Hillclimbing is a branch of motorsport in which drivers compete against the clock to complete an uphill course. It is one of the oldest forms of motorsport, since the first known hillclimb at La Turbie near Nice, France took place as long ago as 31 January 1897; the hillclimb held at Shelsley Walsh, in Worcestershire, England is the world's oldest continuously staged motorsport event still staged on its original course, having been first run in 1905. An alternative style of hillclimbing is done with offroad motorcycles going straight up steep hills, with the victor being the motorcycle which can climb the highest, or make it to the top the fastest; the motorsport has a long tradition in the U. S. and has been popular in Austria since the 1980s. The Austrian event in Rachau focused on crowd entertainment, inspired many similar events. Hillclimbs in continental Europe are held on courses which are several kilometres long, taking advantage of the available hills and mountains including the Alps.
The most prestigious competition is the FIA European Hill Climb Championship. An Austrian venue: Gaisberg. An historic course is at Semmering. In the British Isles, the format is different from that in other parts of Europe, with courses being much shorter; the Harewood Hillclimb is mainland Great Britain's longest permanent hillclimb at 1,584 yards. The longest in the UK and Ireland is County Antrim, Northern Ireland at 1.65 miles. These short courses are more akin to uphill sprints – and always take under one minute for the fastest drivers to complete. For this reason and drivers do not cross between the British and continental European championships. Hillclimbing is relevant to motorcycle sport; the French hill climb championship, or Championnat de France de la Montagne, has been one of the most competitive of the European national series, attracting many new F2 and 2-litre sports cars during the 1970s and early 1980s. Notable champions from this period include Pierre Maublanc, Daniel Rouveyran, Hervé Bayard and Jimmy Mieusset.
The best-known Course de Côte are Mont Mont-Dore. Two German venues: Freiburg-Schauinsland, Rossfeld; the fourth International Schauinsland hillclimb at Freiburg was held on August 5, 1928: "A car made the fastest time of the day, Heusser's Bugatti putting up 74.009 km/h, the fastest motorcycle being Stegmann's DKW at 69.6 km/h." Caracciola won the over two-litre racing car class. In the Italian championship known as the Campionato Italiano Velocità Montagna, there are the longest and most challenging hillclimbs like Trento-Bondone, Coppa Bruno Carotti, Pedavena-Croce d'Aune, Monte Erice and Verzegnis-Sella Chianzutan, which are the most known. Hillclimbing in Italy became famous in the 1970s, early 1980s, between 1994 and 2000 and at the end of the 2000s in the last two periods thanks to TV services and live Internet commentaries; the most famous Italian drivers, who won a lot in Europe, are Ludovico Scarfiotti, "Noris", Domenico Scola, Mauro Nesti, Ezio Baribbi, Fabio Danti, Pasquale Irlando, Franz Tschager, Simone Faggioli and Denny Zardo Hillclimbing is a popular sport on the island of Malta.
Numerous events are organised annually by the Island Car Club. Participants are divided according to their type of vehicle into various categories ranging from single seaters to saloon cars. In Romania, the first major event was the Feleac course, in Cluj. From 1930, it was a round in the European Hill Climb Championship. A record of the Feleac was set by famous German racer Hans Stuck in 1938, driving a 600 bhp Auto Union Grand Prix car. Stuck stormed through the 7 km gravel course in 2 min 56 sec. In recent decades, the course was widened in order to be suitable for intense traffic and therefore is considered inappropriate for auto racing; the modern Romanian hillclimbing event is the Viteză în Coastă or Campionatul Național de Viteză pe Traseu Montan. There are several traditional hillclimbing race events in Portugal, its national championship growing in popularity since 2010. Falperra International Hill Climb is the most popular and famous hillclimb, being held since 1927, most of the editions as part of the European Championship.
