Formula Ford, SiIverstone, 1969
Racing was all I’d wanted to do since I was 10. I remember my father Arthur getting the traditional South Bank ovation after an 1172 Formula race at Brands Hatch.
That was it; I had to be a racing driver.
Dad agreed to go halves on one of his Mallock Mk9 Formula Fords. The cost was £469 all in, and the deal was that we would share the car.
I was testing on the Friday before my first race and I tried to follow Mike Taylor — who was the man in Formula Ford at the time — through Copse. It was the first and only time in my career that I rolled a car. Remarkably, the only damage was to the old oil can we used as a wind deflector.
I can’t remember where I qualified, but I made a demon start — that is until I had to change gear. I was so excited that I forgot to change up to second!
It was an amazing race, with overtaking at every corner. The light was fading, which made it even more interesting. I finished sixth out of 13 finishers and was hooked.
…and my last race – Classic Clubmans, 2004
Not much changes. My last race was in a machine from a similar era to my old Mk9, which we rebuilt into a Clubmans car for 1970. I have a Mallock Mk11 with which I compete in Classic Clubmans events and I won at Thruxton late last year, a couple of weeks after also winning at Silverstone. I’ll be out in it again at the Silverstone Classic meeting in July.