July 97 - Part 1 Click here to view full page in a new window

A FISHY TALE

Maralyn and Susan TP with Tuckers Triple 

Susan Jamieson and Maralyn Knight with Tuckers Triple. Presented to Falcon as the clubs new Trials Trophy.

    What connects a Nipper to a Lobster besides the fact that it's claw nips?  You don't know, really!.... read on.It all began with my frightful gaff in the April edition of Classical Gas, saying that Falconry's former editor, Maralyn Knight, was the first lady to gain a coveted MCC Triple.  Fortunately for historians Ron Warren corrected me the following month.  I was delighted, not only that he set the record straight, it also confirmed that someone out there is reading this stuff!

    Ron's correction sent me scurrying to Peter Garniers book, not that I didn't believe him.  In the thirty years since I first met Ron I have learned that he doesn't say something unless he's pretty certain it's right!    No, I was after material for a story and here it is.

    Maralyn's father, Tucker, was president of both Falcon and the MCC.  Tuck conceived, built and drove the Tucker MG, perhaps the ultimate all round sporting machine.  Not only did he campaign it in trials, it was also his circuit racer.  Tucker and Betty had two daughters, Maralyn and Susan, and they took them trialling whenever possible, Tuck even converted his car to a four seater!    However, the time came when they couldn't go with mum and dad anymore.   Tucker responded by building them a trial's machine of their own, based on a 5cwt Ford Van.  The name was inspiration itself, "The Tucker Nipper Special".   With sister Sue as passenger Maralyn had five successful years with the car,   becoming the second woman to win a triple and the first to win two.

Nipper

The Miss Tucker-Peakes in the "Tucker-Nipper Special" at the foot of Bluehills 2

    Maralyn married Peter Knight in 1967 and gave up trials driving, but not motorsport.  The couple became RAC timekeepers, officiating in many major events, especially at Silverstone.  Maralyn didn't severe her trial's connections completely as she is heavily involved in producing "Triple", the MCC's magazine.  I don't  know what happened to the "Nipper", but the Tucker MG is presently being restored by Jim Templeton.

    Meanwhile, sister Susan had taken to saloon car racing, first with an Anglia, then an Escort and finally a season racing all over Europe as a Skoda works driver.  When Tuck built Susan's Escort she sold the Anglia to boy friend David Ovey.  David later went on to race at Le Mans in Charles Ivey's Porsche and became an airline pilot.  He is now married to Tomorrows World presenter Sharnaz Pakravan, lives in London, and is fully occupied as a house husband!

    I can remember marshalling at Nottingham Sports Car Club meetings at Silverstone when Sue and David were racing.  David's sister Marion was also a Falcon member around this time.  She was a keen marshal, and an occasional rally driver, she even had a certain Michael Leete as her navigator on one occasion!  Marion was a studying hotel and catering management at the time.   Today she owns and runs the Lobster Tail restaurant in Great Offley.   Specialising in fish this is a very nice place with excellent food, it's recommended.

    As Ron pointed out Margaret Woodall was the first lady to win a Triple.  Margaret was married to Bert Woodall who with his brother Victor built the big Wolseley-Ford special in 1938.  After the war Bertie built a second (Mk 2) Ford special in 1951, winning him a triple in 1952 with Maggie getting hers in the same car in 1955.  Margaret is still involved with the sport, running the finish controls at MCC events.

    Bert and Margaret's son, Simon, organised   the Clee Hills classic for many years and is the current ACTC chairman.  Simon competes in the ACTC series with a class 8 VW buggy and a rather special convertible BAJA in class 7 in the MCC events.

    Isn’t amazing what you can learn by reading Classical Gas!!!

bertie

Bertie Woodall in the Wolesley-Ford Special.
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Link to a Nipper up-date

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