R. S. Strachan is restoring a 1928 “20.9” Sunbeam chassis and craves a suitable body and wings for it. R. L. Walker has rebuilt a Singer “Le Mans” with modern two-seater bodywork, even to a modern frontal aspect and his own spray-painting, working in a shed and using the minimum of equipment. The police are taking an increasingly active interest in competition motoring, in the desirable sense. Apart from six cars from the Hendon Police School that competed in the B.D.C. Rally, entries from the Hastings and Eastbourne police are anticipated for the B.A.R.C. Eastbourne Rally of July 2nd and 3rd. A reader generously offers a 1934 Wolseley Hornet engine and gearbox, practically complete, to any bona fide enthusiast who cares to collect it — letters will be forwarded. Juneero, Ltd., have introduced a kit of parts for building a Model car to be powered with an engine of up to 2.5 c.c. capacity — and in the best early racing cyclecar tradition, it has belt drive. At the other extreme, Meccano, Ltd., show commendable enterprise in having introduced examples of the Standard “Vanguard,” Triumph “1,800” and Austin “A70 “saloons in their range of “Dinky” miniatures. Moreover, if your toy-dealer has them in stock, you can take delivery at once, sans covenant or permit, on payment of 1s. 9d. each.
The B.A.R.C. is offering a prize of £25 for a new car badge design. Entries close on May 31st and details are available from the Club, at 55, Park Lane, W.1. G. D. Smith, of Worcester, is restoring the 1924 Bamford and Martin s.v. Aston-Martin which was raced at Brooklands by Miss Lister and Cater in 1928 and which has a very beautiful crankshaft. The Shell Film Unit have plans, we are told, for an elaborate film of the British Grand Prix at Silverstone. An 1899 Peugeot, an aged Darracq saloon and a 1927 Windsor with spare engine have come to light in the Corbridge-on-Tyne area. At the conclusion of his talk on Bugattis to the N.L.E.C.C., reported elsewhere in this issue, J. Lemon Burton showed a picture of his new special, based on a Volkswagen chassis. It has a neatly streamlined body, retains the rear engine and is supercharged with a Bugatti supercharger driven by no fewer than five belts. As Burton modestly says, “It should provide a bit of fun.” P. Underwood intends to rebuild 3-litre Bentley chassis No. PH 1459, which is in poor shape; he craves a handbook.
Capt C. J. Maple has sold his “International” Aston-Martin and acquired a “12/50” Alvis; he says he would like to see Motor Sport published fortnightly – sorry, at present we cannot oblige.
Sir Malcolm Campbell left the Sum of £175,580 and bequeathed £1,000 and a house to Leo Villa, his racing mechanic. John H. Leighton-Davies is rebuilding a 1926-7 DISS “14/40” Delage and has recently unearthed a 1923 “Brescia” Bugatti from a chicken-run in which it had spent the last twenty years or so.
Commander D. S. C. Blatland, R.N., recently back from Singapore, is running a rare car, in the form of a 1937 2-litre “Speed Model” Aston-Martin with open two/four-seater body and extremely stark wings. Out in Massachusetts Henry C. Wing, junior, has acquired a 1905 Type A.C. 40 Clement Bayard touring car and, while he thoroughly digested “Baladeur’s” recent remarks thereon, he seeks any additional information that is available. He is particularly anxious to discover the significance of the tiny airship emblems stamped or engraved on the front dumb-irons. Antone, Ltd., 107, Longdown Lane South, Epsom, Surrey (Epsom 9110), can now Supply their stirring gramophone records of last year’s Silverstone and Jersey recordings, price 10s. each, post free.
In the United States Alec Ulmann has renovated a 37.2-h.p. Hispano-Suiza with Chapron convertible drophead coupé body, and on a recent trip from Riverside to Florida and back it cruised at 70 m.p.h., equal to about 2,000 r.p.m. He is also getting his “Alphonso XIII” Edwardian Hispano-Suiza into good fettle and has acquired an ex-Targa Florio 2-litre supercharged twin-o.h.c. 1923 Mercédès, believed to have been the last factory team entry by Mercédès in America, when Lautenschlager drove it at Indianapolis. Ulmann asks us to say that his 1912 Mercer Raceabout has only one two-spark Bosch Magneto, not two as we stated recently, and that the car has been timed to do slightly over 80 m.p.h.
