ONE hundred years ago, on Saturday February 15, 1913, at the now-legendary race track at Brooklands in Weybridge, Percy Lambert, driving a 25hp ‘Invincible Talbot’, became the first person on land to travel over 100 miles in one hour.
To mark the centenary of this extraordinary achievement, on Saturday February 16 this year a group of Talbots and other historic cars will attempt to cover an aggregate 103.76 miles (the exact distance covered by Lambert) at Brooklands.
Working with Brooklands Museum to orchestrate the celebrations will be the Sunbeam Talbot Darracq Register, whose members will be bringing many of the Talbots to run on the day.
The cars will line up on the Railway Straight of the historic circuit close to the original record timing line and at precisely 12.43pm (the exact time that Lambert began his run). They will move off onto the adjacent Mercedes-Benz World circuit where, over the next hour, they will attempt to accumulate that magic total of 103.76 miles before 1.43pm.
The participants in the re-enactment, which will mainly be Talbots, with a few ‘guests’ such as the Museum’s Napier Railton, will be on display at the Museum for the rest of the day.
Included will be a replica of Percy Lambert’s record-breaking Talbot, which is being constructed by Ian Polson, Des Burnett’s 25/50 (the model on which Percy Lambert’s racer was based) and Talbots from the Brooklands Museum Racing Team which successfully raced at Classic Le Mans last year, demonstrating Talbot’s racers 18 years on.
The Earl of Shrewsbury, whose great-grandfather ran the Talbot company and was in charge of Lambert’s record attempt, will be present on the day, and among the special Percy Lambert memorabilia on display will be a newly-completed replica of Lambert’s original Brooklands racing silks.
To add to the flavour of this unique celebration, Brooklands Museum will be making all drivers of pre-war cars (and especially of pre-WW1 Edwardian cars) welcome, with arrangements for them to enter the Museum site via the Campbell Gate off Brooklands Road.
General visitor parking will be in The Heights off Wellington Way. Entry prices are £10 for adults, £9 for seniors and students, £5.50 for children aged 5-16 (under-5s free) and £27 for a family ticket (2 adults and up to 3 children).
Further details about the STD Register’s weekend of celebrations are available from Stephen Lally at firstname.lastname@example.org or 01442 863526.