Peter Westbury, 1938-2015

Peter Westbury, 1938-2015

Racer Blog

Peter Westbury, 1938-2015


Peter Westbury, who has died at the age of 77, might be best-known for his two British Hillclimb Championship titles and a single world championship grand prix start, but his impact on the sport went much further. Not only was he a successful Formula 3 racer, but he gave future sportscar great Derek Bell his break in international motorsport.

After triumphing on the hills in 1963 aboard the Daimler V8-powered Felday 1 built in his back yard, Westbury was loaned the four-wheel-drive Ferguson P99 Formula 1 car for a successful defense of his title the following year.

A series of Felday sportscars followed after which the move was made into F3 under the Felday International Racing & Sportscar Team or FIRST banner. Bell was one of the drivers of FIRST’s fleet of Brabham BT21s and his successes would quickly attract the attention of Ferrari.

“That was my big break internationally and Peter provided it,” said Bell. “The preparation of the cars was excellent.”

Westbury also achieved success in F3 and shone on fast and challenging circuits. He triumphed on the daunting public roads of Chimay in both 1967 and ’68, and also won at Rheims in the second of those years. He would also finish second in the Monza Lotteria in 1969 after his graduation to Formula 2.

Westbury’s single grand prix start came at the wheel of his Brabham BT30 F2 car in the 1969 German Grand Prix and he also tried to qualify a BRM at the 1970 US Grand Prix.


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