The Sports Car Club of America plans to hold the Bridgehampton Sports Car Road Races on June 11th, in conjunction with the Eastern U.S. branch of the M.G. Car Club and the Motor Sports Club of America. Three races will be held over a fairly flat course at Long Island, four miles long and with approximately one mile straights to each leg. Two of the races will be of 48 miles duration, the remaining one of 100 miles. Another Watkins Glen race will be held late in September and there may be a hill-climb in mid-summer, but as events are held on public roads, it is necessary to obtain sanction from town authorities and the police and that is not always easy. Just to show that we never refuse to publish a request, we state that K. V. Ellis, Earl Grey, South Street, Derby, wants to form a club for drivers of dirt-track midget cars. Le Grimpe freak hill at Knatts Valley, is available for club meetings, and may be hired from A. H. H. Neal, c/o 17, Leyton Cross Road, Dartford, Kent. It was first used in 1928.
A 20-h.p. Rolls-Royce with truck body and sans dynamo and battery, is reported standing at the back of a filling station adjoining West Bromwich football ground, if anyone wishes to save it.
Following our announcement last month that a reader is contemplating putting two Scott engines into a “12/40” Lea-Francis comes news that R. C. Hobdell, a Scott enthusiast, has done just such an installation in an early Riley Nine chassis. Incidentally, he would be glad to hear from this other reader — his ‘phone number is Forest Hill 7577. A. V. Henderson, of Co. Antrim, is considering putting a twin-o.h.c. 3-litre Sunbeam engine in a “special” and seeks data on this power unit.
A big La Buire saloon motors in Manchester and a Birmingham breaker numbers a 1921. Wolseley Ten, a Minerva and a Hadfield Bean amongst his stock. E. J. Steel is now living in a caravan in the West Country and is reconditioning his veteran Alldays and Onions saved through the Motor Sport “Register of the Unique” He reports well-preserved Panhard, Tony Huber and Stanley steamer veterans locally and such vintage cars in frequent use as Lea-Francis, A.C., Straker-Squire and Humberette. He also pays tribute to the excellent work done by old Austin “Twelve-Fours” during hay-making.
P. F. A. Watkins owns the 1922 3-litre Bentley once raced at Brooklands by Capt. Fiennes. Prices are falling, a 1931 Austin Twelve recently selling for £17 10s., a very Sound 1928 Austin Twelve tourer for £30, a nicely-preserved small mileage 1929 Sunbeam Twenty saloon being priced at £110, and a 1926 Rolls-Royce Twenty at £104.
S. M. Frost has installed a Ford Ten engine in the ex-R.K.N. Clarkson “Grasshopper” Austin Seven and endowed it with a new body.
Morgan 3-Wheeler Club
This Club’s June Rally will be at Ballard’s Drive, Colwall, near Malvern, by kind permission of S.U.N.B.A.C. and not at Madresfield as originally intended. The date is June 18th/19th. The Club subscription is 10s. a year, or 7s. 6d. for associates. Secretary: G. Evans, 19, Chestnut Walk, Worcester.
Citroen Car Club
The Citroen Car Club has been formed and already many enthusiastic Citroen owners from this country and from far-distant parts of the world have enrolled.
The aim of the Club is to cater for the enthusiasm of members by organising meetings, rallies and functions, to provide opportunities for meeting fellow members and to promote social interest amongst all Citroen car owners.
A quarterly journal entitled The Citroenian will be published and issued to all members, included in which will be the latest information on Citroen cars, together with maintenance hints, up-to-date modifications, details of tours, correspondence between members and other topical features of interest.
Much general correspondence is being dealt with, indeed on most days the Club office looks like a Citroen Advice Bureau; needless to say all inquiries are very welcome.
Full details may be obtained from the Secretary, Citroen Car Club, 1a, Montpelier Row, Blackheath, London,
It is refreshing to find a Chief Constable and. a Lord Mayor who warmly favour competition motoring. Such is the case at Southsea. At the annual dinner and dance of the Southsea Motor Club, last March, the Lord Mayor of Portsmouth, Councillor F. Miles, in response to a suggestion that Southsea might stage an important motor rally, said: “I’m all for it.” The Chief Constable, Mr. A. C. West, said: “I see no reason why you could not make a success of such a venture with advantage to the City. From our point of view I wish that you people would run some such events in the interests of safe driving. Show people what can be done with powerful cars in expert hands, even on our roads of to-day, always remembering, of course, that some were built for the needs of the old hansom days. In such a way the majority of people who use fast cars coild help a higher standard of driving.” With such valuable encouragement the Southsea Club may be expected to make good use of any opportunities that come its way. The favourable remarks of the Mayor and the Chief Constable were given publicity in the Portsmouth Evening News. The Chief Constable hinted that certain persons of higher level had “stuck their toes in” in respect of rallies or speed events at Southsea, but declared that this is not an insurmountable difficulty. ” In the very near future, I think,” he added, “you will be able to overcome that with a little enterprise and push.”
