Triple M Corner no.145

By Triple M corner

The Triple M series of MG’s all belong to a family of models that commenced with the 1929 MG Midget and continued through to the mid-thirties via a long string of four and six cylinder OHC engined cars that forged the marques identity.

This scan from a newly discovered Motor magazine 35 mm negative shows MG Midget EX135 at speed on an autobahn near Dessau, Germany, where in May 1939 the car broke a series of records. Below, can be found the National Archives potted biography of the driver, which tells of an exciting life both in the motoring record breaking realm and also away from it.

Alfred Thomas Goldie Gardner was born on May 31st 1890 in Essex, his mother’s maiden name being Goldie. His early motoring interest lay in motorcycles but the First World War interrupted his ambition to race them, and on the outbreak he joined the army, becoming the youngest Major in the British Forces. In 1917 his reconnaissance plane was brought down by enemy fire and he sustained leg and hip injuries that were to hospitalise him for two years and leave him disabled for the rest of his life. In this condition he began motor racing in 1924 and in 1930 he came to the attention of Cecil Kimber the managing director of M.G. and subsequently raced various of these cars with considerable success. In 1934 he bought a streamlined K3 Magnette and after accompanying Sir Malcolm Campbell to Daytona Beach to set a new Land Speed Record, his appetite was whetted for record-breaking, starting with a class record at Brooklands. In 1937 he went to Dessau in Germany where he created a new Flying Mile Record at 148.5mph.. He went on to set further records at Montlhery in France and returned to Germany later in the year to set new records. He now had in mind achieving 200mph for which purpose George Eyston’s Magic Magnette Ex 135 was acquired and modified to produce 196bhp. In November 1938 he returned to Germany and raised the record to 186mph. With the 200mph target still eluding him, in May 1939 he returned yet again to take the 1100cc record to 203mph, and with the engine rebored overnight he also took three 1500cc Class ‘F’ records. Further attempts at the 750cc records were stymied by the outbreak of war, and he first of all joined with Sir Malcolm Campbell in setting up the Mobile Special Constabulary (The Blue Birds) and then helped reorganise civilian transport in liberated Europe. Once the war had ended new Class ‘H’ (750cc) records were achieved in Italy and at Jabbeke, Belgium and then in 1947 Class ‘I’ (500cc) records were set, and in 1948 a Jaguar 2-litre experimental engine was borrowed to set Class ‘E’ (2000cc) records. This allowed him to claim records in 50% of the World International Classes. Further record-breaking continued at Jabbeke and in the USA through 1950-2 but in 1952 he suffered a cerebral haemorrhage and was forced to retire. He was holder of the OBE and received three BRDG Gold Stars. He died in 1958.

Photo courtesy of Motorsport Images

Triple M corner no.144

By Triple M corner

The Triple M series of MG’s all belong to a family of models that commenced with the 1929 MG Midget and continued through to the mid-thirties via a long string of four and six cylinder OHC engined cars that forged the marques identity.

G.W. Wright took part in the 1932 Monte Carlo Rally in this MG C Type Midget (GP 2913). The photograph was taken in low light somewhere in London prior to car and crew setting off for France where they finished 12th in their class. They fared significantly better in the post rally Mont des Mules hill climb where they topped the listing in the 750 cc class. Just 14 months after this photograph was taken, Wright’s C Type was to dramatically catch fire at Brooklands. (see Triple M corner no.83 in the archive) Photo courtesy of Motorsport Images

Triple M corner no.143

By Triple M corner

The Triple M series of MG’s all belong to a family of models that commenced with the 1929 MG Midget and continued through to the mid-thirties via a long string of four and six cylinder OHC engined cars that forged the marques identity.

The 1933 JCC Iternational Trophy Race took place on Saturday 6th May at Brooklands and was held in glorious sunshine in front of a large crowd. The racing did not disappoint with household names such as Malcolm Campbell, Lord Howe and Kaye Don taking part along with G.E.T Eyston who was driving the Magic Midget. Here, The Autocar’s talented artist Gordon Crosby captures the moment Eyston’s Midget looses its rear wheel along the start/finish straight just three laps into the race. (Click on the arrows in the trhc to read Motor Sport’s account of the incident.) (LAT photoscan from Autocar 12th May 1933 – courtesy Motorsport Images)

Triple M corner no.142

By Triple M corner

The Triple M series of MG’s all belong to a family of models that commenced with the 1929 MG Midget and continued through to the mid-thirties via a long string of four and six cylinder OHC engined cars that forged the marques identity.

Donington Park 19th August 1933: Taken at McClean’s, this LAT archive image (C1597) shows a gaggle of MG’s including the dicing J2 Midgets of C.H. Masters (no.3) and J.R. Grice (no.15) as they round the bend. Following a short distance behind is a 1933 McEvoy Minor Special (no.12) being driven by Richard Jenson, the car’s body having been built by the Jenson brothers in Wolverhampton to a Michael McEvoy specification. Jenson finished 5th, in this the opening event of the day. (Ed. This image is something of a discovery in that it’s the first such identifiable image of a McEvoy Minor being driven by either of the Jenson brothers to be found by the author.) Photo courtesy of Motor Sport Images. More about the Jenson Brothers here.