There are several traditional hillclimbing race events in Slovakia. Some of the best known and most popular include the Pezinská Baba hillclimb race and the Dobšinský Kopec hillclimb race. One of the most well known Slovak drivers competing in local and international hillclimb events is Jozef Béreš. Béreš is very popular on social media networks thanks to the videos of him driving his legendary Audi Quattro S1 racecar. Motor racing was banned in Switzerland in the aftermath of the fatal collision between cars at the 24 Hours of Le Mans race in 1955. However, this prohibition does not extend to events where drivers compete only indirectly via the clock. Events such as rallies and sla
Sir Henry Ralph Stanley "Tim" Birkin, 3rd Baronet was a British racing driver, one of the "Bentley Boys" of the 1920s. Birkin was born into a wealthy Nottingham family in 1896, the son of Sir Thomas Stanley Birkin, 2nd Bt. and the Hon. Margaret Diana Hopetoun Chetwynd. In childhood, Henry Birkin gained the nickname "Tim", after the children's comic book character Tiger Tim, created by Julius Stafford Baker, popular at the time, it was his nickname for the rest of his life. Birkin married Audrey Clara Lilian Latham, daughter of Sir Thomas Paul Latham, 1st Bt. and Florence Clara Walley, on 12 July 1921. He and Audrey had two daughters and Sara, both of whom married and had issue; the elder daughter Pamela married two Buxton cousins in succession, her second husband was the Life Peer Baron Buxton of Alsa, KCVO, MC. She had seven children including wildlife film-maker Cindy Buxton; the younger daughter Sara married twice, had two sons by her first husband.. At his death in 1933, without sons of his own, he was succeeded by his next surviving male relative, his paternal uncle Sir Alexander Russell Birkin, 3rd Baronet.
His younger brother, Archie Birkin, was killed during practice for the 1927 Isle of Man TT motorcycle races. Birkin joined the Royal Flying Corps during World War I and gained the rank of Lieutenant in the service of the 108th Field Brigade, serving in Palestine where he contracted malaria, a disease from which he would suffer for the rest of his life. In 1921 Birkin turned to motor racing. Business and family pressures forced him to retire from the tracks until 1927 when he entered a three-litre Bentley for a six-hour race. For 1928 he acquired a 4½ litre car and after some good results decided to return to motor racing much against his family's wishes. Soon Birkin, racing with a blue and white spotted silk scarf around his neck, would be a familiar sight on the race tracks driving with the works team. In 1928 Birkin entered the Le Mans race again, leading the first twenty laps until a jammed wheel forced him to drop back, finishing fifth with co-driver Jean Chassagne who heroically rescued the abandoned, damaged car, winning the hearts of the crowds.
The next year Birkin was back as winner, racing the "Speed Six" as co-driver to Woolf Barnato. If Bentley wanted a more powerful car he developed the Speed Six was a huge car. Ettore Bugatti once referred to the Bentley as "the world's fastest lorry". Back in 1928 however, Birkin had come to the conclusion that the future lay in getting more power from a lighter model by fitting a supercharger to the 4½ litre Bentley; when Bentley Motors refused to create the supercharged model Birkin sought he determined to develop it himself. With technical help from Clive Gallop and supercharger specialist Amherst Villiers, with Dorothy Paget financing the project after his own money had run out, Birkin rebuilt the car at the engineering works he had set up for the purpose at Welwyn Garden City in Hertfordshire. Adding a huge Roots-type supercharger in front of the radiator driven straight from the crankshaft gave the car a unique appearance; the 242 bhp "blower Bentley" was born. The first car, a stripped down Brooklands racer known as Bentley Blower No.1, first appeared at the Essex six hour race at Brooklands on 29 June 1929.
