1927 Bugatti Type 35B Grand Prix

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Car Highlights

A Historically Significant Grand Prix Bugatti

Extensive Prewar and Postwar Competition History

Multiple Speed Record Holder at Brooklands with Captain George Eyston

Retains Matching-Numbers Engine per Factory Records

Retained in Current Family Ownership for over 40 Years

Documented by Noted Bugatti Historian Mark Morris

Technical Specs

2,262 CC SOHC Inline 8-Cylinder Engine

Roots-Type Supercharger

Single Solex 52mm Carburetor

Estimated 130 BHP at 5,500 RPM

4-Speed Manual Gearbox

4-Wheel Cable-Operated Mechanical Drum Brakes

Front Rigid Axle with Semi-Elliptical Leaf Springs and Shock Absorbers

Rear Live Axle with Reversed Quarter-Elliptical Leaf Springs and Shock Absorbers

Leo d’Erlanger, London, England (acquired new via Ettore Bugatti Automobiles in April 1927)

Captain George Eyston, London, England (acquired from the above in 1927)

Clifford Penn Hughes, England (acquired from the above in 1930)

RL “Jack” Duller, England (acquired from the above in 1933)

Jack Fairman, England (acquired in 1946)

Peter Stubberfield, England (acquired from the above 1946)

Frank Wall, England (acquired from the above 1963)

Current Owner (acquired from the above 1982)

Course de Formule Libre de l'AFC, Montlhéry, June 1927, Eyston

Brooklands, June 1927, Eyston, No. 3 (The Brooklands Gold Vase – 53rd 100 mph Short Handicap)

Brooklands, June 1927, Eyston, No. 3 (38th Lightning Long Handicap)

Brooklands, June 1927, Eyston, No. 1 (Winner’s Handicap)

Brooklands, August 1927, Eyston, No. 1

Grand Prix La Baule, August 1927, Eyston

Brooklands, November 1927, Eyston (Charity Meeting)

Brooklands, April 1929, Eyston, No. 3 (120 mph Badge Achieved)

Brooklands, April 1929, Eyston, No. 2 (120 mph Badge Achieved)

Brooklands, April 1929, Eyston, No. 4 (120 mph Badge Achieved)

Brooklands, May 1929, Eyston, No. 2

Brooklands, May 1929, Eyston, No. 2

Brooklands, May 1929, Eyston, No. 3

Brooklands, May 1931, Penn-Hughes, No. 1

Brooklands, June 1931, Penn-Hughes, No. 1 (120 mph Badge Achieved)

Brooklands, June 1931, Penn-Hughes, No. 1 (120 mph Badge Achieved)

Brooklands, October 1931, Penn-Hughes, No. 6

Brooklands, March 1932, Penn-Hughes, No. 4 (Norfolk Lightning Short Handicap)

Brooklands, March 1932, Penn-Hughes, No. 6 (Norfolk Lightning Long Handicap)

Brooklands, March 1932, Penn-Hughes, No. 2 (Norfolk Lightning Mountain Handicap)

IV Grand Prix de Monaco, Monte Carlo, April 1932, Penn-Hughes, No.6 (Accident in Practice)

Brooklands, March 1933, Bowes, No. 2

Brooklands, March 1933, Bowes, No. 3

Brooklands, March 1933, Bowes, No. 3

Brooklands, June 1933, Duller, No. 3 (First Cobham Mountain Handicap)

Brooklands, June 1933, Duller, No. 4 (Cobham Senior Long Handicap)

Brooklands, June 1933, Duller, No. 2

Brooklands, October 1933, Duller, No. 3 (BARC Senior Long Handicap. Accident)

Brooklands, October 1933, Duller, No. 5 (DNS)

Brighton Speed Trials, September 1934, Duller, No. 98

Brooklands, October 1934, Duller, No. 7

Brooklands, October 1934, Duller, No. 1

Brooklands, April 1935, Duller, No. 12 (3rd Heat of the British Mountain Handicap)

Brooklands, April 1935, Duller, No. 12 (Final of the British Mountain Handicap)

Brooklands, September 1938, Taylour, No. 15 (4th Dunlop Road Handicap)

