Caversham - BLACK JACK GOES WEST!
BLACK JACK GOES WEST!
It goes without saying that you accept the role of Master of
Ceremonies’ for a cocktail party come meet and greet for an
83 year old living legend with some trepidation, but to mine
and I think many others surprise, we were given a most
interesting and insightful look at Sir Jack Brabham the man,
his fantastic career in our chosen sport and his good
Anyone who has even the remotest interest in the sport knows
of Black Jacks reputation and of his medical difficulties.
None of these had any influence on the night and I doubt
they are even true if I was asked to judge the man on what I
saw on Saturday night. We were able to speak with Sir Jack,
question him in open forum and be delighted by his sharp
wit, humor and well wishes. He must have signed hundreds of
autographs, spoke with nearly everyone in the VSCC Clubrooms
on a myriad of subjects. The prospect of having the area
surrounding Caversham Motor Raceway named after him seems to
have struck a chord with Sir Jack and he joined in the
spirit of the event, even withstanding some baiting over the
“Arnold Glass “incident back in 1962.
So what did we get from the function? Well we now know that
after many years Sir Jack and Arnold made their peace, even
an acknowledgement that after many years it had become a
light hearted conversation piece. We got to learn the
background of how the piece of the first Brabham ever seen
on Australian soil came to be hanging on a nail in the shed
of a club member in Caversham and that it is now the
property of the VSCC and will stay on display at the club
for perpetuity, bearing his autograph suitably noting the
date of his visit. For this we must thank Rob Stewart for
his magnanimous offer.
Reliving the memories of his greatest feats and depressing
lows just leaves you with the impression of Sir Jack which
borders on surreal, he has survived horrific crashes,
mastered The Nurburgring , out driven the world’s best
(including Moss) out engineered the world best racing
engineers, supported his sons and now his grandson, the list
seems to go on and on of the fantastic achievements that
bring him to be acknowledged as a true living legend and
fiercely proud Australian.
If you weren’t at Caversham on Saturday I am afraid that you
missed a great opportunity to meet and speak to a genuinely
nice guy and obviously a person a thousand times more
talented than most, not that we didn’t already know that, I
mean how many Australians do you know that have ever won a
F1 Grand Prix - let alone a world drivers’ championship of
which Sir Jack has three and the only person to have ever
won the constructers championship in a car of his own
manufacture and bearing his name.
Many of the guests from the Caversham era were in attendance
and were off to bed early to make sure that they were all
fresh for Sunday but not before they shared some of the old
times with friends.
My opinion - well I have to admit - I was nervous about how
it would go but in the end it was a breeze and a really fun
thing to do! Sir Jack is welcome anytime and if you need an
MC just call.