LAGONDA AVERAGES OVER 104 M.P.H. FOR ONE HOUR
EARLIER this year a stir was caused when S. C. H. Davis averaged 102.2 m.p.h. for 60 mins. at Brooklands under official R.A.C. observation, driving a fully-equipped sports FrazerNash-B.M.W. running on pump fuel. To encourage such public demonstration of a sports-car’s ability to achieve over 100 m.p.h., and to possess a high degree of reliability into the bargain, L. A. Badderley of the M.C.C. put up a trophy for the car equalling or exceeding 100 miles during either of the M.C.C. One Hour Brooklands runs. Unfortunately, weather conditions were against competitors and the best time was Elgood’s 98 m.p.h. with an old-school, 41–litre Bentley. Last month, on a rather unsuitable day when the Track was wet, Alan Hess, driving Arthur Fox’s 41-litre T.T. Lagonda, carried the “sports-car hour” a stage further. Hess averaged 104.4 m.p.h. and lapped with remarkable consistency. He carried a passenger and the car had wings, lamps, horn, numberplates, bonnet-straps and two aeroscreens in place. It ran on Discol fuel and Champion R11 plugs. Not so very many sports-cars will lap at over 100 iu.p.h., especially on their “touring plugs,” and to maintain this lap-speed for 60 minutes is an extremely fine performance. Unfortunately, although the figures are rendered quite authentic because of the R.A.C. ..observation, a run of this nature do-es not constitute a record. It would seem that the time is ripe for the R.A.C. to recognise such runs as National Stock-car Records, as is done in the U.S.A. No doubt the answer will be that it is quite impossible to define a stock car, which is the argument eternally quoted in respect of races or other contests for purely standard cars. We feel that it should not be beyond the ingenuity of the R.A.C. Competitions Department to check up on cars submitted singly for record attempts. To prevent untold confusion we would suggest three classifications only : Brooklands flyinglap, the “hour,” and a 12-hour record. Perhaps sub-divided into over and under 11-litre categories. As it is at .present full equipment is carried, but any fuel may be used. This is ‘quite a useless basis, as it at once admits racing-cars
with road-equipment, and even were the R.A.C. to encourage the restriction that pump fuels only be used, many a racingcar could put up a good fake showing with dropped . compression-ratio, or minus. its blower. In this country we should have ‘a pretty shrewd knowledge of what. car was used, but remember that such runs have a high publicity value the world. over. We 31aalve c.not tlt slightest doubt that the Frazer-Nash-B.M.W. and Lagonda were standard cars, at all events. within our own T.T. definition of a sports-. car, but in case considerable further activity takes place in this category— and it wouldbe highly instructive—weurge the R.A.C. to consider some serious. committee sittings on the subject of National Stock-car Records. It would be interesting to know if any existing sports. models could lap Brooklands at over 120 m.p.h., officially timed, and to see’ who will first put the “sports-car hour” at this figure. In the meantime, Alan Hess. and Arthur Fox deserve the greatest credit for so convincingly demonstrating, the speed, allied to reliability, of a veryfine and widely respected British marque..