Autosport Awards
Topic

Autosport Awards

AUTOSPORT Awards 2014: Gordon Murray wins John Bolster Award

Legendary Formula 1 designer Gordon Murray has been honoured with the John Bolster Award, 40 years after the first grand prix victory for one of his cars

AUTOSPORT Awards 2014: Gordon Murray wins John Bolster Award

Murray started his career with the Brabham team in 1969 and was made chief designer by Bernie Ecclestone in 1973.

The following season the Brabham BT44 scored its maiden F1 victory when Carlos Reutemann won the South African Grand Prix at Kyalami.

The BT44 scored a total of three victories in 1974 and notched up two more the following season courtesy of Reutemann and Carlos Pace.

"I started Formula 1 at 23 and I was running the team at 26, and you just want to win the race. Then when you've won a race and a world championship, you just want to win another one," Murray recalls.

"It was fantastic. I was lucky to be operating in that period. One of the reasons I stopped was that the regulations were getting very tight and you couldn't innovate anymore."

Among Murray's best known designs was the infamous Brabham BT46B, which became known as the 'fan car.' The BT46B generated enormous levels of downforce thanks to a large fan that extracted air from underneath the car.

Introduced to combat the dominant Lotus 79 and its ground effect innovation, the BT46B won on its debut at the 1978 Swedish Grand Prix. It was voluntarily withdrawn by the Brabham team before the next race after protests from rivals.

Murray's F1 contenders at Brabham won a total of 22 grands prix and delivered Nelson Piquet to the drivers' world title in 1981 and '83.

In 1987, Murray joined McLaren as technical director and helped produce the all-conquering MP4-4 in 1988.

With Murray on board, McLaren enjoyed one of the most dominant eras in Formula 1 history as the Woking-based team won four consecutive constructors' titles and drivers' titles with Ayrton Senna in 1988, '90 and '91 and Alain Prost in '89.

In 1991, Murray was chosen to head up McLaren Cars. He designed the McLaren F1 road car - which also won the 1995 Le Mans 24 Hours in its racing guise - and was part of the team that produced the Mercedes-Benz SLR McLaren in 1998.

shares
comments
AUTOSPORT Awards 2014: Formula E wins Pioneering and Innovation
Previous article

AUTOSPORT Awards 2014: Formula E wins Pioneering and Innovation

Next article

AUTOSPORT Awards 2014: Petter Solberg wins Gregor Grant Award

AUTOSPORT Awards 2014: Petter Solberg wins Gregor Grant Award
Load comments
The one-time Schumacher rival rebooting his career Down Under Plus

The one-time Schumacher rival rebooting his career Down Under

Joey Mawson made waves in the middle of the last decade, beating future Haas Formula 1 driver Mick Schumacher - among other highly-rated talents - to the 2016 German F4 title. A run in F1's feeder GP3 category only caused his career to stall, but now back in Australia Mawson's S5000 title success has set that to rights

General
May 8, 2021
The lesson football’s would-be wreckers could learn from racing Plus

The lesson football’s would-be wreckers could learn from racing

OPINION: The greed-driven push for a European Super League that threatened to tear football apart is collapsing at the seams. Motor racing's equivalent, the football-themed Superleague Formula series of 2008-11, was everything that the proposed ESL never could be

General
Apr 21, 2021
The F1 and Indy 'nearly man' that found contentment in Japan Plus

The F1 and Indy 'nearly man' that found contentment in Japan

Having had the door to F1 slammed in his face and come within three laps of winning the Indianapolis 500, the collapse of a Peugeot LMP1 shot meant Japan was Bertrand Baguette's last chance of a career. But it's one which he has grasped with both hands

General
Feb 27, 2021
The female all-rounder who arrived "too early" Plus

The female all-rounder who arrived "too early"

From Formula 3 to truck racing, Dakar and EuroNASCAR via a winning stint in the DTM, there's not much Ellen Lohr hasn't seen in a stellar racing career that highlights the merit in being a generalist. But she believes her career came too early...

General
Feb 17, 2021
How Radical's latest machines fare on track Plus

How Radical's latest machines fare on track

The lightweight sportscar manufacturer has not rewritten the rulebook with its latest machines, but the new SR3 XX and SR10 still provide a step forward on its previous successful models

General
Feb 8, 2021
The real-life racing rogues stranger than fiction Plus

The real-life racing rogues stranger than fiction

The forthcoming Netflix film linking the world of underworld crime and motorsport plays on a theme that isn't exactly new. Over the years, several shady figures have attempted to make it in racing before their dubious dealings caught up with them

General
Jan 31, 2021
How a GP is thriving in a COVID-free territory Plus

How a GP is thriving in a COVID-free territory

The New Zealand Grand Prix's mix of rising talent and big-name stars thrilled the crowds (yes, remember crowds?) assembled for the Toyota Racing Series meeting at Hampton Downs last weekend and left distant observers craving a repeat

General
Jan 26, 2021
How a much-changed Macau GP kept the party going Plus

How a much-changed Macau GP kept the party going

OPINION: The 67th edition of the Macau Grand Prix might have been a largely muted affair to the outside world without its international influx and star line-ups, another victim to the COVID-19 pandemic, but organisers deserve huge credit for keeping the party going

General
Nov 24, 2020