fairly
easy, although a shower of rain might have caused a very different story to be told. The hill was straight, and therefore gave the Frazer Nashes a chance to demonstrate their ability to climb such gradients at high speed. Fastest of all was H. J. Aldington, who roared up at a great pace, scattering marshals and spectators. W. A. Pouting, on another Nash, tried to do the same thing, but struck a gully and shot headlong into a concrete post, with much damage to his front axle and sump. K. N. Hutchison (V8 Ford) made a very fast climb, as did most of the Fords, Frazer Nashes, Singer Nines, J.2 Midgets and Wolseley Hornets. G. R. Brocklebank (M.G. Magna) just got over the bump at the top. A lot of people failed, among them being I. S. Macdonald (Riley), H. G. Smith (Morris Minor), H. E. Williams (M.G. Midget), R. Rose (3 litre Bentley), Pige-Leschallas (A.C.), C. P. Madden (Rover) and D. F. Durward (Austin Seven). Beggars Roost, for many years a notorious climb of the Land’s End, was not so crowded this year with spectators, although some women in shorts and flannel trousers gave the barracking members of the audience a chance to show off their wit. The Roost was in good condition, and some first-class climbs were seen, notably by Marker (Bentley), P. D. Walker (Talbot” 105 “), E. Russell (1926 Morris Cowley), amid cheers, and N. Tweedale (Rally). J. A. Driskell did his usual melodramatic stuff of yelling to the crowd to stand back, waving his arms, and generally causing a sensation. Wearing a yellow jumper, he drove his V8 Ford up the hill very quickly, in spite of giving so much of his attention to the
Failures included I. S. Macdonald (Riley), R. M. Tufnell (Salmson), J. Torrome (Standard Avon), W. J. Davies (Wolseley Hornet), R. Varley (Essex Challenger), P. Butler-Henderson (Wol seley Hornet), G. A. Ladwig (Jowett), Lt. Comm. C. M. D. Maltby (M.G. Midget), G. F. Gaskell (Trojan), D. J. C. Gamble (Riley), H. C. Smith (Morris Minor), H. E. Williams (M.G. Midget), R. Rose (Bentley), G. E. Ferguson (La
gonda), L. A. Sandford (Singer) and C. Montague-Johnstone (Riley).
Taken as a make, outstandingly good performances were put up by the Frazer Nashes, the Singer Nines, the J.2 Midgets, the V8 Fords, and the Hornet Specials. On the cross-country route to the new hill, Gooseham (pronounced Giisham, a la Francaise, by the locals), Powys Lybbe misjudged a corner and turned his Alvis over, fortunately without injuring his passenger. The hill itself, in dry condition
was easy for cars with adequate lock and a fair amount of power. The surface was covered with thick white dust, so that the policeman at the tep was gradually transmuted into a grey ghost. Some good climbs were seen by large cars, H. A.
Nash (Humber Snipe), P. D. Walker (Talbot “105 “), B. W. Clarke (Talbot) and Marker’s Bentley. N. A. Watkins (Frazer Nash) made a fast climb to the accompaniment of loud encouragement by his friends. The Rally driven by Tweed.ale was fast, as were C. B. Beeby’s £100 Morris Minor, Longman on the Andre V.6, and C. F. Widmann on a Vale Special. Every car raised a great cloud of dust, and on some corners, stones. J. R. H. Baker (Singer Nine) did his best to stun spectators with stones flung up by his rear wheels, while the biggest cloud of dust was raised by K. N. Hutchison, who made a star climb with his V8 Ford. The unfortunate spectators who were doomed to remain on the bill the whole time became more and more parched. Failures included I. S. Macdonald (Riley), R. M. Tufnell (Salmson), A. S. Whiddington (Alvis Firefly), D. J. C. Gamble (Riley), H. G. Smith (Morris Minor), J. Harrison (V8 Ford), A. L. Mason (M.G. Midget), and the 3 litre Bentley driven by R. Rose which had come to a standstill on every hill so far.
