Motor Sport concours

As has become traditional, our annual Concours d’Elegance attracted a field that was every bit as diverse as it was highly polished

Just catching the tail-end of our wonderful summer, the HSCC’s August meeting at Silverstone provided a day of terrific Bank Holiday racing to combine with Motor Sport’s annual concours, which included a class for V8 Ferraris. Of these, Mark Donoghue’s 328GTS was judged best, ahead of Paul Highfield’s similar car, earning him the Ferrari Trophy, presented by Andrew Turner of Ferrari dealers Mortimer Houghton Turner.

Only two points separated Len Huff’s unusual Ford Consul Mk 1 convertible from Patrick Amos’s Porsche 911T, which was runner-up to the Overall Champion — John Worrall’s lovely Morgan 4/4 1600. Most Interesting Car was judged to be Alexander Fysch’s Bizzarini Strad. Trophies were awarded by Nigel Brotherton, Marketing Manager of Volkswagen, and the concours was supported by Autoglym.

Michael Schryver starred on the track, collecting both the Reliance Security Trophy and the Motor Sport Single-seater Challenge Trophy in his Gold Leaf-liveried Lotus 72 GP car.

Donington Park

Formula One cars from the recent past had top billing at the HSCC’s annual FIA Championships meeting at Donington.

A field of 26 three-litre Grand Prix cars practised for the 20-lap race, with the fastest four on the grid covered by less than half a second.

Unfortunately this quartet’s intense race for the lead was spoiled on the 12th lap when Geoff Farmer (Tyrrell 012) and Bob Berridge (RAM March) were forced off the track by an errant back-marker, leaving Sean Walker (Lotus 87B), who had moved into first place at the halfway mark, to lead pole qualifier John Wilson (Williams FW08) over the finish-line by 0.37s. Ian Giles (Tyrrell 012), Ermanno Ronchi (Brabham BT49) and Martin Stretton (Tyrrell 005) took the next places, but by winning the class for older cars Stretton retained the FIA Cup points lead with one round remaining.

Mike Whatley (F5000 Surtees TS8) was an easy winner of the Historic Formula Racing Car Championship round but in finishing second John Harper (March 712) just won the F2 class from Chris Fox.

Switching to Vijay Mallya’s recently-acquired BRM P261, Harper won the Pre ’65 Challenge race after staging a close battle with Gary Pearson (Cooper-Climax T51) and Paul Alexander (Lotus-BRM 24), who took the next places.

A three-car battle gave Kevin Welsh (Lotus 20/22) victory in the F1 class over American visitor Gil Nickel (Lotus 27) and historic-racing Austin-Healey ace Denis Welch (Merlyn Mk7), who was having his first single-seater race for almost 25 years.

The Juniors had earlier run as part of a Formula Ford field, when Marcos GT driver Barry Sewell, who had last driven a singleseater in 1963, was narrow winner in a borrowed Lotus 20 from Welch, Welsh and Nickel.

At the wheel of his Lotus 23B, Nickel was a comfortable winner of the poorly-supported FIA sports car race. The field was combined with the Brooks Historic race for older cars, which allowed Gary Pearson (Lister-Jaguar) to take second place on the road and first in his race.

The RJB Mining race for newer sportscars produced a good winning drive from champion elect Richard Evans (Chevron B26) with Richard Dodkins (McLaren M8C) second. Pre-race favourite Mike Wilds (Chevron B31-36) stopped out on the circuit with a dead engine.

The FIA GT Cup round was won by Steve Hitchins (AC Cobra) after Tony Dron retired Kerry Horan’s pole-starting TVR Griffith.