VETERAN CAR CLUB
The Veteran. Car Club held its annual Rally and Hill-Climb at Tilburstow on April 9th. The entries were not so numerous as in previous years, but a very enjoyable day was had by all. After lunch the cars attempted the long climb
of Tilburstow. Capt. Colver’s 1896 Arnold required the assistance of both occupants, but Wood’s Leon-Bolke ascended steadily, likewise Allday’s 1808 Benz, with two up. E. A. Marshall made a very rapid ascent, pedalling hard, on his 1899 Arid l tricycle, and Rowde.u’s 1898 Star was slower, but very sure. J. M. Turner’s 1899 Panhard was excellent, the passenger working at a pressure-pump, and R. C. Blake’s 1899 6 h.p. M.C.C. Daimler and H. J. Welliugham’s 1900 41h.p. De Dion Bouton were very good performers. R. C. Porter’s 1900 De Dion Bouton climbed strongly, but G. P. Stiles’s 1901 Charette only just got up clean. Major Allen’s 1901 Foster Steam Waggon and J. W. Thomson.’s 1901 Renault were good, likewise G. W. Goodall with Swift’s Royal Enfield Quadcycle. J. C. Garland elected a change-up on his 1901 12.4 h.p. James and Brown, but he soon returned to a lower ratio, while John Goff and A. C. Lane on a 1902 6 h.p. De Dion Bouton and Eastmead on Butch’s 1902 9 h.p. Oldsmobile were outstanding. G. A. Upton with a 1902 5 h.p. Wolseley had no bother at all, and Frost got up successfully after changing down on his 1902 8 h.p. De Dion Bouton. Capt. Wylie’s famous 1903 6 h.p. Wolseley made light work of the long gradient and Hutton-Stott, Jimr., on the wonderful 1903 12 h.p. Lanchester romped up, passing Capt. Rolfe’s 1903 6 h.p. De Dion Bouton which failed about half way, boiling strongly. J. G. Walters with Parsons’s 1900 4i h.p. De Dion Bouton did it non-stop, appearing late amongst the big cars, while Graham Oliver’s 1903 Panhard Fifteen and Sam Wright’s 5 h.p. Humber were most im
pressive. A.Ilday’s 1903 19.6 h.p. Viercedes was really fast, and Cecil Rowe’s 1904 Renault, with enclosed bodywork, left a stream of water in its wake. Sear’s beautifully finished 1904 18 h.p. ClementTalbot went, perhaps, best of them all. M. W. Anderson’s 1904 Cadillac was sure and Belmont-Taylor’s 1904 De Dion Bouton came up well, while Goslett’s sister-car made a steady ascent. Thereafter they all went downhill, some rather too fast, and all had second attempts. Fotheringh am-Parker resorted to some pushing with his 1899 Century Tricar, nobly aiding its 21 h.p., and Marshall again pedalled his Arid. R. 0. Sluittleworth had now overcome trouble with the main steam valve and came up nicely on the beautifully reconditioned 1900 41 h.p. Locomobile steamer. It was good to see him in a competition again, as he has rather retired to his aerodrome at Biggleswade of late, engaged in early
flying machine renovation. Allday’s Mercedes made another fast ascent. In the Rally part of the event much adventure had been met, and only twentynine out of forty-one entrants checked
in to time. Anderson’s 1904 10 h.p. Cadillac just made it, after excessive overheating troubles and Mills’s 1901 Benz had many “en pannes.” The fastest ascents of the hill in each class were : Class 1 : F. S. Rowden (1898 3i h.p. Star), 4m. 47.4s.: Class 2: E. A. Marshall (1899 2f h.p. And), 2m. Os. Class : F. W. Hutton-Stott, Junr. (driver E. A. Upton) (19025 h.p. Wolseley), 3m. 24.4s. Class 4: G. J. Allday (1903 19.6 h.p. Mercedes), lin. 56s. But the results will be based on the formula : Weight (lb.) x K (constant) H.P. x Time (secs.) The Rally results depend on the formula : Dx 10 -i-DxA 10
where D is mileage, and A, number of years in age prior to 1905. The Club’s next fixture is the Beaconsfield Rally and Aston Hill Climb on June
18th. A B.B.C. television assembly is due to take place at the Hurlingham Club on May 15th.
