Louisa Skipper's Diary

Racing greats gather to honour Sir Stirling

Motor Sport recently welcomed back to our Chelsea riverside offices many familiar faces from the world of racing, including Sir Jackie Stewart, Damon Hill, Derek Bell, Paddy Hopkirk and other long-standing friends of Sir Stirling and Lady Moss for a special evening to celebrate Stirling’s 80th year.

His birthday is in September, so Stirling was a little apprehensive of having all the attention on him in advance. But once the party was in full swing with guests enjoying Veuve Clicquot champagne and delicious canapés everyone, and especially Stirling, was having a great time.

It was also an evening of announcements, firstly for Motor Sport Founder Editor Bill Boddy, who was awarded the Tom Wheatcroft Trophy for his contribution to motor racing in the UK. Bill’s daughter Nondus was present on his behalf to collect the award from Kevin Wheatcroft. Simon Taylor led the speeches and chatted with guests, with Damon Hill recollecting that Stirling had attended his christening. Editor Damien Smith took the stage to announce that Stirling will start his first office job this summer, as Motor Sport’s guest editor for the October issue, which brought a cheer from the audience.

To close, Motor Sport managing director Juliet Parker thanked our guests for making it such a memorable night and asked them to pencil in their diaries the date of February 10, 2010 when, at a major inaugural event at The Roundhouse in London, heroes of the sport will be inducted into the first ever Motor Sport Hall of Fame.