Easter Race Meetings

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Brands Hatch

The first public race meeting held at Brands Hatch this year was on a damp and cold Easter Monday, the B.R.S.C.C.’s programme consisting of nine races, mostly for small sports-racing cars, GT cars and small saloons. The main race of the day was for the Oxfam Trophy, and was not very exciting—Tomlinson’s Brabham won from Berrow-Johnston’s 1,098-c.c. Lotus, which had led for eight of the 20 laps while Tomlinson had been recovering from a bad start. The best race was a 10-lap Redex Trophy qualifier for GT cars up to 1,600 c.c., which Norman Surtees (Elite) led for three laps until he retired with a broken throttle linkage. Oliver’s attractive and fast Diva and H. Jones’s Elan then had a very good race for the lead, with Burnard (Elan) coming up in the later stages to join in. Burnard went off expensively at Paddock on the last lap, injuring a marshal, and Jones just beat Oliver. The Historic racing car event saw a win for E.R.A., the Connaughts (apart from Horton’s, which led until it spun coming out of Clearways and retired) not going well. The E.R.A. was R12B, “Hanuman,” entered by W. R. G. Morris and driven by his co-owner David Kergon. Second was Gahagan’s R78 and third Freeman’s Aston Martin Spa Special. Lots of new stands are springing up round Brands together with lots of new advertisements, which should be colourful in July; let’s pray that the weather isn’t as chilly as it was on Easter Monday!

J. H.

Mallory Park

It was not the Formula Three and Formule Libre races that provided the crowds with the big thrills at the B.R.S.C.C. meeting at Mallory Park on Easter Monday. Most of the real excitement came in the supporting events, particularly in the second of the two GT races, when a wheel-to-wheel dice throughout between E-type drivers John Dean and Sid Taylor brought loud approval from spectators at every corner. Dean eventually won, and despite a monumental broadside at Devil’s Elbow in the last lap, Taylor still came home second. The 10-lap Formula Three race, although not quite so entertaining, saw a spirited scrap for first place between Derek Bennett (Mark 4 Gemini) and Rodney Bloor (Brabham), in which the latter snatched victory by a short nose. The Bob Gerard and Guards Trophy races were both won by Maurice Nunn, who gave a stylish display of driving in his Lotus 23b. The whole meeting was overshadowed by the highest number of accidents ever known at Mallory during one meeting, the most serious being when Graham Eden, practising during the morning for the Formula Three event, spun at Devil’s Elbow and careered across the pit apron, injuring himself and four marshals and wrecking his new car.—C. T. R. G.

Silverstone

Held under a Restricted permit, the Nottingham S.C.C.’s Silverstone race meeting, run in dull and cold weather on Easter Monday, attracted a large entry of Club racing enthusiasts for the nine-event, eight-lap programme. Undoubtedly the most spectacular events were the single-seater racing car event and the Formule Libre race. In the single-seater event Peter Richardson’s Cooper-Chevrolet, which is a combination of the ex-Moss leaf-spring Formula Two Cooper (still bearing the number “F.2 one” under its bonnet) and a Rochester fuel-injected Chevrolet V8 engine, completely outpaced the remainder of the field until Richardson became a little too brave and went wide coming out of the chicane to allow Jeremy Bouckley’s Lotus-Ford-engined 1.6 Cooper to close up the gap. Sheer power, however, still had the edge and Richardson quickly pulled away again to finish with a little in hand from Bouckley. Third was Pip Woolgar’s 1.5 Cooper-Ford and fourth J. R. Axon’s Cooper-Ford with lan Sievwright’s Tipo 625 Ferrari a well driven fifth. In the Formule Libre race Mike Warner gained his second win of the day with his Lotus 23B from Alan Stubbs (Cooper-Chevrolet) and R. W. Boote (Merlyn-Climax).

David Cunningham’s lightweight E-type Jaguar accounted for two events, the large GT category where he battled initially with A. J. Lambert’s standard E-type, and the sports car race where he was hard pushed by Rob Beck’s D-type-engined XK120. Winners of the other events were as follows: Lotus 7-type cars, D. H. Preston (Lotus Super Seven); GT, J. Scott-Davies (Sprite); Saloons (up to 1,300 c.c.), J. S. Fincher (Morris-Cooper “S”); Sports/Racing, M. Warner (Lotus 23B); Saloon Cars (over 1,300 c.c.), T. Fowler (Lotus-Cortina).—E. L. W.

Snetterton

Despite the cold Snetterton weather an interesting afternoon’s racing took place on Easter Monday.

David Skailes in a Zagato Aston Martin carried off two of the prizes: in the first race, for sports racing cars, and in the 15-lap scratch race for Special Grand Touring Cars which was the main event of the day. Starting from pole position he led throughout this race and lapped all the other competitors at least once. Konig’s Lotus Elan was second and M. E. Garton’s fast Austin Healey Le Mans Sprite was third. Entries for the first event included the D-type Jaguar of Alderslade and Beckett’s Lister Jaguar, which unfortunately only lasted one lap before its engine expired. Sanders in a Lotus Super Seven came second to Skailes’ Aston with the D-type third.

Events Two and Four consisted entirely of Formula Three entries from the Jim Russell Racing Drivers School. They were both won by S. Thoroddsson with M. Payne coming second. There was plenty of excitement in both these races with positions continually changing right through the field.

The final event, a 10-lap saloon car race, was won by M. Winch in a 1,098-c.c. Ford Anglia; B. W. E. Peacock in another Anglia was second after some quick motoring from the back of the field, and third place was taken by the Mini-Cooper entered by the Squadra Tartaruga.—V. J. M.