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Major Tony Rolt MC (merged)


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#51 David McKinney

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Posted 12 February 2008 - 10:21

I'm sure DSJ would have seen it as a correctly captioned picture of Rolt ;)
It doesn't claim to show the Le Mans winning car

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#52 Mal9444

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Posted 12 February 2008 - 11:28

Originally posted by David McKinney
I'm sure DSJ would have seen it as a correctly captioned picture of Rolt ;)
It doesn't claim to show the Le Mans winning car


But you'll admit, David, that it is hardly an award-winning example of the caption-writer's art. ;)

#53 David McKinney

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Posted 12 February 2008 - 13:06

I've seen worse
That one says it's a picture of Rolt, the 1953 Le Mans winner
And it is
What else would you say if you were given a space less than 40 characters for a caption?
(And, in case I'm beginning to appear defensive, I had nothing to do with the caption)

#54 Mal9444

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Posted 12 February 2008 - 13:34

Originally posted by David McKinney
I've seen worse

What else would you say if you were given a space less than 40 characters for a caption?
(And, in case I'm beginning to appear defensive, I had nothing to do with the caption)


David - I don't want to make a big issue out of it all. But since you ask, I (having spent about a third of my working life writing captions for pictures) would probably have written something along the lines of:

Tony Rolt in the A-type Connaught.

(33 characters, includng spaces.)

This at least connects the caption with the subject of the picture, and informs the reader as to the identity of the car, something that not all readers of the obit might necessarily know, but which many might like to.

Agreed the caption is not WRONG - but it is pretty sloppy stuff.

In any case, my principal reason for mentioning it was noting that the picture in the online obit had changed from the picture in the newspaper. That's all.

#55 David McKinney

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Posted 12 February 2008 - 14:57

I don't want to make an issue either, Malcolm.
But I doubt if Telegraph readers would know or care what an A-Type Connaught is/was.
And accepting that the heading merely gives the man's name, the caption at least says what he was famous for (or one of the things he was famous for)

#56 Mal9444

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Posted 12 February 2008 - 17:19

Fair enough, David - we can agree to differ. :kiss:

#57 ry6

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Posted 13 February 2008 - 11:16

As much as any other, I'd think...

It's only from 1950 onwards that the distinction, 'World Championship GP' can be drawn, so the AGP of 1939 is a Grand Prix by any estimation.

That the winner did such a good job, that the circuit was so fantastic and that he's still alive are icing on the cake. Looking forward to October and seeing him again!


_________________________________________________________________________________

Les Miller, in his 90's now, raced in the pre-war South African Grands Prix.

He still drives a car and scurries around like a 60 year old!He has a sharp recall too.

#58 Mal9444

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Posted 13 February 2008 - 13:09

Something I asked David, but which for some reason seems to have dropped off my post:

If the '53 hangover story was so very Absolutely Untrue, whence came it? Simply an extremely colourful Duncan Hamilton story?

#59 Ray Bell

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Posted 14 February 2008 - 10:46

Thanks to Terry McGrath, who is very deeply involved with Jaguar history, here's a picture of Major Tony Rolt... he points out that the initials on the briefcase (clearly seen in the full size scan) are 'APRR'...

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#60 ensign14

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Posted 14 February 2008 - 11:11

Originally posted by Mal9444
If the '53 hangover story was so very Absolutely Untrue, whence came it? Simply an extremely colourful Duncan Hamilton story?

Probably...it's a memorable yarn.

#61 Paul Rochdale

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Posted 14 February 2008 - 12:32

Are a Bristol Freighter from Silver City Airways from Lydd. Those were the days.

#62 Odseybod

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Posted 14 February 2008 - 14:12

Originally posted by Paul Rochdale
Are a Bristol Freighter from Silver City Airways from Lydd. Those were the days.


Or Suthend? Seem to remember the choices were Lydd-Le Touquet or Southend-Calais, with every landing an adventure due to the varying weight distribution in the cargo area, according to where the heaviest car of the three or four was loaded. Happy days indeed.

