GRR’s go-to man for Edwardian automotive excitement has a new plaything. After his heroic resurrection of the Fiat S76 ‘Beast of Turin’, Duncan Pittaway has turned his attention to a beast of a different breed: an evocation of a 1913 Monarch racing car.
And this time he’s going to race it, at Goodwood. The car is one of a packed field of Brooklands-era racing giants entered in the inaugural S.F. Edge Trophy race at the 74th Members’ Meeting in March – a race that promises to be the noisiest, smokiest and certainly most flame-filled event ever held at the Motor Circuit.
We’re not sure if Duncan ever drives a car that doesn’t spit flames, but with its aeroplane engine providing grunt aplenty this Monarch certainly does. As Duncan tells us in the video, one problem of driving this car on today’s roads is that modern cars get fried when he puts his foot down and blasts past them…
The sound, the fury and Duncan’s passion for Edwardian racers all comes across in our video, a nice little taster of what’s to come at 74MM. The car, restored 35 years ago to evoke one of the original Monarch racecars, is in some ways quite modern – complete with quadrant gearchange pattern – but in others, like the transmission brake, definitely of the period. As are the wicker chairs – from the same aeroplane the engine came form!
The appeal of cars like this for Duncan?
‘You can have more fun in this at 30mph on a roundabout than you could ever have at 200mph in a supercar on a German autobahn.’
We’ll see you at the Members’ Meeting Duncan!
Photography by Tom Shaxson