After the run of success enjoyed in 1953 (apart from Le Mans) 1954 proved to be a "slough of despond" for Aston Martin.
As well as the constant search for more power,, it was decide to develop a coupe body, in the interests of lower drag and improved driver comfort. Sadly, at this time in racing car design, little was known about lift and the use of spoilers to counteract its effects. Two coupes were entered, and both suffered an identical fate.
At 9.30 on the Saturday night Jimmy Stewart, piloting No.21 car, took off on the hump at White House , and was extremely lucky to survive with a mere fractured elbow, the coupe overturning and being crushed to scuttle height.
At a spot within 50 yards of the other accident, Bira came to grief after 138 laps. He, too, escaped with nothing more than a broken nose. He had been in partnership with Peter Collins in car No.20.