S.U.N.B.A.C. AT SILVERSTONE (Sept. 5th)
S.U.N.B.A.C. were at one time a little dubious about taking September 5th is the date of their annual Silverstone Meeting because this followed the 750 M.C. Six-Hour Relay Race and a
paucity of motorable motor Cars was feared in consequenee. But as it worked out, whereas the Relay Race was well awash.
S.U.N.B.A.C. had the very best September weather, a day when you didn’t have to he particularly nostalgic to feel that it was good to he in England. The day’s sport went expeditiously under the genial control of Jack Woodhouse and E. K. Sumner. Very complete results Were issued soon after the finish. After the new “Birkett” long Club circuit
had been used by the A.M.O.C. and for the Relay Race, S.U.N.B.A.C. reverted to the better known Club circuit for this, their fifth Silverstone sortee.
The big sports cars came out first for a six-lap scratch race, Swift’s Type C Jaguar, on Michelin •” boots,” leading Don ‘fruman’s sister car all the way, although it lost time here and there in exciting slides, to win by a second, at 74.95 m.p.h. Third place would have gone comfortably to Baxter in the B.M.W.-based L.M.C. had he not -slid out on Woodeote on Vie run in, thus presenting a place to D. 0. M. Taylor’s dented XK120.
The smaller sports machinery now had a similar six-lapper, Peter Gammon in his rubber-consuming 1Hitre ‘M.G., with little avoirdupois and the correct-sized valves, winning at 67.49 m.p.h., nicely ahead of Colin Chapman’s Lotus. The neat Porteous was third. Osborn’s H.E.G. indulged in frantic front-wheel patter, Jack took his bouncy M.G. just round Beckett’s, and Gibbs’ Riley went sick. Pat White consistently over-revved her father’s ‘I’D M.G. until the engine fell apart. Give her credit–she drove fast round the corners, if in a low cog, and we hope she races again.
The first 10-lap heat of the Formula III race found Don Parker in the Kieft unassailable after the first hectic lap. Bias, driving his Mk. VI Cooper notably, held a firm second place, but Truman, who hail shown early promise, gradually fell back in his blue Cooper, so that the Smith 500 occupied third place, going very well. Parker averaged 74.02 m.p.h. and as this was exactly the. speed at which Ls Leston in his Leston with the whitewashed tyres won the second heat, Parker and Leston shared 500-c.c. honours. This second heat (there was no final) was a procession, Headland’s Martin-Headland in second place, followed by Bueb in the lengthened Bueb-R-Nott. The Wasp retired, Brown’s J.P. and Burnett’a Emerron-J.A.P. spun, and the Grose was both noisy and jerky, but we thought Phillipson drove his Cooper nicely.
A rate of five Jaguars over six laps followed, Swift defeating Truman by 7.4 see., although Truman was the steadier until he spun on the last lap. Taylor was third. The winner averaged 74.27 m.p.h. The 750 and 1,172 Formula cars were next let loose, again over six laps from scratch. Jack French, who makes a habit of it, was
the star turn in his £190 Austin Special ” He beat all the Ford Ten devices except the Lotus (Loti ?), averaging 60 m.p.h. He finished about a day ahead of Whitehouse and Grimsley—and none can say in this case that ” money wins motor races.” Good show, Jack ! Chapman duelled with Nigel Allen for 1,172 honours and won at 65.01 m.p.h., Evans’ Nimrod in third place. The Porteous was leading when it blew up with a loud bang and much smoke, causing Chapman and French to take rapid avoiding action. Stringer, in a car variously described as a Raybeau Griffiths and a Ilaybean Griffiths, enlivened the race by repeatedly running wide at Beckett’s with his front wheels at quite impossible angles from the vertical. We liked the rapid Chummy Austin of S. G. Mailer. The All-Comers’ handicap was run off in three six-lap heats and a final. The first heat provided confirmation that the race is not always to (the) Swift, as his Jaguar retired, we believe With the throttle connections adrift. Gammon deservedly won in the M. G., at 71.31 m.p.h.. from Parker’s Kieft and Russell’s early Cooper—a
mixed field. Bueb did Berne very calm hands-off wheel-twirling when the BueloRNott became, skittish at Beekett’s, and Don Truman made the C-type Jaguar’s tyres smoke.
