International Lombank Trophy Meeting Snetterton, April 14th
THIS was the first event on British soil where entries had been made for Formula One cars using the Climax and B.R.M. V8 engines. Three cars were equipped with the new engines; Jimmy Clark’s Team Lotus car, using a “bench engine,” Stirling Moss with the latest U.D.T.-Laystall Lotus fitted with their recently delivered Climax unit, and Graham Hill in the B.R.M. Giving the International touch to the race were the Porsches of Joakim Bonnier and Wolfgang Seidel; the former being the 1961 works 4-cylinder car recently acquired by the Republica Venezia team and being liveried in Italian red and the latter, an identical car, being entered by Seidel’s Auto-Sport team and still liveried in the work’s silver. Apart from Clark’s V8, Team Lotus had two 4-cylinder cars entered for Peter Arundell and Trevor Taylor – only Taylor’s car appearing. With Moss driving their number one car, regular U.D.T. drivers, Innes Ireland and Masten Gregory were entered with 4-cylinder Mk II Climax-engined Lotuses of the latest pattern. The other finance company, Bowmaker-Yeoman had the Brussels’ Lola for John Surtees and a stock Cooper-Climax for Roy Salvadori. Other Lotus drivers were the independants, Tim Parnell and Tony Shelly. Completing the entries was the Gilby-Climax of Keith Greene, the Emeryson-Climax of Graham Eden, and Chris Ashmore’s Cooper-Climax. Jack Brabham’s new Lotus was due to run but a fire at his workshop had damaged the car, and race day found him in the role of spectator. The second B.R.M. had been entered for Richie Ginther who was still recovering from burns received when the car caught fire during testing at the Bourne test track a few weeks earlier, and did not run.
Practice times on a dry track were soon getting near last year’s fastest race lap set up by lnnes Ireland in a 2½-litre works Lotus-Climax of 1 mill 33.6 Sep. (104.23 m.p.h.). By the time practice finished Moss had the U,D.T. V8-engined car in pole position with 1 min. 34.2 sec., with Clark’s Lotus just 0.2 of a second behind and Hill’s B.R.M. third with 1 min. 34.6 sec. Occupying the fourth position on the front row of the grid was the fastest of the four-cylinder cars, Surtees’ Lola with 1min.35.8sec. Second row held the two U.D.T. cars of Gregory and Ireland and Taylor’s Lotus, all much slower than the first four. Third row held the four cars of Bonnier, Parnell, Greene and Salvadori, in that order. Fourth row had Shelly, Seidel and Eden while Chris Ashmore’s Cooper had the back row to itself.
From the start it was Hill’s B.R.M. straight into the lead and pulling away on acceleration from Moss and Clark the Bourne car finishing the first lap with a useful lead. Behind came Surtees in the Lola and then quite a gap until a close knot comprising Gregory, Ireland, Taylor, Bonnier, Parnell, Salvadori, Shelly, and a tail string consisting of Eden, Seidel and Ashmore. First retirement was Salvadori, whose engine died on him on the third lap. The position remained stagnant until the fifth lap when Moss’ Lotus came through on the tail of the B.R.M. A lap later and Moss was through to the lead and before the hubbub, that usually ensues whenever Moss takes the lead, had died down, other excitement was in the offing in the form of Ireland and Gregory, who both rushed into the pits, having shunted each other at the Hairpin. Ireland had hit the rear of his team-mate’s car, splitting his own radiator and damaging the gear selector mechanism on Gregory’s Lotus. Ireland immediately retired and a hurried examination of the rear-end of Gregory’s car certified the third retiral.
Hill had slowed slightly, the B.R.M. not sounding quite so crisp, and soon Clark was noticeably gaining. Tim Parnell pitted his Lotus with acute water shortage which cost him a lap for replenishment and Taylor in the second Team Lotus car completed his eighth lap at a very slow pace, retiring shortly after at the Esses. Moss was now motoring his Lotus well clear of Hill and Clark. Chris Ashmore made the first of several pit stops for water and Parnell continued fluctuating between pit and circuit.
