Goodwood Motor Circuit, West Sussex - Monday 12 September, 2016
Goodwood Revival Gives Golden Sir Jack Brabham Tribute
The Goodwood Revival staged a truly moving yet uplifting tribute to the legendary Sir Jack Brabham over the course of the 2016 event, providing a fitting 50th anniversary celebration of the triple Formula 1 World Champion’s monumental achievements.
Renowned worldwide as a pioneering innovator, Jack went from racing on dirt tracks in Australia to dominate the world of motorsport. His first two Formula 1 World Championship titles in 1959 and 1960 marked the end for rear-engined F1 cars. With his 1966 Drivers’ and Constructors’ crowns, ‘Black Jack’ went down in history as the first – and so far only – driver to take the titles in a car of his own make.
During that outstanding season, Jack took six F1 race wins with the world-beating BT19, the Silverstone BRDC International Trophy race and the Oulton Park Gold Cup adding to his string of four consecutive Grand Prix victories. Furthermore, he also won the Formula 2 crown, all-in-all notching up an incredible 16 race wins in one year.
The Brabham team, co-founded with the incredibly talented designer Ron Tauranac, went on to secure back-to-back Drivers’ and Constructors’ titles in 1967. It also became the world’s biggest manufacturer of single-seater race cars in the 1960s.
Jack’s career was seemingly intertwined with the history of Goodwood Motor Circuit. Jack made his British racing debut at Goodwood on Easter Monday, 1955, and he won the circuit’s final Easter Monday International in his Brabham-Honda Formula 2 car in 1966. He was laid to rest in the grounds of the circuit, next to Bruce McLaren, following his sad passing in 2014, at the age of 88.
Gathering from three continents, the Brabham family – David, Lisa, Sam, Finn, Geoff, Roseina and Matthew – reunited for the 2016 Sir Jack Brabham Tribute. They were joined by former Brabham team drivers, personnel and racing adversaries including Sir Stirling Moss, Sir Jackie Stewart, John Surtees, Jackie Ickx, John Judd, Gordon Murray, Nick Goozée and Sergio Rinland, to name a few.
Over 30 cars charting Jack’s driving career and team owner history, from 1955-1970, took to the iconic West Sussex circuit. The crowds were treated to seeing some of the rarest and historically significant Brabham related cars from the across the globe in action, including a 1959 Cooper-Climax T51, 1958 Aston Martin DBR1, 1960 Cooper-Climax T53 ‘lowline’, 1961 Cooper-Climax T54 ‘Kimberly Special’, 1966 Brabham-Repco BT20 and 1970 Brabham-Ford BT33.
Brabham brothers David and Geoff drove a variety of stunning machinery, including the 1959 Cooper-Climax T51, 1967 Brabham BT24 replica, 1969 Brabham-Repco BT25 Indy car and 1969 Brabham BT26A. Jack’s grandsons Sam, Finn and Matt also joined the Tribute parade.
Early on Sunday morning, Lord March together with the UK Managing Director of Credit Suisse, Karsten Le Blanc, presented the family with a framed commemorative diorama of the Brabham BT19 winning the World Championship at Monza in the 1966 Italian Grand Prix. Accepted on behalf of the family by David, the piece was specially made by Graham & Leigh for Goodwood Revival partner Credit Suisse for the 50th anniversary celebrations of Sir Jack’s unique achievement.
David commented: “What a weekend to remember at the Goodwood Revival! Lord March and his team pulled out all the stops to celebrate our father's amazing career. It was wonderful to see so many cars that Jack drove through the years brought in for the event from around the world. We were joined on the grid by racing legends Sir Stirling Moss, Sir Jackie Stewart, John Surtees and ex team mate Jacky Ickx, along with Brabham team members who worked for Jack in the early days.
“Lord March gave a moving speech about Jack’s career and the unique relationship he had with Goodwood, where he won his first race in Europe and, in later years, attended many of the Revival and Festival of Speed events. It was emotional to then watch the video all about Jack and then for Geoff in the Cooper T53, Matt in the Cooper T51, Sam and Finn in the two-seater Cooper-Monaco T49, and myself in the Brabham BT25 Indy car to lead the parade, complete two laps and cross the finish line four abreast. It was a fitting end to an incredible weekend.
“My sincere thanks go to Lord March, his outstanding team and Credit Suisse for making it such a memorable weekend and moving celebration of my father’s life and achievements.”
Photography (L-R where relevant)
Image 1 - Geoff, Matt, David, Sam and Finn Brabham with the framed commemorative diorama of the Brabham BT19 winning the World Championship at Monza 1966, following the Credit Suisse presentation
Image 2 - David Brabham, Geoff Brabham and Sir Jackie Stewart lead the Sir Jack Brabham Tribute © Simon Hildrew
Image 3 - David Brabham in the 1959 Cooper-Climax T51
Image 4 - Sir Stirling Moss © Simon Hildrew
Image 5 - Jackie Ickx and Sir Jackie Stewart © Simon Hildrew
Image 6 - Sam, David, Geoff and Matt on the Goodwood Revival grid © Simon Hildrew
Image 7 - David (1967 Brabham BT24 replica) and Geoff (1959 Cooper-Climax T51) wave to the Goodwood crowds © Simon Hildrew
Image 8 - Roseina, Kimberley, Matt, David, Finn, Sam and Lisa Brabham beside Sir Jack's grave at Goodwood