John Surtees Remembered At Goodwood Revival

It’s sixty years since John Surtees won the F1 world championship. Goodwood will put the spotlight on Surtees’ extraordinary career at Goodwood Revival in September.

Surtees at 1968 Dutch Grand Prix.jpg Kopie
Photo Wikipedia

To this day, John Surtees is still the only man to have won world championships on both two and on four wheels. Surtees was a motorcycle world champion no less than seven times in different engine classes between 1956 and 1960. In 1959, he tested a single-seater race car for the first time, at Goodwood, as it happens. And again at Goodwood, Surtees made his competition debut on four wheels. On that occasion, in March 1960, Surtees came second in a Formula Junior Cooper, behind Jim Clark.

Eight time World Champion John Surtees at the 2010 Goodwood Revival. Ph. by Ian Lambot 1024x681.jpg Kopie
Photo Goodwood/Ian Lambot

Stunning debut

By May 1960, Surtees was already in Formula 1. He scored a podium finish in only his second F1 race, coming second at the British Grand Prix in a Lotus-Climax behind Jack Brabham. At the same time, Surtees kept competing on two wheels. He managed to win both the 350 cc and the 500 cc world titles on MV Agusta.

1965 07 30 Surtees u. Forghieri.jpg Kopie
Surtees and Mauro Forghieri discuss Ferrari. Photo Wikipedia

Ferrari title

In 1963, Surtees switched to Ferrari and won his first F1 Grand Prix, on the Nürburgring. He finished fourth in the final standings. One year later, Surtees took the title with just one point. He won two races along the way to the championship. The title was decided at the final race of the season, the Mexican Grand Prix. After Clark (Lotus) dropped out, Bandini let his Ferrari teammate Surtees through into second place.

Eight time World Champion John Surtees at the Festival of Speed 2014. Ph. by Drew Gibson 1024x683.jpg Kopie
Photo Goodwood/Drew Gibson


Surtees famously fell out with Ferrari in 1966, but he would make his comeback in F1 in 1967 with Honda. After his career, Surtees kept an active role in racing. In 1993, he was the patron for the first Goodwood Festival of Speed. According to the Duke of Richmond: “Along with Stirling Moss, John was a Patron of the Festival of Speed and was deeply involved from the very beginning.  More than anything, he was an exceptional racer and a great friend.”

John Surtees left The Duke of Richmond middle and Valentino Rossi right at the 2015 Festival of Speed. Ph. by Dominic James 1024x683.jpg Kopie
From the Goodwood Festival of Speed hosted this year at Goodwood House, Chichester, West Sussex, UK, on June 28, 2015. © James Esq.

At this year’s Goodwood Revival, both the bikes and cars Surtees drove in his decades-long career will come into action once more. Tickets for the Goodwood Revival in September can be ordered here.

Report by Johan Dillen for


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