SPEED IN THE SUN AT SOUTHSEA FRAZER-NASH MAKES FINE SHOWING — VAUXHALL-VILLIERS FASTEST OF ALL
The Southsea Motor Club is really deserving of the highest praise, for the organisation of its speed trials of August 15th was almost perfect, if one overlooks a few minor matters, such as the temporary failure of certain loud-speakers, the lorry that trundled up the course when two competitors were making their runs (very serious that) and the need to commence at 1 p.m. a meeting billed to begin at 2.30 p.m. When it is rememberet that 112 different drivers, with over 120 different cars, gave their support to the Southsea venture, the good organisation will be apparent to anyone who was present. Our only regret was that, to us at any rate, the course lacked something, being in no wise as picturesque as Lewes or Shelsley or as imposing as the half-mile Madeira Drive, flanked by terraced promenades, of Brighton. Nor did it suggest quite the speed-trial atmosphere as does a gravel drive winding through wooded parkland. The onethird-mile concrete road seemed short, possibly because it was dead straight and possessed ” keep-left ” pylons at intervals (it is actually the unopened Eastern Road Extension) while spectators in the ordinary enclosures could not see a great deal on account of the straightness and level aspect of the road. The surface was mostly good concrete, adversely cambered on the outside but safe, and a loose-surfaced, right-hand curve after the finish rather surprisingly caused no trouble. Starting was by coloured lights and the paddock was a big field alongside the commencement of the course. Our criticisms must not be regarded too seriously, but rather as impressions of those who drove hard to reach the venue and instantly compared it with other speed-trial venues of their acquaintance. That some 10,000 people paid to watch, allowing handsome proceeds to be handed to the Lord Mayor’s charities, speaks for itself, and only a year ago we were welcoming any place where sprint motor-cars could be safely extended. When the MOTOR SPORT representative arrived, anticipating a 2.30 p.m. start, the car-parks all down the course were crowded, the wire-fences
guarding the course black with people, the paddock a scene of great activity and the sports-cars were making their runs. The sun burned down, and aeroplanes landed and took off from the aerodrome just behind us, the bannerbearing Avro making strange contrast to the graceful Envoys.
The class for racing-cars of 1,100 c.c. and 850 c.c. blown went to Lord Austin’s side-valve Austin, handled by Hadley and proudly watched by Jameson. Hadley took 191 secs., and Maclachlan’s well-known blown Austin was only f secs. slower. D. N. Letts (M.G.) was placed third. In this class W. T. Page crackled down the course in the Midget 480 c.c. Jameson Two-Stroke, which treated spectators to a passing puff of exhaust gas as it went past. Later in the programme it folded up neatly while making its run, and two men obligingly lifted it clear of the course—but then we suppose something must be done about power-weight ratio when the designer limits himself to half a litre.
In class 13., for racing-cars up to I*litres and 1,100 c.c. blown, Hadley scored again, taking 19 secs. dead, and this time M. S. Soames recorded 19/ secs. with a blown M.G. to get second place, while Maclachlan now needed 20 secs. and was third. Much crackling announced the functioning of Sumner’s Sumner-J.A.P., and the cheery Symonds was airing the rakish B.H.D. Special “Spider,” which is now in practically original Davenport order. Incidentally, this great V-twin exponent may be returning to the game, but not with “Spider.” The unblown 8-litre cars were against the blown if litres in class C, and J. P. Wakefield won by taking his blown Alta along the course in 181 secs., which beat Soames (M.G.) by sec. and Hadley’s Austin by j sec. Dick Nash and Pane presented themselves together on the line—all cars, of course, ran in pairs, the course being divided
down the centre with cans. But the Frazer-Nash Union Special was suffering from fuel starvation and the Shelsley single-seater Frazer-Nash got away.
