A CHANGE OF HEART

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SOME years ago St. John Nixon, the well-known motoring historian, expressed the opinion that the earlier veteran cars are far too precious to be subjected to active usage, and condemned such events for them as the annual Brighton Run, etc. At the time this seemed droll, because Mr. Nixon had done his share of long-distance motoring in “priceless heirlooms”, having taken the 1899 Wolseley voiturette, then owned by the Nuffield Organisation, on a self-imposed replica of the 1,000-Mile Trial of 1900 in 1950, which he repeated, in spite of his “museum” dictum, in 1960. This involved the ancient Wolseley in some 2,400 miles’ driving in a total of 24 days. (Not subscribing to Mr. Nixon’s views we greatly admired his tenacity and the car’s reliability and the Editor of MOTOR SPORT gladly acted as one of the Observers for one of these replica journeys.) What is even more droll is that having expressed his intention of never again submitting old machinery to such an ordeal, Mr. Nixon and the 1899 Wolseley are at it once more ! On April 23rd he is due to leave London and drive his third replica of the historic 1,000-Mile Trial. He has some reason to be interested, as he rode with S. F. Edge on a Napier in the original Trial, and he intends to adhere as closely as possible to the correct route (for details of which consult Wolseley’s distributor’s showrooms) ignoring the fact that on May 1st the Veteran CC of GB is holding its own idea of how the 70th anniversary of the 1,000-Mile Trial should be commemorated, with an ambitious nine-day event. This will involve the 71-year-old Wolseley and its courageous veteran driver in the equivalent of some 19 consecutive Brighton Runs.

In spite of Mr. Nixon having burned his boats, we hope his enterprising adventure was a great success—and that no serious harm befell the historic Wolseley.—W. B.