Just as May is the month motorsport turns it’s attentions to the Indianapolis 500 and Monaco Grand Prix June is traditionally the sports interest focuses on the Le Mans 24 Hours. This month I have lined up 29 vehicles that either competed in the event, are of a type that competed in the event and or were designed to compete in the event but for one reason or another did not compete on the fastest roundabout in the world.
Humphrey Wyndham Cook is listed on the peerage.com as being born in 1893 to Wyndham Francis Cook and Frederica Evelyn Stillwell Freeland he attending Harrow on the Hill School and Christ Church, Oxford University.
Described as quiet and enthusiastic Humphrey started racing in 1914 and continued after The Great 1914/18 war racing Vauxhall’s and Bugatti’s mostly at Brooklands.
In 1928 he entered today’s featured car an unsupercharged 4 1/2 litre Bentley, chassis #TX3246 in the 1928 Tourist Trophy at Ards where he finished 7th.
The car next appears to have been entered by W.O. Bentley in to the Double Twelve at Brooklands, two 12 hour races being run in daylight on the same weekend, so as not to disturb the neighbors at night, in May 1929 where Humphrey and Frank Clement retired with a big end failure.
A month later and with the big end repaired #TX3246 powered by it’s original motor #PM3275 was entered into the Le Mans 24 Hour race by Bentley Motors Ltd for Frank Clement and Jean Chassagne to drive. Carrying the #8 They finished 4th completing a 1st to 4th place sweep for the Marque behind the Woolf Barnato and Henry Birkin driving the #1 Speed Six and the #9 and #10 4 1/2 litre cars driven by Jack Dunfee and Glen Kidston with Dr. Dudley Benjafield and André d’Erlanger in the latter.
Humphrey Cook and Leslie Callingham drove #TX3246 to a third place finish in the Brooklands 6 hour race at the end of June 1929 where a Bentley 1,2 finish interupted by an ALFA Romeo running in the 2 litre / 122cui class.
Two weeks later in the Irish GP Eireann Cup run at Phoenix Park Humphrey finished 5th before #TX3246 returned to Brooklands where Jack Barclay and Frank Clement drove her to victory lane in the Brooklands 500, the first race ever organised by the British Racing Drivers Club, BRDC, in October 1929.
Humphrey Cook went on to fund and race Raymond Mays and Peter Berthon’s English Racing Automobiles, ERA, project.
While Jack Barclay is still best known in London for his Rolls Royce and Bentley Dealerships in Mayfair.
#TX3246 powered by the 4 1/2 litre motor number #PM3275 is seen in these photographs at Goodwood Festival of Speed last year.
Thanks for joining me on this “4th Of Four” edition of “Getting A Little Psycho On Tyres” I hope you will join me again tomorrow. Don’t forget to come back now !