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'Jenks & The Bod' DVD


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#1 Gary Davies

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Posted 20 June 2012 - 06:12

My daughter recently bought me the Jenks & The Bod DVD for my birthday. I might say I've been a reader of Motor Sport since 1962 but my impressions of both those gentleman have been formed almost entirely via the print medium.

I nearly spoke to DSJ once, while waiting at the counter to pick up my Motor Sport calendar at the City Road office one winter's day ages ago during my annual pilgrimage to Blighty to visit my parents. Jenks bustled in, I nearly spoke to him, chickened out, and then he was gone into the interstices of the building. Long regretted that.

What a fascinating DVD this MFQ effort was. William Boddy showed a delightfully impish sense of humour, a long way from his always engaging but sometimes sententious prose. The poses he tended to adopt when pictured handing out cups at the Grovewood Awards or alongside road test cars tended to support the impression of his being haughty. Matters of Moment and Showtime Soliloquy did have me cringing now and then I must confess. But in the flesh, so to speak, he came across as a man capable of considerable charm.

Jenks was largely as I expected, if perhaps even more of a lad than his writing suggested. I was particularly interested to see his house. I'd long known of it, as we all have, but it was, how can I put this... even more rough and ready than I had imagined. It felt slightly intrusive creeping through his domain and I commend Doug for the sensitive way in which he took viewers through it. His electrical arrangements were... shocking!

I felt I should know about the story behind the pathetic and rotting S-Class Benz in the driveway (sic), but alas I cannot recall. Anyone care to enlighten me?

Overall, for long time readers of Motor Sport and admirers of those two gents' dedication, a must have DVD. Thanks MFQ.

Edited by Gary Davies, 20 June 2012 - 06:13.


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#2 Johnbull

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Posted 21 June 2012 - 09:48

Interesting that Gary Davies should have started buying Motorsport magazine in 1962, the same year I did. I have been a Jenks fan ever since.

Perhaps I was luckier than Gary in that I did have the good fortune to have met Jenks on a number of occasions. From 1965 right through to it's last year as a World Endurance Championship event in 1973, I met Jenks almost every year at the famous Targa Florio in Sicily. I actually entered the famous race in 1972, but that's another story.

I also met Jenks on 3 occasions, 69, 70, and 71 at Montecarlo during the Monaco GP. As Dunlop distributors in Malta we always had a ready supply of passes to anywhere at an GP, so Monaco was a natural favorite, and I also met Jenks again at the Nurburgring 1000 kilometres - can't remember whether it was 70 or 71.

In those days travel ,like all else, was reasonably affordable. On one particular year, a friend joined me in my Mini Cooper S for one of our annual trips. We started off with the Targa Florio, arriving there the Thursday before the big race, and thus having plenty of time to mingle with the racers, particularly the British teams. We all spoke both English and Italian so we were always very handy interpreters for the Brits. From the Targa in Sicily we drove up Italy to Monaco for the GP, after which we carried on for the 3rd weekend at the Nurburgring for the 1000Ks. I was to meet Jenks on all 3 weekends.

Incidentally, the 3 week trip cost us our ferry passage Malta to Siracuse, which in those days was something like 6 quid, and we each took 150 pounds spending money. This paid for fuel, hotels, meals, and drinks, since our entrance fees for all 3 events were courtesy Dunlop. Try doing that today. You wouldn't even pay for the entrance ticket to one event.

But my first encounter with Jenks was much earlier than all that. In 1963, aged 16, I blew my first bit of saved pocket money going across to Syracuse to watch the Syracuse GP. It meant taking a plane from Malta to Catania, then a train back South to Syracuse. We booked into a camping site fairly close to the circuit, and lo and behold, we hadn't been there a couple of hours when a British registered VW Camper van towing a racing car turned up. The occupants of said Camper were Bob Anderson, his wife and young daughter, and one mechanic/friend. And this was Formula 1.

Naturally we got chatting, and our knowledge of Italian immediately came in handy. We stayed we Bob and the team throughout the weekend. Every time Bob went to the circuit we would join him, laying flat on his Lola's trailer between the wheels, covered by a tarpaulin. Bob would reverse the trailer into his pit garage, and we would then get out. Jenks was of course there throughout the weekend, and as Bob was the only British competitor there, Jenks would spend a fair bit of time with us, in Bob's pit.

Marriage and kids, and the fact that the Targa Florio lost it's World Championship status in 1973, meant far fewer trips to GPs, but I still kept in touch with Jenks via Motorsport magazine. He regularly was the subject of conversations when I was to meet British vintage car and motorcycle enthusiasts here in Malta in later years, and shortly before he died he sent me a lovely photograph, autographed, of himself at Shelsley, competing on his Norton. It hangs, framed, in my "den" at home, and brings back so many happy memories.

I have a couple of books by Jenks, but couldn't get hold of his biography, A passion for speed, until only last year, hill climb enthusiast and facebook friend Al Raynor found a copy and gave it to my son Josh, who was visiting Shelsley, to give me. It brought so much of those wonderful old days back, and I couldn't help thinking how "artificial" top flight racing has become these days.

