Brabham BT21C car-by-car histories

Mike Hayman's Brabham BT21C at Virginia International Raceway in September 1968. Copyright Ed Cabaniss (virhistory.com)  2019. Used with permission.

Mike Hayman's Brabham BT21C at Virginia International Raceway in September 1968. Copyright Ed Cabaniss (virhistory.com) 2019. Used with permission.

SCCA Formula B was booming in 1968 and Brabham's US dealer Fred Opert imported up to 16 of the latest Brabham BT21C model. The BT21C was an update to the 1967 BT21A and visually almost identical.

The Brabham BT21C illustrates how difficult it can be to research individual racing car histories. Of the 18 that Brabham records say were built, we know that one car stayed in the UK for Sir Nicholas Williamson to use in hillclimbs and another appeared in the UK two years later for Malcolm Eaves, so the other 16 presumably went to the US via Fred Opert. If Brabham records could be located, it is likely that they would just give Opert’s name as agent so they probably would not allow us to identify individual owners. SCCA records from that period paid no attention to chassis numbers and as the BT21C appeared four years before the SCCA introduced log books, many BT21Cs will never have been logbooked. We are therefore left with many cars that raced in the US but very few clues to their identities. However, this page will act as a resource to owners and we will, over time, make some progress.

Of the US cars, so far just four have been identified: Peter Nichols Goetz’ BT21C/1, Don Delamore’s BT21C/8, Noel McGlothlin’s BT21C/14 and Gari Andreini’s BT21C/16. That leaves up to 12 cars for which the first owner is not yet known. This compares with 12 unidentified cars in 1968 (see next section).

If you can add any further information, please email Allen.

Current owner
Brabham BT21C/1

Peter Nichols Goetz (Mohrsville, PA) bought a Brabham BT21C for Formula B in 1968 but only raced it sparingly, advertising it at on 2 Nov 1968 as "only 3 races". Subsequent history unknown until acquired by Brian Julien (Waukesha, WI) in early 2007. Raced by Julien at Road America in August 2010 and in July 2012.

Driven by: Peter N Goetz. First race: Lime Rock, 6 Jul 1968. Total of 2 recorded races.

Brian Julien (USA) 2012
Brabham BT21C/3

The early history of this car is unknown but according to research done in Australia, its early owners include a "Coleman" and a "Campbell". After being owned by Mike Whelan and Mike Fitzgerald, it was restored by Wayne Taylor between 1994 and 1998, and was then with Mark Leonard between 1998 and 1999. Sold to John Ashwell (Casino, Australia) in 1999 and raced in historic events in Australia. Raced by Ashwell at the Sydney Retro Speedfest in May 2014.

John Ashwell (Australia) 2014
Brabham BT21C/6

New to Sir Nicholas Williamson (Mortimer, Berkshire), fitted with a standard 1600cc Vegantune Ford twin cam and raced in the British Hill Climb Championship in 1968. Won at Bouley Bay in July. Williamson ordered a BT29 for 1969 but it was late arriving and he ended up using the BT21C again until acquiring a McLaren M10A in August. The Brabham was sold to Spencer Elton (Westbury, Wiltshire) and raced in sprints and hillclimbs in 1970 and 1971. Sold in August 1971 to Peter Varley (Bradford/Silkston, South Yorkshire) who took a surprise second place at Wiscombe Park in May 1972. Varley raced the car for several more years but was finishing further down the results sheets by 1976. Next seen when raced by Peter Speakman (Broughton-in-Furness, Cumbria) in 1988 and 1989. Sold to Tim Barrington 1991, then to Michel Réchède (Pau, France) in 2004. Advertised by Réchède in June 2009. Then unknown until it reappeared in England in 2015, being used in hillclimbs by Martin Jones (Gotherington, Gloucestershire)

Driven by: Sir Nicholas Williamson, Spencer Elton, Peter Varley, Peter Voigt and Tim Barrington. First race: Wiscombe Park, 7 Apr 1968. Total of 72 recorded races.

Martin Jones (UK) 2015
Brabham BT21C/8

According to later owner Mark Shillingburg, this car was bought new by Courtesy Chevrolet in California, and was raced for them by Don Delamore (San Jose, CA) in 1969 and 1970. He advertised the car in Dec 1970 wth two Vegantune engines, adding that it had never been damaged. Shillingburg reports that Courtesy Chevrolet then sold the car and it did not race again. With Mark Shillingburg (Evergreen, CO) in 2014. Retained by Shillingburg November 2015.

