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Raymond Mays and the ERA at Shelsley

I first became aware of ERAs in 1945, and their special significance to British motor sport, together with their originator and promoter Raymond Mays, who was also responsible for the creation of BRM cars. Mays was a very fast driver and his many wins with ERAs helped him to sell these cars to other leading drivers of the day. He achieved many fastest times of day at Shelsley Walsh Hill Climb from 1934 to 1950, and it was at this Worcestershire hill that I first saw an ERA in 1947. During my art school days and apprenticeship in advertising, I was forever drawing racing cars and ERAs were a favorite subject, as was Shelsley Walsh with its wonderful rural landscape. As such, I have produced a number of Shelsley paintings, with three of these still being available in print. ERA R4D, Mays’ car, spent most of its life painted black, but in 1938, along with the other team cars, it appeared in light green.


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