However, the car proved to be unreliable. W. O. Bentley himself had never accepted the blower Bentley. With Wolf Barnato's support, Birkin persuaded "W. O." to produce the fifty supercharged cars necessary for the model to be accepted for the Le Mans twenty-four-hour race. In addition to these production cars built by Bentley Motors, Birkin put together a racing team of four remodelled "prototypes" and assembled a fifth car from spare parts. Birkin's blower Bentleys were too late for Le Mans in 1929 and only two of the cars reached the start line in 1930. After an epic duel between Dudley Benjafield and Birkin's entered blower Bentleys and Rudolf Caracciola's Mercedes SSK all three retired, leaving the victory to the Bentley works team Speed Six of Barnato and Glen Kidston. Birkin's courage and fearless driving, in particular his selflessly harrying Caracciola into submission, are regarded as embodying the true spirit of the Vintage Racing era. Back in 1925 the energetic motor sports enthusiast Eugène Azemar, involved with the Tourist Board in Saint-Gaudens in southern France, succeeded in persuading the Automobile Club du Midi to arrange a Grand Prix race in the region.
A great success, the Saint-Gaudens track got the honor of hosting the 1928 French Grand Prix. If they can, so can we, thought the city council in the nearby town of Pau and decided to try to take the French Grand Prix to their own town. Pau had some Grand Prix traditions, as the town held the honour of arranging the first race to be called a Grand Prix back in 1901. For the 1930 Grand Prix a triangular, Le Mans-type track outside the city was selected. Known as the Circuit de Morlaas it should not be confused with the well-known street track in the Parque Beaumont; the French had hoped to run the race to the International Formula, but when the response was poor the event was postponed and changed to a Formula Libre event instead. The new date meant that the Italian teams were unable to attend, leaving it to be an internal French affair with sixteen Bugattis, two Peugeots and a Delage among the twenty five starters. Among the top Bugatti drivers were Louis Chiron, Marcel Leho
HMS Aboukir (1900)
HMS Aboukir was a Cressy-class armoured cruiser built for the Royal Navy around 1900. Upon completion she was spent most of her career there. Upon returning home in 1912, she was placed in reserve. Recommissioned at the start of the First World War, she played a minor role in the Battle of Heligoland Bight a few weeks after the beginning of the war. Aboukir was sunk by the German submarine U-9, together with two of her sister ships, on 22 September 1914. Aboukir was designed to displace 12,000 long tons; the ship had an overall length of 472 feet, a beam of 69 feet 9 inches and a deep draught of 26 feet 9 inches. She was powered by two 4-cylinder triple-expansion steam engines, each driving one shaft, which produced a total of 21,000 indicated horsepower and gave a maximum speed of 21 knots; the engines were powered by 30 Belleville boilers. On their sea trials all of the Cressy-class cruisers, except the lead ship, exceeded their designed speed, she carried a maximum of 1,600 long tons of coal and her complement ranged from 725 to 760 officers and enlisted men.
Her main armament consisted of two breech-loading 9.2-inch Mk X guns in single gun turrets, one each fore and aft of the superstructure. They fired 380-pound shells to a range of 15,500 yards, her secondary armament of twelve BL 6-inch Mk VII guns was arranged in casemates amidships. Eight of these were only usable in calm weather, they had a maximum range of 12,200 yards with their 100-pound shells. A dozen quick-firing 12-pounder 12 cwt guns were fitted for defence against torpedo boats, eight on casemates on the upper deck and four in the superstructure; the ship carried three 3-pounder Hotchkiss guns and two submerged 18-inch torpedo tubes. The ship's waterline armour belt ranged in thickness from 2 to 6 inches and was closed off by 5-inch transverse bulkheads; the armour of the gun turrets and their barbettes was 6 inches thick while the casemate armour was 5 inches thick. The protective deck armour ranged in thickness from 1–3 inches and the conning tower was protected by 12 inches of armour.
Aboukir was laid down by Fairfield Shipbuilding & Engineering at their shipyard in Govan, Scotland on 9 November 1898 and launched on 16 May 1900. In March 1901 she arrived at Portsmouth Dockyard for fitting out, she was completed early the following year, commissioned on 3 April 1902 by Captain Charles John Graves-Sawle. The ship was assigned to the Mediterranean Fleet upon commissioning, left Portsmouth in early May, arriving at Malta that month, she made two deployments to the Mediterranean, 1902–1905 and 1907–1912. In September 1902 she visited Greek waters for combined maneuvers with other ships of the cruiser and channel divisions, landing at Nauplia and Argostoli, before she escorted the damaged battleship HMS Hood from Malta to Gibraltar in October, she was reduced to reserve when she returned home in 1912 and was assigned to the 7th Cruiser Squadron shortly after the outbreak of the First World War in August 1914. The squadron was tasked with patrolling the Broad Fourteens of the North Sea in support of a force of destroyers and submarines based at Harwich which protected the eastern end of the English Channel from German warships attempting to attack the supply route between England and France.
