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#1 Roger Clark

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Posted 24 February 2002 - 08:36

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The boy second from the left of the middle row celebrates his seventieth birthday tomorrow, the 25th February.

He grew up to become one of the best drivers of his generation, excelling on the circuits that demanded most from a driver. In the art of high speed driving, he surely belongs at the very top table. If he lacked anything at all it was in a willingness to win at all costs (I speak by the standards of the time). He was probably more intelligent than the average racing driver. His win in the 1958 German Grand Prix deserves, but has never received, comparison with Fangio's the year before.

His public personna was quiet and unassertive. Yet he appears to have always been open and wiling to talk with the press and public. I don't think I have ever heard a harsh word said by or about him. When he signed for Ferrari, he stated firmly which races he would drive and which he wouldn't. The fact that the Old Man accepted these terms shows the regard he had for the driver.

He raced for his own enjoyment. In those days he could probably earn as much as a dental surgeon as a racing driver. When racing began to change and he no longer had the same enjoyment, he retired quietly and with the same dignity as he had raced.

Happy birthday Charles Anthony Standish Brooks.

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#2 Doug Nye

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Posted 24 February 2002 - 14:22

A great tribute Roger. That sounds heartfelt? You're a very, very good judge.

Tony Brooks is the most charming of men, and while he is genuinely quiet, and reserved, and retiring - every so often one does see the flash of steel - irritation that perhaps he is overlooked sometimes today, as he was in period.

Some years ago at Basildon, Essex, when the police closed the roads for an extraordinary Historic racing car bash, Moss took the wrong turning and shot up a dead-end, creating an embarrassing 94-point turn-around virtually amongst the crowd before he could regain the course...and Tony had followed him, and had to do the same thing.

"Oh, Stirling" - he said with a wan smile when they returned to the paddock - "...over forty years later, and you are still getting me into trouble...".

Tony is a man with a private, but deep, religious faith - and when he retired from racing at the end of 1961 part of his motivation was loss of interest in gutless 1 1/2-litre F1 cars - and part the notion that since God bestows life upon us, it is irresponsible and wrong of us to put it wilfully at risk...particularly when one has been married, and children are around.

As a tribute to this lovely man, and to his mould-breaking achievement at Syracuse late in 1955 - I hope you'll all enjoy this piece, written for the British national newspaper - 'The Daily Telegraph' - in 1995:



BROOKS, CONNAUGHT AND THE SYRACUSE GP
By Doug Nye

(Background - This weekend marks the 40th anniversary of the first Grand Prix for 31 years to be won by a British car and driver. From these small beginnings grew this country's dominant modern racing industry.)

