John Fitzpatrick born in Birmingham9 June is a former English racing driver, winning many titles throughout his career.
He works within motorsport as a consultant doing corporate events and driver management. He published a book "Fitz-My Life at the Wheel" in He was one of the best Porsche drivers of his era. He then became renowned for his expertise at driving the German machines. He was crowned European GT Champion inand then again in He won the prestigious Porsche Cup inand Inhe moved from driver to team owner-driver, with some success. He won points, although his season was brought to a close with two Escort hans and james part 2 in the final rounds.
ForFitzpatrick switched to the factory backed Cooper Car Escort hans and james part 2 team, taking his first victory in class at the first race. A second win resulted from the fourth meeting, ultimately finishing second in the championship to Jim Clark. The season saw Fitzpatrick claim three podiums including a class win in his Morris Mini Cooper S Peter Proctor had a severe accident in the Goodwood race and his place was taken by Anita Taylor. Fitzpatrick won the Championship overall.
Fitzpatrick followed this with a second place overall the following year, before Broadspeed changed to the new Ford Escorts. Team Broadspeed bought a Ford Escort for Fitzpatrick, which meant he would compete directly with the Mini Coopers once more. Nonetheless, Fitzpatrick took four class wins on the trot during the middle of the season, finishing sixth overall.
In andFitzpatrick would claim a further fifteen wins in class, taking third on the championship in The new regulations introduced that year seemed to provoke Fitzpatrick to end his driving career in the series, as he entered the world of endurance racing full-time after After not finishing any other races, until his final race ofhe won the Jarama 4 Hours in alongside Mass  .
He would finish sixth overall in the end of season standing, one better than the previous season.
He won five of the nine races in the inaugural European GT Championship, en route to the title, beating his nearest rival, Claude Haldi by more than double his points pts v 61pts. He also won the coveted Porsche Cup. After taking two more podium finishes, including a second place in the Spa 24 Hourshe would finish fifth in the overall standings. Drivers switched between the two outfits during the season, including John. Despite this Fitzpatrick got the title by a lot smaller, margin that in — just 9pts.
In the lad from the West Midlands would also win the Porsche Cup for the second time. Unfortunately for Fitzpatrick, he was racing a BMW 3. Although the car was supplied by BMW Motorsport, it was outdated Escort hans and james part 2, but fragile. He piloted a BMW 3. Originally, Fitzpatrick was paired with Walkinshaw, but when their car retired, he was switched to the sister car of Peter Gregg and Brian Redmanwhich would go on to victory, winning by 14 laps.
In a dramatic finish, Fitzpatrick nursed the Torana home trailing smoke over the last few laps.
Initially thought to be an engine problem or a broken axle which the L34 Torana's were notorious for doingit was later revealed that an oil seal had failed and the leaking oil was getting into the clutch making it slip badly and slowing him down, especially on the steeper parts of the Mount Panorama Circuit.
His last appearance as a driver in Australia was to have been the James Hardiebut after Morris qualified their Ford XE Falcon in 6th place, Fitzpatrick had a front wheel break going through Forrest Elbow during the Saturday afternoon practice session causing the car to crash heavily into the wall.
ForFitzpatrick was back at Kremer Racing, where in five WCM races, he co-drove with Wollek to three podium finishes, reaching the top at Hockenheim.
He had rejoined Broadspeed, to race the Jaguar XJ12Chowever the racing programme got off on the wrong foot because British Leyland would not finalise the decision whether or not to continue with the programme following their debut in This mean Ralph Broad and Broadspeed guys did not know whether to get on with their development Escort hans and james part 2.
Once Leyland gave the go ahead, valuable time had been lost. Fitzpatrick found himself partnering Tim Schenkentogether they raced eight times for Jaguar, they only finished once, in the Grand Prix Brno, held on the old Masaryk Circuitalbeit in 16th place following an exploding tyre. Despite Jaguar pulling out of the ETCC, Fitzpatrick found himself in great demand, so much so, he was racing in three major championships, winning races in all of them.
