VSCC Cadwell Park



RODNEY FELTON had two hard-fought and well-deserved victories with his Monza type Alfa Romeo, taking the “Williams” Monaco Trophy in the process. Richard Black and David Taylor added to their successes at Silverstone the previous day by both winning and being placed in a race each. Martin Stretton took his recently acquired Meadows engined Frazer Nash to win two handicap races, having had the complete chain transmission in pieces during the lunch break to replace a bearing. Martin Morris won the Allcomers’ Race despite missing the starting signal. Robert Wicksteed was unhurt when his early Alvis 12/50 rolled over the the Mountain and there were no other incidents to spoil a fine Bank Holiday Sunday’s racing at the picturesque, if crude, Lincolnshire circuit. The course cars were an immaculate pre-war Aston Martin and the 1980 prototype Lea-Francis, pictured in the August edition of MOTOR SPORT.

The nine race programme started with the Spero and Voiturette Trophies Race lire cars under 1,100 c.c.. run on a scratch basis over eight laps. Previous winners Freddie Giles and Nev Farquhar (GN Morgan and Riley Brookland) shared the front row of the grid with Martin Eyre and Dennis Barbet (Austin Ulster and Riley Special) leading the rest of the full field lined up behind. Farquhar made a tremendous start, followed closely by Barbet, but Giles seemed to be in trouble, having difficulty in getting away. At the end of the first lap, Farquhar led from Barbet and Giles was some distance behind in third place, the GN Morgan spluttering and banging badly. Eyre had dropped out with a broken brake cable, and Brian Smith was lying fourth in his Riley Brooklands. By the end of the second lap, Barbet was pressing Farquhar hard. Giles had retired with a holed piston, Smith was third and leading the Voiturette Class in fourth position was David Tedham with his Austin Chummy. By lap four, Barbet had taken the lead from Farquhar. whose car was misfiring badly, and Smith and Tedham were pulling out a good lead over the rest of the field, although they were unable to make any impression on the eventual winner Barbet.

The second event was a scratch race over five laps. Pat Fleming and James Crocker (Riley & Lagonda Rapier) had the front row of the grid, but it was Paul Nickalls (Lagonda Rapier) who took the lead from the second row at the start, building up a good advantage on his first lap with Crocker and John Seber (Wolseley Hornet) dicing together for second place, some distance behind. David Taylor in fourth place was trying very hard and delighted the crowd with some very sideways cornering in his Aston Martin. Taylor was up into third place on the second lap, and had taken the lead from Crocker on the third, Nickalls having spun, losing two places in the process.

John Charles had been unable to ship his single seater Frazer Nash over from the continent. and Giles car was unable to run, leaving Ian Stirling’s Norris Special at the back of the grid for the Frazer Nash GN Handicap race. The first group away were the more touring cars. Martin Stretton’s Meadows engined version squeezing into the lead from Roger Newton’s Exeter. Paul Shaw in Mark Joseland’s Fast Tourer and David Leigh’s unpainted TT Replica. Mike Gibbs’ Exeter was making a welcome reappearance after an upset some six years ago, and with Brian Hopkins’ TT Replica, had a thirty second disadvantage from the leaders. Chris Bird in the very special Frazer Nash built by the Archdale brothers and Tony Jones in “Patience” were nearly at the back of the grid, and were fighting hard to catch up with the leaders. At the and of the second lap, Hopkins was up into fourth place behind Stretton, Newton and Shaw, while Jones and Bird were struggling through the field in seventh and ninth positions. At the start of the last lap, Stretton had a commanding lead from Newton who was by now being pressed by Hopkins. Jones was in fourth place and closing on the leaders rapidly, while Bird in fifth position was driving in a very determined manner. Stretton kept his lead, but Newton succumbed to Hopkins and Bird just managed to pass Jones on the finish straight to come in fourth.

The next event, a five lap handicap, was won by Garry Bishop driving Frank Hernandez’ Austin Swallow, who came through from mid-field to take the lead from Richard Black (3-litre Bentley) on the last lap. Mike Quartermaine was third in his well-known 30/98 Vauxhall, and John Brydon (Alvis) did well to come from the back of the grid into fourth place, being chased hard by David Duffy (Alvis Riley).

