It was all a long way from the Austin he campaigned in that very first tintop championship – now of course the BTCC – in 1958. It is said that at the end of that inaugural year’s racing two drivers tied for first place and for a decider each was given an identical Riley 1.5 for a 10-lap shootout at Brands Hatch. Sears won by 1.6 seconds.
He regained the saloon car title for John Willment in the Galaxie and, for some races, a Lotus Cortina, in ’65, cementing the enduring connection between saloon car racing and the name of Jack Sears. Today the name lives on in the Jack Sears Trophy which is awarded by the BTCC to the best new driver at the end of each season.
Jack Sears’ collection of eight cars will be sold at the Bonhams Goodwood Revival sale on 9 September. The cars, and their presale estimates, are:
1963 Ford Galaxie 500 (£180-220,000)
1938 Rolls-Royce Phantom III Limousine by Thrupp & Maberley (£80-120,000)
1969 Mercedes-Benz 280 SL (£80-100,000)
1955 Nekaf Army Jeep M38 A1 (£10-15,000)
1948 MG TC (£18-22,000)
2001 Ford Mustang Bullitt GT(£15-18,000)
1971 BMW 3.0 S (£10-15,000)
1986 Mercedes-Benz 190E Cosworth (£12-13,000)