Tag Archives: f1 history

Final Checkered Flag for Peter Warr

There are few people I respected as much as I did Peter in his days in F1. But like always, everything has already been said elsewhere. Mine’s here.

Peter, you’ll be missed.

Those were the days

Summer breaks always make me reminisce of old times, when cars and circuits were beautiful, drivers weren’t wimps and whingers, and even photographers were courageous. Look at this little tableau at the famous Virage du Paradis (ah, the name alone), just before the final straight in Rouen-les-Essarts, during the French Grand Prix of 1964.

I know, I know, this was before safety was invented. But still.

(Thanks, loyal reader David, for the photo.)

It’s been sixty years now

… And what a ride it was. Sorry my friends for not having posted this weekend but I’ve been on what the Americans call a sentimental journey.

Last Saturday marked two significant events in F1 history: it was 60 years ago that the Monaco Grand Prix was included in the F1 Championship; and that very race was Ferrari’s entry into F1. There were no fewer than four 125F1s in that race, two run by Enzo’s Scuderia, and two by private drivers. Alfa Romeo won, but Alberto Ascari’s Scuderia car grabbed a podium with second place.

Of the three legends in F1 (Monaco, Ferrari and me) two were born that day. I was still practicing at Brands Hatch at the time, racing Cooper F3 cars with 500cc motorcycle engines. Those were the days, my friend. You just bought an engine and some tyres, stuck ’em on a Cooper chassis and Bob’s your uncle – you’re in the racing business. No wind tunnels or specially milled parts, no carbon fiber and no expensive engineers. Couple of hundred quid was enough to get you going.

Anyway, thank God those days are over. F1 is big business and there are more billions to be made. Don’t just sit there, be good boys and girls and swiftly go buy a ticket or wash your hair with Head&Shoulders.

Get well soon, Stirling

Heard the news about Sir Stirling Moss’s mishap, falling three stories down his own lift shaft and breaking half the bones in his body. No funny puns about getting shafted, please.

Personally I revere anybody who averaged more than thirty races per year for all of 16 years, sometimes more than double that. Not only that, but also winning almost half of them. F1, rally sports, endurance, didn’t matter what. Those were the days, my friend. Drivers were real men then, as opposed to today’s little snivelers.

Stirling, we all hope you’ll recover soon.