"Find a record of the English national anthem. Be quick!", snapped race director Renzo Castagneto, his words drowned by the flat, harsh bellow of a Formula 1 car booming by with a split exhaust. It was British racing green, number '22', leading the Grand Prix with ten laps to run - this was almost unprecedented. Fifty seconds later a flame-red factory Maserati, driven by local hero Luigi Musso, screamed by in hopeless pursuit. Whenever pressed, that green car ahead could pull out two seconds a lap.
Thirty-one long years had passed since any British car/driver combination had last won a Continental Grand Prix. Now, 23-year old Manchester dental student Tony Brooks was poised to end that drought. His car was a Connaught - built behind a garage on the A3 London-Portsmouth road at Send in Surrey. Until that weekend he had never even sat in a Formula 1 car before, while the Connaught team itself was so strapped for cash it transported its cars in a pair of worn-out AEC Greenline coaches...The ways of Formula 1 were, ahem, different then...
But since that Syracuse Grand Prix, run on October 23, 1955, other British Formula 1 teams have won some 90 per cent of all races run, and this country's motor racing industry is by far the world's largest and most effective.
Tony Brooks' win that day was the first for a British car and driver since Henry Segrave had won for Sunbeam at San Sebastian in 1924. It was celebrated last weekend at the National Motor Museum, Beaulieu, when Brooks and Connaught technical director Mike Oliver recalled that momentous Sicilian weekend before an enthusiast audience.
Connaught Engineering had been created in the late 1940s by two ex-RAF pilots - Rodney Clarke and Mike Oliver, backed by Kenneth McAlpine. They first built sports cars then handsome Formula 2 single-seaters before aspiring in 1954-55 to Formula 1. Then came a last-minute invitation to the Syracuse Grand Prix, postponed from its normal Spring date.
Mike Oliver: "The call came just nine days before. Syracuse is on the southern tip of Sicily, a 2,000 mile drive, but start money was good, £1,000 per car plus all expenses. We took a streamliner for Les Leston, and an open-wheeled car for this pleasant young newcomer. He was very inexperienced but came highly recommended by one of our old-car owners, John Riseley-Prichard for whom he had driven in Formula 2...
"We tested the two cars briefly at Goodwood, then sent them off in our old Greenline coaches - which were converted with the seats removed and doors cut in the back to accept the cars."
On the Monday, Oliver flew his road car out via Lydd-Le Touquet, expecting the transporters to be well south of Lyons. "But the RAC desk had a message for me, I was urgently required at Dunkirk - the AECs had been impounded...".
Their French Ponts et Chaussees permits had expired so Mike had to rush to Lille, find the proper office and arrange fresh paperwork. "We finally set off late that night, doubting we could reach Syracuse for Friday practice...".
They were right. They had also misjudged the Southern Italian mountain roads through Calabria: "...where the hairpins were so tight we had to reverse the AECs just to get round. In one hour's motoring we covered only 11 miles...".
Meanwhile Tony Brooks, the novice driver, had flown out - itself an epic - via Rome, to Catania. "As a penniless dental student I couldn't afford a hire car, so I rented a Vespa scooter. I hung around the Syracuse paddock that first practice day, wondering if the team would ever arrive. That evening I ground round lap after lap on the Vespa just to discover which way the circuit went..."
It was a daunting circuit too, 3.4 miles of bumpy public roads lined by unforgiving concrete walls, and including two level crossings. Over the bumps, the Vespa's twist-grip throttle split the webbing between Tony's right index finger and thumb, creating a searing, weeping sore.
Mike Oliver and the first AEC arrived late that Friday, the second coach - which had burned-out its brakes in Calabria - grinding in on the Saturday morning, the mechanic crews exhausted.
Oliver: "Tony sat in his car for the first time that Saturday morning and I limited his practice to save the car for the race. I was desperate he shouldn't break it, because if we failed to start we'd earn no start money to cover the trip."
Yet despite this restricted practice, Brooks qualified third fastest, only marginally slower than the factory Maseratis of Musso and Gigi Villoresi. He recalls: "They had more power, but Syracuse's curves and swerves put the accent on roadholding and handling, which were Connaught strengths."
Mike Oliver: "Our engines were based upon parts made by a little company at Tolworth named Alta, and we had to tune them so highly to be at all competitive it then became a question of 'Will it last?'. After a slow start, Tony settled into the race, caught the Maseratis and - glory be - passed Musso for the lead. Towards the end Musso looked as if he had settled for second place, and when our car went by with its engine sounding peculiar the crowd were expecting it to go bang, but in fact it was merely the exhaust which had split - the engine stayed healthy."
Tony: "I was well aware of how marginal reliability might be, so once I had established a lead, I used 500 revs fewer than Mike's limit and just nursed it round to the end..."
Mike: "Tony was fantastic. Without risking the car he was two seconds a lap faster than Musso, he raised the lap record from 99mph to 102, and won by almost a minute. Dusk was falling as Tony came out of the last corner to take the flag. I remember Denis Jenkinson of 'Motor Sport' magazine - Moss's Mille Miglia-winning navigator - nudging my elbow and saying 'Mike - This is history!'. Tony was such a self-effacing chap I had to push him up onto the podium...he didn't want to go."
Tony: "I found the crowd very friendly but overwhelming. I just wanted to get back to our hotel on the Vespa, but by this time my sore hand was in a terrible state. To pad it against the twist-grip throttle I wrapped a handkerchief round it which I then tried to pull tight in my teeth - surrounded by this seething mob of excited Sicilians. But as I tugged the handkerchief tight with my teeth it dislodged my expensive dental bridgework which shot out under their feet!
"I dived down to to retrieve it but they hadn't noticed - they made even more of a fuss once I was grovelling around on my hands and knees, and I never did find it..."
Whistling his excuses through a lopsided grin, Tony extricated himself and rode back to the hotel for a bath. Being an exceptionally well-organised young man he had a spare dental bridge which he fitted for the prize-giving dinner that evening "...though it was terribly insecure"; the race organisers interpreting his demeanour as Britannic stiff upper lip.
Connaught's elated mechanics then eased their AECs the 2,000 miles back to base, Mike Oliver stopping off at Pirelli, Milan, to arrange racing tyres for the following year. "After our win it was a long meeting, involving all Pirelli's directors, speaking through an interpreter. Finally the most senior of them asked what did this unknown young driver 'Broo-ooks' do for a living? I replied that he was a trainee dentist, to which the interpreter responded 'The director says, that if Signor Broo-ooks, is as good a dentist as he is a racing driver, the next time he comes to England, he would like to make an appointment with him'.
Tony went on to drive for BRM, Vanwall and Ferrari 1956-61, competing in 38 World Championship-qualifying Grands Prix of which he won six.. He shared another historic all-British first - this time the first Formula 1 World Championship round win - with Moss in the Vanwall at Aintree '57, and went on to win the Belgian, French, German (twice) and Italian GPs. He was third in the 1958 Drivers' Championship and second - pipped at the post - in 1959. Stirling Moss was - and is - a great fan, describing the retiring Brooks as "the greatest unknown racing driver" of their era. Connaught closed down, having completely run out of money, in 1957, and Mike Oliver returned to flying, becoming Folland's chief test pilot developing the exquisite little Gnat fighter/trainer later so famous as chosen mount of the RAF's Red Arrows.
Waving the flag you see - in the days before such behaviour became unfashionable.