#63 cpbell

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Posted 14 February 2008 - 15:59

Very sad, RIP. :(
Autosport have published a photo of the start of the GP d'Europe of 1950 detailing every starter's year of birth and death; interestingly, Maj. APR Rolt was the second-youngest.

#64 Richard Jenkins

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Posted 14 February 2008 - 19:18

Originally posted by cpbell
Very sad, RIP. :(
Autosport have published a photo of the start of the GP d'Europe of 1950 detailing every starter's year of birth and death; interestingly, Maj. APR Rolt was the second-youngest.


Y'know, I was just looking at this the other day, because I wondered to myself, who was the youngest of the lot & of all those drivers, died they all die young, or what have you?

In fact, it was Geoff Crossley, who even then was 29 & died in 2002. A fair amount of the drivers died of natural causes, and a lot of them were over 75 when passing away too. There wasn't one driver who died early that would be expected to still be alive, on average.

Then I compared that to the 1951 Indy 500, of which no living starter remains. The amount of drivers who "should/could" be alive (ie 85 or under) was about 6 or 7. 65% of that 1951 grid were dead before 31st Dec 1959, and at least 4 or 5 were dead before 1952.

So, when you look at the fact Major Rolt was 31 when he started that race & he was the 2nd youngest (and then by a year or two), then we've one quite well to only have lost everyone in 2008, and not long before.


One thing about that article though - didn't Peter Walker start the race & Rolt take over? The caption is pointing an arrow to Rolt, but I think it should actually be Walker in the car?

#65 Richard Jenkins

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Posted 14 February 2008 - 19:27

By the way, for those of you who need details such as this, Rolt died in Warwick.

Decent obit from the local paper.

#66 simon drabble

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Posted 15 February 2008 - 08:12

He was by anyone's accounts a true British hero - sad to hear that the Le Mans story wasn't true as I have always thought it a great story (even though I dont drink) - I thought I heard it from a family member on the Hamilton side.....
The Rolt talent passed down to his son's - one of them trialed for Chelsea whilst at Slough Grammer

#67 Allan Lupton

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Posted 15 February 2008 - 09:43

Originally posted by Odseybod


Or Suthend? Seem to remember the choices were Lydd-Le Touquet or Southend-Calais, with every landing an adventure due to the varying weight distribution in the cargo area, according to where the heaviest car of the three or four was loaded. Happy days indeed.


IIRC Southend-Calais was Channel Air Bridge - certainly was by the time of the Carvair (DC4 conversion)
I used Lydd-Le Touquet and the chap in the uniform hat seemed to enjoy a quick blast across the apron in anything sporty so would have really liked the C-type. One thing, though, was that when I went they drove on and reversed off, so I think the photo is entirely for publicity, rather than reality.
It seems to be the 1953 Le Mans winner so I guess it was taken en-route for home after winning. No nonsense about taking the comp numbers off when driving on the public roads . . . .

#68 Mal9444

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Posted 15 February 2008 - 10:11

Originally posted by Allan Lupton


It seems to be the 1953 Le Mans winner so I guess it was taken en-route for home after winning. No nonsense about taking the comp numbers off when driving on the public roads . . . .


If so, they've replaced the broken windscreen. Didn't DH suffer a 'bird strike' - and a blodied nose? Or is that another colourful myth?

It is rather sad having all these childhood-hero myths de-bunked. You'll be telling me next there's no such person as Santa Claus ):


There is another nice picture of Major Rolt and Lt-Cdr(?) Hamilton here: http://www.jag-lover.../hamrlt53_l.jpg

about to do a lap of honour at the British GP in the same car.

#69 Allan Lupton

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Posted 15 February 2008 - 11:53

Originally posted by Mal9444


If so, they've replaced the broken windscreen. Didn't DH suffer a 'bird strike' - and a bloodied nose? Or is that another colourful myth?


No they haven't, it's the plastic screen that has the bit missing.
The Brooklands screen can clearly be seen in all the post-bird photos in "Touch Wood"

#70 Mal9444

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Posted 15 February 2008 - 12:04

:up:

#71 Mal9444

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Posted 16 February 2008 - 09:03

Originally posted by Allan Lupton


No they haven't, it's the plastic screen that has the bit missing.
The Brooklands screen can clearly be seen in all the post-bird photos in "Touch Wood"


Bit confused here, and about to display the very narrow limits of my knowledge. Again. Umm. - which is the Brookland's screen? Is it what I call an 'aero screen'?

