Johnny Dumfries

Johnny Dumfries

Handsome, sleek and really fast, he appeared every inch the champion in waiting. In 1996 he offered household furniture and paintings which fetched £10.7 million at Christie’s. Three years later he offered the island of Great Cumbrae, within the Firth of Clyde, for £1 million, and in 2000 he bought a uncommon copy of Audubon’s Birds of America for £5.5 million.

Yet with his aristocratic background John Colum Crichton-Stuart, Earl of Dumfries, had supplied a vibrant addition to the F1 circus. And in reality his background may barely have helped him negotiate the customarily fraught politics of Formula One. Invariably self-deprecating, he described himself as “utterly useless” at negotiating himself a deal. It meant, regardless of his burgeoning reputation, he solely had one 12 months at a Grand Prix group, driving for Lotus as Ayrton Senna’s number two. He never hit it off with Senna, later admitting he in all probability knew the enigmatic Brazilian much less after a yr working with him than he did before.


He additionally achieved a sixth place on the 1986 Australian Grand Prix, where his automobile was famously adorned with an onboard camera, offering the footage you see in the video beneath. Johnny Dumfries, who began 15 Grands Prix for Lotus in the 1986 season, has handed away on the age of sixty two. “His coronary heart was firmly rooted on the Island of Bute where he spent a lot of his time.” Dumfries spent a yr in F1 in 1986 with Lotus, where he was a subordinate team-mate to Ayrton Senna. The Scotsman raced beneath a pseudonym to disguise his aristocratic background – he was John Crichton-Stuart, the seventh Marquess of Bute.

  • However, the automotive was not simple for a rookie to tame and Dumfries struggled to make an impression.
  • The Renault-powered 98T was one of the quickest and strongest automobiles of the turbo area.
  • Apart, that’s, from attending the annual dinner of the ‘Rat Pack’, the casual eating membership of former British racing drivers.

He lived along with his family in London and at the ancestral seat Mount Stuart House, 5 miles ( km) south of Rothesay on the Isle of Bute. In December 2020 he was charged with breaching COVID-19 rules for allegedly travelling with others to his Isle of Bute home.

He signed a Maranello check contract that proved to be a dead end, having earlier turned down a chance with Bernie Ecclestone and Brabham. He gained four races in the European F3 series, and despite not contesting all of the rounds, he was a close runner-as much as champion Ivan Capelli. He scored 10 victories and received the title simply – together with his prize together with a McLaren F1 check. He even turned down a chance to sub for the injured Martin Brundle at Tyrrell to focus on his F3 campaign. Having given himself a surname that would not appeal to attention, Dumfries first made his mark in FF1600 in 1980.

Johnny Dumfries  Great Britain

His likelihood to race for Team Lotus alongside Senna in 1986 got here after the Brazilian vetoed the choice of Derek Warwick, feeling that an established British driver might divert consideration from his marketing campaign. Dumfries, who tested for the group at Donington Park, was a suitable alternative. He worked in quite a lot of jobs, notably as a builder, and as painter and decorator. In 1977 he had a spell as a van driver/gofer for Williams, after which moved to the BS Fabrications group, which ran Brett Lunger and Nelson Piquet. He by no means favored to use his title and all the time most popular to be often known as John Bute or Johnny Dumfries. He worked as a part of assist workers with the Williams F1 Team and at the age of 22 debuted in karting racing.

johnny dumfries

Even a severe karting accident on the age of 22, when he broke each ankles, did not put him off. “He spent his entire life attempting to stay down the very fact he was descended from Robert the Bruce,” says Damon Hill, remembering his fellow Formula One driver, whose death, aged sixty two, was introduced this week. Back in 1984, the word in motor racing circles was that there was a brand new subsequent huge factor revving up on the grid.

First Race

He also gained his first sportscar experience, driving a Porsche 956 camera automotive at Spa and at Sandown Park, sharing at the latter with Sir Jack Brabham. In 1983 he graduated to F3, where he was initially run by former racer Dave Morgan. The following year he took a step up to Dave Price’s frontrunning team, with strong BP backing.

A assertion from the Dumfries family confirmed the passing of the “devoted husband, father, brother, uncle, son and grandfather and loved by all” on Monday. Johnny Dumfries, who was Ayrton Senna’s teammate at Lotus in 1986, has died on the age of 62 following a short illness. He offered a second household mansion, Dumfries House in Ayrshire, to the Prince’s Foundation, a charity run by the Prince of Wales, in 2007. In December 2020 he and six different people, aged between 21 and 90, were charged with breaking Covid-19 journey rules after a journey from London, where he had a house in Ladbroke Grove, to Bute. In 2007, the other household house Dumfries House in Cumnock, Ayrshire, was sold to the nation for £45 million.

He acquired a automobile from early mentor Bert Ray, whose factory based mostly close to Brands Hatch, and his cousin Charlie helped out with contacts where he could. Johnny Dumfries, who has died after a brief sickness on the age of sixty two, will at all times be best remembered for his 12 months as Ayrton Senna’s Lotus teammate in 1986. In sportscars he was entered in a Sauber C9 which he shared with the enigmatic Mike Thackwell and none aside from the present CART team proprietor Chip Ganassi, for his first Le Mans in 1987.

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