SIDEBAR - THE WINNING CAR?
Tony Brooks' victorious Connaught 'B1' returned to Syracuse in April 1957, to be driven by Les Leston. But a drive-shaft broke in practice there, its flailing end splitting the fuel tank whose nitro-methane contents ignited on the hot exhaust. So the heroine of '55 was burned to the ground, but its scorched chassis survived to be sold in the Connaught closure sale of late 1957.
Into the Historic motor racing era of the 1960s and '70s, it was then sold-on with sufficient bits to recreate a running car. From 1971-74 this 'entity' was actually owned by H. Jones - ten years later the posthumous Falklands VC - but he never had the time to make it a runner. As recently as this Autumn, 'B1', now recreated around this chassis, has been acquired by a past owner/entrant of other Connaughts; Bernie Ecclestone, head of the Formula One Constructors' Association, and architect of modern Formula 1 motor racing.
ENDS

One final thing - at dinner after the Goodwood Festival of Speed one year, Rick Mears' wife asked Mario Andretti who was the greatest racing driver he had ever seen as a kid in Italy. Mario pointed discreetly across the table and whispered, "Stirling Moss - but I tell ya, that guy there was probably better..." - and then he had to explain who the slim gentleman with the hawkish face, and the lovely bubbly Italian wife, was. C.A.S. Brooks.

DCN

#3 Vitesse2

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Posted 24 February 2002 - 14:42

Thanks for that Doug - a great tribute to a great driver.

As a group, we have several times expressed the wish that Tony Brooks would tell the full story as he saw it - self-effacing he may be, but I am sure that many of us here (and elsewhere) would be fascinated to hear his take on Moss, Hawthorn, BRM and all the rest of it .... (hint, hint ... :) )

#4 Doug Nye

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Posted 24 February 2002 - 15:11

I love your quote you know - but most of the racing people I seem to have worked with over the years seemed to subscribe to an alternative view of life...

"I disagree with what you say, and if you say it once more my men will beat you into a pulp"...Ampere

#5 David McKinney

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Posted 24 February 2002 - 17:15

Originally posted by Doug Nye
Tony Brooks' win that day was the first for a British car and driver since Henry Segrave had won for Sunbeam at San Sebastian in 1924.

OK for the Daily Telegraph, Doug, but not for TNF!
I know the 1946 Grand Prix des Frontieres wasn't much chop, but it was a Grand Prix, and it was won by a British driver in a British car

#6 Don Capps

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Posted 24 February 2002 - 18:11

Originally posted by David McKinney

OK for the Daily Telegraph, Doug, but not for TNF!
I know the 1946 Grand Prix des Frontieres wasn't much chop, but it was a Grand Prix, and it was won by a British driver in a British car


Doug, Welcome to the REAL Nostalgia Forum.....

Little did I know in October 1961 that I was seeing the last drive by one of those drivers I just flat liked, Tony Brooks. Foe whatever reason, Tony never received the attention he was due -- but among us schoolboys, he was very, very highly rated. Too bad the Twiddler Formula soured him and allowed him to cut the ties to the sport.

#7 Wolf

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Posted 24 February 2002 - 18:15

I'm sorry to temporarily steer this wonderful thread adrift of it's course, but David, could You post or send me the results of this race? I have no knowledge whatsoever of results of GP des Frontieres and Ulster Trophy of '46... Thanks in advance. :)

BTW, thanks to Roger and Doug for great thread. :up:

:) Many Happy Returns to Tony! :)

#8 Doug Nye

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Posted 24 February 2002 - 19:10

Originally posted by Dave McKinney: OK for the Daily Telegraph, Doug, but not for TNF!



Hmmm! I wonderered how long it would take before the new boy got slapped at break time...

15-love then Dave, and while I was offering to hold your coat as well...

But hold hard - You do admit that the 1946 GP des Frontieres "wasn't much chop" - so I don't take severe issue, but being well aware of this result I have always discounted it from worthwhile consideration for the following reasons:

1 - While the GP des Frontieres represented a wonderful effort by its organisers in being run at all so soon after VE Day, its resumption of the pre-war 'Grand Prix' title was even more presumptuous than it had been 1926-1939.

2 - Leslie Brooke was a private owner running his privately-owned non-current - OK, by which I mean 'not new' - ERA when he won at Chimay. In contrast, when Segrave won at Tours in 1923 and at San Sebastian in 1924, he was driving a contemporary WORKS-prepared Sunbeam entered by its MANUFACTURER at premier level.

3 - When Tony B. won at Syracuse in 1955 he was also driving a contemporary WORKS-prepared Connaught entered by its MANUFACTURER at premier level.

