Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Moss Races in Wales

Although Stirling Moss dominated races all over the world, his one excursion west of Offa's Dyke back in 1952 was hardly a success. Driving Swansea born manufacturer Cyril Kieft's works car, Stirling crashed out, while trying to avoid a melee of spinning cars, on the very first corner of his heat of the 500cc Championship of Wales race.

Alan Brown's Cooper ran over the Kieft, clipping Stirling with its wheel. Luclily the boy wonder was unhurt and a great career didn't meet a premature end. Of course the crowd were disappointed at not seeing the star driver in action, so an invitation race was hastily arranged which Brown proceeded to win, with Moss, in a borrowed Kieft, finishing third.

The Championship race itself was won by George Wicken, with Brown second and Les Leston third, all in Coopers. Although he did complete in a couple of non-championship F1 races, Wicken is one of the forgotten men of Fiftes motor sport. A steady driver, the most unusual thing about him seems to have been his membership of an obscure Victorian religious sect called the Jezreelites.

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