Sir Jack Brabham 1926-2014
He was a championship winning driver and constructor, and the first to receive a knighthood for services to motorsport. Sir Jack Brabham, known as ‘Black’ Jack as much for his dark hair as his sometimes introverted demeanour, was a triple world champion in motorsport’s most dangerous era. His achievements were remarkable.
The fact that he won his three championships (1959, ’60 and ’66) against the likes of Sir Stirling Moss, Jim Clark and Sir Jackie Stewart marks him out as one of the greats – but what makes his career truly exceptional is that his last championship win was at the wheel of a car of his own design, the Brabham BT19. He is the only person to win F1 driver and constructor titles simultaneously, and it’s an achievement that seems unlikely to be repeated.
Sir Jack continued to race until he was in his 40s, his last victory being at Monaco in 1970, the year he retired. He sold the Brabham team to Bernie Ecclestone and the name continued in F1 until the 1990s.
He was a regular competitor at Goodwood in period and, having moved back to Australia, would regularly return to the UK to attend events here. In 2004, he was the subject of the driver tribute at the Revival.
Sir Jack passed away at the age of 88 at his home on the Gold Coast of Australia following a long battle with liver disease. His most recent F1 victory may have been 44 years ago, but his memory and reputation lives on.