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RIP John Surtees

Another legend leaves us. 83 years old, at St. George's Hospital in London, surrounded by his wife and two daughters.
7 time motorbike champion between 1956 and 1960 (had he stayed there, he would have wn as much as Hailwood, Agostini, Rossi) and F1 world Champion with Ferrari in 1964, taking advantage of Hill and Clark's inconsistency. Also started his own team, although with less success than Brabham and Mc Laren.
He survived many friends, but tragedy struck in 2009 when his son Henry was killed in a F2 event at Brandts Hatch, his head being hit by the flying wheel detached from another car that had spun ahead of him, similarly to what happened a few years later to our Justin Wilson.

RIP John, hero of the two and of the four wheels.


  • He made a huge impact on the sport. Didn't deserve what happened to his son. I often wonder how it is that a lot of racers can excel on 2 or 4 wheels. Such different disciplines - even muscle groups - involved. Vale.
  • Another Legend gone. Sadly missed. Vale John Surtees
  • RIP Nicky Hayden, another tragedy on a bicycle shakes the sports world this year. Even though the Kentucky Kid was likely going on his bike with his iPod on.......
    But riding a bike on the road is becoming growingly dangerous......
  • And also RIP Dan Gurney, another great.
    One of the "missed World Champions", with Moss, Brooks, von Trips, Peterson, Villeneuve, Arnoux, Pironi, Kubica, maybe Reutemann, maybe Laffite, maybe Massa. To show his greatness, just one episode: at Jim Clark's funeral, in 1968, Clark's father told Dan that he had been the opponent Jim feared and respected most. 'Nuff said.
  • Also Collins, Ickx, maybe Regazzoni, maybe Alboreto, maybe bellof among the missed World Champions.....
  • I think that you are being deliberately provocative Manlio......so I will bite

    Ickx - no. Journeyman. Alboreto - no. Inconsistent. Bellof - no. Fast, but career too short to tell. Ruetemann - absolutely no. Opportunist at best. Massa - no. Lacked the killer instinct. Laffittie - no. Not really tier one. Kubica - ummmm. Really though, we did not see enough to say he missed out. Pironi - no. He was never as fast as Villeneuve really.

    The problem with bright lights is that they dazzle. I always think about two drivers from the recent past. Fisichella & Frentzen. When they forst came on the scene I recall thinking how impressive they were to watch and how fast they could be on their day. Both I thought, had a chance at being the champ. The longer they drove though, the more average they became. The Fish could still turn it on for most of his career in qualifying, but often went missing in races. His time at Ferrari was plain embarassing.

    Vale Gurney - The very first champagne waster.....and incredibly talented driver
  • I was basically inserting there two categories, Lease: 1) those who had the talent but their careers were cut short (Bellof, Kubica) and those who were close to get there, even though i know that Laffite, Massa, Alboreto or Reutemann did not have that talent. maybe even Arnoux and Pironi. In the list I did not even insert Irvine because I consider it so far away from having the talent. Fisico did not have the talent, Frentzen missed his chance and did not have the talent either. I would have loved if Trulli had a chance, which he never had. And of course Alesi.
  • RIP Niki Lauda. Controversial character, but probably the most novel-like life in that babylon of great men that past Formula One is.
  • Gosh yes!

    I got to see him race in Adelaide in 1988 I think it was. What a contribution he made. Very sad that it would seem that his lungs - which were his main problem in the big crash - were essentially what got him in the end.

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