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David Purley


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#1 jatrob

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Posted 13 February 2003 - 09:43

Hello TNFrs

Does anybody on this great forum know of any resources about David Purley?

I have had a search of this BB and have seen some quotes but no threads, which could be down to my poor searching!

Are there any websites or biographies for this great man, besides this one:

http://www.grandprix...drv-purdav.html

Thanks.

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#2 Lec CRP1

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Posted 13 February 2003 - 10:20

I've made a few thorough searches on the web in the past, and these are the best I could come up with :

Anton Sukup's David Purley bio page :
http://www.asag.sk/bio/purley.htm

8W's entry on Purley's Token qualifying attempt at the 1974 British GP :
http://8w.forix.com/...en.html#MARCOR2

An interview with Purley by Nigel Roebuck (it says here) :
http://www.rallystar....02Features.doc.
(you'll have to scroll down quite a way to find it)

#3 Gary Davies

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Posted 13 February 2003 - 10:41

Or here: http://www.autosport...d=21514&s=5&l=3

Vanwall

#4 jatrob

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Posted 13 February 2003 - 11:00

Many thanks Lec CRP1 and Vanwall.

As the site says, "top racer, top bloke"

#5 David M. Kane

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Posted 13 February 2003 - 13:19

The world could use about a million David Purley's these days. Now there was a real man and a real gentleman. We all are afraid at different times,
its how we deal with it. Mr. Purley dealt with it better than most.

He also was apparently fairly bright as he "rabbit" reply to Super Rat
shows.

If I ever get to heaven, he will be one of the first I will be looking up.

#6 ensign14

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Posted 13 February 2003 - 14:03

"Racers Apart" by David Tremayne (published by PSL?, circa 1991) has a great chapter on Purls and many other heroes, sung and unsung.

#7 Barry Boor

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Posted 13 February 2003 - 19:15

I can only add a few observations from the very short period of time that David was connected with us at Peter Connew Motor Racing.

Yes, he was a very decent and friendly bloke. However, in the car he was not the most careful of operators. He punctured a rear tyre in the paddock by hitting one of the scaffold pole bases when driving around; he managed to pull the knob off the gear lever within a couple of laps (something that Francois Migault never did in all the time he drove the car); and unceremoniously ripped the sole off his driving boot as he said it was catching on the front of the chassis when he was braking.

Then, of course, on the parade lap before the race he managed to disconnect the electrics that we had fitted in order that he should have a kill button on the steering wheel. To be fair, the latter incident may not have been his fault, but merely a snagged wire. Then again, had the kill button not been fitted, there would have been no wires there to snag.

Having said all that, it was a great act of kindness on his (and his father Charlie's) part to pay for the rebuild of our (McLaren's) DFV so that the car could be entered in the race for him.

Had the wires not broken and the car run reasonably in the race, there may well have been a Lec Connew in F.1 for the whole of 1973!

A lot of other things may well have been different thereafter.

#8 petefenelon

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Posted 13 February 2003 - 19:23

Originally posted by ensign14
"Racers Apart" by David Tremayne (published by PSL?, circa 1991) has a great chapter on Purls and many other heroes, sung and unsung.


A very good book indeed - the Roger Williamson and Tom Pryce chapters are almost unbearably moving.

#9 Lec CRP1

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Posted 14 February 2003 - 12:43

Originally posted by petefenelon


A very good book indeed - the Roger Williamson and Tom Pryce chapters are almost unbearably moving.


If you really want moving, check out this quote from the Leicester Mercury 16th July '73 (courtesy of Anton Sukup - http://www.asag.sk/bio/williamson.htm )

-----
"It all happened so fast," said Williamson. "I turned into Woodcote, saw all the dust flying about I and got on brakes, but everything was cold because it was only the first lap. I started to slide towards the dust and I was aiming for the pit wall, thinking there wouldn't be any cars about there. But I had to swerve to miss the back of one car, then there was another one and nowhere for me to go. I took off, hit Jody Scheckter's car, then the pit wall and ended under the bridge. All the drivers were just glad there was no fire because we all had full tanks, of course."
Williamson hopes that the car can be rebuilt in time for the Dutch Grand Prix, in a fortnight's time, but much depend on the availability of spares.
-----
I mean, I wasn't born until the end of '75 but... :(

#10 jatrob

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Posted 19 February 2003 - 12:33

For anybody reading this thread, this may be of interest.


