Brett Lunger

Full Name:
Robert Brett Lunger
Born:
14th November 1945 (Age 73)
Wilmington, Delaware
Nationality:
American
Most recent race (in database):
Biography

This wealthy privateer was a Grand Prix driver for three full seasons – starting 34 times but never scoring a point. Only Luca Badoer thus far has started more Formula 1 races without troubling the scorers.

Family background and early racing career

The heir to the DuPont fortunes, Brett Lunger did not complete his studies at Princeton University for he was more interested in motor racing. His fledgling racing career began in 1965 with a Chevrolet Corvette before spending the next three years in Can-Am and the United States Road Racing Championship.

Lunger then enlisted in the United States Marines and served on the front line in Vietnam. He resumed his motor racing career in 1971 in the thriving Formula 5000 category when third overall with a second-hand Lola T192-Chevrolet. He repeated that result in 1972 with a T300 as well as driving a private March 722-Ford in European F2 when fourth at Mantorp Park was his best result.

Formula 1 with Hesketh and Surtees

A race winner with Sid Taylor’s Trojan T101-Chevy in European F5000 during 1973, he continued in the category until 1975. He also graduated to F1 in 1975 by hiring the second Hesketh 308B-Ford for three Grands Prix as James Hunt’s team-mate.

He moved to Surtees for 1976 but 10th in Austria (after a late crash) was his best classification. He was an unwitting participant in Niki Lauda’s accident at the Nürburgring that year when his Surtees TS19-Ford crashed head-on into the burning Ferrari. Lunger emerged unscathed and with honour as he helped rescue the injured World Champion.

Switch to ex-works McLaren and Ensign

Lunger used Chesterfield sponsorship to fund an ex-works McLaren M23-Ford for the next two seasons, the car prepared by Bob Sparshott’s B&S Fabrications. An M26 chassis was acquired during 1978 and Lunger was seventh at Zolder – his best F1 result but still outside the points. He made a one-off start with Ensign in the United States GP that year – his final appearance in the category.

He retired from the sport in 1979 and now runs his own research and development company. A qualified pilot, he volunteered for the Angel Flight Network that transports disadvantaged patients to hospital.

Championship seasons

Season Name Starts Poles Podiums Wins Position Points
1979 World Championship of Makes
Randolph Townsend
1 0 0 0 10
1978 F1 World Championship
Liggett Group with BS Fabrications
Team Tissot Ensign
10 (5) 0 0 0
0% win rate
0
1978 Aurora AFX British F1 Championship
BS Fabrications
1 1 0 0
0% win rate
21st 10
1977 F1 World Championship
Chesterfield Racing
11 (2) 0 0 0
0% win rate
0
1977 World Championship of Sportscars 2 0 0 0 0
1977 World Championship of Makes
Vasek Polak
2 0 1 0 15
1976 F1 World Championship
Team Surtees
10 (2) 0 0 0
0% win rate
0
1976 SCCA/USAC F5000 Championship
Hogan Racing
5 0 0 0
0% win rate
11th 18
1975 F1 World Championship
Hesketh Racing
3 0 0 0
0% win rate
0
1975 World Championship of Makes 1 0 0 0 0
1975 ShellSport 5000 European Championship
Adlards
1 (1) 0 0 0
0% win rate
0
1975 SCCA/USAC F5000 Championship 0 (1) 0 0 0 0
1974 Rothmans European F5000 Championship
Crowne Racing
1 0 0 0
0% win rate
0
1974 SCCA/USAC F5000 Championship
All-American Racers
7 0 2 0
0% win rate
5th 33
1973 European F2 Championship
Space Racing
5 0 0 0
0% win rate
31st 1
1973 Rothmans European F5000 Championship
Sid Taylor Racing
Hogan Racing
11 (2) 0 4 2
19% win rate
7th 95
1973 SCCA L&M F5000 Championship
Hogan Racing
9 1 2 0
0% win rate
7th 39
1972 European F2 Trophy
Space Racing
Peter Bloore Racing
4 (6) 0 0 0
0% win rate
24th 3
1972 Rothmans European F5000 Championship 1 0 0 0
0% win rate
0
1972 SCCA L&M Continental F5000 Championship
Hogan Racing
8 1 3 2
25% win rate
3rd 60
1972 John Player British F2 Championship
Space Racing
Peter Bloore Racing
3 (2) 0 0 0
0% win rate
0
1971 SCCA L&M Continental F5000 Championship
Competition Research & Development
8 0 3 1
13% win rate
3rd 64
1968 SCCA Formula A Grand Prix Championship
Autodynamics Corporation
3 0 0 0
0% win rate
0