Hustyn caused few failures, but the water splash at the foot enabled some over-enthusiastic people to submerge their carburettors in a wave of water. Among the failures we noted S. F. Seyfried (Talbot 90), A. Powys-Lybbe (Alvis). R. R. K. Marker (Bentley), W. T. Platt (supercharged M.G. Midget), and C. E. C. Martin (M.G. Magna). Bluehills Mine seemed to be easier this year, an impression which may have been given by the sun changing the gloomy surroundings of the hill into cheerful brightness. As usual, the hairpin caused the greatest number of failures, most of them big cars. A. Powys-Lybbe distinguished himself by baulking two other
competitors when he failed, while R. Littlewood-Clarke had the misfortune to shear his back axle—on the last hill of the Trial. Among others, we noted the following failures :—J. B. Thompson (V8 Ford), W. G. Harvey (Wolseley Hornet), D. C. Vosper (Wolseley Hornet), R. Rose (Bentley), R. R. K. Marker (Bentley), G. H. C. Goodban (Wolseley Hornet), P. D. Walker (Talbot 105), W. H. Haden (M.G. Midget), C. P. Thorpe (Alvis), W. St. Clair Smith (M.G. Midget), P. Ferguson (Lagonda), W. J. Hampton (Singer), N. A. Watkins (Frazer Nash), E. R. M. Walke (Frazer Nash), S. T. Lowe (Wolseley Hornet), B. H. Holloway (Hillman Minx), F. T. Rainey (Frazer Nash), G. R. Strong (Alvis), A. T. Wickham (Aston Martin), H. A. HardwickSewell (Vauxhall), and A. F. Jackson (Wolseley Hornet).
In past years the last competitors have had to climb Bluehills Mine in the dark, but this year the flares were not needed, and the last car was speeding away to Penzance before the light finally failed.
No account of this Land’s End would be complete without a bouquet for the M.C.C. officials, whose organisation of the trial was absolutely faultless—in spite of having an entry of 405!
There were only 11 non-starters amongst the car entrants. These were :—R. H. Aldworth (1,096 Morgan), R. E. Wright (1,496 Frazer Nash), C. H. Wagstaff (1,496 Lea-Francis), R. H. Massey (1,938 A.A. Special), H. B. L. Hillcoat (933 Ford), R. C. B. Buckley (847 M.G. Midget), W. G. Marshall (1,925 Lancia), W. J. Haughton (847 Morris Minot), M. H. Lawson (972 Singer), J. H. E. Marsh (1,271 Wolseley Hornet), W. G. Stott (4,962 Invicta).
NON-FINISHERS. The provisional list of those who were reported to have failed to finish the course included the following 33 car entrants :—T. Coates (1,096 Morgan), D. W. 1Z. Moriarty (1,096 Morgan), L. H. Creed (1,096 Morgan), E. L. Brynildsen (2,276 Talbot “75”), 1). West (1,496 Frazer Nash), Lt.-Comdr. G. M. D. Maltby (847 M.G. Midget), A. S. Whiddington (1,496 Alvis ” Firefly “), A. Massey (747 Austin), F. Allott (1,271 Patrick Hornet Special), A. C. Hess (847 M.G. Midget J.2), A. B. Langley (847 M.G. Midget J.2), II. E. Williams (847 M.G. Midget),
G. E. Taylor (847 M.G. Midget), R. LittlewoodClarke (847 M.G. Midget), 1). Percival (1,954 Lagonda), F. P. Barker (1,496 Lea-Francis), W. A. Pouting (1,496 Frazer N ash), M. S. Aldridge (747 Austin), P. A. E. Strong (1,271 Wolseley Hornet), G. H. P. Scott (1,074 Alta), J. R. G. Finch (1,074 Alta), S. H. Allard (1,100 Allard Special), G. F. Horan (747 Austin Special), G. C. Garbett (2,62$ Essex), A. J. M. Hodges (972 Singer), 0. B. Bennett (1,450 Austin 12-4), 3. R. Elliott (2,054 S.S.1), S. H. H. Cundey (1,496 Frazer Nash), R. T. Bagot (3,498 Humber Snipe), S. Sanders (1,271 M.G. Magna), R. J. B. Seaman (1,271 M.G. Magna), L. G. Mussi (1,089 Riley), J. Stark (2,996 Bentley).