It was with great sadness and regret that Goodwood learned of the passing of three-time Formula 1 World Champion Sir Jack Brabham on Monday.
Brabham, whose 1966 world title made him the only driver to be crowned champion in a car bearing his own name, was a great friend to Goodwood, having first forged links with the Motor Circuit following his decision to move from Australia to England to further his racing career.
His first event at Goodwood Motor Circuit was in 1955 and he continued to race single-seater and sportscar machinery right up to the point at which competition ceased in 1966, finishing third – behind Jim Clark and Graham Hill – in the last Formula 1 race held there in ’65.
Goodwood was central to Sir Jack’s return to racing in 1998. He attended the Revival six times and raced several times during the early years, his highlight being fifth place – and second among the rear-engined F1 cars – in the Richmond and Gordon Trophy race of 1999 in a Cooper T53-Climax, at the age of 73.
In 2004 he was the subject of the Revival’s driver tribute while four years later he made his final appearance at the event as part of a ‘Goodwood Greats’ parade. He also drove at eight Festivals of Speed, entertaining huge crowds with display runs in everything from a Brabham BT12 Indy car to an AC Cobra Le Mans Coupé.
Goodwood extend its deepest sympathies to Sir Jack’s wife Margaret and the family.
Lord March said: “Sir Jack Brabham was one of the world’s greats and I remember very well him racing at Goodwood in the 1960s. He played a very important part in Goodwood’s history. More recently, he and Margaret regularly supported the Festival of Speed and Revival – it was wonderful to see him behind the wheel again driving many of the cars which he made so famous. We all at Goodwood extend our sympathy to Margaret and the family at this very sad time.”