Tracey’s Jaguar won the second heat front Rust’s Cooper-J.A.P. and Green’s Healey coupe, at 67.55 m.p.h. A Lotus duel was noticed in progress. Chapman’s dented rear-wheel spat which had been rubbing the tyre in the 1,172 race now rectified itself. The third heat saw Llewellyn’s Type. 40 Bugatti going nicely, so that it took Lord’s 11.11.G. a lap to eateh it, while Freneh’s astonishing Austin, boiling, was faster than Oslequi’s Jarrett’s 11.11.G. netted a marker bin at Beckett’s, bill Wi111, at 1)0.7 m.p.h., from the L.M.C. and Stringer’s Ilaybean.
The motor-cyclists of S.U.N.B.A.C. had a half-hour High-Speed Trial, Len Gibbs and his wife riding their trials Nortons very nicely, While Hayes’ 197-c.c. Norman sounded delightful and Weake was taking his 248-c.c. two-stroke Excelsior up and up the rev.-stale, selecting a higher Mg only when misfiring intruded.
The final of the All-Corners’ Handicap was a good dice, won by Unulerwood’a blue-Smoking Riley, at 58.15 m.p.h., front Lord’s 11.R.G. and Baxter’s L.M.C.—W. B.
SUNBEAM M.C.C. VINTAGE AND VETERAN RALLY (Sept. 6th)
This annual event, organised by R. A. Little and Ralph %tables for the Sunbeam M.C.C. in conjunction with that club’s Pioneer Register, produced the excellent entry of 125 vehicles. A breakdown of the entry revealed that this was made up of 10 veteran motor-cycles, 43 ” Edwardian ” (pre-1914) motor-cycles, 52 vintage motor-cycles, two veteran cars, eight ” Edwardian ” (pre-1914) cars and 10 vintage cars.
Competitors were required to cover a straight-line mileage of 60 in the morning in not less than three hours, with bonus marks for age of vehicle and age of driver, and in the afternoon to complete two laps of a 15-mile circuit which included Coombe Rill with a hairpin bend at the foot at 15 m.p.h., plus bonus minutes for age of vehicle.
The morning run caused someconfusion, some competitors merely doing 60 direct road miles, others changing direction to covet this distance. Roddy arrived twenty minutes after the Control at Newland’s Corner opened, having left Towcester at precisely 9 a.m. in his wife’s 1927 Sunbeam Sixteen tourer, which had obligingly packed 33 miles into each hour, at 19 m.p.g. At Newland’a Corner the public mingled with the experts in admiring the splendid assembly of vehicles. We. noted two Bradbury motor-cycles, one clean, one dirty, two flat-twin Woolers with different fuel tanks, a Kerry with its battery in a compartment in the petrol tank, ” Pa ” Dickens and his lady in their 1913 Williamson with wicker sidecar, a 1909 Minerva with wicker sidecar, Tyler’s 1913 “ladies’ model ” Scott, J. Moore’s Levis proudly bearing the slogan ” The Master Two-Stroke ” on its tank above the Butterfield engine, W. C. Morgan’s 1908 White Heather Antoine 31-h.p., Griffith’s sedatelooking 1914 Sunbeam V-twin, Shearn’s very well polished 1914 Triumph, Broomfield’s comparatively grubby 1913 model of the same make, Collins’ 1903 Phoenix forecar, Sloan’a 1898 RomainOrleans tricycle with rear-slung de Dion engine, a racy, much-drilled Rex-Acme, Coombs’ dirty but unsubdued 1920 Martinsyde, Halfpenny’s N.U.T. with the two authentic ” Memano-strips ” over its circular tank and Tansad pillion seat, and many more delectable bicycles.
The vintage cars were rather a motley collection. Daniels’ 1926 12/50 Alvis haul been rebodied and had modern lamps, Lyne’s 1926 Frazer-Nash had a special body with Gamecock-like boot of vast dimensions, Ferrari’s Riley Nine Monaco saloon was comparatively recent. and MeNaughton’s twin-cam 3-litre Sunbeam Was clothed M a 1950-ish body with lamps sunk behind a protruding radiator grille. The speed merchants swarmed round Ilium’ 30/98 Vauxhall and Fruin’s gleaming modified two-seater 3-litre Bentley. Amongst this collection Boddy’s Sunbeam and Dyson’s interesting disc-wheeled 1924 Crossley Fourteen stood forlornly unadmired as original vintage carriages. The afternoon run was a great dice, aged motor-cycles baulking vintage cars on the level and downgrades and the ears having their revenge uphill. In addition, modern cars caused some aaxioos moments to those behind schedule, and outside the starting and finishing point real traffic jams nearly caused heart attacks to late car competitors, who were unable to emulate the riders of light veteran motor-cycles who were able to lift their machines onto the footpath and push them in. noddy mildly dented a mudguard of the wide Sunbeam on a tree stump in giving room to approaching tinware, anti Lush, whose 1912 Untie taxi had come gamely up front Lobscombe Cornier that morning, nearly bumped the luAgage on the tail of a modern Ford which braked without warning, Peter BMus and MeNaughton went great guns in their sports machinery. Great credit was due to those who coped with the, congestion sans loss of marks. S. J. Skinner, whose regal 1910 Rolls-Royce Silver Ghost made best car performance, never Stopped once on the difficult sections, That Bert Coffin’ssmart 1914 model-T Ford tourer won the car class was excellent. because last year he had trouble in sight of the
finish of the morning run. The greatest praise, too, goes to M. V. Smith for winning the premier veteran award on ki 1904 .396-cc.
