Moto Magazine

Sir Jack at Monaco, 1959

Posted on the 08 January 2012 by Gardenamateur
It will come as no surprise to discover that my Aussie childhood racing hero in the 1960s was Jack Brabham, now Sir Jack. World Champion in 1959 and 1960, Jack then did what no-one else had ever done: in 1966 he again became World Drivers Champion, but this time he did it in a car he designed and built himself (with due credit of course to the real designer, Ron Tauranac, and the real engine builder, Phil Irving, of Vincent fame). As well as already owning a Trax model of the 1966 BT19 Brabham car, I've recently acquired a model of his 1959 car, a Cooper Climax, and to celebrate the purchase I thought I'd do something a bit different in the way of a Photoshopped diorama. Here goes...

Sir Jack at Monaco, 1959

Here's Jack hurtling into a corner at Monaco in the Cooper, in a scene re-created using a
Brumm 1:43 model of the Cooper.

Sir Jack at Monaco, 1959

And here's the original photo on which my diorama is based – it's a wonderful study of
concentration and speed. Now, I know my diorama is not a patch on this great original
shot, but it was fun trying to re-create a true action shot using a diecast model.

Sir Jack at Monaco, 1959

The Brumm model is a nice thing, and they've captured the butch, aggressive body shape
well. With its engine behind the driver and in front of the back axle, the Cooper set down
the basic layout of Formula One cars that hasn't changed for over 50 years. It's an historic
car that probably doesn't get as much kudos as it deserves. For the record, Jack wasn't the first
to win in a Cooper. In the previous year, 1958, Stirling Moss had won the Argentine GP in a

Cooper, and after that Maurice Trintingnant won 58 Monaco in a Cooper. Even Jack
Brabham had signalled the changing of the guard even earlier on, coming in sixth in a
Formula 2 Cooper in 1957. When he won in 1959, no-one was surprised!

Jack winning at Monaco in 1959 was a very big thing for Australian motor sport. It was the season opener, so everyone was watching, and Jack became the first Australian to win a Formula One race, coming home with the lap record for good measure. From that moment on, I was a fan, even if I was only six years old then! 
And so, to finish things off, let's hop in with Sir Stirling Moss for a few laps in a 1959 Cooper...

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