My real contention - I suppose - is that just because a race carries 'Grand Prix' in its title, we don't have to be fooled into believing that it qualifies.

Tell you what, mate, this could be just like some of the regular nit-picking dust-ups I used to witness between the Bod and DSJ - "Ah, but have you considered...?" - "Oh rhubarb, rhubarb, yeah but Bod...!" etc etc etc. And they were never, ever, settled.

DCN

#9 David McKinney

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Posted 24 February 2002 - 20:15

I know, I know
My tongue was slightly in my cheek
But it's fun to be a pedant sometimes (or should that be pain in the...?)

Wolf
I'm fairly sure the 1946 Chimay results have been posted before. If someone doesn't come up with confirmation (and/or a link) in the next 48hrs or so I'll see what I can do

#10 Gary C

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Posted 24 February 2002 - 20:47

Yes indeed. Many happy returns, Mr.Brooks!

#11 paulhooft

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Posted 24 February 2002 - 21:24

In fact: I have Tony.'s
Connaught in my Merit Collection
Why don't they bring out those Marvellous Merit kits again...
has England changed..
a Pity!!
and why 70..
for me Tony is still young,
Is I... should be... at 54..
kindest regards
Paul

#12 Roger Clark

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Posted 24 February 2002 - 21:36

One intersting question is whether he ever practiced as a dentist. I, and others, have said on this forum that he did not. Yet the atricle in Motor Racing from which I took the picture on the first post quotes him as saying: "I shall never give up dentistry entirely for motor racing even if it means that I practice only a few months of the year as a locum. It is possible to do them both, and after all, being a dentist is my bread and butter job. I shall certainly never go motor racing all the time with no other source of income." This was in early 1957. I am also sure that I have seen a report in Autosport that he was appointed a house surgeon at Manchester University Hospital.

#13 Hans Etzrodt

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Posted 24 February 2002 - 22:31

Originally posted by David McKinney

OK for the Daily Telegraph, Doug, but not for TNF!
I know the 1946 Grand Prix des Frontieres wasn't much chop, but it was a Grand Prix, and it was won by a British driver in a British car

It is unfortunate that on June 9, 1946, two races for racing cars were held. The main event was the Saint Cloud GP and therefore not many 'potent' cars were left for the start of the Frontiers GP at Chimay, only seven: [list=1] [*] "B. Bira" in a Maserati 8CM, a 3-liter car with 1935? origin,
[*] Then Leslie Brooke in a B-Type ERA from 1936,
[*] Also Arthur Legat's Bugatti T35, at least 16 years old from 1930?
[*] And Maurice Adant in a Bugatti T35B, probably of similar age.
[*] As gap fillers René Steinbach's Alfa 2900B,
[*] Then van Kempen's Fiat 508 Balilla,
[*] and Désiré Boudart in a Lenkin/Steyr.[/list=1] I can understand why Doug does not include this mixed event in his 1946 racing record. Only two acceptable GP cars, two vintage GP cars and three sports cars. The race at Chimay reminds me of the 1930 Eifelrennen, a similar mixed event, were the big sports cars beat some of the racing cars. In spite of everything, these events qualify for my list at http://www.kolumbus....ellman/gpw0.htm, especially since 1946 was a tough year with few cars available and saw similar entries at other events.

#14 Mike Argetsinger

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Posted 24 February 2002 - 22:41

I must thank Roger Clark and Doug Nye for their wonderful tributes to one of my greatest heroes. I believe Tony Brooks, through both his skill and demeanor, epitomizes everything that I find most admirable in a sportsman. By the way, for more on Brooks you can do no better than Doug Nye's excellent book "Racers 1948-1968 The Legends of Formula One."

As I write this I'm looking at a photo on my wall of myself with my father and Tony Brooks (Wilkie Wilkinson is in the picture too) arm-in-arm together moments after Brooks got of his BRM after his final Grand Prix race (he was 3rd - Watkins Glen 1961). As I look back on it - it was a watershed day for both my father and for Tony Brooks.

Speaking of Wilkie Wilkinson - he must be one of the great characters to ever grace the motor racing scene. He was the first person I ever saw toast a woman by drinking champagne from her shoe! I was saddened by his recent death but consoled that he had reached his mid-nineties and had accomplished so many diverse and interesting things. Another wonderful guy.

#15 oldtimer

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Posted 24 February 2002 - 23:51

Roger, thank you for reminding us of Tony Brooks big day. I, too, am a great admirer, and was lucky enough to see him drive on the British circuits.

Doug, do you know any way in which Tony could be made aware of this forum? It would be nice if he could know how much he is appreciated here. And perhaps he might share some of his story. Bits of his story come out in the BRM, Vanwall and Aston-Martin books, but I've not seen anything
about the 1959 season with Ferrari and how things didn't work out there.

Whatever, Happy Birthday to C.A.S. Brooks, as he appeared in my racing programmes.