Driven by: Don Delamore. First race: Vacaville, 6 Apr 1969. Total of 12 recorded races.

Mark Shillingburg (USA) 2015
Brabham BT21C/10

Unknown until a SCCA Log Book issued to Jason D. Anderson by Steel Cities Region on 13 May 1972, Previously owned by a Charles E. Cottrell Jr, who we now recognise as the Charles Edward "Chuck" Cottrell (Pittsburg, PA) whose obituary in July 2015 noted that he had raced with the SCCA before moving to Denver, Colorado in 1974. Cottrell must have owned it in 1971 or earlier, and there were several BT21Cs in Pennsylvania at that time. Sold by Essex Racing (Ivoryton, CT) to DeVillo H. McCann Jr (Rochester, NY) in 1980 and retained for many years. Still with McCann in April 2007.

DeVillo H. McCann Jr (USA) 2007
Brabham BT21C/11

Nothing known until sold by Hal Roach (Arizona) to Tracy Shepard (Bloomington, IL) some time around 2007.

Tracy Shepard (USA) 2007
Brabham BT21C/12

Early history unknown but reported to have been "new to Mr. C.H.Adams of Springfield Illinois". The Charlie Adams who raced a BT21C in 1968 was Charles W. Adams of Manhattan Beach, CA so this does not appear to be the same person. This car was bought in the US by Australian Gary Simkin who was working there, and returned with him to Australia in March 1983. It was sold to George Goodare (Sydney, NSW), rebuilt and used in historic racing. It was owned by Peter Addison (Sydney, NSW) then sold to Howard Blight (Sydney, NSW) 1989. and then via Rob Bailey (Victoria) 1998 to Nereo Dizane (Sydney, NSW) December 1998. Dizane died in 2004, aged only 53, but his collection of cars has been kept together by his wife Anna Dizane (Wantirna, Victoria).

Anna Dizane (Australia) 2014
Brabham BT21C/14

Duncan Rabagliati advises that Brabham BT21C chassis 14 went to Fred Opert for customer "McLaughlin". This would appear to be RN (Noel) McGlothlin of Chattanooga, TN (or nearby Rossville, GA) who entered a Brabham BT21C for the Sept 1968 SCCA National at Virginia International Raceway. He also appears at Sebring in December 1969, his car now entered simply as a BT21. Subsequent history unknown.

Driven by: R. Noel McGlothlin. First race: Huntsville Airfield, 27 Oct 1968. Total of 2 recorded races.

Brabham BT21C/16

Gari Andreini (Santa Rosa, CA) bought a new Brabham BT21C for 1968 but his early racing was in minor SCCA events and is not well recorded. The earliest evidence of Andreini having the car is from the entry list for the SCCA Regional at Santa Barbara on 1 September 1968. He raced the car until 1972 when he moved to Alaska and sold the car to old school friend Art Siri (Santa Rosa, CA). History largely unknown until sold by Don Roose (Seattle, WA) to Nick Smith (Rancho Santa Fe, CA) in March 2006. Still with Smith in April 2009.

Driven by: Gari Andreini and Arthur B. "Art" Siri. First race: Laguna Seca, 10 Apr 1970. Total of 5 recorded races.

Nick Smith (USA) 2009
Brabham BT21C/17

New to Malcolm Eaves (Solihull, Warwickshire) and fitted with a 3.5-litre Buick V8 engine for hillclimbing. It made its competition debut at Curborough on 4 October 1970, its only previous outing having been a shakedown at Silverstone. Eaves qualified the car regularly for the Top Ten in British championship hill climbs in 1971. To Peter Boshier-Jones (Cardiff) for 1972 and again often made the Top Ten in 1972 and 1973. To Nigel Pow (Bristol) and kept the Buick engine for 1974, qualifying for the Top Ten on several occasions. Pow reappeared with the car in 1976, when it had been fitted with a 4.2-litre four-cam Indianapolis Repco V8 running on neat methanol. The bodywork had also been updated and it was described as a BT21/23C. The car was not a great success in this configuration. Sold by Pow to John Harper in 1979 and sold by him to Australian Clive Osborne in 1981 and then sold to Les Wright in 1987. Wright located Malcolm Eaves who still had the detailed photographs from when the car was first built, allowing Wright to return it to original specification by 2003. The quad-cam Repco V8 was sold to be fitted to a Matich sports car. Les Wright raced the BT21C-Buick regularly in Australian historic racing from 2003 onwards. Raced by Wright in the HSRCA Winter meeting at Sydney Motorsport Park in June 2013.

