Hants & Berks M.C. Great Auclum Speed-Hill Climb

Browse pages
Current page

1

Current page

2

Current page

3

Current page

4

Current page

5

Current page

6

Current page

7

Current page

8

Current page

9

Current page

10

Current page

11

Current page

12

Current page

13

Current page

14

Current page

15

Current page

16

Current page

17

Current page

18

Current page

19

Current page

20

Current page

21

Current page

22

Current page

23

Current page

24

Current page

25

Current page

26

Current page

27

Current page

28

Current page

29

Current page

30

Current page

31

Current page

32

Current page

33

Current page

34

Current page

35

Current page

36

Current page

37

Current page

38

Current page

39

Current page

40

Current page

41

Current page

42

Current page

43

Current page

44

Current page

45

Current page

46

Current page

47

Current page

48

Current page

49

Current page

50

Current page

51

Current page

52

Current page

53

Current page

54

Current page

55

Current page

56

Current page

57

Current page

58

Current page

59

Current page

60

Current page

61

Current page

62

Current page

63

Current page

64

Current page

65

Current page

66

Current page

67

Current page

68

Current page

69

Current page

70

Current page

71

Current page

72

Current page

73

Current page

74

Current page

75

Current page

76

Sprint events are very much in the English tradition, for when Brooklands was our only circuit it was supplemented by many speed hill-climbs and speed trials, at first on public roads, later on private courses. Today, happily, this form of racing persists, although fewer courses have been available since the war. The Hants & Berks M.C.’s annual Great Auclum hill-climb is held over Neil Gardner’s tortuous quarter-mile course in remote country near Reading and the village of Mortimer where, during the war, a racing s.v. Aston Martin came to light. It is rendered interesting because the first corner is steeply banked with concrete. The rest of the short hill abounds in corners — distinctly a driver’s course.

In practice this year the record, held by Marsh (Cooper-J.A.P. 1,100) in 20.6 sec., was beaten several times, but on the day intermittent rain put paid to a fresh record.

The honours went to the Equipe Endeavour, which brought two sports Coopers and an FII Cooper, the latter not being used in the event. Tommy Sopwith took the first l.h. corner fearlessly, in a slide, ignoring the banking, his Cooper making f.t.d. in 21.76 sec., so that it was his smart Mercedes-Benz 190SL which drove up to the prize-giving reception. Marsh himself couldn’t better 22.36 sec. in his FII twin-cam Cooper, but this was second fastest and a new record for racing cars up to 2 litres.

In his Cooper 1,100 Marsh took the 1,100 c.c. racing-car class in 22.63 sec. The only others to beat 23 sec. were Sopwith in the racing class in 22.7 sec. and, very creditably, Patsy Burt, whose 1,100 sports Cooper clocked 22.93 sec.

The only driver who really made proper use of the banking was Rivers-Fletcher, who took his Cooper-J.A.P. 1,100 startlingly near the top, to record 23.5 sec., but was vanquished by Boshier Jones’ Cooper’ (23.26 sec.), Parker’s Jaguara (23.32 sec.), Lewis’ Lotus 1,100 with wishbone i.f.s. (23.35 sec.), Sir G. Baillie, Bt., in the second Equipe Endeavour Cooper (23.36 sec.) and Willmott (Lotus-M.G.), while Stubberfield won his class with a well-judged run in his twin-rear-wheeled Bugatti in 23.12 sec. Croot’s mid-engined C.D. Mercury, a true sprint special with pronounced front wheel flap, was only 0.68 sec. slower than Stubberfield.

In practice the Austin Seven of J. Marsh and E. Burrows had provided exciting incidents, but on the day it was well-behaved. However, the spectators in the chilly fields saw Berry spin his E.R.A.Special in a very confined space, Good hit the bank and fold back the near-side front wheel of his Cooper-J.A.P. 1,100 and Eccles’ Cooper 500 charge the bank after the banked corner, luckily without damage, while Scragg’s H.W.M.-Jaguar broke its transmission.

Coleby’s Goggomobile sounded very cross, buzzing its way up (28.73 sec.), but it was far faster than an anaemic 1900 de Dion which promenaded during the interval. Wickson’s Buckler 90 with Ford Ten 100E twin S.U. engine and 4.7 to 1 axle ratio was taken up neatly (23.66 sec.), Tupper did 23.55 sec. in his Lotus 1,100 and Moss in the E.R.A. “Remus” managed 23.53 sec.– figures which prove how closely Great Auclum was contested. Rudd’s Le Mans Replica Frazer-Nash won the hotly-contested up-to-3-litre sports-car class, beating Park’s A.C. Ace Bristol by 0.14 sec.

The organisation was unobtrusively efficient and this time there were no super-fast motor-cycle patrols to embarrass the driver they chased up the hill at the close of a class! Michael Burn was adequate on the Antone. There was the usual Lowrey-sponsored turbine-car class with the usual complete lack of support. — W. B.

Results:

The Neil Gardner Trophy for f.t.d.: T. E. B. Sopwith (Cooper sports) in 21.74 sec.

Sports Cars up to 1,300 c.c. uns/c. E. Lewis (Lotus), 23.35 sec.

Sports Cars, 1,301-1,800 c.c. uns/c. and up to 1,300 c.c. s/c.: T. E. B. Sopwith (Cooper), 21.76 sec.*

Sports Cars, 1,801-3,000 c.c. uns/c. and up to 1,800 c.c. s/c.: J. Rudd (Frazer-Nash), 23.56 sec.

Sports Cars. 3,001 c.c. upwards ons/c. and over 1,801 c.c. s/c.: G. Parker (Jaguara), 23.32 sec.

Racing Cars up to 500 c.c.: R. W. Colton (Cooper), 24.70 sec.

Racing Cars 501-1,100 c.c.: A. E. Marsh (Cooper-J.A.P.), 22.63 sec.

Racing Cars, 1,101-2,000 c.c.: A. E. Marsh (Cooper FII). 22.36 sec.*

Racing Cars over 2,000 c.c.: P. J. Stubberfield (Bugatti), 23.12 sec.

* New class record.

Auclum Angles

Rivers-Fletcher arrived in his special Morris Minor 1,100 sunshine-roof saloon, which has excellent front seats, racing-type steering wheel, lengthened gear lever and special dashboard containing minute club badges, etc. He departed for Prescott after the meeting, sportingly promising Good the necessary parts to repair his Cooper 1,100 for this event if he couldn’t procure them elsewhere.

*

Nancy Mitchell was amongst those who spectated.

*

Full results were issued very promptly after the last climb.