Brooklands, September 1938, Taylour, No. 34

Brooklands, October 1938, Taylour, No. 17

All achieved at Brooklands with George Eyston between 1927–1929

1km (Standing Start) – 71.56 mph
1km (Flying Start) – 117.17 mph
1 Mile (Standing Start) – 81.26 mph
1 Mile (Flying Start) – 113.81 mph
5 Km (Flying Start) – 124.57 mph
5 Miles (Flying Start) – 124.35 mph
10km (Flying Start) – 124.27 mph
10 Miles (Flying Start) – 123.78 mph
50km (Standing Start) – 107.03 mph

This vehicle competed in over 65 events between 1946 and 1988. The following is a selection of those races.

Shelsley Walsh Hill Climb, June 1946, Fairman, No. 75
Prescott Hill Climb, July 1946, Stubberfield, No.83
Brighton Speed Trials, September 1946, Stubberfield, No.55
Shelsley Walsh Hill Climb, June 1947, Stubberfield, No.66
Prescott Hill Climb, July 1947, Stubberfield, No.86
Brighton Speed Trials, September 1948, Stubberfield, No.14
Shelsley Walsh Hill Climb, September 1949, Stubberfield, No.56
Shelsley Walsh Hill Climb, September 1950, Stubberfield, No.41
Bo’Ness Hill Climb, January 1951, Stubberfield, No. 100
Prescott Hill Climb, July 1951, Stubberfield, No.52 (Hill Record 46.54 Seconds)
Prescott Hill Climb, May 1952, Stubberfield, No. 71
ECME, Snetterton, April 1953, Stubberfield, No. 85
Shelsley Walsh Hill Climb, August 1954, Stubberfield, No.84
Staverton Sprint, May 1956, Stubberfield, No.42
Shelsley Walsh Hill Climb, August 1957, Stubberfield, No.83
Prescott Hill Climb, September 1967, Wall No.120
VSCC Silverstone, July 1975, Moffatt
Prescott Hill Climb, May 1988, Majzub, No.171

Considered by many to be the finest racing car of its period and one of the most enduring automotive designs of all time, the Type 35 Grand Prix is the definitive Bugatti.

Unveiled at the 1924 European Grand Prix held at Lyon, Ettore Bugatti’s Type 35 was immediately hailed as a modern marvel, combining advanced engineering with masterful aesthetic design. Equipped with an overhead-cam eight-cylinder engine, the original Type 35 produced 95 hp, an impressive figure for a normally aspirated two-liter machine of the era. The car’s extremely lightweight chassis showcased Bugatti’s revolutionary hollow front axle and cast aluminum wheels with integrated brake drums, while the main mechanical components were clothed in a streamlined two-seat aluminum body that was both elegant and purposeful. The entire car was beautifully made, from its horseshoe radiator to its tapered tail, with scraped or polished metal finishes and fine detailing throughout.

Bugatti built several different variations of the Type 35 through 1931, when the model was replaced by the Miller-inspired twin-cam Type 51. Early Type 35s generally followed the pattern set by the original Lyon cars, while more powerful supercharged models of varying engine capacity appeared in 1926. Altogether, the Bugatti works in Molsheim, France produced approximately 350 Type 35s.

A credit to technical achievements and versatile performance, Bugatti Type 35s dominated racing throughout the late 1920s and early 1930s, with over 1,000 wins in a variety of competitions. It has been said that the Type 35 averaged 14 race wins per week and, by the close of 1926, the model set 47 individual speed records. The Type 35 took the Grand Prix World Championship title in 1926, won the Monaco Grand Prix three times, and the Targa Florio five times. Bugatti’s success attracted the most famous drivers of the day – Nuvolari, Varzi, Divo, Costantini, Chiron, Dreyfus, and Williams all contributed to the legend of the Type 35 Grand Prix.