The unlimited racing-car class allowed Cummings to register 171 secs. with the thunderous 2-litre Vauxhall-Villiers, and Pane was remarkably fast with the Frazer-Nash, losing the class by * sec. only. Wakefield’s Alta was third in 18/ secs. Charles Follett ran his familiar Speed Twenty Alvis, Lt. Kidston a 6.7-litre Mercedes-Benz with rather a remarkable off-set single-seater body, which has been standing outside T & T’s paddock depot at Brooklands of late, and Pacey the essentially track-racing Pacey-Hassan
Special. Their respective times were, 23* secs., 211 secs., and 20* secs., the last being remarkably good. In the paddock many remarkable
cars were noticed. Kirman had a very short Alvis-Special that was also astonishingly high, and someone else had a sort of sister car to this machine, but with a Lea-Francis radiator. The big Delage, now owned by Sumner, who drives some most interesting motors, was standing self-consciously in the grassgrown field, but when the time came it fired very quickly after a short pushstart. It had a straight-through exhaust system, but Dunham’s Alvis and Pane’s Frazer-Nash used Brooklands silencers. Peter Almack had the Alm ack Austin, a Riley-engined 4-speed G.N., the AbbottNash, which, though one thinks of it as a track car, spun its wheels on the line, and a Riley, the gasket-of which Almack claimed to have changed between each run—and anyone who takes that number of Riley gaskets to a speed trial deserves something better. J. Lloyd, Junr., had brought the 3.3-litre Lloyd-Special, which one remembers as a Buick-engined Vauxhall evolved by Arthur Baron, who was engaged that day at Lewes. It is a wellturned-out car with very lengthy bonnet, a conspicous bulb horn, and its own radiator badge. Cyril Moore’s 1,093 c.c. Satan III is a real skeleton motor with a blown, twin-camshaft, four-cylinder engine, possibly Lombard, half-elliptic front suspension, G.N. rear parts, Meccano strips helping to support the dash, and a big tank beside the driver. It clocked 291 secs. H. R. Winnicott and F. L. Cox were driving a 41-litre touring Invicta with Rover radiator, a 30!08-looking frame, and spring leaves that protruded
untidily beyond their shackles. The best time was 22* secs. Reverting to the classes, R. A. Mitchison with the Almack-Austin won the closed invitation 850 c.c. sports category in company with Holdaway’s Austin, both recording 30* secs. B. Rogers’ M.G. Midget took honours in the 1,100 c.c. sports class, while G. Bagratouni’s M.G. did likewise in the 11-litre sports division. Pane scorned the 1*-litre class, but running his Shelsley sports Frazer-Nash in the 3-litre class, he clocked 191 secs., best sports-car time of the afternoon,
to win very comfortably. Running again in the unlimited sports category he took 20* secs , tying with Alan Hess in the blown Hudson-Special.
The closed invitation class for 850 c.c. racing-cars was a gift for C. D. Miller’s M.G. Midget, which beat the AlmackAustin by 11secs. In the next one higher victory went to Harvey-Noble’s M.G., and then in the 11-litre invitation racingclass H. G. Dobbs made his very fine run on the Riley in 19i secs.
Pane then got down to 19 secs. in the 3-litre category, with Harvey-Noble’s wonderful blown M.G. Midget taking only 19f secs. and Dobbs, this time with the white 2-litre Riley, 191 secs. Naturally, very considerable excitement attached to the invitation unlimited racing-class, when the fastest cars would run again. Pane got down to 18 f secs., with the singleplace Frazer-Nash, but Dobbs tied with him. Then, on the last run of all, Sydney Cummings clipped another * sec. off his previous time, registering fastest time of the day in 171 secs. With such a big entry it is not easy to mention every creditable run, so we append a list, compiled from the official provisional list of times, of those competitors who bettered 20 secs. Equally
meritorious times by slower types of ears show up in the list of class placings. The Southsea M.C. is to be congratulated on issuing a complete list of times—but, next year, if the event is staged again, as we hope it will be, please may we have a list of competitors in numerical order in the programme ? M. S. Soaraes (M.G.) 19 secs., S. N. L. Madachlan (Austin) 191 secs., L. H. Hadley (Austin) 19 secs., L. P. Wakefield (Alta) 181 secs., A. F. P. Pane (FrazerNash) 18 secs., H. G. Dobbs (2-litre Riley) 191 secs., A. F. P. Pane FrazerNash, sports) 191 secs., R. R. Jackson (Alta) 191 secs., H. G. Dobbs (2-litre Riley) 181 secs., R. G. J. Nash (FrazerNash Union Special) 19* secs., G. B. C. Sumner (Delage) 19 secs., S. Cummings (Vauxhall-Villiers) 171 sees., HarveyNoble (M.G.) 191 secs., J. H. T. Smith (M.G.) 19* sees., F. R. G. Spikins (Spikins
Hudson) 191 secs. Other interesting times of interesting cars were : — H. G. Symonds (B.H.D. Special) 22 secs., J. G. Clarke (Emeryson-Special 1) 33 secs., C. G. Fitt (Frazer-Nash-B.M.W.) 24 secs., Lt. Kidston. (Alfa-Romeo) 22* secs., A. H. Lancaster (blown 41-litre Bentley) 23f secs., F. Lycette (8-litre Bentley) 201 secs., L. T. C. Rolt (1,400 c.c. G.N.) 33* secs., R. A. C. Sumner (Sumner J.A.P.) 20* secs., J. G. Clarke (Emeryson-Special II) 28 secs., Jameson Two-Stroke 261 secs., Roy Eccles (Rapier-Special) 20* secs. Timing was by hand, in conjunction with starting-lights. The interest in sprint events this year has been outstanding, and now that quite substantial prize money is offered at these events it would probably pay certain British drivers to concentrate on beating the fleeting seconds at all the meetings of 1937. One wonders what type of car would be most suitable. The 11-litre Specials are no longer absolutely invincible. Perhaps a G.P. Alfa or ” Maser ” motor in a frame just strong enough to allow of a clean get-away, yet much lighter than anything possible for road-racing, is the answer. And, perhaps, we shall see 1
see 1 RESULTS : S. G.