Regulations and entry forms for the International Shelsley-Walsh Hill-Climb on June 11th, which is the first event counting towards the British Hill-Climb Championship, are available from the Secretary, 87, Edmund Street, Birmingham, 3.
The Vincent-H.R.D. Owners’ Club
We have received copies of “M.P.H.” the monthly news-letter of the Vincent H.R.D. Owners’ Club, for “riders of the world’s fastest standard motor-cycIe.” Membership appears to be nearly 150, including several lady-members, and the news-letter contains many practicaI hints and discussions and a keen enthusiasm. We do not have space to devote to motor-cycling matters as a rule, but have pleasure in announcing what appears to be a very useful one-make club. The President is Philip C. Vincent, A. M . I Mech.E., A.M.I.P.E. The entrance fee of £1 includes machine and lapel badges, and the annual subscription is 15s., with a reduction for executives of the H.R.D. concern and for lady members. Trips to the I.O.M. and Manx races are contemplated. Hon. Sec., Alan Jackson, 17, Grange Road, Bramhall, Cheshire.
The 750 Club, which was formed before the war at the Suggestion of the Editor of Motor Sport, primarily for the exchange of Austin Seven spares and the organisation of competitions free from the then-menace of the V8, appears to be taking on a new lease of life. Charles Goodacre, the Austin racing driver, has agreed to become the Club’s President, and Harold Biggs has taken over Editorship of the news-sheet from Lush. The committee is composed of Messrs. Brooks, Moon, Lush, Billinghurst and Wootton. H. Birkett is Chairman, R. Yeats Captain and K. Welfare Hon. Treasurer. The Club meets at the “Red Cow,” Hammersmith every first Thursday in the month and last month had a special visit to inspect J. V. Bowles’ stable of Austins. J. Bowles and W. Roddy have been elected Hon. Life Members. Hon. Secretary: A. W. Butler, 1, Hawkhurst Way, West Wickham, Kent.
The well laid-out programme of the Singapore M.C.’s Lim Chu Kang speed trials, which reached us late in March, contained an interesting summary of past motoring competitions in Malaya. Following a fatal accident in 1927, a 1/2-mile s.s. sprint was organised in 1929 at Kuala Lumpur, Keay’s “30/98” Vauxhall beating Lake Yaik Foo’s 1 1/2-litre G.P. Bugatti for fastest car time. Much faster, however, was Barton’s Norton motor-cycle. Nothing more happened until 1936, when Crowther-Smith’s Ford V8 made f.t.d. for cars in the same event. In 1938 the event was revived and fastest car was Van de Straaten’s Ford V8. That year two other speed trials were held, and Lim Peng Han’s L.A. Special made fastest car time on each occasion. 1939 saw Holloway’s Holloway Special make best time in the Kuala Lumpur event and in 1940 Phillips made fastest time of the car drivers in his L.A. Special, at Seremban.
The 1949 R.A.C. British Hill-Climb Champioinship
We have received the following news or this year’s British Hill-Climb Championship from the R.A.C.: —
“The general conditions have now been Issued by the Royal Automobile Club for the third annual British Hill-Climb Championship, which will take place during the summer.
“In character, the conditions follow those in force last year, and the same hills will be used. The dates for 1949 are: —Sheisley Walsh (England) June 11th; Bo’ness (Scotland) June 25th; Bouley Bay (Jersey) July 21st; Craigantlet (Ulster) August 27th; Prescott (England) September 11th.
“Competitors in the Championship, which is open to drivers of British nationality only, are entitled to nominate any four of the five events, and the competitor who gains the highest total of marks is the winner. A win carries with it the title of British Hill Climb Champion for the year and the R.A.C. Trophy for twelve months.
“It is expected that Raymond Mays, champion for the last two years, will again be competing and there is likely to be keen rivalry to prevent his completing a ‘hat trick.’
“Entries will be accepted by the R.A.C. up to 30 days before the first Championship meeting in which the entrant proposes to take part. Entry Forms can be obtained from the Royal Automobile Club, Pall Mall, London, S.W. 1. The registration fee is £2 2s.
Brighton and Hove M.C.
The following interesting fixtures have been approved:
May 7th. — Spring Cup Trial, finishing in Stanmer Park.
June 5th. — Impromptu Hill-Climb, for members only.
June 19th. — Brighton-Beer Trial, over shortened course.
July 9th /10th. — Rally and Concours.
August 7. — Gymkhana.
September 3rd. — International Brighton Kilometre Speed Trials.
October 1st. — Stanmer Park Speed Hill-Climb.
November 13th. — November Trial.
