Youngster clinches vintage memorial race

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Twenty three-year-old William Nuthall – son of historic race car preparation specialist Ian – won last weekend’s Bob Gerard Memorial Race at Mallory Park at the wheel of the very car former ERA team member Gerard campaigned in the 1950s.

Nuthall’s win in the Cooper Bristol at the VSCC’s Mallory Park Race Meeting on Sunday 21 August was his maiden victory, in what was only his third ever race.

The youngster – who raced karts throughout his teens – dominated the competition after taking pole before taking the chequered flag some 11 seconds ahead of his nearest rival.

Fittingly Nuthall (pictured below with father Ian) received his winner’s laurel wreath from Sue Palethorpe, who worked for ERA in the late 1940s when Gerard was racing for the team. The Cooper Bristol had been loaned Nuthall by Graham Burrows, who recently retired from racing.

(Photo credit: Ted Welch)

Secretary of the VSCC, Mike Stripe said: “We were thrilled to witness William’s dominance of the race and surprised to see him outrun some much younger machinery. We congratulate him on his first ever race win and hope that it is the first of many with the VSCC”.

Another ‘first’ saw 18-year-old George Diffey, son of well-known historic racer, Simon, making his racing debut in his father’s Lotus 20 in the Formula Junior race. George’s best lap was only 5 seconds slower than race winner, Sam Wilson’s, best lap of 50.46 seconds in a Cooper T59.

Continuing the theme, regular Vintage racer, Robert Carr, claimed his first ever VSCC trophy race win in the 10-lap race for Vintage Racing Cars finishing some 6.94 seconds ahead of nearest rival, Justin Maeers in his Parker GN.

The annual VSCC meet attracted a record entry with 213 cars entered into 277 grid slots on the day. The club was able to squeeze an additional handicap race into the programme to cater for the extraordinary demand to produce a 12-race programme that attracted one of the largest spectator turnouts for many years.

VSCC race regular Dougal Cawley won the opening race of the day, the Mallory Park Trophy Race for Special Pre-war Sports-Cars in his GN/Ford ‘Piglet’ – so notching up his fifth win this season – while Sam Stretton won the ‘Mallory Mug’ race for Standard and Modified Sports-Cars driving his 1937 Alta Sports, boosting his position in the ‘Owner-Driver-Mechanic’ award that is attached to that series.
 
Michael New defied expectations and maybe foxed the handicappers by winning the Dick Baddiley Trophy for Edwardian Cars driving John Brydon’s 1909 Leon Peugeot, which lapped Mallory at a sedate 1 minute 40 seconds.

The annual one-off race for Edwardian cars attracted a 23-strong grid entry, from aero-engined monsters to rare, valuable machinery such as Tim Moore’s Metallurgique Maybach. Fastest lap in this race went James Collins in his 1917 Hudson Super Six, with its powerful 5-litre engine.
 
Nigel Ashman improved on his second place at VSCC Donington Park in May by winning the final race of the day for Formula 3 (500cc) cars in his 1957 Cooper Mk XI.

A meeting highlight was ‘Trike Race’ tribute (below) to Charles Jarrott - pioneer racer and tricycle exponent - by De Dion Bouton Club enthusiasts’ ‘Team Jarrott’, comprising eight machines from the years 1898 to 1901 and re-creating the first British motor race which was held in November 1897 on the track at Sheen House, Richmond Park.

(Photo credit: Ted Welch)

(Lead photo credit: Pete Austin)

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