Monday, May 09, 2011


If old cars and bikes are your bag, the Vintage Revival was paradise, perfumed with burnt castor.  With only 1200 people, including competitors, on the vast, forested infield, the event felt like a family gathering, or a collection of the tribes.
Zenith KTR racer, an Austrian champ
 Two runs per day for every class, each lasting 20 minutes, with a 'pace car', lights flashing, for only the leading lap...then it was purely your 'bottle' meeting the banking.  I would estimate the Ton was necessary to keep above the 'fourth line' on the deteriorating concrete, and a tolerance for a bucking wild ride. If you'd like a moment's experience of what that felt like, see below:

A thrill ride you couldn't pay for; what is missing from the video is your narrator's feet pressed firmly into the firewall, and left hand grasping, knuckles blanched, on the seat!  Fast.
Testing my former '25 Zenith 'Super Kim', 1700cc of supercharged power.  Like sitting on Dynamite...
 Competitors ranged from hi-wheel 'safety' bicycles to a supercharged Alfa Romeo straight-8, which sounded for all the world like an Aermacchi seaplane, clipped of wings.  They were not on the course together...
Business end of the 1,000cc Koehler-Escoffier 'Quatre Tubes'
Many thanks to organizer Vincent Chamon for assembling such a crowd at the most historic, original, and necessary race track, anywhere. 
Fantastic Frazer-Nash with 'smoking weasel' mascot
The engine room of the Koehler Escoffier; 1,000cc overhead camshaft v-twin, a very rare spec pre-war.
That feeling never goes away, boyo.
The JAP KTR racing sidevalve engine
The Morgan invasion; fun to watch them blasting around the track!
The super-plaid Scotch Mog, one of the fastest of the day
From the cockpit of the Bugatti T37A...
The lonely ride of the long-distance racer
Little Moggy trucklet
Small grids meant no elbowing on corners
Exotica as far as the eye can see...
Papa Coste, in the weeds!
The Grindlay-Peerless 'Bill Lacey Replica', ex-Brooklands racer, still living at Brooklands
Frank Chatokhine ready to decimate the banking.
What would a French event be without a bicyclist in a beret?
Nice 1928 AJS Big Port...I had one way back, they handle beautifully
Lineup for the 'slow' group; cycle pacers, cycles, and ancient bikes/cars
Gernot Schuh on the Zenith KTR
'Chain Gang' Frazer-Nash smoking weasel, possibly the best mascot ever.
Organizer Vincent Chamon, sun-baked but happy
Lovely Rex-Acme with Blackburne engine
The structure of the banking; engineered!


Grandpa Jimbo said...

Believe me. If I was 40 years younger and had studied very very hard for the 20 prior years, I'd have your job.
Jim A. Tucson, AZ yesterday high 95, today high 82. Go figure.

Jon Dudley said...

Couldn't agree more. Shame you couldn't get the bike on the straight at least for a demo and sound check. Interesting the comparison of blowers from Amilcar and your bike...I watched the whole thing.