Race order remained virtually unchanged, except for Seidel, who had at last pushed his Porsche from last position to eighth on the 10th lap and in the process was himself passed by the leaders. Clark had now closed on the B.R.M. and, still in fourth place, well ahead of Bonnier’s Porsche and the rest of the field, was Surtees’ Lola. On the completion of the 13th lap Moss had lost some of his headway to the B.R.M. and Clark and Hill were beginning to play tag. Surtees brought the Lola into the pits with chronic overheating and remained there for a lap, eventually going out in ninth place, Bonnier taking over his fourth position. Next move was up front on the 16th lap, when Clark took Hill’s second place and pressed on after Moss. Two laps later Clark took the lead, which he was to keep until the finish. Moss dogged the leader until just before half way and then came round behind Hill’s B.R.M. and pitted with throttle linkage trouble. The ensuing stop took 45 seconds and slowing and accelerating time added up to almost a lap-putting him down to fourth place, behind Bonnier and ahead of Keith Greene’s Gilby, which had been lapping steadily throughout. Eden’s Emeryson had lost its clutch and became the fifth retiral.
Clark was now unassailable and Hill still had the measure over Bonnier, who now had the task of keeping Moss at bay. This didn’t prove so formidable as Moss again came in with throttle linkage trouble, costing yet another lap. With 20 laps to run, Clark, who had been lapping at a steady 1 min. 34.2 sec., which constituted a new 1½.-litre F1 record, lapped Bonniers’ third place Porsche. Hill was about 25 seconds in arrears. Moss had yet more trouble to come from the throttle linkage and his final pit stop saw the job done properly by dismantling part of the mechanism and modifying with a hack-saw, a task with which car-less Ireland assisted. This put Moss completely out of the hunt in seventh position, ahead of Ashmore’s Cooper, which was still overheating. Surtees had retired the Bowmaker car with a very hot engine and Parnell had driven straight into the dead car park with his Lotus. Race order at the 14th lap was Clark, Hill. Bonnier, Greene, Shelly, Seidel, Moss and Ashmore. Only Clark and Bill were in the same lap; being almost half a lap apart.
Five laps from the end Moss was treating the 40,060 spectators to a real demonstration, lapping on his 14th lap at 1 min. 33.8 sec., while Clark was still steady on 1 min. 37 sec. Moss continued whittling down the lap times until he broke the lap record with 1 min. 33.6 sec. at 104.23 m.p.h., just before Clark crossed the line on the penultimate lap. Thus ended the first British Formula One race with the V8 engines, all of which finished, Clark’s sounding just as sweet as at the start.
Supporting the main race was a 10-lap Formula Junior race easily won by Team Lotus driver Peter Arundell from John Fenning’s Lotus 20, with Dennis Taylor’s new Lola and John Love’s Cooper-B.M.C. in a close group behind. A lengthy saloon car race finished the day, 3.8-litre Jaguars taking the major places.-E. L. W.
Since this heading first appeared, we hear that the Triumph Roadster Club has a new Secretary, Maurice Burton, •'”Cala Vella,” 2, Burstead Drive, South Green, Billericay, Essex. Other Club addresses asked for include : V.S.C.C., c/o T. W. Carson, 3, Kingsclere House Stables, Kingsclere, Newbury, Berks. Bentley. D.C., cfo Miss B. Gunstone, 76A, High Street, Long Crendon, Aylesbury, Bucks. Fairthorpe O.C., cto R. B. B. Gibbs, 235, Tring Road, Aylesbury, Bucks. Humber Register, cjo M. L.
“Pippins,” Angel Road, Thames Ditton, Surrey. Southern jowett C.C., c/o L. R. Reed, J.P., 43, Holtspur Top Lane, Beaconsfield, Bucks. Bullnose Morris Club, c/o L.P. Jarman, 27, Oakfield Road, Rugby, Warwicks.