I have always regretted that Mount SPORT discontinued its interest in motorcycling. I realise that. it would be impossible to cover all branches, but reports on the International Grands Prix, with their attendant development in design, would have made interesting reading. For myself, although I gave up competing in motor-cycle events in 1928, I
have kept in touch with the improvements made in road-racing machines up to the present, and have noted with apprehension from a patriotic, and with interest from a technical, viewpoint the perseverance with which the Continental racing departments perfected their unorthodox designs until they very definitely had the legs of us in the 500-c.c. class. Although we had brought the ” prieu matic-drill ” type of engine to an unprecedented degree of perfection, our manufacturers have, in the main, always seemed loath to break away from the stereotyped. There were, of course, exceptions : the V4, water-cooled, supercharged A.J.S., for instance, was on the heels of the fastest Continental challenger and, given a season of development, might well have (riven us superiority
once more. It should be borne in mind that this machine was the first to lap the Ulster course at 100 m.p.h. and was only put out, by a steering defect. The following .few results will show how thoroughly we had, by 1939, lost our coveted omnipotence in motor cycle racing :
Swedish Grand Prix.—lst, ; 2nd, Gilera ; 3rd, B.M.W. ; 4th, Norton. Speed : 96.10 m.p.h. Fastest lap : Meier (B.M.W.), 100.87 m.p.h.
Grand Prix of Europe.=ist, B.M.W.; 2nd, Gilera ; 3rd, B.M.W. ; 4th, K-N. Speed : 94.95 m.p.h. Fastest lap : Meier (B.M.W.), 100.63 m.p.h.
Senior T.T.-1st, B.M.W. ; 2nd, B.M.W. ; 3rd, Norton. Speed : 89.38 m.p.h. Fastest lap : Meier (B.M.W.), 90.75 m.p.h.
Ulster Grand Prix.—lst, Gilera ; 2nd, Norton ; 3rd, Velocette. Speed : 97.85 m.p.h. Fastest lap : Serafini (Gilera), 100.03 m.p.h.
German Grand Prix.-1st, Gilera ; 2nd, B. M . W. ; 3rd, B.M.W. Speed : 87.61 m.p.h.
In the 250 and 350-c.c. classes we were well on the way to being beaten up by D.K.VV., Benelli and Guzzi machines, Let us hope that when peace returns we may forget the single-cylinder fetish, which still smacks of 191-1. ; we. have the designers, constructors, tuners, and riders.
Let us not again be overcome by the national lethargy which lost us our position in sports car and Grand Prix car racing and the respect of Continental motor sportsmen. Owing to the return to the saddle of many who find that the present circumstances matke it desirable, and the fact that hundreds in II.M. Forces have had to take up motor-cycling, might I suggest that you once more open your columns to items of interest in this connection. I ant, Yours etc., H. L. Moos,
Middlesex. [We have often .contemplated, giving adequate space to motor-cyclematters,but the press of car material has made it impracticable. Now that there is still less space the problem remains. However, the R.A.C. having banned car competitions, while Army-approved motor-cycle events are frequent and well supported, perhaps something more should be done for the two-wheeler fraternity and we will endeavour to mould future plans accord
Veteran-Edwardian-Vintage, September 1979
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