Blue skies and sunshine prevailed on the morning of August 27th for the International Trophy Meeting at Oulton Park. Racing began at 11 a.m. with the “small fry” events, there being the John Bull Trophy Race, consisting of two heats and a final, for these 500-c.c. cars. Best practice time was made by Ivor Bueb, who won the second heat of the event. Heat 1 started with S. Lewis’ Evans in the lead, followed by Leston, but Russell viewed this with dismay and took over the lead on lap seven and there he stayed to win on the 10th lap at 79.70 m.p.h. Taylor and Hall fought it out for a while, the latter coming in third. In the second heat Bueb’s nearest rival was Boshier-Jones, who was in the lead for five of the 10 laps, but Bueb came up again; Dickson in a Staride spun at Old Hall Corner on his first lap and was unable to start in spite of “marshal aid,” Anderson’s Staride retired with a broken driving chain, Howard’s Cooper had gearbox trouble, and J. W. Burgoyne’s business-like Kieft-Turner appeared at first to have a box full of bottom gear, but this was actually timing trouble.
The final of this event was a Lewis-Evans/Russell contest, with a bit of Bueb for good measure, although the last gentleman came up into second place on the concluding laps, making the final order Lewis-Evans, Bueb and then Boshier-Jones.
Next came the Sporting Life Production Saloon Car Race, very interesting in view of the fact that such drivers as Leston, Moss, Hawthorn, Collins, Gelberg and Wharton were putting very ordinary saloons, in some cases, to the test. From start to finish J. Bonnier, from Sweden, led the race in his 1,900 Alfa-Romeo, a fast car and well driven, followed for some time by Wharton in an Austin Westminster and Hawthorn in a Ford Zephyr; these two were constantly changing places in the earlier laps but when Hawthorn retired half-way through the race with piston trouble things steadied down a bit. Wharton kept second place, with Foster’s M.G. Magnette third and C. A. S. Brooks, who made astounding progress, held on to fourth place in his D.K.W. Sonderklasse. Farther down the line Moss could be seen driving a Standard Ten with great vigour, creeping up from ninth to fifth position; two 1,100 Fiats were making light work of the corners; and nearly last, but not least in personality anyway, came Hill’s green Renault R 1063, which received applause from the spectators as it tried desperately to catch Threlfall’s Standard Ten, the Renault appearing to be much steadier on corners although both cars were only a few yards apart from each other throughout the entire race. Results were: 1,100-c.c. class, C. A. S. Brooks (D.K.W.); 1,600-c.c., A. T. Foster (M.G. Magnette); and unlimited, J. Bonnier (Alfa-Romeo), 67.57 m.p.h.
Finally came the big race of the day, the International Trophy Race of 80 laps, in which many of the world’s crack sports cars and drivers were competing. In practice Hawthorn and Salvadori put up excellent times in a Ferrari 750S and Aston Martin DB3S, respectively. On the day, however, one of the most satisfying sights was to see Reg Parnell in the DB3S Aston take up the lead from the start of the race and pull steadily away lap by lap from Hawthorn in the Ferrari, one of seven competing. Leaders on the first lap were: Parnell, Collins (HMS), Hawthorn and Gregory (750s), but before very long Hawthorn came up to second place and Collins dropped back, and it was in this order that they finished, Gregory, Schell (H.W.M.-Jaguar) and Moss finishing fourth, fifth and sixth, Moss driving the Peter Bell Connaught, usually driven by Les Leston, which sounded very rough at the end of the race. Retirements were: Manzini, whose Maserati burnt out its clutch; Rosier (Ferrari), with brake trouble; Whitehead (Aston Martin), back axle; and Carlson (Ferrari), with oil pump trouble. Cliff Allison had the misfortune to overturn a team Lotus at Old Hall Corner with disastrous effects to the car but none to himself. The remaining Lotus cars seemed to be in frequent need of liquid refreshments of all kinds, but the Coopers appeared to have the greater stamina, making fewer pit stops. Parnell’s average speed was 81.16 m.p.h., winning the unlimited class; he also made a new lap record of 82.97 m.p.h. Hawthorn came in second at 80.89 m.p.h. The 1,100-c.c. class went to Russell in a Cooper (74.53 m.p.h.); 1,500-c.c., Moss (Connaught), 78.34 m.p.h.; and 2,000-c.c., Scott-Russell (Lotus), 73.20 m.p.h. The B.R.S.C.C. deserves considerable credit for organising this meeting and the number of entrants both British and Continental demonstrated the rise to fame which this club has enjoyed in very recent years. — I. G.
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