Another issue of the Veteran Car Club Gazette is now due.
Hon. Secretary : Capt. J. H. Wylie, 38, West Cromwell Road, Earl’s Court, S.W.5.
BUGATTI OWNERS’ CLUB
Everything is now set for the Closed Invitation Meeting at Prescott on Sunday, May 15th. There will be touring, sports and racing classes and a class for pre-war cars. The Midland A.C., Derby and District M.C., Brighton & Hove M.C. and Vintage S.C.C. have been extended invitations to compete. A presentation fund, opened to provide a presentation to Col. and Eric Giles in recognition of the vast amount of work they have done to make Prescott possible, is in the hands of J. D. Aylward and is
filling up nicely. From June 10th to 12th the annual ” Monte-Honiton-Rally ” is to be held, a most amazing display of enthusiasm, when many competitors motor a greater distance than is required of entrants in the R.A.C. Rally. Last year the winner was Col. Giles. This time a timed ascent of Prescott is likely to be incorporated in the event.
New members comprise Messrs. C. J. Tipper, Dr. J. M. Lees, D. J. W. Penrose, D. E. R. Greig, A. J. Toy, F. Heaton, Col. C. H. Leverson, D.S.O., R. S. Shapley, R. M. Blomfield, T. S. Grimshaw, Miss N. Healey, T. P. Melby, R. E. Gardner and A. S. Heal. Another issue of ” Bugantics ” is due this month and will include an article by W. Boddy on J. Smyth’s 1924 Brescia Bugatti. See you at Prescott on May 15th I
Hon. Secretary : B. L. Giles, 2, Queen Street, Mayfair, W.1 (Mayfair 4701).
THE MOTOR SPORTS CLUB
The Motor Sports Club continues as popular as ever. The notice board has been enlarged and moved to a new position and a darts-board added.
The Secretary : The Motor Sports Club, Grand Buildings, Trafalgar Square, W.C.2.
KENTISH BORDER C.C.
To ease the trials outlook the Kentish Border C.C. has abandoned its trial scheduled for May 1st. Instead, it will hold another meeting at Knatt’s Valley, near Farningham, in Kent, on Saturday, May 14th. Tea and a dance will follow in
Famingham. The Ford Enthusiasts’ Club has been invited.
GREAT WEST M.C.
A very large audience assembled to enjoy the Film Show on April 8th at Brentford. Excellent shots of the Club’s trials, notably the ” Bournemouth,” were screened, the M.C.C. film was shown, together with travel films showing T. H. Wisdom’s Hillman Minx and Scribe Throssle’s Humber in some decidedly un-English settings. And we were treated to that great farce, “The G.P. de Pozzo.” Prizes were presented for lucky programme numbers, and we duly won a firestone ash-tray—the first prize of this sort we have ever landed ; incidentally,
as a non-smoker Fernand Havenith, the Club’s cinematographer, deserves every credit.
Timed runs over the half-mile at Brooklands were arranged on April 0th. The results, based on a formula, gave Newton’s Morris Eight first place, Upsdell’s Morris Eight second place, Long’s Austin third place, Gorinly’s Invicta fourth place, while on time alone Hampshire’s 2-litre Bugatti recorded 26 secs., winning the Glegg Cup. Newton’s Morris won the McNeil Cup.
FORD ENTHUSIASTS’ CLUB
The Ford Enthusiasts’ Club had hoped to repeat the highly successful Rally at the Autodromes School of Driving on May 22nd, but that date clashes with the Harrow C.C. Driving Tests. Another Croydon meeting will, however, be held later in the year and the Club will participate in the Knatt’s Valley Hill Climb on May 14th. It is
hoped that the G.P. de PoZzo film will be shown to members at the Club’s headquarters at the Millbrooke dining club very soon.
Members continue to enrol and Ford owners up in Scotland and abroad are enlisting. L. M. Ballamy has withdrawn from the Committee, which is now composed of Messrs. K. N. Hutchison, S. H. Allard, W. Boddy, R. J. Canham and J. White, with Mr. Fry as chairman. A News Sheet is issued at fairly frequent intervals.
