Francis Curzon, 5th Earl Howe
Francis Richard Henry Penn Curzon, 5th Earl Howe, styled as Viscount Curzon from 1900 to 1929, was a British naval officer, Member of Parliament, motor racing driver and promoter. In the 1918 UK General Election he won the Battersea South seat as the candidate of the Conservative Party, which he held until 1929. While in Parliament he took up motor racing, won the 1931 24 Hours of Le Mans race, he ascended to the Peerage in 1929. Earl Howe co-founded the British Racing Drivers' Club with Dudley Benjafield in 1928, served as its President until his death in 1964. Francis, Viscount Curzon, joined the Royal Naval Reserve after leaving school, following in a long family tradition. 28 October 1907, Lieutenant Viscount Curzon, RNVR of the London Division, was appointed Commanding Officer of the Sussex Division of the Royal Naval Volunteer Reserve in Hove, with the rank of Commander RNVR. When World War I started the RNVR was formed into the Royal Naval Division and they were to fight on land like infantrymen not sailors.
Commander the Rt. Hon. Viscount Curzon served as Battalion Commander, Howe Battalion of the 2nd Brigade RND. Howe Battalion saw action at Gallipoli, April 1915 – January 1916. During part of this period Curzon served as aide-de-camp to George V. Following the armistice Viscount Curzon moved into politics. In the 1918 General Election he won the Battersea South seat; when the RNVR was reconstituted in 1921 Viscount Curzon resumed his position as the commanding officer of the Sussex division with the rank of Captain. Following his father's death in 1929 Francis Curzon ascended to the title Earl Howe, making him ineligible for Parliamentary re-election, he was appointed a Privy Counsellor in the 1929 Dissolution Honours. However, during his years as an MP Curzon had begun to become involved in motor racing. An associate of the infamous Bentley Boys, he was instrumental in forming the ideas which led Dudley Benjafield to set up the British Racing Drivers' Club in 1928; the newly ennobled Earl Howe was elected its President at the BRDC's first Annual General Meeting in 1929.
Francis Curzon made his race debut at the comparatively old age of 44, in the 1928 Irish TT with a Bugatti Type 43. After leaving the House of Commons he pursued his driving career with increasing vigour. During the 1930s he became a well known driver, competing in many national and international races, most notably the 24 Hours of Le Mans, he entered the endurance classic six times between 1935, only missing the 1933 event. For the first year he was entered as a part of the Bentley factory team, but latterly he entered his own cars. Driving his own Alfa Romeo 6C with co-driver Leslie Callingham he won the 2-litre class at the 1930 race, he upgraded to an Alfa Romeo 8C for the 1931 24 Hours of Le Mans, won the race outright driving in partnership with Henry Birkin. Away from La Sarthe, Earl Howe drove in a variety of automobiles. Indeed, in the mid-1930s he was credited by Time magazine as having "Europe's most elaborate" collection of racing cars. Although patriotic, he was forced to buy and run cars built outside the UK, as once Bentley had withdrawn from motor sport there were no realistically competitive British-built machines available.
He favored the Bugatti marque and campaigning several Bugattis. He won the Donington Park Trophy race in 1933, added to his victory haul with a win in the 1938 Grosvenor Grand Prix, at Cape Town in South Africa. In addition to these two victories he took podium finishes in eleven other major races between 1933 and 1939, became one of only two men to have competed in every running of the RAC Tourist Trophy at Ards, the other being E. R. Hall. In 1937, Howe was injured in an accident driving his pale blue and silver – Howe's personal racing colours – English Racing Automobiles R8B, while challenging the Thai Royal family competitor Prince Bira for the lead in the Campbell Trophy at the Brooklands circuit. Aside from assuming the Presidency of the BRDC, Earl Howe served as Vice-President of the FIA's Commission Sportive Internationale, the governing body of international motorsport at the time, he kept motorsport issues on the political landscape, with numerous speeches in the House of Lords. The start of the Second World War ended Earl Howe's front line driving career, he returned to the Navy.
