So, to return to the subject of yesterday’s entry, Sunday morning was spent at the start of the annual London-Brighton Veteran Car Run in Hyde Park. Ridiculously early, in fact – the whole thing kicked off at around 7.00. Did you know there’s a 7.00 in the morning on Sundays? Me neither. They must have brought it in with daylight savings or something.
Now, I know what you’re thinking – what’s a cool and urbane-type fellow like me doing watching really old cars on a freezing cold Sunday morning, when all decent right-thinking folk are still a-bed?
Well, call it sentimentality. I love the London-Brighton run. I love the cold, I love the being-really-sleepy, the long walk to actually get to the start line because there’s no free parking spaces nearby, the realisation that my footwear is entirely inappropriate, it’s all part of the experience for me. If it was comfortable, it would be the Brighton run, you know?
Sadly, despite the unholiness of the hour, we managed to miss the very start of the run, so I got few photos of the really early vehicles. I even missed my favourite, the frankly insane Salvesen steam carriage.
Nevertheless, I hope the photos I did get convey something of the atmosphere of the event. Note the incredible variety of vehicles in those early days. Makes most steampunk artists look frankly unimaginative.
This guy wasn't taking part in the run. He just had a penny farthing with him. Awesome!
Another steamer. They're surprisingly quiet, you know. I want one.
These farm-buggy-looking things are Oldsmobiles. Awful lot of them on the run.
- This here is a steam car. It is powered by steam.
I love the weathered paintwork on this one.
Believe it or not, this is an electric car.
Bloody traffic jams. I blame Boris.
Incredibly, the man in the middle survived.
- The boys from Imperial College travel in style.
I love these little Humberettes. If I can't have a steam car, I think I'd like one of these.
I'm not normally a fan of Mercedes, but hot damn.
- What I find interesting about this, apart from the colour scheme, is the fact that it has solid tyres and springs in the spokes of its wheels. Unusual evolutionary path there.
The Mercedes is like the Rolls Royce of automobiles.
The mighty Milwaukee steamer suffers from engine trouble. Not to worry, it was back to work in a jiffy.
A few stragglers hurry to catch up...
... and it's time to go home.