Gold Cup celebrates 50th

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HSCC | Oulton Park | Aug 29-30

HGPCA victories for John Harper and Barrie Williams and a double Gp4 success for Martin O’Connell topped the third Gold Cup Revival at Oulton Park.

Unfortunately, a back op kept Sir Stirling Moss away, but fellow Gold Cup victors Sir Jack Brabham and Roy Salvadori were on hand to mark the Golden Anniversary of this famous race. Both men would prove to have strong links with the victorious HGPCA cars.

In only its fourth race since a total restoration, Williams guided David Wenman’s Aston Martin DBR4 to a fine victory in the Pre-1961 race as Nick Wigley gave spirited chase in his Connaught B4. “I tested all of the DBR4s and it was a really good car,” explained Salvadori as he congratulated Williams on his success.

Charles Dean drove mightily in his Bugatti Type 51 to mix it with the post-war machinery, but it was Peter Neumark who battled his Maserati 250F through to third after stalling on the line.

After the Pre-1966 HGPCA race it was Brabham’s turn to celebrate when BT4s scored a dominant 1-2. After a great tussle, Alan Minshaw just lost touch with Harper in the closing laps when he struggled to find a gear. “It looks a million dollars,” said Brabham of Minshaw’s BT4; it’s the ex-Bib Stilwell car that Sir Jack himself also raced.

Early on, Michael Schryver had tenaciously clung to the BT4s in his Lotus 18, but when he hit gear selection dramas he coasted back to the pits rather than risk serious damage five days before Goodwood.

Handed Sandy Watson’s superb Chevron B16, O’Connell romped to a brace of Group 4 wins as Chevrons dominated at their spiritual home. John Minshaw and Sean Walker led the chase in B16s, and Schryver and Simon Hadfield shared the former’s B6 to head their class in each race.

A qualifying mishap put Hadfield out of the Derek Bell Trophy race when he damaged the nose of his Chevron B37. That left O’Connell to bag another win in testing conditions in the Lotus 59/69. A fourth O’Connell victory was thwarted by Christian Fischer’s ex-Surer March 762 in the Euro F2 encounter.

Chris Sanders (Lotus Cortina) took the victory in a topsy-turvy and rather oily Historic Racing Saloon race: Dan Cox (Anglia) and Graeme Dodd (Jaguar Mk2) both came to grief on the slicks. Dodd had previously won the XK race in his XK120 as Darren McWhirter gave chase.

A fierce battle in the BRDC Historic Sports Car event went to the Cooper Monaco of Ted Williams, who fended off Harper’s similar car.

The Historic FF1600 event was equally close as Nigel Bancroft took the fight to Neil Fowler. The latter’s Lola won by 1sec from the Crosslé.

Other winners were: Ed Jowsey (Lotus 22 & Brabham BT28), Steve Maxted (Argo JM6) and John Clark (Cooper T39 Bobtail).

******

Speed Merchant | Sean Walker

Having hit gear selection problems in qualifying, Walker took his Chevron B16 through the Group 4 pack to third in the opening race.

He then beat team-mate John MInshaw off the line to secure second in part two on Monday — before dashing off to blitz the Classic Sports field in his Lotus Elan.

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