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We regret to inform Members that Life Member Chris Kerrison passed away last Friday 16 October at the age of 85. He was elected to the BRDC in 1963.

Chris started racing in the late 1950s with a Lotus Eleven with which he achieved good results nationally before acquiring the Eleven’s successor, a Type 17, for the 1960 season. A couple of second places early in the year at Goodwood, behind Mike Salmon’s Jaguar D-type, and at Silverstone to Geoff Breakell’s Lotus Eleven, were early successes but by now the Lola Mk 1 was beginning to dominate the popular 1500 cc and 1100 cc sports-racing car classes and the Type 17 failed to carry on the good work of the Eleven. By the end of the year Chris had acquired his own Lola Mk 1 with which he competed widely through the 1961 season. Most notable achievement was winning the 1150 cc sports-racing class in the Nurburgring 1000 Ks and finishing 14th overall with Peter Sargent as co-driver against some strong Lola opposition including works driver Peter Ashdown.

Although he was best known for his exploits in sports-racing and GT cars, in 1961 Chris contested several rounds of the BRSCC Saloon Car Championship, forerunner of the RAC championship, in a Jaguar 2.4 Mk 2. On his own admission, the opposition was not the strongest and he ended up winning the 2000 cc 3000 cc class ‘against a few Zephyrs and Wolseleys’.

At the end of 1961, Chris acquired the Ferrari 250GT Berlinetta Competizione with which Stirling Moss had won that year’s RAC Tourist Trophy at Goodwood. For the 1962 TT he shared the driving with Robin Benson who unfortunately contrived to lose control at Madgwick towards the end of the race and pile into the Ferrari 250GTO of John Surtees and Jim Clark’s Aston Martin DB4GT Zagato, which had already come to grief when the race-leading Ferrari was lapping the Aston.

Unable to afford his own 250GTO, but hopeful of attracting better start money with a distinctive car, Chris sent his 250 GT Berlinetta to Drogo in Modena where it was rebuilt under the direction of Giotto Bizzarrini, becoming known as a Ferrari 250 GT Speciale and running as a sports-prototype rather than against the 250GTOs in the 3-litre GT class. Chris raced the re-styled Ferrari throughout 1963 and 1964 with worthwhile results for a privateer. At the Whitsun Goodwood in 1963 he finished third behind the 250GTOs of Mike Parkes and Michael MacDowel and was fifth in the Spa 500 Ks the same year. Highlight of the following season came not with his own Drogo Speciale but in a 250GTO in the Circuito de Cascais Gran Premio di Portugal. The original plan was to share the car with Mike Salmon who was taken ill just before the race and rendered unable to take drive. Chris drove the whole race solo in the heat of a Portuguese summer, and emerged victorious. In his own car Chris had a best result in 1964 of sixth place in the Grand Prix de Limbourg at Zolder.

After sharing a Ferrari 250GTO with Mike Salmon in the 1965 Nurburgring 1000 Ks, Chris retired from racing but remained a proud BRDC Member, participating in numerous social events over the years. To his widow Cathy and their family, the BRDC extends its most sincere condolences.  Funeral details will be updated on the website when confirmed.

The Club regrets to report the death of Stan Collier, who was elected as a BRDC Member in 1988.
The Club regrets to report on the death of Neville Hay, who was elected as a BRDC Member in 1993
The Club regrets to report on the death of Alan Minshaw, who was elected as a BRDC Member in 1984
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