I was delighted to read the superb article on Tony Brise in the December 2000 issue. David Tremayne captured the essence of Tony, who would’ve gone on to great things given the chance.
During my impressionable early teens, Tony was always the driver I wanted to see race, and I have clear memories of him hurling the Modus through Knickerbrook in a full-blooded slide, trying to keep everyone at bay in Formula Atlantic. He was able to race using his head and his natural talent This allowed him to adapt his style according to the conditions. Who can forget him stalling at Silverstone and then setting off with a clutchless March F3 car to destroy the field in a Formula Atlantic race? The man had such ability.
Whenever I saw him in the paddock, there was no sign of any arrogance. He always had a word to say to me, and acknowledged my request for an autograph or a picture every time.
I am encouraged that not all motor racing nostalgia stems from the 1950s. Racing in the ’70s was close, fast and boasted full grids in every formula. Even with the petrol crisis in the mid-70s, racing carried on, and the development of the cars became more lateral. This allowed the likes of Chapman to develop ground effects, with its major influence in F1 design today.
I AM, YOURS ETC,
M Broadbent, Haslington, Cheshire