Hon. Secretary : S. H. Allard, 15, Millbrooke Court, Putney, S.W.15 (Putney 2333).
TALBOT OWNERS’ CLUB
The Talbot Owners’ Club is planning a very interesting and ambitious European Summer Tour, commencing Friday night, July 22nd, and concluding on Monday night, August 8th. The itinerary covers 2,011 miles, embracing France, Belgium, Holland, Germany, Switzerland and Italy, with four rest days and four days spent
by the Mediterranean. The German Grand Prix at the Nurburg Ring will be included. A very well prepared book describing the tour has been prepared, and this, together with full details, can be obtained from :— Paul Hardy, 33, Cypress Avenue, ‘Whitton, Twickenham, Middlesex. Popesgrove 3842 (evenings).
OLD MARLBURIAN MX.
This Club has been, formed to bind together motoring enthusiasts from amongst Old members of’ Marlborough College. A Club magazine; ” Performance,” is issued.
Hon. Secretary : H. M. Shears, The Vicarage, Twickenham, Middlesex.
The Club goes from strength to strength. A. S. Heal has acquired a 1919. 5-litre racing Ballot and Clutton ran the ’08 nala down to Prescott by road, attaining 65 m.p.h. on second gear at 1,750 r.p.m., and between 90 to 100 in places with top gear engaged. He will drive it at Shelsley. The DOnington meeting on April 23rd and Surrey Trial on April 30th were recent fixtures and the next event is another Donington meeting in conjunction With the United Hospitals and University of London M.C. on May 21st. Another issue of the Club’s inimitable Bulletin, ministered to by Cecil Chitton, is due this month.
Hon. Secretary : T. W. Carson, ” The Phcenix, ‘ Hartley Whitney, Hants.
The advent of Prescott coincided with the borrowing of a Lancia Aprilia saloon, and, accordingly, we went Over to Wembley on the Friday to fetch the car, returning home vastly intrigued with its effortless 70 in cruising, excellent steering and thoroughly road-worthy control after a flip along thederestricted North Circular Road. Later, there was much fun in continually beating a Talbot Ten away from a series of Belisha Lamps, the
driver very solemn but obviously trying, for all that. Look at it how you will, Continental cars are usually pleasing to drive, no matter how exciting the Motors you have been used to, and the Lancia would never tire an enthusiast. Added to its essentially safe and thoroughbred control there is all that periormance—excellent acceleration and a maximum in the neighbourhood of 80 tu.p.h.—from a fiveseater closed motor-car which is cornpact, economically rated, and giving a genuine fuel consumption of over 30 m.p.g. It is such fun to drive a car of this kind. Ordinary motorists glance in their mirrors and the radiator conveys nothing to them. Then you bring the sports-car acceleration into play and go ahead. Fellow enthusiasts recognise the little car’s quality and abilities and treat you as they would a sports-car driver. And even away from other traffic, out on the open road, or at night, the finger-light, high-geared and very accurate steering, the rigid gear-lever controlling a ” rapid ” gearbox and the car’s whole ” being ” of modern fast travel, combine to form very pleasant company indeed. So we went to the Great West M.C. Film Show in high spirits and enjoyed Saturday pottering ‘about and visiting the veterans at Tilburstow. Hasty lastminute preparations as to parties for Prescott rather went astray, one Brescia Bugatti owner definitely stating that the writer’s presence always brought him bad luck, and that he was motoring alone . . . However, we got away fairly early and met the s.v. Aston as planned, running thereafter in formation, until the very Bugatti in question came up fast along the Oxford By-Pass, whereupon the Aprilia speeded up for a bit to indicate to the Brescia that it, too, could motor. Nor did it seem to mind mile after mile at 75. Thereafter we were disturbed to find that the “Mistletoe Bough” has apparently closed down, so that coffee and cakes had. to be sought at a certain farm nearby, which does these things very well indeed. Rather .a shock came to us as we heard a Lancia start up and drive away, not realising that a big saloon had parked near the ApriLia. The Crowther Lancia Scuderia was sailing by as we drew out, so that we could not resist mingling with it, until we and they hardly knew which Lancia was ours and which theirs ! After lunch we got temporarily lost, but found Prescott at last. The timed climb, two up, was quite to our liking, for we even needed third gear momentarily, and actually effected an excellent change-down into second. In sober fact the little touring Lancia saloon beat a blown 5-litre Bugatti, a Ford VS, an H.R.O., a Talbot 105, three Type 57 Bugattis, a Type 55 Bugatti, several Bentleys and a British-Salmson, amongst others. The Apt-ilia has the characteristic of only setting up slight tyre squeal on fast corners and of not rolling to any extent. Moreover, it slides before it rolls