Driven by: Malcolm Eaves, Peter Boshier-Jones and Nigel Pow. First race: Curborough, 4 Oct 1970. Total of 42 recorded races.

Les Wright (Australia) 2013
Brabham BT21C/18
Bob Ilich's Brabham BT21C in January 2020. Copyright Andrew Fellowes  2020. Used with permission.

Bob Ilich's Brabham BT21C in January 2020. Copyright Andrew Fellowes 2020. Used with permission.

This car emerged from the Art Valdez Collection when it was sold in 2019. The AM number confirmed that the car was a late BT21C, but was it said to have been owned by the Smothers Brothers, which doesn't make a great deal of sense as Dick Smothers had the ex-Lou Sell BT21A for 1968, and replaced it with a new Chevron B14 later in the season. The Valdez car was sold to Bob Ilich in Australia later in 2019.

Bob Ilich (Australia) 2020

Unidentified Formula B cars in 1968

SCCA race records reveal 12 Brabhams racing in 1968 that we can be reasonably confident were BT21Cs. No record has been found of Don Delamore’s BT21C/8 or Gari Andreini’s BT21C/16 racing in 1968. In reading these histories, and trying to understand the movements of these cars, it is essential to also consider the mystery Brabham BT21As.

Current owner
Brabham BT21C
'the Nick Reynolds car'

Nick Reynolds (Sausalito, CA), a musician with folk group "The Kingston Trio", bought a new Brabham BT21C for 1968 which he used in SCCA Nationals, finishing second in NorPac Division and fifth at the ARRC. He sold the car to Dr William T Monson (Kent, WA) for 1969, and Monson went one better, taking the red BT21C to the SCCA Northern Pacific Division title and placing well in the 'Pro' series when it visited his home town. It was then sold to Gary Gove (Tacoma, WA) who raced it locally in 1970 and 1971. Gary cannot recall who he sold it to but recalls that it was an early car, either BT21C/2 or BT21C/3.

Driven by: Nick Reynolds, William Monson and Gary Gove. First race: Stardust International, 25 Feb 1968. Total of 18 recorded races.

Brabham BT21C
'the Howard Brown car'

From May 1968 to September 1969, Howard Brown (Paoli, PA or Malvern, PA) raced in Pro Formula B and in NEDiv in a Brabham, identified by the Sep 1968 Lime Rock entry list as a BT21C. Brown ran as #76 in 1968 and #69 in 1969 but the colour and identity of the Brabham are not yet known.

Driven by: Howard Brown. First race: Cumberland Airfield, 12 May 1968. Total of 13 recorded races.

Brabham BT21C
'the Edmund Hessert car'

Dr Edmund C. Hessert Jr (Haddonfield, NJ) was a surgeon at Pennsylvania Hospital in Philadelphia and was a regular in SCCA events in the mid-1960s. With backing from Ellwood F. Thum's Abrasive Alloy Co team (Riverside, NJ), he bought a brand new Brabham BT21C-Vegantune for 1968 but although he was photographed in the car at a launch, only one entry for it has so far been found. The car wore #99 and appears to have been white with black stripes. Hessert moved into NASCAR for 1969. The later history of the Brabham is unknown.

Driven by: Edmund C Hessert. First race: Cumberland Airfield, 12 May 1968. Only one recorded race.

Brabham BT21C
'the Bob Welch car'

Bob Welch (Alexandria, VA) raced a black #23 Brabham BT21C in 1968, racing in Washington DC Region Regionals, scoring 15 pts in NEDiv FB and also appearing at the Lime Rock Pro FB race in Sep 1968. The car was described as "brand new" at the Marlboro Regional on 26 May 1968. He advertised the car in CP&A 28 Dec 1968. As Welch ordered a Brabham BT29 for 1969, this is likely to be the #23 car entered by Fred Opert for himself to drive early in 1969 as the BT29s were late. Subsequent history unknown.

Driven by: R. C. (Bob) Welch and Fred Opert. First race: Marlboro Motor Speedway, 26 May 1968. Total of 6 recorded races.