#16 Wolf

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Posted 25 February 2002 - 00:34

David, I've found You posted results of '47 race... Search gave no results for '46 though.

BTW, in my search I've stumbled upon races during WWII thread, and would like to seize the day. In Your list of Yugoslav names of two races are wrong. OK, they would be hard to detect, had I not seved 9 months in Belgrade . BTW, if they are merely typos, I appologise in advance. :)

Originally posted by David McKinney
YUGOSLAVIA
1939

03/09 Yugoslavian Grand Prix, Belgrade
1940
14/08 Avola race
08/10 Benjica race


14/08/40 race should be Avala race (Avala is mountain adjacent to Belgrade )

08/10/40 race should be Banjica race (part of Belgrade , where I was stationed; recieved couple of hits during NATO strikes :up: ).

#17 Vitesse2

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Posted 25 February 2002 - 01:24

XVI Grand Prix des Frontieres, Chimay, June 9th 1946, Formule Libre.
15 laps 101.31 miles

1 Leslie Brooke (ERA B) 15 laps 1:20'34.4" 75.45mph
2 Rene Steinbach (Alfa Romeo 2900B) 14 laps
3 Maurice Adant (Bugatti T35B) 13 laps
4 Desire Boudart (Lenkin-Steyr) 12 laps
5 van Kempen (Fiat 508 Ballila) 12 laps
6 "B.Bira" (Maserati 8CM) 11 laps

FL: Brooke 4'58" 81.84mph

Retired
Arthur Legat 9 laps Mechanical

DNA
Taso Mathieson(Maserati 8C)
Erik Verkade (Maserati 4CL)
Devos (Devos Spl)
Harry Herkuylens (Maserati 4CM)
Robert Mazaud (Maserati 4CL)
Roger Meunier (Jaguar SS100)
Emmanuel Baboin (Simca 8)

I Ulster Trophy, Ballyclare, Aug 10th 1946, 1500cc maximum.
12 laps 49.70 miles

1 "B.Bira" (ERA C) 12 laps 38'00" 78.47mph
2 Reg Parnell (Maserati 4CL) 12 laps
3 Bob Gerard (ERA B) 12 laps
4 David Hampshire (Maserati 6CM) 12 laps
5 Robert Cowell/Gordon Watson (ERA B) 12 laps

FL: Parnell 3'06" 80.17mph

Retired
Leslie Johnson (Delage 15S8) 8 laps Mechanical

#18 Wolf

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Posted 25 February 2002 - 01:40

:clap: Thanks a lot, Richard. :)

BTW, this was not the first time that non-c'ship races were 'problematic'. Would it be too 'idealistic' to suggest that a some kind of classification of this races be made? Based on things like strength and depth of the field (both drivers and equipment), the venue, &c; stir and brew all ingredients for a while, coming up with few classes. For example, all WDC rounds would be GP 1st Class, together with races whose field did not significantly deviate from WDC rounds for that season. I belive it could be made, but would it be any good?

#19 Joe Fan

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Posted 25 February 2002 - 05:25

Happy Birthday Mr. Brooks! Your racing exploits haven't been forgotten.

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#20 David McKinney

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Posted 25 February 2002 - 06:36

Wolf:
Thanks for those corrections
The spellings probably include typos - at source rather than by me, I hope :)

#21 Barry Boor

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Posted 25 February 2002 - 07:58

May I add my very BEST WISHES to Tony?

I added him to the 'should have been World Champions' thread because I think he was actually the outstanding driver in 1959.

I was lucky enough to get an autograph at Coy's in 1999 - what a very pleasant and humble gentleman.........

#22 Doug Nye

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Posted 25 February 2002 - 10:24

I'm happy to tell you that Tony Brooks is amazed that anybody is still interested, and extremely flattered by your collective recall and tributes. He doesn't have access to the Internet so I'll try to print out this thread and Fax it to him.

Roger - the response to your question 'Did he ever practice as a dentist?' - technically - is YES.

CASB: "I did practise actually,but only very briefly. I was at the Turner Dental School which was attached to the University of Manchester, and when I qualified in December 1956 I worked as a house surgeon in the facility, which you can call the Manchester Dental Hospital. I preferred the surgical side of practice, removal of wisdom teeth, the heavy end of the profession. But the School had always been extremely good in permitting me time off to go racing, and into 1957 that side of my life was taking off and I felt it wasn't fair to them to go on exploiting their generosity, and so in May 1957 I left, and became a fulltime professional racing driver...please do thank everybody who has been kind enough to wish me a happy birthday - I'm very surprised, and very touched".

OK?

DCN

#23 Doug Nye

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Posted 25 February 2002 - 10:31

Posted Image

An awesome drive, in an awesome car, on an awesome circuit - Tony Brooks winning the 1958 Belgian Grand Prix, in the Vanwall, at Spa-Francorchamps.