At the end of the conflict he moved into race organising, although he continued to prepare and enter cars for other drivers, including Tazio Nuvolari. As President of the BRDC and Patron of the newly formed 500 Club, he was instrumental in the resumption of motor racing and applied political pressure to allow airfields to be used for motor sport, he was involved with organising the first British Grand Prix, at Silverstone in 1948, which gained full Formula One World Championship status at the Championship's inception in 1950. He instituted the annual BRDC International Trophy meeting at the same circuit. Under Earl Howe's 35-year stewardship, the BRDC went from private dining club to one of the most successful and high-profile motor sport associations in the world. Today the BRDC maintains a prestigious award in his memory: The Earl Howe Trophy, awarded annually "to the highest placed British Driver in the Indy 500 race or to the British driver who has established the most meritorious performance
The Bentley Boys were a group of wealthy British motorists who drove Bentley sports cars to victory in the 1920s and kept the marque's reputation for high performance alive. In 1925, as the marque foundered, Bentley Boy Woolf Barnato bought the company, leading to the creation of the famous supercharged Bentley Blower car; the Bentley Boys included: Woolf "Babe" Barnato, heir to Kimberley diamond magnate Barney Barnato Dr. J. Dudley "Benjy" Benjafield Sir Henry "Tim" Birkin Dale Bourne Frank Clement S. C. H. "Sammy" Davis, automotive journalist, Sports Editor of The Autocar John Duff George Duller, steeplechaser Clive Dunfee Jack Dunfee Dudley Froy Baron Andre d’Erlanger, playboy Clive Gallop, engineer Glen Kidston, aviator Bertie Kensington Moir Bernard Rubin, pearl fishery magnate Jean Chassagne, French racing driverThanks to the dedication of this group to serious racing, the company, located at Cricklewood, north London, was noted for its four consecutive victories at the 24 hours of Le Mans from 1927 to 1930.
Their greatest competitor at the time, whose lightweight, but fragile creations contrasted with the Bentley's rugged reliability and durability, referred to them as "the world's fastest lorries". In March 1930, during the Blue Train Races, Woolf Barnato raised the stakes on Rover and its Rover Light Six having raced and beaten Le Train Bleu for the first time, to better that record with his 6½ Litre Bentley Speed Six on a bet of GBP100, he drove against the train from Cannes to Calais by ferry to Dover and London, travelling on public highways, won. The H. J. Mulliner-bodied formal saloon he drove during the race, as well as a streamlined fastback "Sportsman Coupe" by Gurney Nutting delivered to him on 21 May 1930 became known as the Blue Train Bentleys; the "Sportsman Coupe" has been erroneously referred to as being the car that raced the Blue Train, while in fact Barnato named it in memory of his race. A great deal of Barnato's fortune went to keeping Bentley afloat after he became chairman in 1925.
British Racing Drivers' Club Lagonda
Bentley Speed Six
The regular Bentley 6½ Litre and the high-performance Bentley Speed Six were rolling chassis in production from 1926 to 1930. The Speed Six, introduced in 1928, would become the most successful racing Bentley. Two Bentley Speed Sixes became known as the Blue Train Bentleys after their owner Woolf Barnato's involvement in the Blue Train Races of 1930. By 1924, Bentley decided to build a larger chassis than the 3 Litre, with a smoother, more powerful engine; the new chassis would be more suitable for the large, heavy limousine bodies that many of his customers were putting on his sports car chassis, the resulting car would be more refined and better suited for comfortable general motoring. Bentley built a development mule with a 4¼ L straight-six engine derived from the 3 Litre's four cylinder engine. To disguise the car's origin, it had a large, wedge-shaped radiator and was registered as a "Sun"; the chassis was given a large light weight Weymann-type tourer body built by Freestone and Webb. W.
O. Bentley combined one of his road tests of the Sun with a trip to see the 1924 French Grand Prix in Lyon. On his return trip to the ferry at Dieppe, W. O. encountered another disguised car at a three-way junction. W. O. and the Rolls-Royce test driver recognized each other and began racing each other along the routes nationales. This street race continued until the Rolls-Royce driver's hat blew off and he had to stop to retrieve it; the Sun's tyres were worn when W. O. got to the ferry at Dieppe. Realizing from the impromptu race that the Sun had no performance advantage over Rolls-Royce's latest development, W. O. increased the bore of his six-cylinder engine from 80 millimetres to 100 millimetres. With a 140 mm stroke, the engine had a displacement of 6.6 L Like the four-cylinder engine, Bentley's straight-6 included overhead camshaft, 4 valves per cylinder, a single-piece engine block and cylinder head cast in iron, which eliminated the need for a head gasket. In base form, with a single Smiths 5-jet carburettor, twin ignition magnetos, a compression ratio of 4.4:1, the Bentley 6½ Litre delivered 147 horsepower at 3500 revolutions per minute.
