Former Lotus Racer Johnny Dumfries Passes Away, Aged 62
However, quite than spending the household fortune, he tried to make it on his own, not using his name to open doors. Never one to endure fools gladly, he retained a dry sense of humour – and all the time had a down-to-earth perspective on his career. At the identical time, that was the tip of an F1 career for the Scottish aristocrat however his largest success in racing still had to come.
Dumfries struggled to establish himself but was quietly dropped at the finish of the year. He turned as an alternative to sports activities vehicles and became a Jaguar driver in 1987, profitable a number of races including the 1988 Le Mans 24 Hours. He completed off his profession with the Toyota manufacturing facility sports car staff in 1989 and 1990. His only season of F1 was in 1986 for Lotus, the place he scored three points to finish 13th within the championship.
He obtained to Lotus in 1990, however their best days have been lengthy gone, so then it was into sportscars earlier than an F1 revival in 1993. Currently his Triple Eight Race Engineering runs the Vauxhall Vectras in the BTCC, which he himself drove in ’97-’98, with a win at Knockhill. Lotus secured a second supply of the Honda engines already utilized by Williams, and a situation of this was to offer the second seat to Satoru Nakajima of Japan. He would do some check driving for Benetton, however then it was into sportscar racing with Porsche, Toyota, Jaguar.
In fact, he was a way more achieved driver than the bare 1986 statistics instructed, as he had already proven in his F3 days, and would subsequently reveal in sportscar racing. He was born on April 26, 1958, in Rothesay, Isle of Bute, in one of the country’s oldest aristocratic families. Johnny later adopted family tradition and attended Ampleforth College but didn’t full the research. As an adolescent, he became passionate motorsport lover and determined to attempt his luck on the planet of racing. He recorded 15 starts with Lotus within the 1986 Formula One World Championship season. He participated 5 instances at 24 Hours of Le Mans, scoring an total victory in 1988 with Silk Cut Jaguar XJR-9.
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He then moved to London the place, adopting the name Johnny Dumfries, he labored as a painter, decorator and jobbing builder and later as a mechanic at a garage at Elephant and Castle, before happening to pursue his career as a racing driver. Dumfries turned as an alternative to endurance racing, first for Sauber then, from 1987, with Tom Walkinshaw’s Jaguar team, successful several races including the 1988 Le Mans 24 Hours. After a couple of years with the Toyota and Cougar teams, in 1991 he retired from racing to run the family estates, his father having fallen unwell. In 1988, Bute scored the most important racing victory of his profession when he won the Le Mans 24 Hours, driving a Jaguar XJR-9 for Tom Walkinshaw’s Silk Cut Jaguar Team alongside Dutchman Jan Lammers and Englishman Andy Wallace. Inexperienced, and with the group focusing on Senna, Dumfries had an underwhelming season, finishing solely 5 races and including one further factors placing to his Hungarian result when he was sixth in the season-closing race in Australia. A new driver combination, a refreshed mentality and winter developments focused at the weaknesses of its 2020 Formula 1 automotive puts Ferrari in a much stronger place heading into the brand new season.
Inspired by Goodwood’s Festival of Speed, he additionally inaugurated the Mount Stuart Classic, by which competition vehicles of all kinds raced by way of the grounds, though it lasted solely two years. He was born in Rothesay as John Crichton-Stuart, styled the Earl of Dumfries. His mother, Nicola (nee Weld-Forester), was the primary spouse of John Crichton-Stuart, the 6th Marquess, whose right to his title came by virtue of getting been born 5 minutes earlier than his twin brother. Educated at Ampleforth College in Yorkshire, the young Earl left earlier than his O-ranges – which he took at a London crammer – with the purpose of pursuing his interest in motor sport. If there was no opposition from his household, neither was there financial assist, and he earned his residing as a painter and decorator and as a van driver for the Williams F1 staff.
Bute also participated within the 1-hour endurance race in the 1988 British Touring Car Championship at Donington Park with fellow ex-F1 Briton Guy Edwards for Andy Rouse’s Kaliber Racing staff in Ford Sierra RS500, ending third general and in Class A. In 1984, Bute, then often known as Johnny Dumfries, was the sensation of the F3 season, scoring 14 race victories on his way to successful, and completely dominating, the British Formula 3 Championship for Team BP . He additionally completed runner-up to Ivan Capelli within the European Formula Three Championship that yr. In 1985, he graduated to the newly created FIA International Formula 3000 Championship, initially competing for Onyx Race Engineering earlier than switching to Lola Motorsport. It was a disappointing season, with a sixth-place end in Vallelunga being the spotlight of the yr. Two years after his sole F1 season, Dumfries cemented his reputation as a extra-than-useful pedaller by taking overall victory on the 1988 Le Mans 24 Hours alongside Jan Lammers and Andy Wallace, on the wheel of a Jaguar XJR-9LM.
His household released a statement which described him as a “devoted husband, father, brother, uncle, son and grandfather and liked by all”. While studying Sports Journalism at the University of Central Lancashire, Chris managed to speak his means into working at the British Grand Prix in 2008 and was retained for three years before becoming a member of ESPN F1 as Assistant Editor. After three years at ESPN, a spell as F1 Editor at Crash Media Group was adopted by the main task of launching F1i.com’s English-language website and operating it as Editor. Present at each race since the start of 2014, he has continued constructing his freelance portfolio, working with worldwide titles. As properly as writing for RACER, he contributes to BBC 5Live and Sky Sports within the UK as well as working with titles in Japan and the Middle East. “The indomitable spirit and energy which Johnny brought to his life shall be significantly missed, and the immense heat and love with which he embraced his household,” the assertion learn.
As he found in his driving profession, even on the final that title provided no protection. He tried to make a comeback at the 2003 Le Mans, however, eternally self-critical, he recognised after doing a test lap that his reflexes had been not up for it. And, with the backing of Serena, he did promote a Festival of Speed on Bute for a couple of years in the noughties. It was so profitable, it fully overwhelmed the island’s infrastructure and he reluctantly severed his last connection along with his sport. Apart, that is, from attending the annual dinner of the ‘Rat Pack’, the informal dining membership of former British racing drivers.
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Back in 1984 Johnny had been crowned British F3 champion, driving a Ralt RT3/eighty three-Volkswagen for Dave Price Racing. The blue-blooded Scot was on his way to the double in 1984 however he finally finished second in the European Formula three Championship on 53 points, Ivan Capelli taking the title on 60 factors. Thanks to his 4 wins Dumfries finished ahead of Gerhard Berger, who scored 49 factors. 1984 had additionally seen Johnny sample a Lotus-Renault 95T at Donington Park as his testing skills had been highly regarded. He retired from racing in 1991 because of the illness of his father, and took over the household estate in 1993. An unassuming and unpretentious individual, he has few airs or graces and prefers to be called John Bute.