S.C.H. Davis

SCH "Sammy" Davis

Born in London in 1887, Sydney Charles Houghton "Sammy" Davis' career began with an apprenticeship at Daimler but he was better known as a journalist and author, his pen name being "Casque" under which he wrote for The Autocar.

He started competing on various motor bikes and cycle-cars and was drafted into the AC team in 1921 and then Aston Martin for 1922 driving a purpose built car known as Razor Blade, owing to its slender dimensions, to ten world records and 22 national class records.

In the1925 Le Mans 24, he partnered Chassagne in a 3 litre Sunbeam to take second place, covering 1,343.15 miles at an average speed of 55.964 m.p.h. behind the de Courcelles/Rossignol 3½ litre la Lorraine.

He returned  to Le Mans with Bentley in 1927, partnered by Dudley Benjafield who nursed the car home to first place after Sammy had arrived at the White House incident too late to take avoiding action. He was recruited into the front wheel drive Alvis team in 1928 and contested the Tourist Trophy in a works team Riley.

At the end of 1929 he had done enough to be awarded a BRDC Gold Star and he received a second Gold Star in 1930, the year in which he partnered Freddie March to win the BRDC 500 Miles Race. Sammy was again a member of the Bentley Boys team in 1930 when Birkin’s infamous “Blower” chased the Mercedes of Caracciola until both cars broke leaving the works cars to take the win.

Post war, SCH Davis took a keen interest in the revival of motorsport and became President of the 500 Club as well as being Vice President of the Vintage Sport Car Club. He was influential and obtaining an invite for the fledgling "half pint" brigade to the first post war race meeting organised by the VSCC at Gransden Lodge in July 1947.

For a while, he edited The Autocar and on his retirement, selected John A Cooper as his replacement, having been introduced by Guy Griffiths. Sammy's son, Colin Davis was a regular during 1955 and 1956 in his Cooper.

Sammy Davis died at his home in Guilford in January 1981.

SCH Davis and Dr Benjafield pose in 1927

An extract from Iota, published in September 1948.

The foreword from Motor Racing Yearbook 1952