The Farnham Flyer

Ferrari, klemcoll, silverstone, Mike Hawthorn

Here is Mike Hawthorn with a Scuderia Ferrari 500F2 during the Daily Express International Trophy meeting at Silverstone on May 9, 1953. The International Trophy was a non-Championship race but by being promoted by the British Racing Drivers Club nevertheless usually attracted a broad Formula 1 entry. For the 1953 event Scuderia Ferrari sent only this one car for Hawthorn although there were two similar private entries, one for Anglo-American Tom Cole whose car was on loan from Écurie Francorchamps in Belgium and the second run by Irishman Bobbie Baird.

There were 46 entries in total so the race was divided into two qualifying heats and a final, all of which gave the spectators more for their money and attracted a huge crowd. All drivers who finished their heat would have a place in the final. The first heat was won by “Toulo” de Graffenried with his Maserati A6GCM while Hawthorn won heat two, but only by one second ahead of Ken Wharton’s hard driven Cooper-Bristol.

The final saw four different cars on the front row, being Hawthorn on pole then Wharton, de Graffenried and Stirling Moss in the Cooper-Alta with which he had come second in heat one. De Graffenried slightly jumped the start and was assessed a one minute penalty. He led the first three laps until passed by Hawthorn before he withdrew just before half distance seeing no chance given the penalty and Hawthorn’s dominant speed. However, he and Hawthorn would share fastest lap. Hawthorn, earning his local town nickname of The Farnham Flyer, thereafter continued in full control to the win. Behind him were Tony Rolt and Roy Salvadori, both with Connaughts.

Photo by Tom March ©The Klemantaski Collection –

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