At Peterborough M.C. Race Meeting (Sept. 28th)
Winner of this year’s Motor Sport Silverstone Trophy Final, contested at Silverstone, was W. E. Wilks driving a Frazer-Nash. Second and third were Bradley anhd Prior driving Bentley and Lotus respectively. H. C. Spero in a Maserati won the 15-lap handicap race for vintage and historic cars.
Competitors of both the Peterborough M.C. and the Northampton A.C. were taking part at this meeting, one of the last race meetings of the season at Silverstone. A cold wind swirled over the open spaces but no rain came to spoil the long programme of events, mostly of five laps duration.
Race 1 was won by R. P. Bradley in his Bentley, a 3-litre chassis with 4½-litre engine, in which he romped round in fine style; Sim’s 1,300 Alfa-Romeo went quite rapidly but French’s immortal Austin “Simplicity” was even faster although George Burton’s Bentley took second place leaving Miss Cooke’s nice Amilcar Surbaisse to plod round at a steady gait making queer tinkling noises en route.
Always a firm favourite is a production car race and in this event there were such exponents as Shepherd in his A35 Austin, Wright’s Morris 1,000, Treadgold’s Sunbeam Rapier, Wadsworth’s Healey Elliot and Seigle-Morris’ Borgward, all fighting for the lead. Shepherd was the lucky winner on handicap leaving some of the larger cars on corners such as Woodcote. Louis de Conti Manduca’s Alfa-Romeo 1,900 gave a poor showing as it rolled excessively, this being due perhaps to the fact that it was a left-hand-drive model trying to turn right all the time! The best cars to watch were the Borgwards which just turned corners as if they were doing 5 m.p.h.
M.G.s Austins and Berkeleys topped the polls at the next event, again a handicap race in which Mallock’s Austin Seven crossed the line first, but the Berkeleys were fun to watch at the corners as their drivers pursued the “foot hard down and spin the wheel” tactics. Another inspiring character was Hacking in an M.G. TF, which was something to watch as it came steaming up to the corners braking at the last minute and tearing off again.
At the start of the second part of this race, scheduled to allow Qualifiers for the Motor Sport events to sort themselves out. Arundell in an M.G. TC whipped off into the lead and was hardly seen again until the finishing line where he took first place at a speed of 66.17 m.p.h. average, which is not bad at all for a TC.
The over-1,500-c.c. sports-car handicap began with Bradley’s Bentley in the lead and Cutler’s Healey Silverstone hard in second place and by the final lap Saunders in another Healey Silverstone was in third place. In the first of the Formula III events Robinson in a Cooper stepped into first place at the start and meant to keep it. Pitcher in another Cooper put up a good effort in second place but never really challenged Robinson. In the second race for these cars the same two drivers were placed first and second again, which only goes to show that they must be more proficient than their rivals.
The up-to-1,250-c.c. sports-car event saw Brierley in the lead with his Victoria Climax until Brough in a Lotus XI came along to take first place. Anstice Brown had an awkward moment in this race and nearly came to grief at Beckett’s when his Lotus spun.
The big race of the day was the 15-lap vintage racing-car event. Here McDonald was first round in his Bentley, followed by Goodhew’s E.R.A.-Delage, but W. F. Moss soon came on the scene in “Remus” although he ran out of gears after Berkett’s on lap seven, allowing Spero’s Maserati into first place, where it finished at 76.07 m.p.h. Hall’s B-type E.R.A. was second.
Race 8 for larger sports cars resulted in a dice between Brough in a Lotus XI, Brierley in his Victoria-Climax and Dickson’s Lotus XI. Brough won the under 1,251-c.c. class but the 1,251-1,500-c.c. class went to Arundel, again with his M.G. TC.
The Peterborough M.C. Qualifying Race for the Motor Sport Trophy was won by Hacking in an M.G. TF. Mallock was second in his Austin Seven and Wilks’ Frazer-Nash was third. These three, with three others, went forward to take part in the Final race for the Trophy this year, the last event at this meeting. This was a most exciting race, for which first prize is now £75. Because it is a five-lap event the winner is never known until the very last moment. and it was so in this case, for Wilks brought his Frazer-Nash round Woodcote into the lead at the last instant, with Bradley and Prior second and third, respectively, in Bentley and Lotus cars, heading a big field of many different sporting machines. Treadgold in the Rapier and Shepherd in the A35 were first round on the opening laps, but by the fourth lap Bradley had crept into second place behind the Rapier, which was running on a 1 min. 35 sec. handicap and which had dropped back down the scale by the final lap.
The preceding races were the over-1,500.c.c. scratch race, which went to Brough’s Lotus again, and the Formula races for 750 and 1,172-c.c. cars; the former went to Hockney’s Austin and the latter to Broadley’s Lola Ford.
Race 1 (5-lap Handicap for Vintage Cars): R. P. Bradley (Bentley) 69.61 m.p.h.
Race 2 (5-lap Handicap for Production Saloons): G. C. Shepherd (Austin A35) 59.26 m.p.h.
Race 3 (5-lap Handicap for Sports Cars up to 1,500 c.c.): A. M. P. Mallock 64.44 m.p.h.
Race 3a (5-lap Handicap for Sports Cars up to 1,500 c.c.): V. Arundell (M.G. TC) 66.17 m.p.h.
Race 4 (5-lap Handicap for Sports Cars over 1,501 c.c.): R. P. Bradley (Bentley) 69.18 m.p.h.
Race 5 (12-lap Scratch race for 500-c.c. Cars): P. Robinson (Cooper) 76.15 m.p.h.
Race 6 (5-lap Scratch race for Sports Cars up to 1,250 c.c.): D. J. Brough (Lotus XI) 76.33 m.p.h.
Race 7 (15-lap Handicap for Vintage and Historic Racing Cars): H. C. Spero (Maserati GP) 76.07 m.p.h.
Race 8 (5-lap Scratch race for Sports Cars):
Under 1,251 c.c.: D. J. Brough (Lotus XI) 76.69 m.p.h.
1,251-1,500 c.c.: P. J. Arundell (M.G. TC) 66.52 m.p.h.
Race 9 (12-lap Scratch race for Formula III “Sweepstake”): P. Robinson (Cooper) 76.15 m.p.h.
Race 10 (5-lap Qualifying Handicap for the Motor Sport Trophy): J. Hacking (M.G. TC) 66.26 m.p.h.
Race 11 (5-lap Scratch race for cars over 1,501 c.c.): D. J. Brough (Lotus XI) 76.57 m.p.h.
Race 12 (5-lap Scratch Races):
750 Formula Cars: L. G. Hockney (Austin) 60.30 m.p.h.
1,172-c.c. Formula Cars: E. H. Broadley (Lola-Ford) 72.69 m.p.h.
Race 13 (Motor Sport Trophy Final): W. E. Wilks (Frazer-Nash) 76.57 m.p.h.