December 2nd. — Dinner and Dance.
It is hoped that Stanmer Park hill will be modified by Brighton Corporation, rendering it safe for very high speeds. Headquarters: 296/7/8, Madeira Drive Arches, Brighton, 7.
April Quiz Solution
The April “quiz” picture, showing an i.f.s. unit of a high-performance car had a catch in it, for it depicted that of the Rolls-Royce “Silver Wraith” and not that of the very similar unit used for the 4 1/4-litre Mk VI Bentley. This constituted a trap for the unwary. Indeed, while a considerable number of readers submitted correct solutions, others voted for the Bentley, while some specified both Rolls-Royce and Bentley. To clarify the matter, Rolls-Royce Ltd. were approached and they comment as follows: —
“There is in fact a marked difference between the i.f.s. of the ‘Silver Wraith’ and Bentley Mk VI. The difference is that the yoke of the ‘Silver Wraith’ is very much straighter than the yoke of the Mk VI. The reason is, of course, that the track of the ‘Silver Wraith’ is two inches wider than that of the Bentley, and this variation is shown in the yoke.
“Incidentally, the wire of the helical spring on the ‘Silver Wraith’ is one gauge thicker than that of the Bentley, but although our service station engineers can discern this at a glance I don’t think it would be a fair test in a photographic competition.
“The variation between the yokes, however, is certainly one which could be detected in perusing the photographs. So all your readers who claim that the illustration on page 116 is that of a Bentley are wrong. It is of a ‘Silver Wraith.’ “
Those who submitted correct solutions were: J. P. Humphreys of Cannock, R. Laskey of Wallington, T. J. Hammond of Birmingham, J. Holmes of Ilford, G. Rymer and R. C. Warner of Send, E. T. de la Perselle of Swansea, and J. L. Harvey of Winchester.
Those who could scarcely be blamed for including both Rolls-Royce and Bentley cars were: J. C. Chaplin of Knighton, J. W. Pittnock of Edgware, J. Kent of Pinner, D. R. B. Evans of Sevenoaks, I. J. Hall of Stoneycroft, H. Beach of Ruislip, and K. B. Maddocks of Olton.
The following specified Mk VI Bentley only: A. G. Hart of Pinner, S. Turner of Blackpool, M. J. Nunney of Kettering, V. Barlow (in verse!) of Elmdon, T. W. Neal of Wellingborough, M. J. Palmer of London, S.W.3, J. Barnard of Beckenham, R. J. Piner of Colnbrook, 3. D. Slopkins, D.L.C., of the Standard Motor Company’s Research Department, F. Gray of Bromsgrove, J. Birchwood of Old Trafford, P. Foggitt of Rawden, P. Frére of Brussels, J. W. K. Head of Ware, J. B. Cook of Alwoodley, B. Murphy of Carnforth, T. A. Cameton of Totteridge, G. B. Green of Beverley, and I. C. Stewart of Thirsk.
Incorrect solutions were 2-litre Aston-Martin and Healey, both of which use trailing arms.
The practice of forming one-make Registers is growing and there seems every reason to commend it; valuable information is available to owners of the cars concerned and owner-pride is increased, while outsiders interested in these matters have access to well-assembled data. The recently-formed Lea-Francis Register contains 28 names and details engine and chassis numbers, type, year, registration number and body type. It is interesting that amongst the “12/40s” and “Hyper” models are five “12/22s” and a 1925 10-h.p. model. Indeed, A. B. Price, who is responsible for this Register has recently acquired his “12/22” which is reported to be seemingly hale and hearty despite its 22 1/2 years. A separate list of spares is available at 2s. post free, and all Lea-Francis owners are urged to send details of their cars to: A. B. Price, 9, Granshaw Close, King’s Norton, Birmingham, 30.
Founded in 1901, the Motor Cycling Club is now in its forty-eighth season of Club life. It is the oldest extant organisation devoted to the furtherance of the sport and pastime of motoring, and as a pioneer body, it still maintains its foremost position. Although originally founded as a club for motor-cyclists, present-day tendencies have resulted in over 75 per cent. of the membership now being car drivers.
Its road competitions have for many years been recognised as classic events, and, although mostly confined to members of the Club, have attracted year after year more support than many Open Competitions.
Detail changes are made in the events from time to time with a view to maintaining interest and ensuring that conditions are neither too easy nor too difficult. It is the Club’s policy to avoid anything of a freakish nature, or to include any sections likely to cause damage to vehicles. On the other hand, conditions are imposed to make the trials a real test of a vehicle’s capability and a driver’s skill. The “classic” trials which the Club organise and the dates when first held are:
The “Land’s End” Trial at Easter. (1908).
