Saturday, February 28, 2009

Taking a Moment To Congratulate A Good Friend

I would like to take a moment to congratulate our very good friend Doug Mockett on his most recent and very impressive showing at Zwartkops International Raceway in South Africa. If you've never been Zwartkops is near Pretoria which is one of the most beautiful cities in South Africa especially if you are lucky enough to be there when the purple Jackoranda trees are in bloom. Doug drove his beautiful 1961 Cooper T-56, ex-factory FJ car in the Springbok Series which is made up of historic single seaters and had six international entries headed by Doug. The historic single seaters drew a field of over 28 cars for the period up to end 1972.

The six race Springbok Series was to finish off last few events of 50th anniversary celebration of F Junior and Doug made an outstanding showing indeed with two 4ths and four 3rds from six starts ending up 2nd overall!

As you may or may not know, Doug's beautiful Cooper T-56 is the very same model driven by none other than Steve McQueen as seen here by McQueen making the exhilarating high speed drop down through the world famous corkscrew at Laguna Seca.

When talking about Doug's Cooper T-56 he has been overheard numerous times saying, "It's my favorite car in the whole world." For those of us who have raced with Doug in La Carrera Panamericana and Pikes Peak it's hard to imagine Doug even looking at another car. Remembering that old saying, "It's ok to look but don't touch" obviously doesn't apply to Doug and understandably so. Hell I'd do more than touch it too if I had the chance.

While I'm on the subject of Doug and his "little" car. (Don't laugh... Have you seen his battleship?) here is a photo of Doug being honored with the Koni Heritage Award which was presented by our good friend Mario Andretti right here at our local Infineon International Raceway.


formulaphoto said...

Anyone know who the artist is for that painting (and any details of what race it is based on)? My family used to own a Gurney eagle F1 car (although engine-less, and painted in Scuderia Filipinetti colors at the time).

Gary Faules said...

Of course I do and for the record, the reason Doug was given that award was because he won a series in his own 1978 Wolf WR6.

KONI commissioned artist Cortani to create a special award in the form of an original artwork depicting an F1 racecar and driver from this era. Cortani chose to portray American driver Dan Gurney driving his AAR Eagle at the 1967 German Grand Prix at the famed Nurburgring, calling his portrayal of Gurney's strong run at this challenging track "A Chance of Showers."

Cortani is a graduate of The Art Center College of Design in Pasadena, California, and currently resides in Virginia Beach, Virginia. Many of his historic paintings have been shown at the Virginia Air and Space Museum, the California State Railway Museum and the Smithsonian's National Air and Space Museum in Washington, DC, as well as numerous private collections throughout the world.