NORTH STAFFS M.C. (Sept. 24th)
Anstice-Brown (Halselec) wins "Motor Sport' Trophy
THE Final Of the MOTOR SPORT Silverstone Trophy, which was contested at the North Staffs M.C. meeting, provided a comfortable win for John Anstice-Brown in his Climax-engined Halselec from Mrs. Peter Gammon's hot Ford Anglia and Neil Dangerfield's very fast Triumph TR3.
Twenty-one competitors who had qualified at various meetings throughout the season lined up for this handicap race, which saw four competitors having more than a lap start over scratch-man Gordon Lee in his ex-Jim Clark Lister-Jaguar. Of these, Mrs. Gammon proved to be the quickest in the Anglia with aluminium doors, bonnet and boot lid, and with an engine almost to F.J. specification. She moved into the lead on lap two and held it until the last lap, but Anstice-Brown, spurred on by the £75 prize, was lapping very fast in his well-used Halselec and it was obvious by lap four that he would pass Mrs. Gammon. However, the TR3 and M.G.-A brigade led by Dangerfield and Waterhouse looked menacing, while Michael Salmon in his immaculate D-Type Jaguar and Gordon Lee were thundering through the field with lights blazing, and they could easily have gobbled up the pack. However, on the last lap the traffic was just too thick for them to get through and Anstice-Brown passed Mrs. Gammon to win by 50 yards, with Dangerfield a good third in front of Pilkington's A35, Mayne's pretty Falcon Special, and Lee's Lister. Not the closest of finishes to a MOTOR SPORT Trophy race but Anstice-Brown had cleverly disguised the true performance of his car all season and on the day lapped something like 4 secs. faster than he had done before. Jaguar Competition Manager F. R. W. "Lofty" England presented the Trophy and cheques to the prize-winners.
Earlier, the final qualifying race for the Trophy had seen one of the best-ever finishes to one of these Trophy races when practically the whole field bunched together for the final bend. Out of this awe inspiring collection of machinery Mike Salmon detached his tail-wagging D-type and hurled it at the line to snatch a win from Gordon Lee's Lister which had started 8 secs. behind him. It was literally impossible to separate the remainder of the field and Carlton's M.G., Mayne's Falcon and Binn's TR3 were given the same time for third place. Apart from the Trophy races the main events of the day were a 10-lap Formula Junior race and a 10-lap Formule Libre event. In the former, Len Gibbs and E. Harris, both Lotus-mounted, went into the lead with Harris, who is one of Jim Russell's pupils, pressing Gibbs for the lead. Roy Winkleman in the Lola of the Armoured Car Company went very quickly while the car was going well but overheating troubles forced him to stop. Mike Spence came through the field in his Cooper-Austin and took the lead from Gibbs on the last lap, and Harris also slipped through to take second place. Bill Lacy, one of the Cooper School trainees, finished fourth in one of the well-used school cars.
In the Formule Libre race Mike Salmon soon got into the lead and began to enjoy himself power-sliding through Woodeote, until his pit told him to slow down as he was so far in front of the Formula Junior brigade. Len Gibbs led this initially but Spence soon got past into a secure second place, while the Cooper School car, now driven by Jacks, was well back in fourth place. R. P. G. Sturgess drove well in his C-type Jaguar to finish fifth.
Altogether a pleasant end to the Club Silverstone season, with no serious accidents, and warm, sunny weather for the spectators to bask in.—M. L. T.