RACING

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76

RACING AT WINFIELD

TIM Winfield Meeting on October 13th seemed a good excuse for a breath of fresh air before the Show. So, at 4.45 p.m. on the 12th we left the office in the Jowett Jupiter, hound for the far North. Impeded by rush-hour traffic the first half-hour accounted for a mere ten miles, but thereafter, along A 10 And A 14 to Huntingdon the Jupiter got nicely into its stride, cruising at 4,000-4,500 r.p.m. Indeed, the average increased progressively and, after dining at Newark, 30 miles were covered in half an hour in the dark, and we slept at Darlington, the overall running-time average tainting out at 46 m.p.h. Full marks, incidentally, to the Imperial at Darlington for providing sandwiches and tea at 11 p.m. and Bibles in the bedrooms.

Next morning we proeeeded, through Pity Me (we agreed !) and Wide Open, to reach Alnwick’s walled city and so into Berwiekaipon-Tweed. Only 6/ miles (in which we had to negotiate a precarious-looking but excellent singletrack Bailey bridge erected by the R.E.$) remained, to Winfield. During this “refresher course” up A 1 we encountered excellent street lighting at Retford, which must pay dividends in accident prevention, lost the route in Newcastle, where they are apparently indifferent to routing through traffic, fretted at the absence Of warning signs at the beginning of the dual carriageways hereabouts, and were shocked to find that stretches of this great highway to the North were, according to big roadside notices, liable to subside at any Moment ! * * *

Winfield’s two-mile perimeter circuit lutd been lapped in practice by Parnell in the Thinwall Ferrari at. a record 89 m.p.h., but it is sadly bumpy in places. However, the organisation was extremely good and all of a sudden, just before 2 p.m., the enclosures tilled, until the crowd was estimated at 50,000. Catering facilities were excellent, the well-stocked helpyourself refreshment tents being fully licensed and a fruit stall in evidence. Spectators were allowed to cross the course between races, the imminence of which was conveyed by sirens, and ears were marshalled on a grid in the Paddock before leaving for the start, which no doubt contributed to the meeting running absolutely on time throughput. Interesting local entries leavened the now familiar names in the programme. Press passe$ had run out by the time we arrived but we were labelled ” Cocktail Party ” and everyone seemed happy about it. Racing opened with a 5-lap event for the smaller sports ears. Downing’s Connaught, recovered from its Goodwood malaise, ran right away from ‘Gibbon’s Rover Special, lapping at 71 m.p.h. The Hopper (one of those Scottish entries) was coming along fast but its gear lever came out by the roots on the last lap, so Tommy Wise’s ” he Mans ” Jupiter annexed its third place. In the next 5-lap sports-car race six ” Silverstone” Healeys were no match for Gillie Tyrer’s “Mule Miglia ” B.M.W., which lapped consistently at 75.7 m.p.h., holding off Walton’s modern Frazer-Nash.. Dick

son’s Healey was third. latt a long way behind, followed by Stewart’s Healey, Dobson’s nicely-handled ” 328 ” B.M.W. and the rest. Two saloon-car races were next merged into one 5-lapper. The Jupiters of Wise and Skelly were admitted by reason of having their hoods and windaws ereet. Wise won with something in hand fraria Downing’s Healey, which ZWIS a saloon,

a Healey Utility driven by I faVeloek-Slack finishing third to add to the variety. The result was really rather instructive ; a Healey was fourth, Shiers 21-litre Riley pressed on mightily to fifth place. whereas a push-rod 2-litre 1)111 Aston-Martin, was sixth. Ilealeys seventh and eighth, then a push-rod 4-cylinder Aston-Martin,

held by a very disreputable Ford V8, an Austin Alat which just staved off a Citroen Six, then Skelly’s Jupiter, a pre-war 11,1itre Rileywhich tail slid enormously but headed a Jaguar, and finally a ” Lagonda and a Javelin. Maybe the drivers eount for something, however !

