John Surtees: By DSJ...

A few of Denis Jenkinson’s period observations

“Surtees took second, almost unnoticed as he had driven such a smooth and unspectacular race. It put many accepted stars to shame.”

From August  1960, on the British GP

“It was no lucky win, for he had shown throughout practice that he and the car were ideally suited to the circuit. All Surtees’ laps were near-record ones, his race average of 154.2kph being remarkably close to his record of 155.8kph.”

From September 1963, on the German GP

“It was much stronger than Ford vs Ferrari, it was America vs Europe. Before practice finished both sides had been struck a severe body blow, for Surtees had an altercation with his team manager and went off in a huff, just when Ferrari and Europe needed him most.”

From July 1966, on the Le Mans 24 Hours

“The Surtees Honda team was proudly showing a brand new car, built in six weeks. As it had only run a few laps at Goodwood before leaving for Monza not too much was expected of it.”

From October  1967 on the Italian GP, which Surtees won…

“The overall victory by Surtees was exceedingly popular and, as he did his ‘slowing-down’ lap to a great ovation, Rindt was getting out of the Lotus 72 just past Old Hall and getting into an aeroplane to fly off to a hillclimb in Austria. He left his mechanic to drive the Lotus round for the remainder of the lap, which was exceedingly unpopular with the racing enthusiasts.”

From October  1970, on the Oulton Park Gold Cup

“After struggling along for many years, Team Surtees has withdrawn from the Formula 1 Grand Prix game. Its only claim to fame must surely be that a Surtees car never won a Grand Prix in all the years they have been racing…”

Looking ahead to a new F1 season, January 1979