Nigel Roebuck in this weeks column mentions the Zandvort '73 tragedy.


http://www.autosport...d=21974&s=5&l=6

#11 Lec CRP1

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Posted 02 July 2003 - 11:05

David Purley
26th Jan 1945 - 2nd July 1985

I raise my glass of Chimay to you.

#12 ian senior

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Posted 02 July 2003 - 11:34

Originally posted by Lec CRP1
David Purley
26th Jan 1945 - 2nd July 1985

I raise my glass of Chimay to you.


And so do I. If only he was still with us, to drive the Lec at Goodwood.....

#13 ghinzani

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Posted 02 July 2003 - 14:27

18 years? I can remember it like yesterday. Were'nt John Watson and Mike Earle playing tennis and witnessed the plane going into the sea off of Bognor?
David was a true hero, on and off the track. I was reading an old Autosport last night where his team said they were considering debuting the Lec in an Aurora AFX round because they had been refused an entry for their first race at Monaco.

#14 Lec CRP1

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Posted 26 January 2005 - 07:47

Hard to believe I know, but David Purley would have been 60 today...

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#15 Stephen W

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Posted 26 January 2005 - 10:18

In the winter of 1972 I made up my mind to go to the German GP for a full week-end rather than turn up on the day. So having booked with P&M I had my usual trip to the Britsih GP and then I watched the Dutch GP on TV. I was shocked by the total lack of proper marshals. I was also amazed at the sheer courage of David Purley. During the Saturday at the Nurburgring I wandered out to the Hatzenbach Curves. I got a cracking pic of Purls and when I got home had a nice 10x8 printed up. This I sent to David with a letter expressing my admiration for his efforts to rescue Roger.
A week or so later I had a letter from Lec signed by David asking if I could meet him at Oulton Park on his next visit. I duly turned up and we had a long chat about F1, marshals and that incident! He was still deeply affected and I again marvelled at the man's sheer courage. I doubt I could ever have got back into a racing car again after that incident at Zandvoort.

It was with great sadness that I learnt of his death however I did take one grain of comfort from it - David died doing something dangerous and that excited him. He was a true hero. :cry:

#16 Fiorentina 1

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Posted 26 January 2005 - 13:39

Italian magazine, Rombo, had a very nice tribute about him in July 85 after his death. He was even on the cover, that is how I learned about David Purley. It's people like him that make racing so special. :up:

#17 MCS

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Posted 15 March 2005 - 20:24

Taken at a Formula Atlantic round at Oulton Park a few weeks after the Zandvoort tragedy...

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#18 Lec CRP1

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Posted 16 March 2005 - 08:47

Originally posted by MCS
Taken at a Formula Atlantic round at Oulton Park a few weeks after the Zandvoort tragedy...

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:up:

#19 petefenelon

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Posted 16 March 2005 - 10:35

Originally posted by Lec CRP1


:up:


Purls reminds me of Jochen Rindt in that picture. That same look of absolute determination.

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#20 Andrew Kitson

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Posted 16 March 2005 - 10:48

I have on VHS video a kids programme I recorded from BBC1, 'Go with Noakes'. It was first broadcast in 1975 but repeated in '82 when I taped it.
Blue Peter presenter John Noakes joined David, Mike Earle and the Lec F5000 team as a 'pit mechanic' for the Good Friday Oulton meeting, a race won by Gordon Spice.

Great footage, paddock clips, David speaking about Roger's accident and testing the Chevron B30 at Goodwood without a rear wing. I think it was removed so the rearward facing on-board camera could see Noakes following in an F.Atlantic Chevron.

A few warts in the footage, film of F1 cars at Zandvoort with V8 Chevvy soundtrack and on board film of Noakes driving the Atlantic car audibly changing gear, but with both hands on the wheel.

But there again it was a kids show, but worth seeing nevertheless. Dare not play it too often in-case the tape breaks. Must convert it to DVD!

#21 Mallory Dan

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Posted 16 March 2005 - 11:03

I recall that prog Andrew, it was the Snowy Oulton meet wasn't it. I wonder what the FAt Chevron was, did Noakes really drive it ??