#3 David Birchall

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Posted 21 June 2012 - 15:19

Great stories-thank you. :)

#4 john aston

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Posted 21 June 2012 - 16:54

Indeed- only one quibble- £150 for a 3week holiday was a lot of money then.Typical weekly salary was £20 which in modern terms puts the holiday at £3 k plus.Another eg- it cost me £2 to get into the 1971 Britsh GP- now- £150 ++?

#5 fbarrett

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Posted 21 June 2012 - 18:18

Where can this DVD be bought? I searched the MotorSport site plus Amazon, Duke Video, etc. but couldn't find it. I'm in the U.S. but would pay overseas shipping if necessary.

Thanks,

Frank

Edited by fbarrett, 21 June 2012 - 18:19.


#6 elansprint72

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Posted 21 June 2012 - 18:35

Just received my copy from:

Motorfilms

Edited by elansprint72, 21 June 2012 - 18:35.


#7 Gary Davies

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Posted 22 June 2012 - 08:48

I felt I should know about the story behind the pathetic and rotting S-Class Benz in the driveway (sic), but alas I cannot recall. Anyone care to enlighten me?


So I'm right in assuming no one knows the sad story behind the sad S-Klasse?


#8 timbo

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Posted 22 June 2012 - 09:46

Where can this DVD be bought? I searched the MotorSport site plus Amazon, Duke Video, etc. but couldn't find it. I'm in the U.S. but would pay overseas shipping if necessary.

Thanks,

Frank


For any Australians on the forum looking for the DVD, I ordered my copy from Pitstop Bookshop in Perth WA.


#9 Kpy

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Posted 22 June 2012 - 13:55

it cost me £2 to get into the 1971 Britsh GP- now- £150 ++?

£2.00 in 1971 is equivalent to £26.00 today, using RPI and figures produced by Jim O’Donoghue, Louise Goulding, and Grahame Allen in their paper "Consumer Price Inflation Since 1750".
Three day entry to Silverstone this year is £155.00.
I shall be at Le Mans for the Classic - 45€ for my three day (members) ticket including Paddock entry.

#10 fbarrett

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Posted 22 June 2012 - 15:26

Pete:

Thanks!

Frank

#11 fuzzi

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Posted 22 June 2012 - 18:29

I read that the S-Class pushed into the shrubbery around Rye Common Lodge was the result of Jenks setting out to buy a cheap runabout (I think he fancied a 2CV) but came across the Mercedes on a used car lot for very little money and bought that. He ran around in it for a while until it developed a major problem and he drove it out of the way until he could be bothered to sort it out.

When I went there in the early seventies his white E-Type was sitting on axle stands under some polythene sheets with the rear axle off and I'm sure his old Aunty Rover pick-up could be glimpsed among the trees on that dark December day.

#12 D-Type

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Posted 23 June 2012 - 08:51

I read that the S-Class pushed into the shrubbery around Rye Common Lodge was the result of Jenks setting out to buy a cheap runabout (I think he fancied a 2CV) but came across the Mercedes on a used car lot for very little money and bought that. He ran around in it for a while until it developed a major problem and he drove it out of the way until he could be bothered to sort it out.

When I went there in the early seventies his white E-Type was sitting on axle stands under some polythene sheets with the rear axle off and I'm sure his old Aunty Rover pick-up could be glimpsed among the trees on that dark December day.

That's corroborated by what Nigel Roebuck wrote in Jenks: A passion for motor sport:

... About three years ago, I arrived at his cottage in the Hampshire woods to find an ageing 1977 Mercedes 280SE standing around outside. bemused, I asked him where on earth it had come from.
"Well, it's rather difficult to explain," he replied. "I needed a new runabout, so i went out intending to spend about £1,100 on a Citroen 2CV and I saw the Merc on a garare forecourt. It seemed too good an opportunity to miss!" Jenks drove the Merc for a few months - despite the fact that it had a rattley camshaft - and then had a minor collision in a supermarket car park. It was, he reflected. a little too bog for his requirements after all. So it was pushed into the undergrowth in the grounds of his home and allowed to take its chances with the foliage.



#13 brakedisc

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Posted 25 June 2012 - 08:29

Loved the DVD and fantastic service from Motorfilms.



#14 Nick Planas

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Posted 01 July 2012 - 00:23

Just watching the DVD now. I have to say I LOVE the tour of Jenks' house - it sort of spooked me a bit because my father operated in a similar way but in the music world - and in a much smaller workshop, but with old round pin plugs and no circuit breakers... Doug's commentary "the electrical system in the house is an insurer's nightmare" rang so true!

Doug, you have a wonderful way of conveying Jenks' way of life as if he was living normally and the rest of us are a little... odd(!) and your affection for DSJ is so apparent.

I've never heard WB speaking before - what a fantastic interview "... Am I going on too much... you'll want to edit this one out..." (Implied answer, no you're not going on too much, and no we won't edit it out!) nor could I recall Jenks' voice, having only stood next to him once while older members of my family held a civilised conversation with him in the Brands paddock once upon a time.

Folks if you haven't got this DVD, you really should do. It arrived within 2 days of me placing the order and is worth ten times the asking price!

#15 Doug Nye

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Posted 02 July 2012 - 17:56

Thank you very much for all the above. I must confess that, being bushed after Goodwood and a terrible softie at times as well, Nick's kind comments have just brought a tear to my eyes.

DCN (aged 9)