The screen to which I was referring is the small semi-circular screen immediately in front of the driving position and behind a wider lower screen.

Looking, now that I have it to hand, at my own copy of Touch Wood I confirm to myself that it is that screen that was broken in the bird-strike:the screen that I would call an aero-screen. It is broken vertically down the middle with only the left-hand side upright. This can be seen on the dust-cover picture, and in the pictures on pp 71, 72, 73, 74, 75 and, of the car finishing, 76.

In the picture posted by Ray of the car on the aircraft ramp and posited by Allan to be the car on its return from le Mans this screen is intact. Hence my observation that they must have replaced the broken windscreen.

Why did they not replace it during the race, like Mercedes did with Moss when a stone broke the similar screen on his 196 in the Italian Grand Pirx at Monza in 1955? Did the Le Mans rules prohibit such replacements? (I recall reading that Hawthorn and Bueb were warned by Lofty England that if they did not like the modification they were about to make to the 1955 D-type they would have to live with it since no spares were carried.)

#72 Allan Lupton

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Posted 16 February 2008 - 10:21

Yes, I was wrong about the screens.:o
Looking at other pictures I see that now.
There was a curved plastic screen which had a cutaway in the centre, which I had taken as the broken bit and behind that was the thing I referred to as the Brooklands aeroscreen which was indeed only half there in the racing photos.
In 1951 they had Brooklands screens only.
I was going to write that the reason I called it a Brooklands aeroscreen was that Vic Derrington called them that in his advertisements, but I looked it up and he just called them Aero Screens (50/- + 2/- p&p). Paul Beck calls them that these days, and he must have got the name from wherever I did.

#73 Mal9444

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Posted 16 February 2008 - 10:29

Phew!

I am so used to getting beaten up here (usually by David :rolleyes: ) that I just assumed that I was wrong, again.

:wave:

#74 Odseybod

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Posted 16 February 2008 - 12:19

Originally posted by Allan Lupton


IIRC Southend-Calais was Channel Air Bridge - certainly was by the time of the Carvair (DC4 conversion)


I'm sure you're right, Alan, Just remember as a lad the thrill of flying from Southend by Bristol Freighter in the 1960s and somehow assumed they were still Silver City then - clearly not. The new-fangled Carvairs seemed very dee-loox when they arrived on the same route a little later.

As a penance (and without wishing to cause undue thread drift), here's a rather bad pic I took (I think at Calais) when the two types were over-lapping in service. Way to go, as they say.

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#75 ReWind

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Posted 16 February 2008 - 13:29

Originally posted by cpbell
Autosport have published a photo of the start of the GP d'Europe of 1950 detailing every starter's year of birth and death; interestingly, Maj. APR Rolt was the second-youngest.

Originally posted by Richie Jenkins
One thing about that article though - didn't Peter Walker start the race & Rolt take over? The caption is pointing an arrow to Rolt, but I think it should actually be Walker in the car?

The small bios also make for a couple of fine riddles. Guess who's the subject:

Succumbed to injuries sustained when he crashed at Le Mans in 1956

Pre-war veteran lost his life after suffering injuries in a crash in the 1952 Mille Miglia


Is it really so difficult to get the rough facts right? :mad:

#76 Eric Dunsdon

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Posted 27 February 2008 - 15:24

Major Rolt was a boyhood hero of mine. I had no idea then of his War Record, to me, he was the man who drove Rob Walkers ERA-Delage incredibly quickly!. I wrote The Major a fan letter at the end of 1951 to which he kindly replied, also sending me a photograph of himself in the ERA-Delage at Goodwood. At my first ever race meeting at Silverstone the following year I was delighted to see him finish second in the international Trophy Race in a 'one off' drive for HMW. I was lucky enough to get Major Rolt's autograph again at a Silverstone Festival a few years ago. He actually apologised for his hand being "A little shaky". He was a great man and is still my hero.