Although based on the 3 Litre's engine, the 6½ engine incorporated many improvements. The 3 Litre's cone-type clutch was replaced by a dry-plate design that incorporated a clutch brake for fast gear changes, the car had power-assisted four-wheel brakes with finned drums; the front brakes had 4 leading shoes per drum. By operating a patented compensating device, the driver could adjust all four brakes to correct for wear while the car was moving, advantageous during races. A variety of wheelbases were provided ranging from 132 to 152.5 in. The most popular wheelbase was 150 inches; the Bentley Speed Six chassis was introduced in 1928 as a more sporting version of the Bentley 6½ Litre. With a single-port block, two SU carburettors, a high-performance camshaft, a compression ratio of 5.3:1, the Speed Six's engine produced 180 hp at 3500 rpm. The Speed Six chassis was available to customers with wheelbases of 138 inches, 140.5 inches, 152.5 inches, with the 138 inch wheelbase being most popular. The Criminal Investigation Department of the Western Australia Police operated two saloon-bodied examples as patrol cars.
In March 1930, Barnato raced against the Blue Train in a Speed Six with H. J. Mulliner saloon coachwork, reaching his club in London before the train was due in the station at Calais, it had been believed that the car in the race was a Gurney Nutting Sportsman Coupé, but the coupé had been delivered to Barnato in May 1930, more than a month after the race. The racing version of the Speed Six had a wheelbase of 11 feet and an engine with a compression ratio of 6.1:1 that produced 200 hp at 3500 rpm. Successful in racing, these cars won the 24 Hours of Le Mans in 1929 and 1930 with Bentley Boys drivers "Tim" Birkin, Glen Kidston, Woolf Barnato, the chairman of Bentley Motors. 6½ Litre: 362 Speed Six: 182 PrintBrooks, Philip C.. Carpenter, Rhonda. "The Mighty Sixes". The International Club for Rolls-Royce & Bentley Owners Desk Diary 2010. Tampa, FL USA: Faircount: 26–35. Culshaw, David. "Bentley". The Complete Catalogue of British Cars 1895 - 1975. Poundbury, Dorchester, UK: Veloce Publishing. Pp. 80–84.
ISBN 978-1-845845-83-4. Feast, Richard; the DNA of Bentley. St. Paul MN USA: MotorBooks International. ISBN 9780760319468. Retrieved 2013-12-24. Johnson, Harvey. Verschoor, Ron, ed. "The Eight-Litre: Bentley's Last is Bentley's Best". The Classic Car. Beverley Hills, CA US: Classic Car Club of America. LIX: 3–11. ISSN 0009-8310. Posthumus, Cyril; the Story of Veteran & Vintage Cars. John Wood, illustrator. Feltham, Middlesex, UK: Hamlyn. P. 102. ISBN 0-600-39155-8. Robson, Graham; the Illustrated Directory of Classic Cars. St. Paul, MN USA: MBI Publishing. Pp. 66–69. ISBN 0-7603-1049-1. Retrieved 2013-12-27. OnlineYoung, Eoin. "Barnato and the Blue Train Mystery – 190". New Zealand Classic Car Magazine. Archived from the original on 2 January 2014. Retrieved 31 December 2013. "History By Chassis – List of all W. O. Bentleys with original chassis nos. 6 1/2 Litre". VintageBentleys. Org. Houston, TX USA: VintageBentleys.org. Archived from the original on 2009-04-13. Retrieved 2012-06-25. "Special Edition: Bentley Arnage Blue Train".
The Car Experience. Barrie, ON Canada: Rayda Sinni. 2005. Archived from the original on 2011-07-16. Retrieved 2012-04-09
Margaret Audrey White Lady Wardington, was a red-headed English model, refused a job as a BBC announcer in case her powerful looks "alarmed timid men from Wigan and country districts." She had a career in fashion journalism before concentrating on charity work. White was born in Bradford, the only child of a commercial traveller who left the family when she was young, she grew up in North London with Eva. They endured the Blitz during the Second World War together with their cat, named Luftwaffe, she took her school examinations at Henrietta Barnett School at the same time as German doodlebug attacks, the girls sheltering under their desks if it seemed a hit was imminent. White's first job was as an assistant at an Elizabeth Arden salon in London's Bond Street. Phyllis Digby Morton, editor of Woman and Beauty asked White if she would be photographed for the magazine. From there, a career as a model developed. White appeared as a bride in posters for British National Savings, had minor roles in several films and worked as an announcer on commercial radio.
