Thomas Vivian Gott Selby was well know for his exploits in sand racing and at Brooklands campaining a Bugatti 35C between 1929 and 1935.
Thomas Vivian Gott Selby was well know for his exploits in sand racing and at Brooklands. He was also a keen cricket player and was a vice president of the Curdridge Cricket Club.
His record in 100-mile races on the beach at Southport driving a Bugatti 35C, included a win in 1930, second in 1931 and 1933 and third in 1934. He also won another Southport feature in 1936.
His record at Brooklands between 1929 and 1935 also reflected a fair degree of success.
In 1930 he raced his straight eight Bugatti in the Autumn meeting, lapping at 98.62 mph he finished third in the Middelsex Junior Short Handicap. He also took third in the September Mountain Racing Handicap and the Middlesex Junior Long Handicap.
At the first BARC race in 1931 he won the Lincoln Senior Short Handicap at 94.78 mph. A win followed in the Lincoln Long Handicap despite being re-handicapped, turning in a best lap of 106.19 mph. At the BARC Easter meeting he finished second in his Bugatti in the Warwick Junior Short Handicap. He also drove with Gordon Hendy in an MG C Type 'Montlhery' Midget in the 1931 Double 12 race at Brooklands finihsing 13th.
He drove another MG C Type 'Montlhery' Midget with Freddie de Clifford in the Mille Miglia of 1932 though they failed to finish.
In 1934 he raced his Bugatti at the Brooklands Junior Car Club Trophy and later that year he was part of W.L. Thompsons team of supercharged Austins that won the the Light Car Club's Relay Race. The other Austin was driven by R.F. Turner. In May he had been part of the team that set new International J Class Records for 200 kilometers, 200 miles and 500 kilometers in the Vitesse Special (ex Gush Special). In the Junior Long he came home third in the Bugatti having led much of the race. In August he drove in the Esher Lightning Long completing his two flying laps at an average speed of 107.10 mph. He also drove the Vitesse Special with Windsor-Richards and le Croisette averaging 52.38 mph for 200 miles and setting new records for 50 kilometers, 12 and 24 hours.
Selby also competed in the Belgian 24-Hour Sports-Car Race at Spa with an M.G. at this time.
He was a regular competitor in the Monte Carlo Rally, which before the war he usually started from Stavanger.
After the war Selby joined the Car Division of the Bristol Aeroplane Company as Sales Manager. He later became the Racing Manager and was responsible for the building and running of the first Bristol sports racing cars, the 2-litre Type 450 coupes, which failed at Le Mans, hardly surprising given that the cars had been developed and built in around six months. However one did win its class at Reims.
Selby became one of Sir Jack Brabham's first contacts in England when he first arrived from Australia in 1955. Having done well with a Cooper-Bristol in Australia, he was disappointed with the performance of the Cooper-Alta he aquired from Peter Whitehead. He met Selby when he purchased a Bristol engine for it from the factory and left with an invitation from Selby to attend Le Mans as the Bristol factory team's spare driver.