#24 Catalina Park

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Posted 25 February 2002 - 10:35

That is a great picture of a great driver, thanks Doug :up:

#25 Vitesse2

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Posted 25 February 2002 - 11:40

Splendid picture, Doug.

And a very happy birthday to CAS Brooks!! May there be many more! :)

#26 Gary Davies

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Posted 25 February 2002 - 12:25

Originally posted by Doug Nye
I'm happy to tell you that Tony Brooks is amazed that anybody is still interested, and extremely flattered by your collective recall and tributes. He doesn't have access to the Internet so I'll try to print out this thread and Fax it to him.


Doug, evidence of the smallness of the world ... he's probably got the thread twice by now! Earlier today, I emailed it to his nephew and family here in the Adelaide Hills. :)

I, too, have been told more than once that CASB tends to be somewhat bemused by the interest in his achievements.

Re. dentistry, I'm given to understand that his mum it was who pressed him to complete his dentistry qualifications "as a backup" before turning more seriously to motor racing.

Vanwall.

#27 Flicker

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Posted 25 February 2002 - 13:39

May I say, that...

Even in Russia CAS Brooks was well remembered and very highly prized.

For example,
Here it is a page from russian motorsport magazine, where I work:

Posted Image

And the .pdf version of it for those who can read in russian :rotfl:
http://motorworld.ho....ru/archive/122 history.pdf

#28 Vitesse2

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Posted 25 February 2002 - 13:59

Well, if that ^^^ doesn't convince Mr Brooks of the interest in his career, I guess nothing will! Thanks Flicker! :clap:

#29 Don Capps

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Posted 25 February 2002 - 15:30

Originally posted by Vitesse2
Well, if that ^^^ doesn't convince Mr Brooks of the interest in his career, I guess nothing will! Thanks Flicker! :clap:


No kidding! While my proficiency in Russian has lapsed significantly (perhaps withered away is a better way of expressing it), I was able to pick my way through some of what was in the article: and the title does read "Tony Brooks" for those interested in whether or not that was what it was.

Happy birthday, Tony (C.A.S.) Brooks, and may you have many more.

#30 fines

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Posted 25 February 2002 - 17:05

A very happy birthday to Tony Brooks, one of the all-time greats of our sport! :up: :up:


And sorry to disrupt this thread with another statistical analyse, but...

Originally posted by Wolf
:clap: Thanks a lot, Richard. :)

BTW, this was not the first time that non-c'ship races were 'problematic'. Would it be too 'idealistic' to suggest that a some kind of classification of this races be made? Based on things like strength and depth of the field (both drivers and equipment), the venue, &c; stir and brew all ingredients for a while, coming up with few classes. For example, all WDC rounds would be GP 1st Class, together with races whose field did not significantly deviate from WDC rounds for that season. I belive it could be made, but would it be any good?

... this is exactly what my GPChart program tries to do! Here's the listing of the most "important" races in 1955:


Rank Year Mon  Date			   Race			   Formula				 Winner			 Nat Age  Points



  1  1955 Sep 11 Sun  I							1-W				 Juan Manuel Fangio	   RA  44  637.523

  2  1955 Jul 16 Sat  GB						   1-W				   Stirling  Moss		 GB  25  606.077

  3  1955 Jan 30 Sun  Gran Premio de Buenos Aires  Libre			   Juan Manuel Fangio	   RA  43  588.274

  4  1955 Jan 16 Sun  RA						   1-W				 Juan Manuel Fangio	   RA  43  577.713

  5  1955 May 22 Sun  MC						   1-W				Maurice  Trintignant	  F   37  565.020

  6  1955 Jun 19 Sun  NL						   1-W				 Juan Manuel Fangio	   RA  43  532.940

  7  1955 Jun 5  Sun  B							1-W				 Juan Manuel Fangio	   RA  43  506.460

  8  1955 Sep 24 Sat  Gold Cup					 1					 Stirling  Moss		 GB  26  348.847

  9  1955 Apr 24 Sun  Grand Prix de Bordeaux	   1					   Jean Behra		   F   34  304.430

 10  1955 Mar 27 Sun  Gran Premio del Valentino	1					 Alberto Ascari		 I   36  299.059

 11  1955 May 7  Sat  BRDC Trophy				  1					 Peter  Collins		 GB  23  288.897

 12  1955 Sep 3  Sat  Aintree					  1					 Roy  Salvadori		 GB  33  208.021

 13  1955 Apr 11 Mon  Grand Prix de Pau			1					   Jean Behra		   F   34  190.241

 14  1955 Aug 13 Sat  Snetterton				   1					  Harry Schell		  USA 34  187.966

[b] 15  1955 Oct 23 Sun  Gran Premio di Siracusa	  1					  Tony  Brooks		  GB  23  187.635[/b]

 16  1955 Oct 1  Sat  Castle Combe				 1					  Harry Schell		  USA 34  148.294

 17  1955 May 8  Sun  Gran Premio di Napoli		1					 Alberto Ascari		 I   36  145.281