In 1951 she was rejected for the position of a stand-in BBC television announcer over fears that her appearance would overshadow the content, causing the press to exclaim that she was "Too beautiful for the BBC!". In 1951 and 1952, White was the face of an advertising campaign for the washing powder Dreft and appeared endorsing the product across newspapers and magazines. Advertising in Picture Post described her as a "fashion model and T. V. girl" and quoted White as saying "I always find time to give my nylons and undies that all-important nightly dip in Dreft". In September 1952 she appeared on BBC Radio's Light Programme in the series I Like My Job. In 1954, White met Marcus Morris, managing editor of Housewife magazine, at a party and was offered the job of fashion editor on the magazine. After six years at Housewife she took the same role at Go magazine. In 1953, White married theatrical impresario and former Brooklands racing driver Jack Dunfee but the marriage failed. In 1964, she married Christopher Henry Beaumont Pease, 2nd Lord Wardington, thus becoming Lady Wardington.
The couple adopted three children. Lord Wardington was an enthusiastic book collector and together they attended many bibliographic events. Lady Wardington devoted herself to charitable causes from Meals on Wheels to local campaigns, she set up a course to teach women money management and wrote the Superhints books for charity from suggestions she canvassed from her many upper-class, friends. In 2004, the Wardingtons' home at Wardington Manor near Banbury was damaged following a suspected electrical fire. Lord Wardington's book collection, including his unique collection of atlases, was saved through the efforts of their daughter Helen and local people. Lord Wardington died in 2005. One of them, the Doria Atlas, was sold to Bernard Shapero in October 2005 for £1.46 million, a new record price for an atlas. A Piece of Cake, it Started in Paradise The Final Test Rheingold Theatre, "Four Farewells in Venice" http://www.thepeerage.com/p6854.htm
Motor Sport (magazine)
Motor Sport is a monthly motor racing magazine, founded in the United Kingdom in 1924 as the Brooklands Gazette. The name was changed to Motor Sport for the August 1925 issue; the magazine covers motor sport in general, although from 1997 to 2006 its emphasis was historic motorsport. It remains one of the leading titles on both historic racing; the magazine's photo library is managed by LAT Images, which founded as Motor Sport photographic division by Wesley J. Tee in the 1960s and spun-off as a stand-alone affiliated company; the magazine's monthly podcasts have featured Christian Horner, Mario Andretti, Patrick Head, Sir Frank Williams, John McGuinness and Gordon Murray. In 1939 the magazine incorporated its rival Speed. 1936–1991: Bill Boddy. 2018—: Joe Dunn Harold Nockolds, Continental Correspondent. He filled the role by remaining in London and translating articles from overseas newspapers. Denis Jenkinson, Continental Correspondent. Known as'Jenks' or by his initials DSJ, Jenkinson travelled to all the Grands Prix to cover them for the magazine.
His race reports were the only way that many readers could keep up with Grand Prix racing due to the lack of coverage elsewhere. Jenks was himself a talented racing driver. In competition he is best known for success as a passenger in sidecar racing, as navigator for Stirling Moss in the 1955 Mille Miglia, which they won. Mark Hughes, Grand Prix Editor Lucas di Grassi, Dario Franchitti, Sébastien Buemi and 2013 BTCC Champion Andrew Jordan write for the website on a monthly basis alongside staff writers Simon Arron, Damien Smith, Paul Fearnley, Gordon Kirby, Andrew Frankel, Rob Widdows, Mat Oxley, Samarth Kanal. 1924— Radclyffe’s, Technical Publishers, 65 Victoria Street, London S. W.1 1936— Wesley J. Tee 1997— Haymarket 2006— Chelsea Magazines 2009— Motor Sport Magazine Limited Official website
Brooklands was a 2.75-mile motor racing circuit and aerodrome built near Weybridge in Surrey, United Kingdom. It opened in 1907 and was the world's first purpose-built motor racing circuit as well as one of Britain's first airfields, which became Britain's largest aircraft manufacturing centre by 1918, producing military aircraft such as the Wellington and civil airliners like the Viscount and VC-10; the circuit hosted its last race in August 1939 and today part of it forms the Brooklands Museum, a major aviation and motoring museum, as well as a venue for vintage car and other transport-related events. The Brooklands motor circuit was the brainchild of Hugh F. Locke King, was the first purpose-built banked motor race circuit in the world. Following the Motor Car Act 1903, Britain was subject to a blanket 20 mph speed limit on public roads: at a time when nearly 50% of the world's new cars were produced in France, there was concern that Britain's infant auto-industry would be hampered by the inability to undertake sustained high-speed testing.
