Easter 1973 and we were off to the East African Safari Rally. I understand that the word Safari is an Arabic/Swahili word meaning the distance that a caravan can travel in one day. In the Rally, they would be covering over 800 miles each day.
The locals had started the Rally as a competition for local amateurs at the time of the Queen‘s Coronation. This was to be the 21st Rally. At one time, most of the rally was run over Murrum tracks, which were a real test for car and driver. Now, the major part of the Rally was run over tarmac roads and the locals complained about it. However, The Safari Rally now formed part of the World Rally Championship and the rules were laid down by the International governing body. Speed was everything. Read more
In January, I went off to film the 42nd Monte Carlo Rally. It was the first rally to count for the World Rally championship. 298 cars were entered and they started from Almeria, Athens, Glasgow, Frankfurt, Monte Carlo, Oslo, Reims, Rome and Warsaw. Read more
Terry would always live in our hearts. As a person one can’t find a better friend. I lived in London for a while and Terry helped in many ways, bought me friends car, advised me in buying a house overnight. Read more
Easter came round again and we made the long flight down to Nairobi. There had been no rain and there would be no rain while the Rally was being staged.
This would make things very difficult for the crews in the rally and for us. The cars would be speeding across the Murrum blowing up huge plumes of dust which flew into the air to about forty feet and trailing away as a tail two hundred yards long. Read more
Vittorio Della Valle was a colleague of mine from 1961 to 1972.
He was born in 1917 in Rome. His father was a cinematographer who had accompanied one of the Italian Airship Expeditions to the North Pole. Read more
January 1972, we were off again to Monaco for the Monte Carlo Rally. The team consisted of Paul Badin, Julian Botras, Vittorio Della Valle, Jacques Hubinet and his soundman Monsieur Corsi. Pierre Deus was handling the UPITN News coverage, but he was invariably working alongside us during the Rally. He was the great provider. He knew everyone in Monte Carlo and they knew him. He obtained our passes and permissions. He arranged for a police motor-cyclist to take our rushes to Nice Airport for shipment back to England. He is also well remembered for his crew lunches where we could partake of tuna and anchovies that he had caught in the Med the previous year and bottled for the winter. Read more
Two hundred articles ago, I wrote that “I hope that we have enough material to provide another hundred articles.” This Friday’s article, a podcast on my friend and colleague Paul Wyand, will be my three hundredth article. Read more
Easter time and, after a gap of three years, we are off once more to Nairobi for the East African Safari Rally.
Our crew comprised Paul Badin, Julian Botras and Jacques Hubinet. The day after we arrived, we were invited over to Mohinder Dhillon’s House which he shared with his wife, Ambi, and son Sam. Sam was only three or four years old, but already he could speak in three languages. English, Urdu and Swahili, the latter between him and the house boy.
The balance of the crew was made up by Mohinder and Satwant Singh of Africapix. Read more
We had not been invited to cover the 1969 or 1970 Monte Carlo Rallies because, we were told, Nissan got involved in some feature film which took out their annual budgets for filming the documentaries.
Our crew for the 1971 Rally comprised Vittorio Della Valle, Paul Badin, Julian Botras and Jacques Hubinet with soundman Monsieur Corsi.
We covered the rally in the way we had done previously because Nissan liked the way we did it and I saw no reason to change a successful formula. Read more
“The Le Mans crash 1955”
This week’s podcast concerns Movietone’s filming and reaction to the events that happened at Le Mans in June 1955. Read more