#22 Lec CRP1

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Posted 16 March 2005 - 11:08

Originally posted by Andrew Kitson
I have on VHS video a kids programme I recorded from BBC1, 'Go with Noakes'. It was first broadcast in 1975 but repeated in '82 when I taped it.
Blue Peter presenter John Noakes joined David, Mike Earle and the Lec F5000 team as a 'pit mechanic' for the Good Friday Oulton meeting, a race won by Gordon Spice.

Great footage, paddock clips, David speaking about Roger's accident and testing the Chevron B30 at Goodwood without a rear wing. I think it was removed so the rearward facing on-board camera could see Noakes following in an F.Atlantic Chevron.


I also have a distant memory of an early 80s BBC kids programme. 'Record Breakers' I think it was, an item about a racing driver breaking a record about hardest crash survived and interviewing him about such. When I first read about David Purley many years later, I added two and two together. I hope I'm right, but any evidence lies in the BBC archive.

A few warts in the footage, film of F1 cars at Zandvoort with V8 Chevvy soundtrack and on board film of Noakes driving the Atlantic car audibly changing gear, but with both hands on the wheel.


Maybe Shep was changing gear....;)

#23 Andrew Kitson

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Posted 16 March 2005 - 11:16

Originally posted by Mallory Dan
I recall that prog Andrew, it was the Snowy Oulton meet wasn't it. I wonder what the FAt Chevron was, did Noakes really drive it ??


It was a snowy meeting. They cleared the snow from the tarmac for the racing but the track got wetter as melting snow from the grass was running across. It was the first F5000 race on the new 'Fosters' circuit.

Not sure which Chevron Noakes was 'driving' - looked like he was anyway.
But it was a yellow 'Rapid Movements' one - Matt Spitzley's?

#24 jaybie

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Posted 16 March 2005 - 13:51

http://www.grandprix.com/gpe/rr230.html

Hi

Just looking at the results there for the 1973 dutch gp, from the link above and have a couple of questions:

Did Purley go around another lap, or had he lapped Roger Williamson at that point, as it states Purley had completed 8 laps?

What exactly happened Fittipaldi in that race?

Thanks for any help

#25 Tim Murray

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Posted 16 March 2005 - 17:28

Williamson and Purley had been running in close company virtually from the start of the race. At the end of lap 7 Williamson and Purley were in 13th and 14th positions respectively. Fittipaldi had pulled out after a couple of laps as, following his severe shunt in practice, he felt he couldn't move his right foot quickly enough to drive properly. (Source: Autosport)

#26 fines

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Posted 16 March 2005 - 18:12

I believe Purley got back in his car and drove to the pits, so technically completing another lap.

#27 Lec CRP1

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Posted 02 July 2005 - 14:22

Yes, it's 20 years since David Purley was killed when he crashed his plane into the sea off Bognor Regis.

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RIP David Purley (26th January 1945 - 2nd July 1985)

#28 petefenelon

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Posted 02 July 2005 - 19:16

Purls was the King of Chimay, back in its days of wild and woolly F3, so I'll be raising a bottle of the rather splendid local brew to mark his passing.

#29 Nikos Spagnol

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Posted 03 July 2005 - 03:51

Originally posted by Tim Murray
Williamson and Purley had been running in close company virtually from the start of the race. At the end of lap 7 Williamson and Purley were in 13th and 14th positions respectively. Fittipaldi had pulled out after a couple of laps as, following his severe shunt in practice, he felt he couldn't move his right foot quickly enough to drive properly. (Source: Autosport)


Emerson Fittipaldi considers his accident at Zandvoort in pratice that year the most frightening one he had in his Formula One carreer. He had his feet trapped on the car, which was leaking fuel, so it was dangerous to cut him out of the car, as any spark during the sawing could set the car on fire...

Some people are lucky, but some are not. :(

#30 ensign14

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Posted 17 February 2006 - 20:56

Purley crops up in this week's Ask Nigel.

(Incidentally, the one line answer to the first of this week's questions is pure genius...)

#31 Sayeeda

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Posted 08 November 2006 - 21:03

Great footage, paddock clips, David speaking about Roger's accident and testing the Chevron B30 at Goodwood without a rear wing. I think it was removed so the rearward facing on-board camera could see Noakes following in an F.Atlantic Chevron.