Quadrant motor-cycle, no easy machine to manage on those gradients and in the press of Surrey beauty-spot traffic.
This event was popular With the public and received Commendable police traffic control, but for 1954 the organisers will no doubt use less-occupied roads.-L.
Best I FOURTEENTH B.A.R.C. MEMBERS’ MEETING (Sept. 12th)
At one time it seemed that the 13.A.R.C. did not intend to encourage amateur sports-car racing at Goodwood, but its policy changed and the excellent series of Members’ Meetings were organised, counting towards the MOTOR SPORT Brooklands Memorial Trophy. This year an additional meeting of this kind was held on September 12th. not counting for the Trophy, which Cliff Davis had already won. In 1954 we hope that four Members’ Meetings will again be held, all of them counting towards the Trophy.
The first race on September 12th was for closed cars, all races being over five laps. On the initial lap Moore’s Renault 750 led from Foster’s s.v. Morris Minor and Leonard Potter’s 745-c.c. DynePanhard, the Renault lurching a little at the chicane. the Morris more stable and the Panhard sliding its tail with one wl eel in the air in the Dyne style to which we are by now delightedly accustomed. Already Hawkes’ old but not vintage Vauxhall saloon had retired.
On the next lap the three leading positions had reversed themselves, and thereafter Potter was never in danger, winning by 14.8 sec. from Harry Lester’s Lester-M.G. coupe, with Everard’S smart black DB2 Aston Martin, with blue grille and wheels, in third place from scratch. Bledsoe, a Yank from Mauston, didn’t seem to like corners in his fast-accelerating Porsche. Potter averaged 59.86 mp.h. on this, his second Goodwood Win in this car, Everard making fastest lap at 75.66 m.p.h.
In the: first scratch race Colin Chapman’s Lotus took the lead when Watling-Greenwood’s R.W.G. melted a piston and held it to the end, averaging 69.01 m.p.h., to win by 4.8 sec. from Cuff-Miller’s modified Brooklands Riley Nine, which seemed to misfire a trifle, with Metcalfe’s famous Fiat Ballila being beaten into third place at St. Mary’s on lap three. Mallock Vats a good fourth in his fleet Ford-Austin, applying a vast handle brake before the chicane, the Nimrod retired, and Maton’s Riley Imp, with only three active cylinders, also retired. Cuff-Miller made fastest lap, at 70.47 m.p.h.
The next scratch race produced a great battle between Gammon’s M.G. and Dargue’s neat M.G., for although Gammon led at the end of each lap the sleeker M.G. was never far away’ and if Gammon was perhaps a shade quicker through 1,Voodeote, he was rumoured to be worried by a doubtful cylinder-head gasket. As Peter finally pulled away he looked back for his adversary. He won by 12.2 sec., at 74.3 m.p.h. In third place, P. S. Bailey hustled no end in his Bailey Special, which has a four-carburetter Riley engine. He had some wild moments at the chicane, causing the crowd to laugh, but was obviously learning fast, for on his final lap he went through really fast, lapping faster, indeed, than anyone, at 77.42 m.p.h. The three Galloise M.G.s. specials with Series II TO engines, had plenty of incidents, Price’s retiring in 100 yards, Griffiths’ spinning in a vast arc onto the grass out of the chiCane on hip two, and Davies’ hitting the pits on the last lap because the steering came adrift. Ruddock’s Lester-M.G. lost oil pressure and became very sick after passing Dargue on the first lap to occupy second place.