During the Battle of Heligoland Bight on 28 August, the ship was part of Cruiser Force'C', in reserve off the Dutch coast, saw no action. On the morning of 22 September and her sisters and Hogue, were on patrol without any escorting destroyers as they had been forced to seek shelter from bad weather; the three sisters in line abreast, about 2,000 yards apart, at a speed of 10 knots. They were not expecting submarine attack, but they had lookouts posted and had one gun manned on each side to attack any submarines sighted; the weather had moderated earlier that morning and Tyrwhitt was en route to reinforce the cruisers with eight destroyers. SM U-9, commanded by Kapitänleutnant Otto Weddigen, had been ordered to attack British transports at Ostend, but had been forced to dive and take shelter from the storm. On surfacing, she moved to attack, she fired one torpedo at 06:20 at Aboukir. Aboukir began listing and capsized around 06:55 despite counterflooding compartments on the opposite side to right her.
By the time that Drummond ordered "abandon ship" only one boat was available because the others had either been smashed or could not be lowered as no steam was available to power the winches for the boats. As Hogue approached her sinking sister, the ship's captain, Wilmot Nicholson, realized that it had been a submarine attack and signalled Cressy to look for a periscope although his ship continued to close on Aboukir as her crew threw overboard anything that would float to aid the survivors in the water. Having stopped and lowered all her boats, Hogue was struck by two torpedoes around 06:55; the sudden weight loss of the two torpedoes caused U-9 to broach the surface and Hogue's gunners opened fire without effect before the submarine could submerge again. The cruiser capsized about ten minutes after being torpedoed as all of her watertight doors had been open, she sank at 07:15. Cressy attempted to ram the submarine, but did not hit anything and resumed her rescue efforts until she too was torpedoed at 07:20.
She too took on a heavy list and capsized, before sinking at 07:55. Severa
SM U-9 was a German Type U 9 U-boat. She was one of 329 submarines serving in the Imperial German Navy, engaged in commerce raiding during World War I, her construction was ordered on 15 July 1908 and her keel was laid down by Kaiserliche Werft in Danzig. She was launched on 22 February 1910 and commissioned on 18 April 1910. U-9 had an overall length of 57.38 m, her pressure hull was 48 m long. The boat's beam was 6 m, she had a draught of 3.13 m with a total height of 7.05 m. The boat displaced 493 t when 611 t when submerged. U-9 was fitted with two Körting 8-cylinder plus two Körting 6-cylinder two-stroke petrol engines with a total of 1,000 metric horsepower for use on the surface and two Siemens-Schuckert double-acting electric motors plus two electric motors with a total of 1,160 PS for underwater use; these engines powered two shafts each with a 1.45 m propeller, which gave the boat a top surface speed of 14.2 knots, 8.1 knots when submerged. Cruising range was 1,800 nautical miles at 14 knots on the surface, 80 nmi at 5 knots under water.
Diving depth was 50 m. The U-boat was armed with four 50 cm torpedo tubes, two fitted in the bow and two in the stern, carried 6 torpedoes; the boat was equipped with a machine gun, augmented with a 3.7 cm Hotchkiss gun when war broke out in 1914. In 1915, an additional 5 cm gun was fitted; when U-9 underwent a major refit in 1916, two mine-laying rails were added, which were removed again. The boat's complement was 31 enlisted. On 16 July 1914, the crew of U-9 reloaded her torpedo tubes while submerged, the first time any submarine had succeeded in doing so. On 1 August 1914, Kapitänleutnant Otto Weddigen took command. On 22 September, while patrolling the Broad Fourteens, a region of the southern North Sea, U-9 found a squadron of three obsolescent British Cressy-class armoured cruisers, assigned to prevent German surface vessels from entering the eastern end of the English Channel, she fired four of her torpedoes, reloading while submerged, sank all three in less than an hour. 1,459 British sailors died.