“Williams” was the name under which William Grover raced in the first Monaco Grand Prix in 1929. He won the event in his Type 35B Bugatti and was presented with a very fine silver trophy. which his widow passed on to the Bugatti Owners Club. The VSCC run a race at Cadwell Park for this Trophy on behalf of the BOC, and the event is open to two-seater Grand Prix cars. This year the BOC were out in force, determined that a Bugatti should win, with seven GP cars opposing two Alfa Romeos and the Edwardian Straker-Squire. Nev Farquhar’s Irish GP Riley Brooklands was withdrawn from the grid when it was discovered that the magneto he had installed after the Spero race had failed to cure his mis-firing problems.

Pole position went to Hamish Moffatt (Type 35B) with Bernard Kain’s similar car alongside. The two Alfa Romeo Monzas, David Black and Rodeney Felton occupied the second row with John Ward (Type 35B) and John Marks (Type 51A) immediately behind them. At the end of the first lap, only a couple of seconds separated the leaders, Moffatt, Kain and Felton. Black and Ward were fighting for fourth place and Marks was having problems keeping Roger Howard’s road equipped Type 37A at bay. By the end of the second lap, Moffatt had pulled out a useful lead over Kain and Felton who were very close, Felton just squeezing ahead of Kain on the start straight. Third time round, Felton was catching Moffatt whose car was misfiring badly. Black and Ward were wheel to wheel and Howard was ahead of Marks. On lap four, Felton and Kain both passed Moffatt and Ward was pulling away from Black, but Moffat’s misfire had cured itself, and he was driving really hard, determined to win back his lost position. He soon passed Kain, who was having gearbox trouble, eventually losing third gear altogether, and was rapidly closing on Felton, but on the penultimate lap, a piston collapsed on the Bugatti, and Moffatt had to be content with second place. Kain came in third, despite having a white hankerchief waved in his face by his pit crew, and Ward fourth.

Event six was another handicap race, this titne over four laps, and was won by Richard Black (3-litre Bentley) from Nick Lees (Riley Special) who just squeezed past Mike Quartermaine (30/98 Vauxhall) in the closing stages of the race. Malcolm Cann was fourth with his 2-litre Aston Martin.

The Challenge Trophy originated by Chas. Wilkinson, the Cadwell Park proprietor, to commemorate the birth of his son, is contested at different Cadwell Park meetings each year. This year was the turn of the VSCC to stage an event for this silver tray and the race chosen was the Allcomers’ Scratch Race, over ten laps. Pole position went to Martin Morris in ERA RIIB with Ben Morris (who is no relation) driving ERA RI2B next to him. Donald Day in R14B shared second row with Sir John Venable’s-Llewlyn in R4A, while Bill Summers at the wheel of David Black’s 8CM Maserati occupied the third row with Ron Footitt’s Cognac Special. Julian Ghosh, Guy Smith and Dudley Gahagan (Vauxhall Special, Alvis engined Frazer Nash and K3 MG respectively) completed the field.

The starting signal was given by young Christopher Wilkinson, whose name the trophy bears, and this caught Martin Morris completely by surprise, enabling the whole field to pass him before he moved. Bill Summers shot into the lead from the third row, Footitt who had hurtled past the stationary Morris on the grass, was close behind with Day and Venables-Llewelyn hot on his heels. By the start of the second lap, Summers had built up a commanding lead over Footitt. Day and Venables-Llewelyn who were closely bunched, and Martin Morris was thundering along behind. Second time past the start line saw Morris up into fourth place, ahead of Venables-Llewelyn, and by lap four he was in second place trying to close the gap between him and the leader, Summers. Day and Venables-Llewelyn were scrapping for third position and Footitt in fourth place was some distance ahead of Smith. As the leader approached the startline to start his fifth lap, Morris was on his tail, trying to find a way past. As Summers crossed the line, the ERA was alongside. and battle for the lead was over. Summers holding out his hand, palm upwards, to Indicate that there was nothing he could do to prevent Morris forging ahead. Day and Venables-Llewelyn were still having their own dice tor third position, swapping places a couple times before the decision went to Day.

The last two events of the day were both short races, one a four lap scratch race which Martin Stretton won from Pat Baker (Riley) and Averil Scott-Moncrieff (Frazer Nash) and the other a five lap handicap race which Rodney Felton just managed to win from David Duffy, Tom Threlfall (Lancia) and David Taylor in an extremely exciting finish to a happy and relaxed meeting. — P.H.J.W.