I would die for those clips.... :( :(

#32 hipperson

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Posted 09 November 2006 - 10:41

Perhaps someone could kindly ID this LEC.
Brighton Speed Trials either 1974 when I ran my 275GTB or a bit later..................fairly sure it got FTD ?

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#33 Stephen W

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Posted 09 November 2006 - 10:49

Originally posted by hipperson
Perhaps someone could kindly ID this LEC.
Brighton Speed Trials either 1974 when I ran my 275GTB or a bit later..................fairly sure it got FTD ?

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It is the Chevron B30 with V6 Ford engine.

:wave:

#34 Twin Window

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Posted 09 November 2006 - 11:52

Originally posted by ghinzani

18 years? I can remember it like yesterday.

It's now twenty-one years on, and I feel the same...

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Great bloke.

:up:

#35 Mallory Dan

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Posted 09 November 2006 - 11:56

The last Purls shot is interesting Twinny. Looks like the HB F1 Ensign next to him, then his F5000 B30, and at the back a F2 March??

#36 Twin Window

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Posted 09 November 2006 - 11:57

1975 Race of Champions, Dan. Wunderink was in the Ensign, and that's Lella Lombardi in the March 751 behind.

#37 Sayeeda

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Posted 10 November 2006 - 16:47

Amazing pics! :p

Some of those I've never seen before

thx Twin! :clap:

#38 Alan Cox

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Posted 10 November 2006 - 19:07

A nice collection, and variety, Twinny

#39 Twin Window

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Posted 10 November 2006 - 20:29

Thanks - if only I'd had a decent camera... :rolleyes:

One I forgot; 1972 Victory Race at Brands in the Connew.

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#40 Alan Cox

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Posted 10 November 2006 - 23:01

Some memories of a great sportsman

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#41 Lec CRP1

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Posted 10 November 2006 - 23:12

The hanging helmet....now that's unpretentious.

#42 Twin Window

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Posted 11 November 2006 - 00:24

Great images...

:up:

#43 petefenelon

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Posted 11 November 2006 - 01:20

It's time for a Purls biography, isn't it? There's more than enough story there, and if The Lost Generation does well it should raise enough interest in one of the most colourful characters ever to make it into Grand Prix racing.

#44 Neuz

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Posted 11 November 2006 - 02:23

Here are some more photos of Dave on my website. (Still haven't figured out how to post pictures!)

http://www.yesterday...976/index_3.htm


I'd have to agree that Anton Sukup has the best Purley website http://www.asag.sk/bio/purley.htm



Neuz
www.yesterdaysneuz.com

#45 Alan Cox

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Posted 11 November 2006 - 10:07

Posted Image Posted Image

Posted Image A bit of a naff shot, but one doesn't often see Group 8 cars in the snow.

P.S. I love the bungee strap attached to the roll-over bar in the top two shots. Don't see many of those on a 21st century Grand Prix grid!

#46 Lec CRP1

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Posted 11 November 2006 - 14:03

Originally posted by petefenelon
It's time for a Purls biography, isn't it? There's more than enough story there, and if The Lost Generation does well it should raise enough interest in one of the most colourful characters ever to make it into Grand Prix racing.


I thought about doing a Purley biog myself, but I lack the contacts and social skills. Plus Newcastle Under Lyme is a long way from Bognor Regis. I do have a Lec fridge, though.

#47 f1steveuk

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Posted 11 November 2006 - 14:17

I spoke to Mike Earle, and Wattie about doing a bio, and still have the initial research notes, but maybe it's time...

#48 Barry Boor

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Posted 11 November 2006 - 17:56

Lovely shot of Daddy D. in the Connew photo, Twinny, but surely it needs photoshopping?

#49 Twin Window

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Posted 11 November 2006 - 19:22

Originally posted by Barry Boor

Lovely shot of Daddy D. in the Connew photo, Twinny, but surely it needs photoshopping?

:D

(The weather was so grim that day that for years I didn't even realise I'd got a pic of it! Too much for the Instamatic to handle; in fact the only ones which actually came out worse were the of Lotus 72s... :rolleyes: )

#50 MCS

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Posted 11 November 2006 - 19:27

Originally posted by Neuz
I'd have to agree that Anton Sukup has the best Purley website http://www.asag.sk/bio/purley.htm


Always nice to see pictures you've taken on other people's websites...