THE Mont Ventoux lull Climb is one of the longest in the world, being 21 kilometres 600 metres in length. It starts at the pretty little village of Bedoin, at which point the road is 206 metres above sea level. The finish is at the Observatory, at a height of 1,689 metres. For six kilometres the road is fairly level and straight, but at St. Esteve the first bad corner is met, and the gradient begins at a degree of 9%. Then it falls a little, only to ris:_, to 10%, finishing at 13% for the last
stretch. From St. Esteve to the finish there are innumerable corners.
Last year Whitney Straight astonished everyone by breaking the record with a time of 14 mins. 31.6 secs. The previous record was 15 mins. 12.4 secs., made by Caracciola with a 2.6-litre Monoposto Alfa-Romeo. This year Straight was again on the scene, this time to defend his record against all comers. His chief rival was Hans von Stuck, with an Auto Union, a driver who built up his reputation at hill-climbing before taking a place in the Auto Union team this year.
The weather has played havoc with many events this year, notably the Klausen Hill climb, and sure enough it broke up badly on the day of the Mont Ventoux hill climb. First of all there was sunshine, and this was followed by torrential showers. When the rain stopped a heavy mist rose from the ground, reducing the visibility.
Von Stuck beat Straight’s record by nearly a minute with a time of 13 mins. 38.6 secs. Straight himself gave a wonderful display of driving in getting down to 13 mins. 58.8 secs., for his car has not the power of the I6-cylinder Auto Union. A lot of drivers found the slippery state of the corners a treacherous handicap, and made sensational broadsides and circles. No one hurt themselves, however, so there was nothing to worry about.
R. S.,arnan followed up his success in the Voiturette Class of the Swiss Grand Prix by beating the record in the 1,100 c.c. racing class with a time of 16 mins. 5.8 secs. this being faster than the 1,500 c.c. and 2-litre class winners. He was also faster than Balestrero on a sports type 2.3-litre Alfa-Romeo, who made fastest sports car time in 16 mins. 16 secs.
Over Balestrero (Alfa-Romeo), 16m. 16s., record ; 2,:Mlle. Helle-Nice (Alfa-Romeo), 16m. 43 1/5s.; 3, Trintignant (Hudson), 17m. 54.3/5s.
2-1Itres.—I, Hilsum (Citron), 19m. 38s.; 2, Genas (Citroen), 20m. ; 3, Dumac.ay (Citron), 20m. 47.1/5s.
1,500 e.e.—I, Challe (Bugatti), 19m. 31.4/5s. 1,100 C.G.-1, Maillard Brune (M.G.), 18m. 14s., record ; 2, Jourdan (Salinson), 18m. 41.3/5s. ; 3, Moritz (M.G.), 19m. 2.1/5s. ; 4, Nazzaro (Fiat), 19m. 22.1/5s.; 5, Aubert (Aubert), 21m. 12.415s.;
6, Del Vigna (Fiat), 24m. 54.3/5s.
1,100 c.c.-1, Seaman (M(..), 16m. 5.4/5s., record ; 2, Fenouil (Rosengart), 18m. 58s.; 3, Waltrow (M.G.), 19m. 14.2/5s.; 3, Herkulyns (M.G.), 20m. 18.3/5s.
1,500 c.c.—I, Barowski (Bugatti), 17m. 17s.; 2, Jouve (Miller), 20m. 1.4/5s.
2-litres.—I, Martin (Bugatti), 17m. 50.1/5s. ; 2, Moulin (Bugatti), 20m. 24.1/5s. Over 2-litres.—I, Von Stuck (Auto Union), 13m. 38.3/5s., record 94 km. 380; 2, Straight (Maserati), 13m. 58.4/5s. ; 3, Falchetto (Maserati), 14m. 14.2/5s.; 4, Zanelli (Pescara), 14m. 21s. ; 5, Delmo (Bugatti), 15m. 6.1/5s. ; 6, Rolland (Bugatti), 15m. 14.1/5s.;
7, !Monne (Bugatti), 16m. 42.215s.