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Local Studies Department

The Gordon Bennett Motor Race 1903 - Leinster Leader February 1903

Back to Introduction | Feburary list of articles

Leinster Leader, Saturday 28 February 1903 - Page 8.
Crisp Chronicles.

The motor car has added variety to the trials of travellers. There was, however, something more than variety in the experience of some bona-fides in Kildare last Sunday. They annexed a friend’s motor on the Curragh, and whirled into Kildare in search of fresh air and mineral waters. But although they kept the car well under control while it was moving, the difficulty was to stop it. They passed the first hostelry they met with heroic fortitude, and to the astonishment of the chauffeur the car stopped suddenly at the second. Proud of his success, the latter attempted some fancy movements on the roadway. The mechanism of the car helped him; in fact, it surprised him.
First he executed a rearward movement, and carried away portion of a shop front on one of the wheels; then he did a few graceful curves, and to the astonishment and apprehension of the bystanders sailed down the street. He surprised himself by bringing the car to a standstill just as he was about to abandon the wretched thing to its fate, and with the assistance of a few spectators he turned it round and pushed it back to where his friends were watching his manoeuvres with wonder and fear.
A local tradesman helped them to get the car under weigh[sic] again, and they headed it in the direction of the Curragh. Whether they succeeded in pulling up at the Camp or were whirled along until the motor power was exhausted, has not been ascertained, but no reports of fatalities have reached the police.
During the past week a large number of motorists have passed through Kildare evidently on a tour of inspection of the Gordon-Bennett cup course.