Images courtesy of Brian Caldersmith
It is with great sadness that we share the news of Sir John Whitmore’s passing on Friday the 28th of April at the age of 79.
Alongside winning the British Saloon Car Championship and European Touring Car Championship, Sir John would also drive a works Ford GT40 at Le Mans and secure a second in class in the 1959 running of the great race, driving alongside Jim Clark.
Several times a patron of the Tasman Revival, we were honoured to welcome him at our events and call him a friend.
Brian Caldersmith has written a lovely vale for him and kindly shared it with the Club. Please find it below along with a wonderful portrait he made in tribute to Sir John Whitmore.
Thanks to Brian Caldersmith
John was one of the great drivers of the 1960s, winning many titles in Mini Coopers, Lotus Cortinas, Shelby Cobras and GT40s. He co-drove with Jim Clark at Le Mans in a Lotus Elite.
John was a friend who spent some time at our home during his Australian visits and he shared my Elite at a Tasman Revival meeting. There was one Sunday when we were preparing to watch the Australian Grand Prix when Frank Gardner turned up – “I heard Whitmore was in residence!” They both shared development work on the Ford GT40s. It was a funny afternoon.
Sadly both are now gone.
I am pleased now that on my last visit to the UK I was able to organise a reunion with John and Chris Barber. They had not seen each other for 30-odd years. The photo above was taken at the pub in Potters Bar, with myself and Warren King sitting opposite them.
This colour pencil portrait is my tribute to John. One of the good ones.