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Mentioned in Passing

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#901 Ray Bell

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Posted 09 December 2018 - 12:11

What details would you like?


He was a gofer on the Geoff Smedley rebuild of the Miller Cooper when they prepared it for the LSR. Then he disappeared from Tasmania mysteriously and was next seen as head mechanic at the Geoghegans'. Old Tom got wise to him and he ingratiated himself with Greg Cusack and remained with Greg until the end of the Mustang runs.


From that point he set up a couple of big-name workshops for road cars, 'Burr & Daniel' (shared with Jimmy Daniel) being the best known.


#902 ReWind

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Posted 09 December 2018 - 19:29

Bert Laakmann


Bert raced Porsches at Westwood and other local tracks in the late 60s and into the 70s.  He and his friend Charly Godecke won The Province 7-hour at Westwood in 1973 and 1974 in a 911S.  He was a fine, generous gentleman. 


Vince H.


It could be noted that Bert Laakmann was originally from Velbert, Germany.



#903 ensign14

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Posted 10 December 2018 - 08:36

Max Cohen-Olivar.  A Le Mans stalwart and the rarity of being a racing driver from Morocco.  Died this past May, aged 73.  Always seemed to be around in the WSC in the 1980s, albeit never picked out in reports.  He was still racing in 2016.

#904 GMiranda

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Posted 10 December 2018 - 12:03

Willi-Peter Pitz, co-driver of Rauno Aaltonen, among others, also died this October, I think.

#905 nikhil

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Posted 03 January 2019 - 03:10

Leo Wybrott, Passed away 9 June 2018, here in Perth, WA after a long illness with brain cancer. Leo was from Hasting, NZ and one of many NZers to travel to the UK where he started his motor racing career with Lotus and was seen on the Tasman series as a mechanic to Jim Clark and the Lotus 49T. He had a long career that included Lotus, McLaren for 21 yrs and later Nicholson McLaren Engines and XTrac. One of Leo's passions was restoring old race cars, the last of which was a Mclaren M4a which he brought with him when he migrated from the UK to Perth. He ran this car frequently classic car regularity events at Barbagallo, Northam, Albany and Collie. I had the pleasure of working with Leo at McLaren's at Colnbrook in '77 and '78 including running Bruno Giacomelli in an M26 for five GPs. And then more recently as the gofer for him with the M4a. Good times, fond memories and a great guy to be around.


Chris Gray

Edited by nikhil, 03 January 2019 - 03:29.

#906 Ray Bell

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Posted 07 January 2019 - 12:11

One I've picked up from the Roaring Season...


Robin Tanner


Raced a variety of cars in New Zealand, from '39 Ford coupes to Pontiac Firebirds.

#907 D28

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Posted 10 January 2019 - 15:57



Sad news on passing of Peter Giddings Sun Jan 6. He will be sorely missed in vintage racing circles.

#908 raceannouncer2003

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Posted 11 January 2019 - 07:00

More on Peter Giddings here:




Of course, Peter was a great supporter of real vintage racing.  We fondly remember him racing his Talbot Lago and his Maserati 250F at the much missed Westwood track.  The last Westwood historic race poster and program featured a Kane Rogers rendering of Peter leaving turn 3 at Westwood in his Talbot.  Good times.  And a very approachable, easy guy to talk to.  


A favorite memory...Monterey, 1991.  I have a photo (somewhere) of Peter helping Froilan Gonzalez prepare for some laps in Peter's Talbot.  I asked Peter if this was as much fun as actually driving the car.  His response..."Almost."  Meanwhile, Fangio drove by in the Mercedes W196.  Fangio and Gonzalez exchanged smiles...a special moment.


Vince H.

#909 eldougo

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Posted 15 January 2019 - 22:23

Found on NZ Facebook page.


Sad to say that John Edmonds passed on Sunday 6th Jan 19

John purchased Garrie Cooper's Elfin MR5-B (5723) in around 1975 and campained it in Aust and NZ i believe for about two years. Not sure who remembers him, but thought it should be mentioned here. John was a terrific bloke and always had a smile on his face. He told me once that he was down towards the back of the field on grid at Sandown and although he wasn't the fastest, he looked up at the packed grandstand and thought to himself that a many of those seated would have loved to have had his seat. RIP John.

#910 Ray Bell

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Posted Yesterday, 01:59

I remember being in the pits at Sandown once...

Right down the low end, nearest to Peters Corner, and John was struggling with not too many cylinders operating on that Elfin. It sounded pretty bad.

Elwyn Bickley turned to me as we heard him go by, "Who's riding the Triumph?" he asked.

#911 ellrosso

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Posted Today, 06:38

RIP John Edmonds. The F5000 fields would have been very thin without the likes of John and all the others who just wanted to be a part of the most powerful openwheeler formula (and quickest outside of F1). Another scary F5000 Sandown moment

below. I can't recall if John was injured in that accident ...... anyone else know?5876-N-Edm-76-lo.jpg8415-Z-Edmon-77-lo.jpg

#912 Lee Nicolle

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Posted Today, 07:56

I was discussing Elfins very recently with a bloke I know who hung around Elfin in that period. We both remembered the red and white car and could not remember the drivers name.

And now it turns out he has died. RIP.

And yes to make a decent field first you need cars and John and quite a few others filled those gaps and generally doing it on the cheap were never going to be at the front,, but still had dices down the pack.

That crash pic though, that ditch,,, and look at the crowd. I presume just over the crest down to Dandenong Rd

#913 Ray Bell

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Posted Today, 10:03

That would be right, Lee...


A pretty high-speed lose even if you haven't got a quick car!