Vale: Ron Tauranac
Famed racing car designer Ron Tauranac has passed away at the age of 95. Tauranac is best known for the design and construction of Brabham racecars starting in the early 1960s, in which cars Jack Brabham won the 1966 Formula 1 championship and Kiwi Denny Hulme won the 1967 Formula 1 championship. Born in England in 1925 and emigrating to Australia soon after, he left school at age 14 to join the Royal Australian Airforce where he trained as a fighter pilot. In the early 1950’s, Ron and his brother Austin developed an interest in motorsport by way of hillclimbs where Ron met Jack Brabham. Brabham moved to the UK to advance his racing career and Tauranac followed him in 1960 to established Motor Racing Developments (MRD) in partnership with Brabham. That partnership led to the design and construction of a range of open wheeler classes with the ultimate success of 2 Formula 1 titles with drivers Jack Brabham and Denny Hulme. Brabham retired in 1970 with Tauranac taking control of MRD and the Brabham F1 race team. In 1972 he sold MRD and the race team to Bernie Ecclestone. He then went to work for car constructor Trojan where he designed the T103 chassis. His next project in 1974 was the manufacture of Ralt racing cars. Over the years he produced many configurations and designs of open wheelers that were highly successful. In 1988 Tauranac sold Ralt to March and began working on a string of projects with the likes of Honda and the Arrows Formula 1 team. He then returned to Australia and in 2002 was awarded the Order of Australia for "service to motor racing, particularly through the engineering design, construction and production of Formula 1 racing cars, providing young drivers with opportunities to compete at top levels, and sharing knowledge with others for the advancement of the sport". Induction into the Australian Motorsport Hall of Fame came in 2017. RIP Ron
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