A 10-lap sports-car race containing a fine covey of XKI2Os came next and Was heart-stopping at times, although the only incident of the whole meeting was confined to Studer’s XKI20, which burst a tyre coming into Fishaick Corner and took to the grass, the driver thinking pithy things about the tyre manufacturer ! Sutherland’s old-type 31-litre jaguitr contrived to cock its .off-side front wing right up in the air, in the driver’s line of vision but, peering past it, he drove ever more furiously. Out of a vast field, close-packed, Ian Stewart’s ” souped ” XK120 Jaguar was never caught, do as Tyrer and the B.M.W. might, and did ! Stewart lapped at 77 m.p.h., under good ..control, and even tyre-consuming acceleration and a few slides didn’t bring Tyrer near to it. Dickson’s NI:120 was third. Cunningham (I. F. not Briggs !) drove the ex-Crook ” 2.9 ” Alfa-Romeo, but it is now but a shadow of its former self and finished 14th. McGregor-)-VItittan had chosen this as v. time for running-in his XI:120. or so it appeared. Walton’s. Frazer-Nash was outclassed, coming in fourth, ahead, however, of many Jaguars and Healeys. Wol fk i 1 l’s left-drive X K120 duelled with Tannaltill’s N.K120 and won. The Formula III ears provided the most exciting race Of the day, preceded by a 80-second silence in memory of ” Curly ” Dryden. Reece’s Cooper led for two laps, then Bob Gerard, handling his Cooper faultlessly and fearlessly, took the lead, followed by Don Parker’s J.B.S. and Reece. These three held all the attention, Parker ahead again on lap four, but Bob repassed him round the outside of Fishvgick on lap nine. All three could have been covered by the proverbial blanket and Gerard and Parker came into this corner level, Parker pulling away a shade until Bob pipped him. Gerard Pulled away after this, lapping at 78t2 m.p.h. each lap, and so this very thrilling race ended. Headland was fourth in his Cooper, which he took round the bends one hand holding him in, the other sawing at the steering wheel. If only Moss had started in the Kieft! All sorts of sub

sidiary duels, too numerous for detail, characterised a line race (thirty miles in all), but Blane’s .I.P. broke a piston.

Now the vintage Sports cars had a 5-lap go, Melville, in blue skull cap and smart ” 30/98 ” Vauxhall with Ant-Lockheed anchorage, vanquishing the bearded and helmeted Bradshaw, who sat as on a throne, swapping the cogs of his “41 ” Bentley (a two-seater with vast rear reservoir) via an inunense outside lever. Schellerzberg’s ” Ulster” Austin was a neat third, taking the under-3-litre section. Grant’s ” 38J250″ MercedesBenz (which reminds us we saw a ” 24/100 ” Mercedes saloon in Ware on the journey up !) omitted metallic noises, ret1ised its cogs and was generally pathetic. (Query : Why are most of the vintage Mercedes which race nowadays pathetic ?) MeDonald’s ” 4 ” Bentley had eight external small-bore exhaust pipes, but. had not survived its earlier race.

So to the big item, a 50-mile ram, for Formula II and For:mile Libre racing ears. Lots of sports pars rather unseemingly joined in and it was a hardfought struggle except for Reg. Parnell, who, driving the 4-litre Thinwall Ferrari faultlessly, ran away with this ram, of course. Incidentally, it was on Italian tyres. Ken Wharton, on a bumpy but equally polished drive, kept Bell’s IF litre ER.A. in third place, behind Gerard’s 2-litre E.R.A. Alas, after nine laps Gerard coasted to the pits with a broken half-shaft, and Ken was second. So Graham Whitehead’s E.R.A., another car splendidly driven, moved up to third place and some way behind came Kelly’s green G.P. Alta, at last functioning properly and less noisy, or so it seemed, than usual. Behind Kelly, but not quite able to pass, came the single-seater H.W.M.s in uric-ahead-formation, Abecassis musing a stir by leading Moss from lap 9 to 15 and again during lap 21, Duncan I familton third, although for the first four laps he had been second of this group. In the end Moss led the three HAV.M.s home.—perhaps the green wishbone wired to his car’s radiator grille did the trick W. A. Dobson Put up a good show to run behind the HaV.M,e in Murray’s 2-litre Ferrari, now with a new engine giving 145 b.h.p. Tyrer’s Sports 1940 ” Mille Miglia ” B.M.W. at last passed Brown’s 1950-type ILW.M., Whitehouse (Alta) was led by Stokes’ cur of the same breed, but most of the others straggled somewhat, Chassels running his J.P. ” 1,000 ” unblown, although a Shorrock supercharger on the forward near side of the Vincent-H.11D. engine was intended to puff into a long bufferended inlet pipe endowed with thud blowoff valves. The final race was a 5-lap event for small sports cars, Calder contriving to run away from the field in his very nicely turned out ” Brooklands ” Riley Nine. He was pursued at a discreet distance by

Smith’s neat if oddly-bodied Riley Nine and Wilson’s blown ” Montlhary ” M.G. Less in the picture was Barrington’s M.G., which broke something vital in the

transmission at flag-fall.

