Richard Attwood on Peter Arundell: My Greatest Rival

While both drivers saw podium finishes in F1, they rarely faced each other – but it was a different story in Formula Junior in the early 1960s

Richard Attwood and Peter Arundell in 1962 Monaco Formula Junior race

Arundell (Lotus, No88) leads Attwood (Cooper T59, No92) at Monaco in 1962 to win the race. A year later Attwood would turn the tables.

Browse pages
Current page

1

Current page

2

Current page

3

Current page

4

Current page

5

Current page

6

Current page

7

Current page

8

Current page

9

Current page

10

Current page

11

Current page

12

Current page

13

Current page

14

Current page

15

Current page

16

Current page

17

Current page

18

Current page

19

Current page

20

Current page

21

Current page

22

Current page

23

Current page

24

Current page

25

Current page

26

Current page

27

Current page

28

Current page

29

Current page

30

Current page

31

Current page

32

Current page

33

Current page

34

Current page

35

Current page

36

Current page

37

Current page

38

Current page

39

Current page

40

Current page

41

Current page

42

Current page

43

Current page

44

Current page

45

Current page

46

Current page

47

Current page

48

Current page

49

Current page

50

Current page

51

Current page

52

Current page

53

Current page

54

Current page

55

Current page

56

Current page

57

Current page

58

Current page

59

Current page

60

Current page

61

Current page

62

Current page

63

Current page

64

Current page

65

Current page

66

Current page

67

Current page

68

Current page

69

Current page

70

Current page

71

Current page

72

Current page

73

Current page

74

Current page

75

Current page

76

Current page

77

Current page

78

Current page

79

Current page

80

Current page

81

Current page

82

Current page

83

Current page

84

Current page

85

Current page

86

Current page

87

Current page

88

Current page

89

Current page

90

Current page

91

Current page

92

Current page

93

Current page

94

Current page

95

Current page

96

Current page

97

Current page

98

Current page

99

Current page

100

Current page

101

Current page

102

Current page

103

Current page

104

Current page

105

Current page

106

Current page

107

Current page

108

Current page

109

Current page

110

Current page

111

Current page

112

Current page

113

Current page

114

Current page

115

Current page

116

Current page

117

Current page

118

Current page

119

Current page

120

Current page

121

Current page

122

Current page

123

Current page

124

Current page

125

Current page

126

Current page

127

Current page

128

Current page

129

Current page

130

Current page

131

Current page

132

Current page

133

Current page

134

Current page

135

Current page

136

Current page

137

Current page

138

Current page

139

Current page

140

Current page

141

Current page

142

Current page

143

Current page

144

Current page

145

Current page

146

Current page

147

Current page

148

Current page

149

Current page

150

Current page

151

Current page

152

Current page

153

Current page

154

Current page

155

Current page

156

Current page

157

Current page

158

Current page

159

Current page

160

Current page

161

Current page

162

Current page

163

Current page

164

In long-distance sports car racing you don’t really have great rivals, because it’s teamwork, so I’m going back to 1963 and my Formula Junior days with the Midland Racing Partnership Lola-Ford Mk5A. In those days there was only really one step up to Formula 1 so we were reckoned to be the next generation. The frontrunners included Denny Hulme, Jochen Rindt, Frank Gardner, Peter Revson – and Peter Arundell who was winning everything.

He was my greatest rival because he had the best car, Colin Chapman’s Lotus 27, and the best Ford-Cosworth engines in what was effectively a works Lotus run by Ron Harris. This is absolutely not sour grapes, this is simply a fact.

It’s been said that winning consistently is 70% the car and 30% the driver but on a real driver’s track, like Monaco, Pau or Clermont-Ferrand, I could get on terms with Arundell. On the fast, open tracks like Reims or Goodwood, I knew I couldn’t stay with him and that was fairly depressing. I had a few dominant cars in my career and it’s a damn sight easier to win. That’s what we were up against with Arundell.

Peter-Arundell-in-Lotus-cockpit

Arundell – the early ’60s Formula Junior man to catch

When we got to Monaco in May I knew I had a chance to beat him on a circuit that favoured me. He knew I’d be a problem for him. In our heat he beat me by less than a second so we were on the front row of the grid for the final. He came to see me and my team-mate David Hobbs before the race. In that cockney accent he said, ‘Now, look, we gotta keep this sociable at the start,’ and I knew he was already feeling the pressure.

I made a perfect start. We were alongside each other, and when I changed from first to second he went on for another 30yds flat out, and I thought, ‘What has he got in there?’ He got to the Gasometer hairpin first but he’d taken too much out of the car and was out on the first lap. On tricky or technical circuits he was desperate to get away first as he knew he could be beaten. After a great battle with Frank Gardner I won by five seconds, Frank setting a new lap record chasing me.

When Arundell moved up to Formula 1 he was up against Jim Clark so, like all Clark’s team-mates at that time, he wasn’t going to keep winning. There’s an Arundell Cup race for Formula Juniors at Goodwood these days, and that’s right and proper, because Peter Arundell won a lot of races there in period.”

Richard Attwood and Peter Arundell head-to-head

Driver stats for 1963 Formula Junior British Championship only; does not include European races in which both drivers competed

Attwood vs Arundell
MRP Teams Lotus
0 Wins 5
0 Fastest laps 6
4 Podiums 1
22 Points 40