Here, he teamed up with Umberto Grano to win the Mugello Giri. This time he was partnered by Toine Hezemans and Hans Heyer. The next round was back in Italy, the 6 Ore di Vallelungawhich although Fitzpatrick did not win, he did finish on the podium in second and third places!
Although he had raced in the championship before, this was the first time he raced the whole series with Gelo Racing, finishing 4th overall in the process. There was mixed fortunes for John, with winless season in the DRM. However, in the WCM, results were better. Their car with Schurti encountered Turbo problems, but the one with Heyer was victorious, winning by over seven laps.
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Dick Barbour Racing had two of their own cars and hired Fitzpatrick as their lead driver. Between these cars, he took three more wins, en route to 8th in the overall standings. This resulted in the Porsche Cup returning to his hands. InDick Barbour experienced some financial setbacks and Fitzpatrick founded his own team, John Fitzpatrick Racingwith sponsorship from Sachs.
In his debut season as the team owner-driver of John Fitzpatrick Racing, he was assisted by the Kremer brothers. Although the championship for Escort hans and james part 2, was between John Paul, Jr.
John took the Mid-Ohio round, beating Paul, Jr. Rolf went off the road and damaged the car when on fresh tyres, did another lap slowly to check the car out, then went full-bore again only to have the rear body collapse, causing him to lose control and hit a wall.
The team had no idea of the severity of Rolf's accident and switched Bell to the Fitzpatrick-Hobbs car. The team of all-English drivers went on to win, unaware that Rolf had died. He joined Tom Walkinshaw Racing for a few events, a best being a home victory in the Donington Thanks to a high level of sponsorship from J. David, Fitzpatrick was able to purchase two Porsche s to run in the World Endurance Championship [WEC] series and did in fact become the privateer to field a multi-car team of s.
Although this rendered them less than fully competitive, the team's won at Elkhart Lakeon its first American outing.
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When the was returned to Europe, to race in the Grand Prix International kmat Brands Hatchit featured many enhances not seen on the works cars. The soaking Kent track let JFR try out their aerodynamic tweaks and Fitzpatrick and partner for this race, Derek Warwick became only the second team to beat the works team.
ForGuy Edwards brought Skoal Bandit sponsor to the team. The was not popular with JFR's drivers and was sold early into the season. Only one further Escort hans and james part 2 was gained, this being in a DRM round at the Escort hans and james part 2 with Thierry Boutsen behind the wheel, perhaps this was not really surprising, for by then there were so many top-class s in action that wins were spread very thinly amongst them. When Skoal Bandit pulled out at the end ofJFR had difficulty in maintaining adequate levels of finance.
One car was leased to Manuel Lopez and raced with sponsorship from Canal 9 Peru; it was written off at Silverstone and had to be rebuilt around a new chassis. With backing from the American s cigarettes, two cars were entered into the Le Mans 24 hours, but one of these, the rebuilt car crashed heavily in practise.
For the Norisring round of the WEC, the works Porsches were not entered, which left one of their lead drivers, Bell, without a drive, so Fitzpatrick offered him one. Bell called the "diabolical. It was painfully, visibly slow, but I drove my backside off from virtually last place of the grid, struggling round to take 11th place shortly before the end".
His works teammate, Hans Stuckhad electronic troubles with his Joest Racing Porsche, and eventually wound up 15th. So, at the end of the year, Bell was given the World Championship on the basis of this tie-decider — 11th as opposed to 15th at the Norisring. He relocated to Spain, and racing during with backing from various Spanish businesses, notably Danone, he retired from Motor Sport, and he sold his entire team, including racing cars, transporters and all equipment to Jochen Dauer. David sponsorship using March customer chassis but the project did not come to fruition.
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. John Fitzpatrick John Fitzpatrick in Winners of the 24 Hours of Daytona. Hurley Haywood Scott Pruett.
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