 18  1955 Jul 30 Sat  London Trophy				1					 Mike  Hawthorn		 GB  26  132.044

 19  1955 Apr 11 Mon  Glover Trophy				1					 Roy  Salvadori		 GB  32  104.005

 20  1955 Apr 11 Mon  Chichester Cup			   Libre				 Peter  Collins		 GB  23   78.901


#31 dmj

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Posted 25 February 2002 - 17:30

Tony Brooks is one of very best F1 drivers ever and I admire him much more because he was smart enough to quit in time, when other parts of his life became more important to him. Sadly, this move is also main reason why he is "unknown" today - if he died at the track his legend would be much greater, maybe even Chris Rea would make a movie about him... Sadly it tells a lot about us, F1 supporters. :rolleyes:
I hope I will be privileged to see Mr. Brooks at Goodwood or some other historic event when I get rich enough to attend some...

#32 Vitesse2

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Posted 25 February 2002 - 17:38

And we should also remember that today would also have been the 58th birthday of Francois Cevert :cry:

#33 LittleChris

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Posted 25 February 2002 - 23:53

Happy Birthday from me also. Although very young, I seem to remember being taken by my father to Silverstone ( possibly 1969 - 70 ) and seeing CAS Brooks demonstrating a Vanwall. My dad, not a particulary big motor racing fan, told me then that Tony was a man who should've been World Champion a few years previously, so maybe there was some conciousness about his achievements amongst the general public.

#34 Doug Nye

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Posted 28 February 2002 - 22:23

Fellers - and 'Bira' - this is from the man himself, just received:

"Thank you to the many kind, complimentary people who remembered my birthday. Now everybody knows I'm technically an old man although I still keep telling myself that the Registrar made a mistake when he filled in the date on the birth certificate!

"I promise that if there is any sign of cerebral swelling..." - I had warned him that your comments would at last make him big headed - "...I will stuff a shower cap full of ice and wear it until the aberration disappears.

"Best wishes - Tony".

The real thing, you see - as advertised.

#35 oldtimer

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Posted 28 February 2002 - 23:42

Originally posted by Doug Nye
- "...I will stuff a shower cap full of ice and wear it until the aberration disappears.


Was a shower cap full of ice under his helmet the secret to his oh-so cool style? :)

Doug, thank you for passing on the forum's wishes. The question of how to make contact has come up before. I tried through a Moss web-page, but...

And Doug, I'm really enjoying your contributions.

#36 Barry Boor

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Posted 01 March 2002 - 00:01

Doug, would this be an appropriate moment to suggest that it is jolly-well time that someone, (no names mentioned, here) wrote a biography of the much-admired Mr. Brooks? :)

#37 Wolf

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Posted 01 March 2002 - 00:36

I don't recall Mr. Brooks wearing 'shower cap full of ice' after qualifying 5 secs ahead of Moss in Vanwalls on the 'Ring; and that is IMHO more thant this few (fewer than it ought to be :) folks remembering this jubilee.;)

So, are ther any good 'Brooks stories' out there, just waiting to be told? And remeber, 've haf vays of making you talk!'. :lol:

#38 oldtimer

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Posted 01 March 2002 - 01:43

Wolf, whilst you reminded us that Tony was about 5 seconds faster than Stirling in practice at the 'Ring in 1958, you forgot to remind us that Stirling's fastest lap in the race was nearly 6 seconds faster than Tony's qualifying time. Guess you forgot which hat you were wearing. :)

I've told this story before on this forum; hopefully it bears some repeating for any CAS Brook's fans who missed it.

The place is Goodwood, the time is April 1957, and it practice for the main event, the Glover trophy, and I am viewing at Woodcote. The new boy Brooks (his 2nd race for Vanwall?) is circulating out there, fast and so smooth. You know, straight arm, hand steady at the top of the wheel controlling a mild understeer drift. Team leader Moss is a few hundred yards behind, and on a tear. Through Woodcote, he is throwing his Vanwall into oversteering slides, much to the cars reluctance, the front wheels are going from lock to lock, the arms are whirling, and I am realising what special skills Grand Prix drivers have, especially one S.C. Moss.

The outcome of this was that Moss was on the pole, and Brooks was 0.2 or 0.4 sec slower. I wander over to the paddock, and while the Vanwall boys have put Moss' car away, they have left Brook's car out there for us to gawk at. This is all before the days of Bernie, you understand. Apart from being fascinated by the design and construction of the Vanwall, with the driver's seat in the midst of moving parts and space-frame tubes, the tell-tale rev. counter showed that Brooks had 4-500rpm in hand from maximum revs. I guess there could be a whole lot of reasons for that, but I walked away thinking that Brooks sure knew how to go fast slowly.