King commissioned Colonel Capel Lofft Holden of the Royal Artillery to design the projected circuit and work began in 1906. Requirements of speed and spectator visibility led to the Brooklands track being built as a 100 ft wide, 2.75 miles long, banked oval. The banking was nearly 30 feet high in places. In addition to the oval, a bisecting "Finishing Straight" was built, increasing the track length to 3.25 miles, of which 1.25 miles was banked. It could host up to 287,000 spectators in its heyday. Owing to the complications of laying tarmacadam on banking, the expense of laying asphalt, the track was built in uncoated concrete; this led in years to a somewhat bumpy ride, as the surface suffered differential settlement over time. Along the centre of the track ran a dotted black line, known as the Fifty Foot Line. By driving over the line, a driver could theoretically take the banked corners without having to use the steering wheel; the track was opened on 17 June 1907 with a luncheon attended by most of Britain's motor manufacturers, followed by an informal inauguration of the track by a procession of 43 cars, one driven by Charles Rolls.
The first competitive event was held on 28–29 June, with three cars competing to break the world record for distance covered in 24 hours, the first race meeting was held on 6 July, attracting over 10,000 spectators. Drawing inspiration from the development at Brooklands, the Indianapolis Motor Speedway was built soon afterwards, held its inaugural race in August 1909; the Brooklands Mountain Circuit was a small section of the track giving a lap 1¼ miles long, running from the Fork to the rear of Members' Hill and back. It was created in 1930 using movable barriers. On 28–29 June 1907, eleven days after the circuit opened, it played host to the world's first 24-hour motor event, with Selwyn Edge leading three specially converted Napier cars around the circuit. A statement of intent had been made in 1906, Selwyn Edge entered into a physical training program to prepare for the event, his car, "804" was extensively modified, having a special fuel tank, bodywork removed, a special windscreen. Over 300 red railway lamps were used to light the track during the night.
Flares were used to mark the upper boundary of the track. Edge drove his car for the full duration, with the drivers of the other two cars taking the more familiar shift approach. During the event Edge covered a distance of 1,581.74 mi at an average speed of 65.91 mph, comfortably beating the existing record of 1,096.187 mi set at Indianapolis in 1905. Women were not allowed to compete for several years. Dorothy Levitt, S. F. Edge's leading driver, was refused entry despite having been the'first English-woman to compete in a motor race' in 1903, holding the'Ladies World Land Speed Record'. Edge completed 2,545 km at a record which stood for 17 years; the first standard race meeting would be held the next week, on 6 July. George E. Stanley broke the one-hour record at Brooklands race track on a Singer motorcycle in 1912, becoming the first rider of a 350 cc motorcycle to cover over 60 miles in an hour; the world record for the first person to cover 100 miles in 1 hour was set by Percy E. Lambert at Brooklands, on 15 February 1913 when driving his 4.5 litre sidevalve Talbot.
He covered 103 miles, 1470 yards in 60 minutes. A contemporary film of his exploits on that day can be viewed at the Brooklands Museum. In July and August 1929, Violette Cordery and her younger sister Evelyn drove her 4.5 litre four-seater Invicta for 30,000 miles in less than 30,000 minutes, averaging 61.57 mph and earning her second Dewar Trophy from the Royal Automobile Club. Brooklands closed to motor racing during World War I, was requisitioned by the War Office and continued its pre-war role as a flying training centre although it was now under military control. Brooklands soon became a major location for the construction and supply of military aeroplanes. Motor racing resumed in 1920 after extensive track repairs and Grand Prix motor racing was established at Brooklands in 1926 by Henry Segrave, after his victories in the 1923 French Grand Prix and the San Sebastián Grand Prix the following year raised interest in the sport in Britain; this first British Grand Prix was won by Louis Wagner and Robert Sénéchal, sharing the drive in a Delage 155B.
The second British Grand Prix was staged there in 1927 and these two events resulted in improve