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Gary B
Forgotten F1 drivers

The forgotten F1 driver Gary B.

There were decades in the Formula One that there were more teams and drivers than places on the grid. Forty entrants for a Grand Prix was no exception, it was the reality in the 1980s and 1990s. While we all known the ill-fated teams as Pacific, Coloni, Osella, EuroBrun, Zakspeed and so on. There is a huge group of forgotten Formula One drivers who tried their luck for a few seasons, or just for a couple races. It’s time to bring these forgotten drivers back to the surface. Do you remember Gary B? (obviously you know who he is)

Before I can continue writing the story, i have some explaining to do. Why are the eyes covered, and why is the name shortened? Well Gary B. has been found guilty of one charge of rape and one of indecent treatment of a child. This all happened in 2016 by the Brisbane’s District Court. Better said, two young girls (sisters) their lives have been ruined in the 2000’s by this Gary B. Already in 2009 he was pleaded guilty to charges of indecent dealing of a child under 12. His punishment was just six months in jail for his crimes. My personal view, any paedophile should be excluded from any involvement in society. Deport them to a forgotten Island and let them rot away.  As well, I believe this has to be shared, as many seem not to know.

Still Gary B. was part of the Formula One grid in 1990 for Life and did some testing for the Brabham team in the 1980s. Therefore, I made the decision to have the story published. Because, when I started writing the article I only found out of the story above at the end.  I know the opinions from many and I totally agree with them. Though as researcher I should also publish the rest, it’s part of the job. I hope you all can live with that.  Therefore, I decided as well not to mention his family name in the article. As the rest of the family is a pure and true racing family that’s only deserves the respect..

“Despite his career and results he managed to score, it’s the crimes that that he will be known for now”

The Australian Gary B. was born on the 29th of March 1961 in Wimbledon, London. There is not much know of his early years, as in did he do some karting? The first known taste of racing is from 1982 when Gary B. raced in the Australian TAA Formula Ford Championship. The series was held over eight rounds. With a Birrana he managed to finish 12th in the standings, scoring one podium finish at Sandown. In 1983, Gary moved to Europe to race in the Formula Ford series in the United Kingdom for Neil Trundle Racing in a Reynard SF83. He managed to finish the season as 11th.  In 1984, he would remain racing in the British Formula Ford 2000 Championship in a Reynard SF84.

In 1985, he would race his last races in the British Formula Ford 2000 Championship, while he tried his luck as well in the Thundersport series where he scored his maiden victory at Snetterton in a Tiga-Ford TS84, together with teammate Tim Lee-Davey.

It seems in 1986 he would have more luck with racing, as his father put a team together under the banner of their family name. He raced in nine of the 18 races held in the British Formula 3 championship. Ending the season as 5th overall with one podium and two fastest laps.

The lack of money would become clear in 1987. The team managed to have Panasonic on board for 13 of the 19 races that were held. With two wins and a 6th place overall he scored some decent results. If he would have the finance for the whole season, he probably would have defeated Herbert. The same year Gary B. raced with a Holden VK commodore SS Group A in the BTCC of 1987 for Alan Docking Racing. As well, he raced for Schnitzer Motorsport with a BMW M3 in the FIA World Touring Car Championship.

In 1988, he raced in several non-championship races in the British Formula Three championship. He won the race at Brands Hatch. As well, the race held at Knockhill. He completed as well the British Formula 3 Championship as second with four wins driving for Bowman Racing. He managed to finish fifth at Macau the same year. To complete his year he was the test driver for the Benetton F1 Team.  He tested several times with the Benetton B188.

The 1989 season would be the most successful season. He won the British Formula 3000 series with four wins out of nine races with a Reynard 88D from Bromley Motorsport, finishing sixth at the Formula 3 race at Macau. His results in the International Formula 3000 were not that good. Racing for both Bromley and Leyton House he only managed to score two points out of seven races. Overall good for a 17th place. His debut in the 24 Hours du Le Mans was more a success. In the C1 class, he raced with the Porsche 962C from Omron-Team Schuppan and finished 10th.  

During the season, Gary B. tested a couple of times for several Formula One teams. While he was Benetton’s test driver in 1988, in 1989 he would test for the Motor Racing Developments. Probably the family name was involved to have him testing the BT58-Judd. Later during the season, he would test with the Life 190, previously known as the First Racing 189, at Monza with the well known Life W12 engine fitted.

In 1990, Gary B. would make his debut in the Formula One. It was no success at all. Besides the amazing, though complicated W12 engine the chassis was far from great and too weak to hold the power. He failed to qualify the car in Phoenix and at Interlagos. It meant the end of his Formula One career. Eventually he went back to the International F3000 championship with average results. He gave it a shot as well in the Australian Endurance Championship with a Ford Sierra RS500 from the Tony Longhurst Racing Team.

In 1991 and 1992, he would race in the Australian Endurance Championship and the IMSA GT Championship with some good results. In 1991, he would win the 12 hours of Sebring. Eventually in October 1992, he would appear for the last time at the Bathurst 1000 with a Ford Sierra RS500 from Allan Moffat. In 1993 and 1994, he would only attempt the Indy Races at Surfers Paradise. He was the first Australian Indy Car driver. In 1993 he finished 14th, three laps behind Nigel Mansell. In 1994, he retired with the Bettenhausen Racing after ten laps.