Paid-for drives and unpaid debts
Brian Redman and Peter Sutcliffe were reunited at the Festival with what had been Peter’s Ford GT40, chassis ‘1009’, the car that the pair had co-driven to fourth place in the 1966 Spa 10001(ms. This was a terrific result for a private entry, tucked in behind the Essex Wire-entered sister GT40 of Peter Revson/Skip Scott in third place, Frank Gardner/Sir John Whitmore in the Alan Mann 7-litre Ford Mark II in second, and the works Ferrari 330P3 co-driven by Michael Parkes/ Ludovico Scarfiotti, which won.
There was much guffawing at old and, I think, fond memories as Brian remembered that ‘Sooty’ Sutcliffe probably still owed him Is 9d one and nine pence for those who have known nothing but dismal currency, about eight new pence.
I was mystified by this and later asked Brian what It was all about. “Oh, my backer at the time, David Bridges, had actually paid Peter to get me that Spa drive in his GT40. It was very early in my career and dear old David had paid him £60 for the opportunity. We ended up having a pretty good run and that fourth-place finish was good enough for Peter to say to me that perhaps we should co-drive again the following year on the same terms? I was very happy to agree, but I suggested that perhaps next time he should pay me the 60 quid rather than the other way round.
“No private entrant worth his salt would turn up his nose at the chance of a little extra bonus, and after that ’66 race we were standing in the Spa Os when Peter noticed that the various team’s pitcrews had left dozens of empty Coca-Cola bottles on the pit counters. So I was detailed to go round and collect them all, because in those days there was money back on the glass bottles. Peter cashed them in, I assume, but I never heard back from him. So I reckoned he still owes me one-and-nine…”