The next two races, for cars over and under 3,000 c.c., were combined. A female scream (from the commentator’s box ?) drew attention to the inversion of Stoop’s new de Dion Fraser-Nash on the first lap. He was unhurt but the car had a badly damaged off-side front wing and extremely buckled near-side back wheel, etc. When Ilely’s Silverstone Healey, driven by Brooks, looked a certain winner, Page’s 5.4-litre Allard put on a spurt and beat him by 0.2 sec. in the run-in. However, Brooks won the 3,000-cc. race at 77.14 m.p.h., 48.6 sec. ahead of Baxter’s B.M.W.-base L.M.C., with Shale, in a standard-looking Austin-Healey. a good third, after holding the L.M.C. through the chicane. Brooks lapped at 79.7 m.p.h. Goodhew’s Darracq had to be towed in in the over-3,000-c.c. section of this race. which Page won at 77.14 m.p.h.. exactly the same average as Brooks, from Head’s Jaguar and Keeling’s Jaguar. Ilolt’s Type C Jaguar was a non-starter, as he sold it after the Brighton Speed Trials. The handicapper must have enjoyed this race is much as the spectators. A Bentley Handicap followed and it drew the greatest applause of the afternoon. P. J. Morgan’s nice 1923 3-litre, looking very like ” Old No. 7″ of a few years later, led for three laps, driver sawing viciously at its wheel to bring it to heel from the chicane. On lap four Bill Mason in his quite unspoilt 41-litre four-seater got by, while behind, !tarnish Orr-Ewing was going like thunder it’ his 41-litre, pushing past Bailey’s blower-41 at the chicane, only to spin at Madgwick and drop back, from which he recovered to take second
place at the finish. The crowd-a big one considering the Farnborough Air Show on the same day-just loved it. Mason won at 64.86 m.p.h., a mere 4 sec. ahead of Orr-Ewing, who made fastest lap at 72.85 m.p.h., while Morgan was third, only 0.6 sec. later, and Bailey was but 0.2 sec. behind Morgan !
The first of the open-car five-lap handicaps was uneventful in comparison, Marsh’s old Alvis retiring with dirt in the carburetter, Seaman’s Riley falling out and Maton’s Riley Imp still sick. Dargue’s M.G. came up on the last lap to beat Sloman’s M.G. by 4.2 sec., winning at 73.85 m.p.h. after a lap at 75.26 m.p.h. Third place was occupied by Traugott’s M.G.-both M.G.s being TCs, the latter with cycle-type wings.
In the next race Brooks, now in Hely’s Fraser-Nash, had a hopeless task from scratch and Shale went well until he left the course and dented his nice Austin-Healey. The ex-Howe 1931 Le Mans longchassis 2.3 blown Alfa-Romeo driven by Fitzwilliain couldn’t keep. off the moderns, although it went well, anti the race was won by Everard, who came through strongly to pip Keeling’s Jaguar on the line by a mere 0.2 see., another grand finish. The DB2 Aston Martin averaged 74.61 m.p.h., but Keeling, although apparently afraid of heeling at the chicane, must have been fast elsewhere to set best lap at 80.6 m.p.h. Page’s Allard was third. Hely himself, in the Healey, ran out of road while leading the field, and Howard’s Connaught also retired.
The following race was notable for the determined efforts of Bailey in his Bailey Special, now, looking a bit, less dangerous. to catch 1′. Haig’s TC M.G., which ran sans bonnet-sides. Bailey was unsuccessful by 14;4 sec., the M.G. winning at 67.34 m.p.h. Gammon made fastest lap, at 78.4 m.p.h., but had a tough task from virtual scratch and was unplaced, third place going to Lewis’ dented Jupiter. The Loti cornered particularly impressively. More drivers ran amok at this meeting than has happened for a long time-in this race it was Price in a Galloise M.G., but he was fortunately unhurt. The last race was marred, for those who saw it, by a horrid accident to D. Carson, driving Cuff-Miller’s Riley. Unfortunately the driver succumbed to his injuries. He hit the inside of the course at Madgwick on his fourth lap, shot across the track, and was thrown Out to lie very badly injured beside his car as following drivers just managed to avoid him. Orr-Ewing made a prodigious effort in his Bentley, the fabric of its body flexing under the strain of such highspeed cornering, and he won by 9.2 sec., at 70.88 m.p.h., front Marsh’s ex-Powys-Lybbe 12/50 Alvis, which, although it had a generous start, went sufficiently well to. show that a stark sports/ racing car of the mitlAwenties is no mean performer. Groves, in a special with modern Vauxhall engine, was third and Brooks, on scratch, got the Healey round at 77.45 m.p.h. Day’s ” limit ” A.C. Buckland tourer was soon swamped l t he vintage cars it
technically resembled, and l’earson’s Alvi reed Twenty-five retired from this ” vintage finale.”-W. B.