and the steering possesses very quick castor-action, so that Prescott’s several difficult corners suited the car. Consequently we enjoyed our tea on the beautiful lawn at Prescott House most thoroughly. Thereafter we bade goodbye
to friends, Bristol-bound in a J2 M.G. Midget, and admired for a moment the hills in the distance, lit by soft English sunshine in the early evening. The first part of the drive back through some of our finest scenery WaS one that will long live in the memory, after more exciting happenings have been forgotten. We drove up one particular valley, flanked by a viaduct, where we recalled having leapt from an ’07 Renault as it scalded us with its radiator water, on a great run from Shelsley three years ago. On the Oxford By-Pass fast stuff—Bugattis and Nashes–caught us, and disposing of two T-type M.G. Midgets:, we diced to the best of the Lancia’s ability, which was such that we were still with the stream at Oxford. That is part of the fun of a rally—the journey there and back and the knowledge that you are driving for some purpose more worthy than that of merely spectating. The day closed, or rather, another day dawned, in that remarkable café on the Embankment, the ” Blue Cockatoo,” haunt of Chelsea artists, genuine I believe, where no one objected to the writer’s dicingshoes or his rapidly strengthening beard. Here it was that we were regaled with an account of how a friend had set off for Prescott in a Riley, via a trial at Bagshot, and why he had arrived amongst the Bugattisti half an hour after we had left . . .
To sober things down a bit there were two fast journeys in two consecutive days to the East Coast and back, in a very willing Ford Eight, the traffic out of London in the early evening of the Thursday before Easter being truly horrible, so that one doubted the wisdom of a contemporary in recommending its readers not to worry overmuch about the outlet via the east of the metropolis. But then we had to return to town at once—nearly 200 miles almost at one sitting, after four hours’ sleep the previous night. That makes a difference, though it materially adds to the fun . . . Then, at the very last moment, a seat was accepted in a most interesting special Austin Seven, to go down to spectate on the M.C.C.’s new hill in the Land’s End. This little Austin is really fast and a quite potent performer in trials, yet it is quite =tuned, having a 1926 chassis with 1935 engine, transmission and axles. It is quite a revelation in what may be done for little expenditure. Well, we started off in company with the Riley Gamecock and all went well until ominous clatterino suggested that the Austin had run an end, which proved to be only too true—sheer bad luck, due to a choked oil jet. We decided, such is enthusiasm, to carry on, though coffeestops seemed a remote possibility, let alone breakfast. A little farther on the Riley, too, fell sick and it was problematical which was the faster car. However, gradually the miles fell away and we did get breakfast, and a very good breakfast at that, in Boscastle, before taking up our positions on the hill. After the last car had passed we attended very effectively to the inner man and then explored Boscastle harbour on foot. Words cannot do justice to this beautiful piece of Cornish coast, where the _cliffs climb steeply each side of a tiny harbour and where the weathered stone buildings, the paths, walls, fences, and even the very telegraph poles themselves, blend naturally with the soft colouring of soil and shrub. We can only hope to go there again, when there is time to spare and motors may be forgotten. So on to Porthcothan Bay, where we again explored cliffs, sand and the sea, at the magic hour of midnight, before turning in for a well earned sleep. The next morning, another comic homebodied Austin Seven was pressed into service and in the two Austins we went over to a breaker’s yard to buy, for 2/6, a spare rod, in case of trouble on the homeward run. An o.h.v. 14/40 M.G. for £8, a twin-cam Salmson, a red-label Bentley and a very sound Morgan for Di, taxed, intrigued us until the proprietor arrived in a Ford Vti. We learned that naval students from Plymouth are in search of G.N.s in this part of the world. After lunch we got away, the hour being 3 p.m., and grim in view of our 560 c.c. and 3-cylinders–the plug had been removed from the offending ” pot ” to relieve things at the crankshaft end. However, we kept going, stopping only to peer at Kirton’s yard of old motors at Honiton, to assist Ballamy to uncouple the blower from his L.M.B. 9, which had also melted
