Brighton Speed Trials Revelation

May 23, 2018  •  Leave a Comment

I have followed and loved Motor Racing all my life and think I know a bit about most of it. But after digitalising a recent set of negatives from the 1960s I was shocked! I originally acquired the negatives for the wonderful GT and F1 cars on the film, but half way through was a set of pictures from the Brighton Speed Trials. And what wonderful pictures they are! The cars are amazing!

Now I knew of the Speed Trials but had always thought it was a small event on the south coast with little or no relevance to anything that interested me. Judging by the pictures it seems I had been missing out, so I have been doing a little research. 

The pictures are of 1962 a year when Dragsters were first invited to the 1km run along the Brighton seafront! Yes dragsters! The legendary Sydney Allard turned up with his beautiful Allard and was expected to break all the records. Unfortunately Sydney had some glitches with the car and secured only third place being beaten by a supercharged Vincent motorcycle and a Chevy powered Cooper of Chris Summers. 

Sydney Allard Dragster Brighton Speed Trials 1962Sydney Allard Dragster Brighton Speed Trials 1962Sydney Allard was expected to break all the record in 1962 but after a few problems and some demo runs was classified 4th with a time of 22.04 seconds.
This image is very clear for an amatuer picture and will enlarge quite nicely.

All together there were a massive 257 entries! This leads me to feel, that although there were exotic race cars and sports cars, this event was open to virtually anyone. The smallest car on my pictures is a super little 750cc Fiat Zagato Abarth. There are some very old cars from before the war including pictures of famous Brooklands Bentleys, this include three shots of the famous "Barnato Hassan Special". One picture is of a Fiat is a 21 litre, aero-engined FIAT “Mephistopheles” what a monster this is!

And then of course there is the exotic! I have a couple of stunning pictures of a Ferrari 250 MM by Pinin Farina and another two of a Ferrari 250 GT Berlinetta. The first picture on the role is a super sleek Mercedes 300SL.

Now I have done a bit of research i will carry on taking an interest and learning more about this great event! Maybe you could too?

If you would like to see the pictures of the 1962 Brighton Speed Trials here is the link in red:       Brighton Speed Trials Photographs 1962 Link



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