Period Delights from Michael Cole
In this issue we have another selection of period photos from top tennis photographer and E-type owner, Michael Cole. We are sharing them because they are rather different and have a delightful period atmosphere.
Michael comments, of the lady featured, “I met Anthea at Beckenham Art School when she was attending there too in either late ‘62 or early ‘63 ... she was my first girlfriend.”
This is, “Anthea Rice at Beckenham Tennis Week, sitting beside Arthur Cole's 300 SL Gullwing in 1962 or ‘63. Photo was taken on my Brownie 127 (which I still have) and the digital image is a scan taken from a very small 3" x 2" print, as I do not know where the original negs are now.”
Then we have, “Anthea standing beside an MGA belonging to a local friend Mike Stanley. Car is parked in Croydon Road, Beckenham outside Mike's house, early ‘60s.”
Above: Anthea & Gullwing
Above: Anthea & MGA
Of the Mercedes-Benz 300SLs, “My Dad's Gullwing RXW 7 and Michael Sargent's car WPG 4 parked in the drive at Michael and Peter's parents’ house in Surrey. Pic taken Feb 1961.
"Pics taken by either myself when I was 16 or my Dad - I really don't remember, but I still have a roll of film on file of both these cars together. Here is one frame.
“Pic actually taken on a Rolleiflex twin lens reflex camera using 120 roll film - sorry about that tech stuff - had to say it !”
Michael Sargent, a most charming gentleman, is the brother of Le Mans racer Peter.
Of the Lancia Aurelia, Mike Cole states, “I came across this photo amongst a collection that I bought some years ago. My dear Dad had an identical car TPL 7 in the late 50s which I believe was raced by Mike Hawthorn.”
And now for a couple of real gems. Of these, Michael comments: “Found in a box of photos that I have kept since I was a schoolboy. Have no idea where they came from. Certainly not taken by me. Very poor quality snapshots but maybe of some significance?”
These are photos of no lesser event than the XK’s very first competitive outing - the newly-inaugurated One-Hour Production Car Race at Silverstone in August, 1949. Yes, they are very pixillated but we think they are fabulous.
EXTRACT FROM ‘JAGUAR SPORTS RACING CARS’ by Philip Porter
“It was decided,” recalls ‘Lofty’ [England], “that [Wally] Hassan could prepare the cars and some old boy called England could be pit manager or something.” The three cars, respectively painted red, white and blue, were lent to Peter Walker [number 8], Leslie Johnson [number 7] and Prince ‘Bira’ [number 6], drivers who had been selected by ‘Lofty’.
The race was a fine show of superiority by the new Jaguars. Initially ‘Bira’ led Johnson and Walker until Johnson hit a spinning Jowett Javellin, causing the XK also to spin and drop back to fifth. ‘Bira’ then spun off and his race was finished, as ‘Lofty’ explains: “That body on HKV 455 [a prototype] was a bit of a lash-up - the tyre wall fouled on the wing strut and wore through”. However, Johnson and Walker went on to record an excellent one-two, and the XK’s illustrious competition career had begun in the finest fashion.