So ended a well-rim meeting and the busy Paddoek, in which Lucas, Dtuilop, Redex, Shell, B.P. and Regent had set up depots, and Blanc had parked his caravan, gradually emptied. But on July 19th next yearthis pleasant Winfield circuit is seheduled to see an international meeting. For us there was the run back to Darlington, and so to London on the Sunday, when the comfortable, effortless and economical Jupiter, passed by no car, averaged 49 m.p.h. on a run non-stop save for traffic hazards. These included a long hold up near Stamford at some intolerant one-way traffic lights, while we went some miles out of mit way entering London, when A 10 petered-out without warning : there was also a good deal of mist. Incidentally, we had a good example of liow pit-Stops can affect races when we Stopped to refuel and were overtaken by tt Lea-Francis saloon that the Jupiter !tad passed previously. It was f-a n -hot tr before we caughtit, yet we were at the lilling station for only live minutes. On arrival at the office an accurate petrol check proved the consumption over 676 rapid miles to be just over 28 m.p.g. No further praise of the Jowett Jupiter is needed, surely

Results :

SPoitTs(:Alts, 1,2111, c.c. SIC., I ,:300 NON-81C. I FM.: LAI’S): 1st : K.. Domini:to ,1)1II:itiglit).70.91a.p.14: 2nd J. Gibbon (Rover Specia)) • 3rd : “1:. WiSo (Jupiter). Faste.st tap : .1)ownin.g 72.73 m.p.h., SToRTS CARs, 1,5110 Cl’. Sic. 2,500′ cx -Nos•s,c (Pm Lap’s): 1st : fyrer (11.)1.W.),{ m.p.h.; 2nd : J. Walton (Frazer-Nash); 3rd:

13. Dickson (Healey). Fastest tan: Tyrer, 76,7 m.p.h.

firmaTs (Wm 750 e.e. 1,:00) ex, 7oN-510. 1st : A. M. Calder (Riley Nine), 63.3 m.p.h.; 2nd : R. D. G. Smith (Riley Nine); 3rd : H. Wilson (750 NEG. 81e.). Fastest lap.: (‘alder, 64.4 mph. Semers CARS, UNLIMITED 110 LAPS): 1st : 1. Stewart (Jaguar XK 120), 70.3 m.p.h. n • 2nd : TYrer (1).M.W.); 3p1; B. Dickson (Jagitar XI( 120). Fastest to : Tyrer, 50.9 SALOON CARS WIVE LAPS): 1st : T. Wise (.1iipitor), (ILA mph. ; 2nd : K. ltowning (Healey); 3rd : B. Dickson (1-1eakiy). Fastest lap: Wise. 07.23

FonmuLA :1(15 Lars): 1st : F. R. Gerard (CooperNorton), 77.38 mph. ; 21.1: I). Parker (.1.13.1).j.A.P.); 3rd : J. Reece (Uooper-Norton). Fastest tap: Gerard, 78.1 m.p.h. Emottn,a 2 (25 LAPS): S. Moss (WW.M.), 80.6 m.1).11. : 2nd : G. Abeeassis

3rd : D. ilamilton (11.W.M.). FaNest tap: Moss. 82.1 61.1111.

Fossil LA 3 c25 LAPS): R. Parnell (Ferrari), 86.1 m.p.h.; 2nd : K. Wharton (5.11.5.):3rd : A. U. Whitehead (KRA.). rimted lap aad tapro.vra : Parnell, 88.89 ta,p.b.

THE BRDC AND SILVERSTONE

As we close for Press we learn that Silverstone is saved ! The B.R.D.C. is emnpleting negotiations to lease the circuit for next season (it will be recalled that the H.A.C. gave it up at the close of the 1051 season) and that racing will (4-‘1101111e there very much as in the past. Certain ambitious innovations are contemplated and the 13.11.1).C. will shortly call it meeting at which club representatives can discuss their requirements and learn how the 11.11.1).C. hopes to eater for them next year. This is indeed good news, for we can think of no organisation more fitted to run Silverstone than the 11-.R.1).C., and it is gratifying, too, to know that, short of emergency restrictions, they are likely to be offered the circuit at least to the end of 1955 should they so desire. Already the winter seems, as we write, to be halt’ over . . . !