The “Edinburgh” Trial at Whitson. (1904)
The Inter-Club Team Trial in July. (1904) (Motor-cycles only.)
The Sporting Trial in October. (1920)
The “Exeter” Trial just after Christmas. (1910)
For 1949 an additional event will be:— The Minehead Trial and Rally on 10th September.
All these events (with the exception of the Inter-Club Team Trial) are open to both motor-cycle and car owners of either sex.
Since the war, petrol restrictions have prevented the resumption of the trials on the pre-war scale covering several hundred miles, and so, for the present, they are being organised in a modified form with a small mileage so that those members who can spare the petrol can at least participate to a limited extent in their favourite sport. Secretary: J. A. Masters, 26, Bloomsbury Way, W.C.1.
The Clubs at Silverstone
The following are the dates of forthcoming Club race-meetings at Silverstone:
Bugatti Owners’ Club … June 18th
Maidstone and Mid-Kent M.C. … June 25th
Vintage Sports Car Club … July 2nd
Bentley Drivers’ Club … July 23rd*
Midland Motoring Enthusiasts Club (speed trials) … July 30th*
A.C. Owners’ Club
The new club for drivers of A.C. and A.C.-engined “specials” experienced great enthusiasm when twenty-five owners and friends attended the inaugural meeting in London, some travelling from as far away as Liverpool, Wolverhampton etc., to be present. A provisional committee was formed, composed of Dr. Phillips, Dr. Fellows and G. Grigg. A badge is to be designed and wives or husbands of members will be eligible for reduced subscription rates, while it is hoped to hold a full programme of social and sporting events. Mrs. Thelma Ruffer is Hon. Treasurer, and membership is now over 60. Hon. Secretary: B. A. Henry, 20, Norfolk Crescent, London, W.2.
Dundrod Circuit Approved
The proposed Dundrod road circuit has had a very good reception at the hands of the Antrim County Council. It is possible that a motor-cycle meeting will be held on the new course this season, but it will not be possible to stage the Ulster Trophy Race there until 1950. The Belfast News-Letter, of February 23rd, reported as follows: —
“Antrim County Council yesterday approved a scheme for the construction of a race course on the Dundrod circuit for international motor car and motor-cycle races. The cost is estimated at £40,000, and the Ministry of Commerce have agreed to recommend the Ministry of Finance to make a grant of £20,000.
“Mr. P. B. Webb, chairman, said that there could be no international motor race at Dundrod this year, but a motorcycle race was possible. It was hoped to stage an international motor race In 1950.
“Mr. J. W. Haughton, chairman of the Race Course Committee, said that they had a unique opportunity in Northern Ireland, because this was the only part of the Empire, except for the Isle of Man, where motor road-racing was permitted.
“In a statement accompanying a draft copy of the scheme, Mr. Haughton indicated that his committee had had consultations with representatives of the Ministry of Commerce and the Northern Ireland Tourist Board. They had come to the conclusion that the construction of a race course would promote the development of tourist traffic.
“The scheme, which is subject to the approval of the Ministry of Health and Local Govermnent, is being carried out under the Development of Tourist Traffic Act. It provides for the construction, re-construction and widening of several roads, including a road diversion, totalling in length 12,366 lineal yards, and the construction of a grand stand, offices, pits, barricades, fences, etc.
“Actually one new section of road, 515 yards long, will have to be built.
“The contribution from the rates for the purpose of repayment of capital loan and interest will not exceed 1/2d. in the £ in any year. Receipts and payments will be credited to a “tourist encouragement account,” and, when the amount to the credit of this account reaches £10,000, 50 per cent, of any surplus may be transferred to the general funds of the Council and 50 per cent. towards a reserve fund for the improvement of facilities and the promotion of events.
“Should the reserve fund reach £15,000, any amount in excess of that figure may be wholly used for the reduction of county rates.
“Power is given to make charges within an area not exceeding two miles.
“Mr. J. P. M’Cann said that it was hoped, when things were well under way, that there would be a credit balance which would enable the Council to reduce rates substantially. He understood that in the Isle of Man, where there was a similar race, rates had almost been wiped out.
“The Council, he added, owed a debt of gratitude to Mr. Haughton for the work he had done in preparing the scheme.
“The Council approved of the closing of roads for a hill climb at Knockagh on March 26th under the auspices of the Ulster Automobile Club; a motor-cycle hill climb at Knockagh on April 18th, under the auspices of the Belfast and District Motor Club; a road race on the Ballygarvey circuit on July 20th, organised by the Mid-Antrim Motor Club; and for the North-West ‘200.’”