In April 1927 the delivery of chassis 4848 to Leo d’Erlanger in London, was to be the start of an outstanding competition history. One of the great speed kings of the prewar era and later World Land Speed Record Holder, Captain George Eyston was the driving force in 4848’s early success. He held nine Class D records by November 1927, four of which he would go on to challenge again in 1929. Alongside his record attempts, Eyston raced the car in 14 international events between 1927 and 1929. During 1927, he ran at the French La Baule Grand Prix and the Course de Formule Libre de l’ACF at Montlhéry, however, Brooklands was his preferred circuit. Eyston was awarded his BARC 120 mph badge with the car on April 1, 1929.

The proven speed achieved with the car must have been a great attraction to Clifford Penn-Hughes, who at the age of 25 became its next custodian in 1930. An active sportsman, Penn-Hughes competed in numerous events including Le Mans in 1933 and 1934 driving an Aston Martin. This was his second Bugatti Grand Prix and it certainly offered more power and performance than the Type 35A in which he competed in the 1931 Monaco Grand Prix. The speed and handling of the car led Penn-Hughes to match Eyston’s achievement and gain a 120 mph Brookland badge in recognition of the 122.97 mph speed he achieved on June 20, 1931 in the BARC Racing Long Handicap. The attraction of the Monaco Grand Prix arose again in 1932 and 4848 was entered, though a crash in practice ended the chance of racing in the main event.

For the early part of the 1933 season, RL “Bobby” Bowes was in the driver’s seat and entered three events at Brooklands in March including the Weybridge Senior Mountain Handicap, which he won with an average speed of 71.15 mph. Around mid-1933, 4848 passed on to RL “Jack” Duller, younger brother of leading driver and Bentley Boy, George. Duller was a partner in the firm Street & Duller, a tuning specialist and provider of fine automobiles that handled the likes of Alfa Romeo and Duesenberg. The car was entered in nine events at Brooklands over the following three seasons. It is perhaps the BARC Brooklands meeting on October 21, 1933 that 4848 is best remembered in the motoring press. Duller was trying to overtake RJ Munday when he crashed the car and hit a telegraph pole on the inside of the circuit. Thankfully, Duller survived the experience getting away with just a “shaking.” The car was repaired and fitted with a factory replacement chassis frame. In its repaired state, it was seen back on the track in the hands of Fay Taylour for two events toward the end of 1938.

This active prewar work horse was to continue competing in the postwar era. Having been demobilized from the Army, Jack Fairman – who in 1951 drove a works C-Type Jaguar at Le Mans with Stirling Moss and entered 13 Formula 1 Grands Prix – took 4848 to Shelsley Walsh Hill Climb in June 1946. He subsequently moved on to a two-litre Type 35C, which gave Peter Stubberfield the opportunity to purchase 4848. Stubberfield was to become one of the leading drivers in the sprint and hillclimb scene. One of his earliest outings with the car was a Prescott Hill Climb in July 1946. His activities were not limited to this famous Cotswolds venue, and he regularly campaigned the car at Shelsley Walsh and The Brighton Speed Trials, as well as smaller events such as the Staverton Sprint. Stubberfield competed nearly every weekend until he retired from the sport at the end of the 1957 season. It was during 1949 that the car appeared as a monoposto, a format that the car would retain when passed on to Frank Wall in 1963. Wall competed with the car himself, but also allowed Hamish Moffatt, a very competitive Bugatti driver, to compete in several VSCC race meetings in the early 1970s. In 1982, one of the leading UK-based collectors of his period added the car to his stable. It has remained in his family’s ownership ever since.

4848’s continuous history from 1927 is clearly recorded and detailed in a report from Bugatti Historian Mark Morris. According to this report, the car retains its original engine (one of the quickest in period) which is still fitted, and the car has been reunited with its original Grand Prix scuttle and tail panels. It is also as offered with its monoposto body.

Presented in as-discovered condition, the Bugatti, while appearing largely complete, will require recommissioning to allow the next custodian to write the next chapter of its wonderful story. Eligible for some of the world’s finest historic racing events such as the Goodwood Revival or Monaco Historique, it would make a competitive entry against similar machinery. The car would also turn heads and be a welcome new participant on the show field. 4848 represents a wonderful opportunity to buy a world-class Bugatti Grand Prix machine and return it to the active life which it enjoyed for so many years.


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