an end, and for tea. The chilly wind whistled round the passenger’s ears as he dozed, to awake with a startconvinced that he was in a Carden cyclecar in an Exeter trial of long ago, for the long bonnet and small lamps of the Austin were rather reminiscent of that longdefunct cyclecar, the outside exhaust sounded like a twin cylinder, and our maximum was limited to 40 m.p.h. But at 2.15 a.m. we were home, to awake, somewhat the worse for wear but very content, for Brooklands later that same day. An interesting factor of the journey was
the complete freedom of traffic on the Cornish and Devonshire main roads during the late afternoon and early evening of a perfect Easter Sunday—proof that if you motor far enough afield you still leave overcrowdinc, behind, in spite of our impressive ratio of licence-holders to populace. A Dodge Custom Six saloon rendered palatial motoring the following weekend, a morning on the Track being very pleasantly concluded with a piping-hot lunch, served without delay at Milford, an intriguing course of waffles included. So we continued lazily to Lythe Right Hill for the J.C.C. trial, being chased well and truly on the way down by an A.C. driver who was in a hurry to reach the start. In due course we met a Riley driver, who had completed some 211 miles practically non-stop from Cornwall to meet us as arranged, and, the observed runs over, we woke ourselves up by climbing both Lythe Left and Lythe Right, proving to the officials that the Dodge, at all events, amongst comfortable American carriages can also storm hills—admittedly we made contact with the tree on the righthand ascent, but we did not fail for all that. Then a pretty problem arose, for the Dodge had to go back to London town that night, whereas friends wanted to attend an event near Worthing on the Sunday. However, quite unperturbed, friend Lush subsequently arose in the early a.m., after we had steamed up to town at speed in the Dodge, unworried by roads rendered slippery by the end of the drought, to reassemble his Austin Seven’s engine, stripped after running No. 4 big-end as recorded. By 10 a.m. he had had a trial run “round the houses” and reported all O.K. So, still on three cylinders and 560 c.c., we motored throughout that Sunday, and it is a tribute to the Austin Seven that the little engine, put together andre-timed in about a couple
of hours, fired at the second pull-up and gave no trouble thereafter, producing 45. m.p.h. on demand and hauling us up some quite acute grades. Apparently it would be quite feasible to remove one plug and. tax your Austin at 1:5. if your bank manager absolutely insisted! The event which we attended turned_ out to be an exciting speed hill-climb carried out very much in the old-time manner. But I think we were equally interested in a very fine 3-litre Targa. Alfa-Romeo that was present, and by the ancient and remarkable Fiat fire-escape in Storrington Fire Station, goggles. hanging from its almost vertical and. truly massive steering wheel. Moreover, the glass-fronted doors of this ‘fire station. revealed a most instructive ” tariff” from which we learned that the firefighting appliances could be hired under three headings, “turning-out,” “use,” and “standing-by.” Had we been able to conceive any means of working to the second heading without incurring any expense under the first and last we should probably have hauled on the rusty chain attached to the alarm-bell,. for the Fiat escape could be hired for 4/per mile and it would have been worth that to see them commence the huge engine that must repose under its short
bonnet. Unfortunately, the ” turningout “charges stumped us, for they wanted_ 70/to do things with the 800 gallon pump and 50/for the under 300 gallon pump—how intriguing the accounts department must be, and how disastrous. if you summoned several appliances,. each attended by so many firemen at so much per hour, only to calculate that the value of the property involved was. much less than the cost of squirting water over it . . . Storrington also has. a motor fire tender but they cautiously limit its range to five miles.