City Trophy for fastest time of the day : S. G. Cummings (Van..xhall-Villiers).
Wadham Trophy for fastest time by a sports-car : A. F. P. Fans (Frazer-Nash).
Winnicott Trophy for fastest time by Southses. MX. Member; C. B. Cramp (Itiley).
Carmichael Trophy for fastest time by Invited Club Member : G. B. C. Sumner (Delage).
Kimbell Trophy for fastest time in Closed Invitation Classes :—II. G. Dobbs (Riley).
G. Class Placings : Open Racing-Classes 1,100 c.c. tins, and 850 c.a. S. : 1, H. L. Hadley
1,100 c.c. tins, and 850 c.a. S. : 1, H. L. Hadley (Austin s.v., S.) 19/s.; 2, A. N. L. Maclachlan (Austin, S.) 194s.; 3, D. N. Lett,s (M.G. Midget, S.) 20/8.
1,500 c.c. Uns. and 1,100 c.c. S. : 1, H. L. Hadley (Austin s.v., S.) 19s. ; 2,11. S. Soames (M.G.Magnette, S.) 19s.; 3, A. N. L. Maciachlan (Austin, S.) 20s.
3-litre Una and 1,500 c.c. S.: 1, J. P. Wakefield (1,496 c.c. Alta, S.) 18f8. ; 2, M. S. Soarnes (M.G. Magnette, S.) 19s.; 3, H. L. Hadley (Austin, S.) 19/8.
Unlimited c.o.: 1, S. E. Cummings (2,998 c.c. Vauxhall-Villiers, S.) 17/s. ; 2, A. F. P. Pane (1,496 c.c. Frazer-Nash. S.) 18s. ; 3, J. P. Wakefield (1,496 c.c. Alta, S.) 181s. Closed Invitation Classes
850 c o. Sports; 1, Tie between R. A. Mitchison (Almack Austin) and L. K. Efoldaway (Austin) 301s. 1,100 c.c. Sports : 1, B. Rogers (M.G. Midget) 25/s; 2, E. W 1I. Dodson (995 c.c. Fiat) 27/3.; 3, A.C. Skipworth (972 c.c. Singer) 2718.•
1,500 c.c. Sports : 1, G. Bagratouni (NE M.G. Magnette) 231s.; 2, G. Almack (Almack Riley, S.) 24s. ; 3, F. L. Cox (M.G. N. Magnette) 241s.
3-litre Sports : 1, A. F. P. Pane (1,496 c.c. FrazerNash, S.) 191s. (fastest sports-car of the day) ; 2, R. Cooper (Lea-Francis, S.), 2318. ; 3, G. Bagratouni (M.G. Magnette) 24s.
Unlimited Sports : 1, Tie between A. F. P. Fans (1,496 c.c. Frazer-Nash, S.) and A. C. Hess (4,468 c.c. Hudson Spikins Special, S.) 20/3. ; 3, F. Lycette (7,063 c.c. Bentley) 201s.
850 c.c. Racing : 1, C. D. Miller (M.G. Midget) 20/s. ; 2, It. C. Mitchison (Almack Austin) 31/s.
1,100 c.c. Racing : 1, G. P. Harvey-Noble (M.G. Midget, S.) 191s. ; 2, R. Hanson (M.G. Midget, S.) 211s.; 3, D. N. Letts (M.G. Midget, S.) 211s.
1,500 c.c. Racing : 1, 11. G. Dobbs (1,496 c.c. Riley) 19/s. ; 2, J. H. T. Smith (M.G. Magnette, S.) 20s.; 3, It. A. C. Sumner (998 c.c. Sumner-.T.A.P., S.) 2118.
3-litre Racing : 1, A. F. P. Pane (1,496 c.c. FrazerNash, S.) 19s. ; 2, G. P. Harvey-Noble (M.G. Midget, S.) 19/s. ; 3, H. G. Dobbs (1,986 c.c. Riley) 1918. ited Racing : 1, S. E. Cummings (2,998 0.0. Vauxhall-Villiers, S.) 1718. (fastest run of the day) ; 2, Tie between A. F. P. Fane (1,496 c.c. Frazer-Nash, S.) and IL G. Dobbs (1,986 c.c. Uns. Riley) 181s.