It was one of the most notable submarine actions of all time. Members of the Admiralty who had considered submarines mere toys no longer expressed that opinion after this event. On 15 October, U-9 sank the protected cruiser HMS Hawke. On 12 January 1915, Johannes Spieß relieved Weddigen, commanded U-9 until 19 April 1916. During this period, she sank 13 ships totalling 8,635 GRT: 10 small fishing vessels and three British steamers. After April 1916, she was withdrawn from front-line duties to be used for training. U-9 and the raider SMS Emden were the only ships. Beesly, Patrick. Room 40: British Naval Intelligence 1914–1918. London: H Hamilton. ISBN 978-0-241-10864-2. Fitzsimons, Bernard, ed; the Illustrated Encyclopedia of 20th Century Weapons and Warfare, "U-Boats, Volume 23, p. 2534. London: Phoebus Publishing, 1978. Gröner, Erich. U-boats and Mine Warfare Vessels. German Warships 1815–1945. 2. Translated by Thomas, Keith. London: Conway Maritime Press. ISBN 0-85177-593-4.*Halpern, Paul G.. A Naval History of World War I.
New York: Routledge. ISBN 978-1-85728-498-0. Koerver, Hans Joachim. Room 40: German Naval Warfare 1914–1918. Vol I; the Fleet in Action. Steinbach: LIS Reinisch. ISBN 978-3-902433-76-3. Koerver, Hans Joachim. Room 40: German Naval Warfare 1914–1918. Vol II; the Fleet in Being. Steinbach: LIS Reinisch. ISBN 978-3-902433-77-0. Rössler, Eberhard. U-Bootbau bis Ende des 1. Weltkriegs, Konstruktionen für das Ausland und die Jahre 1935–1945. Die deutschen U-Boote und ihre Werften. I. Koblenz: Bernard & Graefe. ISBN 3-7637-5213-7. Roessler, Eberhard. Die Unterseeboote der Kaiserlichen Marine. Bonn: Bernard & Graefe. ISBN 978-3-7637-5963-7. Schroeder, Joachim. Die U-Boote des Kaisers. Bonn: Bernard & Graefe. ISBN 978-3-7637-6235-4. Spindler, Arno. Der Handelskrieg mit U-Booten. 5 Vols. Berlin: Mittler & Sohn. Vols. 4+5, dealing with 1917+18, are hard to find: Guildhall Library, has them all Vol. 1–3 in an English translation: The submarine war against commerce. Photos of cruises of German submarine U-54 in 1916–1918. A 44 min. German film from 1917 about a cruise of the German submarine U-35.
Room 40: original documents and maps about World War I German submarine warfare and British Room 40 Intelligence from The National Archives, Richmond, UK. Helgason, Guðmundur. "WWI U-boats: U 9". German and Austrian U-boats of World War I - Kaiserliche Marine - Uboat.net. Retrieved 2007-05-27
A motorcycle called a bike, motorbike, or cycle, is a two- or three-wheeled motor vehicle. Motorcycle design varies to suit a range of different purposes: long distance travel, cruising, sport including racing, off-road riding. Motorcycling is riding a motorcycle and related social activity such as joining a motorcycle club and attending motorcycle rallies. In 1894, Hildebrand & Wolfmüller became the first series production motorcycle, the first to be called a motorcycle. In 2014, the three top motorcycle producers globally by volume were Honda and Hero MotoCorp. In developing countries, motorcycles are considered utilitarian due to lower prices and greater fuel economy. Of all the motorcycles in the world, 58% are in the Asia-Pacific and Southern and Eastern Asia regions, excluding car-centric Japan. According to the US Department of Transportation the number of fatalities per vehicle mile traveled was 37 times higher for motorcycles than for cars; the term motorcycle has different legal definitions depending on jurisdiction.