#39 David J Jones

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Posted 01 March 2002 - 08:32

I believe Tony's victory in 58 at the Nurburgring ranks higher than that of Fangio in 57 - when taking into account the reduction in race distance.

Must make a note to study this more.

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#40 oldtimer

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Posted 01 March 2002 - 23:20

Originally posted by David J Jones
I believe Tony's victory in 58 at the Nurburgring ranks higher than that of Fangio in 57 - when taking into account the reduction in race distance.


As we all know, Roger has also expressed that sentiment, so my questions are: (i) how much time did Tony make up on the Ferrari pair, (ii) how many laps did it take for him to do that, and (iii), how many laps did it take, if any, to get into the lead?

And what are the sources for such information?

#41 oldtimer

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Posted 01 March 2002 - 23:32

Originally posted by paulhooft
In fact: I have Tony.'s
Connaught in my Merit Collection
Why don't they bring out those Marvellous Merit kits again...
Paul


Pual, since this is TNF, the Merit kit decals were for a 1956 Connaught. :)

But they were nice kits. I built most of the GP cars, including the Connaught, but sold most of them as a poor student. Now, of course , I wish I hadn't.

Great fun painting wheel rims and tyres...

#42 Wolf

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Posted 01 March 2002 - 23:39

Oldtimer- according to Lang Moss was 17 secs ahead of Hawthorn and Collins, who in turn had 30secs over CAS... When Moss lost the magneto, it took him 4 laps to catch them, and passed them on lap 11 (had a scrap with Mike on lap 9, who passed him back). It is when Collins had a fatal accident and Mike, as is being said, threw in the towel and left Tony with 3 minute lead...

#43 oldtimer

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Posted 01 March 2002 - 23:56

Thanks Wolf. Making up 47 seconds in 4 laps is really something! Which prompts the question about Brook's lap times after he was allowed to put the hammer down. Is there anything on that?

#44 David J Jones

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Posted 02 March 2002 - 00:05

Wolf

Thanks for the detail - I have not had the chance to look in detail.

Also from memory - I can recall that CASB had not had much practice time in the car and at the start of the GP was very cautious about the full tank handling of the car.

Some performance wsn't it

#45 Wolf

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Posted 02 March 2002 - 00:09

Oldtimer, he made up 30 sec deficit (Moss was out), but no small feat, nevertheless. I don't have any lap data, sorry...

#46 oldtimer

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Posted 02 March 2002 - 00:47

Originally posted by David J Jones
Wolf

Thanks for the detail - I have not had the chance to look in detail.

Also from memory - I can recall that CASB had not had much practice time in the car and at the start of the GP was very cautious about the full tank handling of the car.

Some performance wsn't it


Indeed it was, and 2nd place on the grid 1 second slower than Hawthorn with limited practice gives added emphasis to it.

I really enjoy how extra details come out on this forum, but, Wolf, I don't enjoy my sloppy mathematics. :o

#47 Wolf

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Posted 02 March 2002 - 01:01

Oldtimer- don't worry, just a small mistake.;)

Being a Moss fan let me remind that Moss opened the 6 second gap on the first lap (despite the handling problems). Fangio did almost the same: he had 50 sec deficit on lap 12, but due to the same reason (problems with fuel tanks and new tyres) chopped 'only' 20ish seconds by lap 16, went into the lead on lap 21 and on final lap (22) had 3.6 second lead. Apparently not only it took Fangio four laps to catch up from 30 seconds behind, but has overtaken both right away ('if I had not moved over the old bugger would run right over me', or something to that effect)...

#48 David J Jones

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Posted 02 March 2002 - 09:00

Wolf / Oldtimer

I wonder if we can locate the lap times for both years.

One question I have had about both events is - to what extent were JMH and PC relaxing and showboating?

I think only by looking at the lap by lap records will this question be answered.

Another recollection I have is that CASB never used to show his hand too much in practice lest his car be commandered by SCM!

#49 Wolf

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Posted 02 March 2002 - 11:51

David, Lang says that in '57 on lap 16 (IIRC) they were both given 'faster' signal from pits, so they knew ol' man was after them...

#50 oldtimer

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Posted 02 March 2002 - 22:17

Originally posted by David J Jones
Wolf / Oldtimer

One question I have had about both events is - to what extent were JMH and PC relaxing and showboating?

I think only by looking at the lap by lap records will this question be answered.

Another recollection I have is that CASB never used to show his hand too much in practice lest his car be commandered by SCM!


I feel pretty sure the Ferrari pair were cruising in '57 and '58. I've long believed that Hawthorn needed a scrap to get him going, and the reports say he got wired up after Fangio 'forced/intimidated' his way past, which is shown by his lap time on the last lap.

As you say David, we need those lap times. And David, are you hinting that CASB was sand-bagging in practice?

Wolf, IIRC, Fangio had taken about 17 seconds out of the Ferrari pair before the got the faster sign. They then speeded up. He still took 10 seconds out of them. What do you do?