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Alfa driver at '33 Le Mans


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#1 David Birchall

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Posted 10 December 2012 - 20:54

I have received the following request from a journalist friend for info:
"the [drivers of] ‘33 Alfa at Le Mans, who are a Frenchman, Desvignes who drove Bugattis with Norbert Mahe and at the Spa 24 hours and 10 hour races, which makes sense, and a Brit, Guy Don, of whom there is no internet record other than first in class and 6th overall in 1935 with the Alfa. It’s as if he dropped in from obscurity, came 6th at Le Mans and then vanished again. "

Could it be Kay Don?

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#2 D-Type

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Posted 10 December 2012 - 21:29

David Hodges in his Le Mans book (1963) has the 1.75 litre Alfa driven by Messrs J Desvignes and G Don, finishing 6th in 1835, but he identifies Don as French. He has no record of Kay Don competing at Le Mans.
Martin Krejki on his WSRP site lists Don as British and also lists him as the entrant of the car.

Edited by D-Type, 10 December 2012 - 21:30.


#3 Vitesse2

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Posted 10 December 2012 - 21:52

Stefan Ornerdal's site seems to suggest that it might be a nom de course for Tim Rose-Richards, although that seems dubious to me:

http://www.formula2.net/1935.htm

I very much doubt it's Kaye Don either. I don't think he ever regained his racing licence after the Frankie Tayler incident: I'd guess he had probably had his ordinary licence withdrawn after that. I know Luis Fontes was banned from driving for 10 years in similar circumstances.

There are three pictures of the car at http://www.lemans-hi...mp;equipa_seq=0 It's French-registered - 6114RJ2. The name "Jacky" on the side ought to ring bells somewhere?

There's also another picture of both drivers here: http://www.normannia...w...t=1&search= Go to page 5 of the paper.

#4 Vitesse2

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Posted 10 December 2012 - 21:59

Ah, right ... so we're talking about this then: http://www.rxautowor...RomeoFigoni.pdf

#5 SWB

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Posted 10 December 2012 - 22:03

Follow this thread on the Alfa Romeo BB

undefined

and the name 'Guy Don' seems to indicate a nickname for Guy Weisweiler.

But nothing is proven.

Steve



#6 Vitesse2

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Posted 10 December 2012 - 22:35

Follow this thread on the Alfa Romeo BB

undefined

and the name 'Guy Don' seems to indicate a nickname for Guy Weisweiler.

But nothing is proven.

Steve

I didn't plough through the whole AlfaBB thread, but has anybody explored the possibility it might be some sort of pun like "Jack Seylair" - "j'accélére"? "Guidon" is French for handlebar.

#7 David Birchall

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Posted 11 December 2012 - 01:02

Is it possible that Kaye Don's moustache resembled a handlebar to the French...?

Or do I aboyer a' the wrong l'arbre?

#8 Vitesse2

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Posted 11 December 2012 - 09:42

I think you are, David. Having back-tracked the sources used for the Alfa BB thread, it traces to a post on Autodiva by "Marc C" aka Marc Ceulemans aka "marcor" of this parish:

En recoupant 2 sources, j'en ai déduit que "Guy Don" s'appelait en réalité Guy Weisweiler.
La première est une liste d'engagés provisoires de ces 24 heures (la première fois il est mentionné G. Weisweiler, puis Guy Don).
La deuxième est le fait que Guy Weisweiler est présent aux funérailles de Jean Desvignes.

Guy Don n'est pas le pilote anglais bien connu Kaye Don, et tant pis pour pour les sites internet ... (vous savez ceux qui confondent Hellé Nice et Heldé).


http://www.autodiva....a8a6275d4fa0017

The race report in Motor Sport makes no mention of Guy Don being British - a pretty certain indication that he wasn't.

There are numerous examples of confusions like this which have been perpetrated over the years. It only takes one writer to make an assumption and all the rest follow like sheep. Marc appears to have gone back to primary sources there, whereas somebody somewhere has probably just looked at "G Don" and thought 'Oh, that must be a typo for K Don' and changed it. A few years later, someone else discovers it should be "G Don" and changes it back without reasearching it or querying the nationality. Thus we suddenly have a new British driver called Guy Don! In the age of t'interweb it all just spreads that much faster!

As another example - I recently researched the Robson brothers (George and Hal). Most websites will tell you they were both Canadians. George was born in England, Hal in Canada. Both moved to the USA in the late 1920s. Neither was ever a Canadian citizen and both declared that they were British when they applied for US citizenship.

#9 Robin Fairservice

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Posted 11 December 2012 - 16:44

I think you are, David. Having back-tracked the sources used for the Alfa BB thread, it traces to a post on Autodiva by "Marc C" aka Marc Ceulemans aka "marcor" of this parish:



http://www.autodiva....a8a6275d4fa0017

The race report in Motor Sport makes no mention of Guy Don being British - a pretty certain indication that he wasn't.

There are numerous examples of confusions like this which have been perpetrated over the years. It only takes one writer to make an assumption and all the rest follow like sheep. Marc appears to have gone back to primary sources there, whereas somebody somewhere has probably just looked at "G Don" and thought 'Oh, that must be a typo for K Don' and changed it. A few years later, someone else discovers it should be "G Don" and changes it back without reasearching it or querying the nationality. Thus we suddenly have a new British driver called Guy Don! In the age of t'interweb it all just spreads that much faster!

As another example - I recently researched the Robson brothers (George and Hal). Most websites will tell you they were both Canadians. George was born in England, Hal in Canada. Both moved to the USA in the late 1920s. Neither was ever a Canadian citizen and both declared that they were British when they applied for US citizenship.


Quite correct. British residents in Canada were Canadians until after WW 2 when Canadian citizenship was created.


#10 David Birchall

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Posted 11 December 2012 - 21:09

I think you are, David. Having back-tracked the sources used for the Alfa BB thread, it traces to a post on Autodiva by "Marc C" aka Marc Ceulemans aka "marcor" of this parish:



http://www.autodiva....a8a6275d4fa0017

The race report in Motor Sport makes no mention of Guy Don being British - a pretty certain indication that he wasn't.

There are numerous examples of confusions like this which have been perpetrated over the years. It only takes one writer to make an assumption and all the rest follow like sheep. Marc appears to have gone back to primary sources there, whereas somebody somewhere has probably just looked at "G Don" and thought 'Oh, that must be a typo for K Don' and changed it. A few years later, someone else discovers it should be "G Don" and changes it back without reasearching it or querying the nationality. Thus we suddenly have a new British driver called Guy Don! In the age of t'interweb it all just spreads that much faster!

As another example - I recently researched the Robson brothers (George and Hal). Most websites will tell you they were both Canadians. George was born in England, Hal in Canada. Both moved to the USA in the late 1920s. Neither was ever a Canadian citizen and both declared that they were British when they applied for US citizenship.


Many thanks Richard. I have passed on this info to my friend. Hopefully he won't take credit for it...

#11 David Birchall

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Posted 12 December 2012 - 01:00

Follow this thread on the Alfa Romeo BB

undefined

and the name 'Guy Don' seems to indicate a nickname for Guy Weisweiler.

But nothing is proven.

Steve


Thanks Steve. It does look like it was Weisweiler all along.

#12 SWB

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Posted 16 December 2012 - 08:25

Coincidentally the current Dec 2012 issue of the AROC magazine has an article about the very car, written by Simon Moore. He also questions the name 'JACKY' on the bonnet and confirms it was not Kaye Don, although a real name is not given.

Steve

Edited by SWB, 16 December 2012 - 08:25.