There are three major types of motorcycle: street, off-road, dual purpose. Within these types, there are many sub-types of motorcycles for different purposes. There is a racing counterpart to each type, such as road racing and street bikes, or motocross and dirt bikes. Street bikes include cruisers, sportbikes and mopeds, many other types. Off-road motorcycles include many types designed for dirt-oriented racing classes such as motocross and are not street legal in most areas. Dual purpose machines like the dual-sport style are made to go off-road but include features to make them legal and comfortable on the street as well; each configuration offers either specialised advantage or broad capability, each design creates a different riding posture. In some countries the use of pillions is restricted; the first internal combustion, petroleum fueled. It was designed and built by the German inventors Gottlieb Daimler and Wilhelm Maybach in Bad Cannstatt, Germany in 1885; this vehicle was unlike either the safety bicycles or the boneshaker bicycles of the era in that it had zero degrees of steering axis angle and no fork offset, thus did not use the principles of bicycle and motorcycle dynamics developed nearly 70 years earlier.
Instead, it relied on two outrigger wheels to remain upright while turning. The inventors called their invention the Reitwagen, it was designed as an expedient testbed for their new engine, rather than a true prototype vehicle. The first commercial design for a self-propelled cycle was a three-wheel design called the Butler Petrol Cycle, conceived of Edward Butler in England in 1884, he exhibited his plans for the vehicle at the Stanley Cycle Show in London in 1884. The vehicle was built by the Merryweather Fire Engine company in Greenwich, in 1888; the Butler Petrol Cycle was a three-wheeled vehicle, with the rear wheel directly driven by a 5⁄8 hp, 40 cc displacement, 2 1⁄4 in × 5 in bore × stroke, flat twin four-stroke engine equipped with rotary valves and a float-fed carburettor and Ackermann steering, all of which were state of the art at the time. Starting was by compressed air; the engine was liquid-cooled, with a radiator over the rear driving wheel. Speed was controlled by means of a throttle valve lever.
No braking system was fitted. The driver was seated between the front wheels, it wasn't, however, a success, as Butler failed to find sufficient financial backing. Many authorities have excluded steam powered, electric motorcycles or diesel-powered two-wheelers from the definition of a'motorcycle', credit the Daimler Reitwagen as the world's first motorcycle. Given the rapid rise in use of electric motorcycles worldwide, defining only internal-combustion powered two-wheelers as'motorcycles' is problematic. If a two-wheeled vehicle with steam propulsion is considered a motorcycle the first motorcycles built seem to be the French Michaux-Perreaux steam velocipede which patent application was filled in December 1868, constructed around the same time as the American Roper steam velocipede, built by Sylvester H. Roper Roxbury, Massachusetts. Who demonstrated his machine at fairs and circuses in the eastern U. S. in 1867, Roper built about 10 steam cars and cycles from the 1860s until his death in 1896.
In 1894, Hildebrand & Wolfmüller became the first series production motorcycle, the first to be called a motorcycle. Excelsior Motor Company a bicycle manufacturing company based in Coventry, began production of their first motorcycle model in 1896; the first production motorcycle in the US was the Orient-Aster, built by Charles Metz in 1898 at his factory in Waltham, Massachusetts. In the early period of motorcycle history, many producers of bicycles adapted their designs to accommodate the new internal combustion engine; as the engines became more powerful and designs outgrew the bicycle origins, the number of motorcycle producers increased. Many of the nineteenth century inventors who worked on early motorcycles moved on to other inventions. Daimler and Roper, for example, both went on to develop automobiles. At the turn of the 19th century the first major mass-production firms were set up. In 1898, Triumph Motorcycles in England began producing motorbikes, by 1903 it was producing over 500 bikes.
Other British firms were Royal Enfield and Birmingham Small Arms Company who