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Thread: Vale Sir Stirling

  1. #1
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    Vale Sir Stirling

    Sad news
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  2. #2
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    We lost a legend
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  3. #3
    Not much more can be said. A real legend by which most were judged, and a character too. RIP Sir Stirling.

  4. #4
    A great loss...

    Though he's been out of public sight for two or three years now, apparently battling some ailment which finally claimed him (reading between certain lines). Not that falling down a lift-well is something one would readily recover from in their eighties, but yet another example of what a fighter he was.

  5. #5
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    It is amazing that Stirling's name is known throughout then world even though it is almost 60 years since his major career ending crash at Goodwood in April 1962 and not long after a serious crash at Spa in 1960. He never won the Formula One World Championship but his racing achievements will never be forgotten. Indeed he was a true fighter to live to 90.
    R.I.P. Stirling.
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  6. #6
    He handed that steering wheel to me once and said 'there you go boy, see if you can straighten that?' It hung on the wall of his study that was clearly a 'working office.'

    Never meeting your heroes is something you hear - he was an exception to that saying. He genuinely was as good a bloke as he was a racing driver. He told some lovely stories over dinner but here's a non-motor racing one. He was often asked to attend events and 'officially open them'. I asked him what the most unusual event had been that he'd ever been asked to appear at.

    'Have you ever heard of Jethro Tull?' I nodded. 'Their manager contacted me and asked if I could introduce them at some gig they were doing at some dive here in London. I didn't want to do it so I raised my normal fee. The manager said 'no problem' so I said I wanted it paid in advance - again no problem - so I said I wanted a car to collect me and bring me home. Again 'no problem'

    So what did you have to do? 'Well boy it was ridiculous - all they wanted me to do was walk out onto the stage and say 'Ladies and gentlemen - Jethro Tull'...and that was it.' He went onto say that the manager had been a fan and that he figured that this was a way of meeting him...and it wasn't his money!

    So there's a bit of trivia. RIP Sir God

  7. #7
    World Champion ERC's Avatar
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    What a great story Michael!

    What many seem to overlook is that not only did he become a world wide household name, but his real racing career was only 14 years. Although he did some trackwork afterwards, it was low key.

    After his bad crash at Goodwood, once 'recovered', and realising he wasn't as sharp as he was before, he took part in a major study led by Dr Berenice Krikler.

    From the book Stirling Moss by Robert Edwards

    "Krikler knew next to nothing about motor racing (that would soon change) and therefore lacked any kind of benchmark against which to measure Stirling's attributes. However a number of Grand Prix drivers, such as Innes Ireland, Graham Hill, Bruce McLaren, Roy Salvadori and Jack Brabham offered their services to construct the sort of baseline, which she needed as a starting point.

    The essence of her study was a series of reactive, cognitive and personality observations, using both the racing drivers and a control sample of intelligent and experienced motorists. She sought some standard by which Stirling could be judged.

    As she collated and analysed the results, it became quite clear to Krikler that by these measures Stirling had better not get back into a racing car. On the section of the test concerning visual co-ordination and concentration, Stirling scored the maximum measurable deficit against the control groups. When she told him, he clearly did not fully appreciate what had happened to him, nor did he (or anyone else, for that matter), have any idea whether this would be a permanent or shifting state.

    The report was kept confidential at the time, but was published in the British Journal of Psychiatry in February 1965, nearly three years after Stirling's crash."


    Part of that study (which I seem to remember reading) came to the conclusion that when drivers, including the GP drivers, were restricted by artificial speed limits for example, (ie a blanket 80kph speed limit), then the error rate rose considerably.

    That study would never have been carried out had it not been for that tragic crash but I seem to remember reading the report many years ago, though I have no idea where, so part of it at least, must have been published, possibly in the motoring press.

    Stirling was an amazing driver, in all sorts of machinery but much harder on his cars than say Tony Brooks and many a time there would be a collective groan from our household when the machinery broke.

    His advice to Mike Hawthorn that lost him the 1958 championship was testament to his absolute sportsmanship, and to this day, and hopefully beyond, something that other sportsmen should take to heart instead of just concentrating on the $$$.

    Ironically, I never saw him race during his heyday.

    Remember his visit to Whenuapai, 1997?

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    A very poor pic but at Goodwood 2009, when Lord March put on a procession of his cars, for his 80th, Stirling actually had a run in his own OSCA.

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    R I P Sir Stirling
    Last edited by ERC; 04-12-2020 at 10:46 PM.

  8. #8
    "Remember his visit to Whenuapai, 1997?"

    I vividly recall a short discussion with Stirling Moss during this visit. He was adamant that for him, sticky tyres had ruined motor racing. His straight-arm driving showed exactly the way it should be done, exemplified by his straight forwards personality. My hero. RIP

  9. #9
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    At the Laguna Seca Historic Meet. August 2011.
    Stirling Moss attended and had a book and autograph signing session alongside Jay Leno. I lined up with some old scrapbook material regarding the 1962 NZGP at Ardmore. Stirling took a great interest in it and signed almost everything I showed him. We had to be ushered apart so others could meet him !
    A treasured moment that means even more to me now.
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    (This is not going back in a scrapbook, it is time to frame it.)
    Ken H photos and scrapbook material.)

  10. #10
    World Champion Roger Dowding's Avatar
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    Saw the Great Man - but never actually met - this is about as close as I ever got, but both my Father Mac and my Uncle Ed [ Eddie ] mentioned him a lot - they saw him Race at Ardmore

    Moss and the Lowline Cooper - Ardmore Reunion meeting 1989

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    Moss- Maserati at Ardmore - 1956** Sketch by Win Bristow - notes at the bottom by Win Moss Maserati at top added by Ed Dowding - these from his copies of the series of sketches - put on TRS before on another thread

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    ** 1956 - need to check !
    Last edited by Roger Dowding; 04-15-2020 at 03:22 AM.

  11. #11
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    The Grand Prix at Ardmore in 1962 was the only time i had the pleasure of seeing the great man race and win. This was the first Grand Prix I attended, I was very upset when he had his terrible accident at Goodwood a few months later.
    RIP Sir Stirling.

  12. #12
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    Stirling rated the P 99 Ferguson 4 WD as one of his favorite cars.
    Thanks to Rhys (Oldfart), I found this excellent informative site that included this information on the Ferguson.

    http://www.spiritracerclub.org/fergu...-pistes-de-f1/ (You may want the English version.)

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    (Ken H )

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