Triple M corner no.141

By Triple M corner

The Triple M series of MG’s all belong to a family of models that commenced with the 1929 MG Midget and continued through to the mid-thirties via a long string of four and six cylinder OHC engined cars that forged the marques identity.

This heavily doctored image first appeared on page 364 of the 1st September 1933 edition of The Autocar magazine. It depicts a 1934 season MG Magnette pillarless saloon (JB 550) which, as can be seen from the neatly handwritten caption sold for £445 or the equivalent of three lwb Minor Saloons (at £150 each) and £50 more than Morris Motors top-of-the-range Morris 25 Saloon, these cars selling for £395. Despite the MG’s elegance, many of the comparatively few that were built were later converted to open cars. (LAT Autocar photoscan coutesy of Motorsport Images) JB 550 survives to this day and is listed on the DVLA database as a 1932 ‘green’ MG, although the body type is not detailed.

Triple M corner no.140

By Triple M corner

The Triple M series of MG’s all belong to a family of models that commenced with the 1929 MG Midget and continued through to the mid-thirties via a long string of four and six cylinder OHC engined cars that forged the marques identity.

On what was a beautiful mid-April day in 1933 the all female crew of this MG Magna MG 1452 climb an unknown hill while taking part in that year’s WASA Cotswold Trial. (LAT Autocar Photoscan 14th April 1933 – courtesy Motorsport Images)

Triple M corner no.139

By Triple M corner

The Triple M series of MG’s all belong to a family of models that commenced with the 1929 MG Midget and continued through to the mid-thirties via a long string of four and six cylinder OHC engined cars that forged the marques identity.

Dennis Evans, sibling to Doreen and Kenneth, also both active competitors in motor sport, is seen here in his MG N Type Magnette (BLL 493) competing at the 1936 Inter-Varsity speed trials at Syston Park in Lincolnshire. The family’s cars were all maintained by the Bellvue Garage Racing Dept. in Wandsworth, London

Triple M corner no.138

By Triple M corner

The Triple M series of MG’s all belong to a family of models that commenced with the 1929 MG Midget and continued through to the mid-thirties via a long string of four and six cylinder OHC engined cars that forged the marques identity.

The 1933 RAC Ulster TT is considered as being something of an epic in the annals of road-racing motorsport. It was of course the race in which the Italian ace Tazio Nuvolari took his maiden victory in an MG K3 Magnette but not without a terrific duel with Hugh Hamilton who was driving a supercharged 746cc MG Midget. Hamilton pushed Nuvolari all the way, a ‘splash and dash’ five laps fom the finish perhaps costing him victory. Here, Hamilton is seen passing Comber Station almost two thirds of the way around the 13.6 mile circuit, his race average speed being a remarkable 73.46 mph. (Photo: courtesy LAT collection – Motorsport Images)

Triple M corner no.137

By Triple M corner

The Triple M series of MG’s (Midget, Magna & Magnette) all belong to a family of models that commenced with the introduction in 1929 of the MG (M Type) Midget and continued through to the mid-thirties via a long string of four and six cylinder OHC engined cars that forged the marques identity.

The Donington Park race circuit was host to just its third motor race meeting on Saturday 19th August 1933. Entries were significantly up on the two earlier events, held in March and May that year, while the beautiful summer weather attracted a large crowd to the new venue. This photo shows the MG J2 of Tom Simister leading a similar car driven by C. H. Masters in the very early stages of the first race that day, Simister being required to retire his car after just three laps into the five lap race. Masters went on to finish second behind W.G. Everett, also in a J2, while another Midget driven by Grice, finished third. (LATplate C1601 courtesy of Motorsport Images)

Triple M corner no.136

By Triple M corner

The Triple M series of MG’s all belong to a family of models that commenced with the 1929 MG Midget and continued through to the mid-thirties via a long string of four and six cylinder OHC engined cars that forged the marques identity.

Italian racing driver Tazio Nuvolari had never driven an MG K3 Magnette until the eve of the 1933 RAC Ulster TT race. While 29 cars started the 478 mile race just 12 finished with Nuvolari beating all comers, including  fourth placed Eric Hall, who was piloting an identical car.  The race lasted for almost six hours and was not without tragedy when the passenger in Balmain’s MG Midget was killed having been thrown from the car as a result of an accident. It’s reported that over 500,000 people lined the Ards course that day, many no doubt coming to watch local man Billy Sullivan driving his Sullivan Minor Special. Unfortunately, Sullivan was forced to retire after just 191 miles or 14 laps of the circuit. Nuvolari is seen here at the end of the race casually eating an apple just prior to the presentation ceremony. (Image from the LAT collection, Motor plate 802-37 courtesy of Motorsport Images)