Brabham BT21C
'the Jerry Nelson car'

Jerry Nelson (Minneapolis, MN) appeared in CenDiv Formula B in 1968 in a Brabham. He scored 34 points to finish second to Chuck Dietrich's McLaren M4B but did not appear at the Run-Offs, where the entry list identified his car as a BT21C. At the Road America June Sprints in 1968, Nelson's entrant is given as Bert Horton (Jamestown, ND), a local Porsche collector and racer. Subsequent history unknown.

Driven by: Jerry Nelson. First race: Road America, 16 Jun 1968. Total of 4 recorded races.

Brabham BT21C
'the Mike Hayman car'

Mike Hayman (Washington, DC) raced a Brabham BT21C occasionally in Formula B in 1968 and 1969. He scored just nine points in NEDiv in 1968, and four in 1969, and none of his Pro race entries in the orange-and-blue Brabham resulted in starts. He advertised the car as a BT21C with Vegantune engine in CP&A 30 August 1969. Subsequent history unknown.

Driven by: Mike Hayman. First race: Lime Rock, 6 Jul 1968. Total of 3 recorded races.

Brabham BT21C
'the Charlie Adams car'

Charles W Adams (Manhattan Beach, CA), known as Charlie Adams, was a regular in Formula B from 1965 to 1971. He had a BT18 in 1967 but from 1968 to 1971, his car is often referred to as a BT21C. It was green, and ran as #64. It is assumed he had the same car through this period, starting at Elkhart Lake July 1968 but quite possibly earlier. Adams won the Southern Pacific Division FB title in 1969 but did not score any points in 1970 and his appearances in the pro series ceased after the Laguna Seca race in June. In 1971, he scored just two points in the SPDiv championship and only appeared at one Pro race, the Edmonton round in August. Subsequent history unknown.

Driven by: Charlie Adams. First race: Road America (US R3), 27 Jul 1968. Total of 20 recorded races.

Brabham BT21C
'the Jay Jamison car'

Jay Jamison (San Diego, CA) bought a Brabham BT21C mid way through the 1968 season which he later described as a 1968½ BT21C. He first raced it at the Riverside SCCA National on 4 Aug 1968 and also appeared in the Sears Point Pro FB races on 22 Jun 1969 but had still only raced the car three times when he advertised it in Sep 1969. A few months later, Jamison bought a new Brabham BT29 from Wayne Mitchell and his BT21C appears to have been taken in trade as just such a BT21C ("four races from new") was advertised by Mitchell's John's Imports and Racing Enterprises in March 1970.

Driven by: Jay Jamison. First race: Riverside, 4 Aug 1968. Total of 2 recorded races.

Brabham BT21C
'the Ted Thomas car'
Ted Thomas in his Brabham at VIR in April 1970. Copyright Robert Graham (virhistory.com)  2019. Used with permission.

Ted Thomas in his Brabham at VIR in April 1970. Copyright Robert Graham (virhistory.com) 2019. Used with permission.

Dr Theodore B. Thomas (Bethel Park, PA), who raced as Ted Thomas, drove a Bobsy Vanguard in 1967, then moved to a Formula B Brabham in August 1968. He entered the car as a Brabham-Vegantune, but his SCCA licence application later identified it as a BT21C. He was entered in 1969 by Tedar Racing Org of Bethel Park and in 1971 by TEBAR Racing of Bethel Park. In March 1970, the BT21C was advertised by Tebar Racing with a Vegantune engine, noting that it had only raced four times, and a month later a photograph from the VIR National shows Thomas racing a red Brabham BT21C. Thomas was the Steel Cities Region Formula B champion in 1971, after which he upgraded to a new March 722. Nothing more is known of the Brabham.

Driven by: Ted Thomas. First race: Watkins Glen, 10 Aug 1968. Total of 3 recorded races.

Brabham BT21C
'the Nick Craw car'
Nick Craw in his Brabham BT21C at Virginia International Raceway in July 1968. Copyright Ed Cabaniss (virhistory.com)  2019. Used with permission.

Nick Craw in his Brabham BT21C at Virginia International Raceway in July 1968. Copyright Ed Cabaniss (virhistory.com) 2019. Used with permission.

Nick Craw (Washington, DC) had a Brabham BT21C for FB in 1968, but appeared rarely at National level, his only points in NEDiv FB coming from a third place at Virginia International Raceway on 29 Sep 1968, right at the end of the regular season. He had entered Lime Rock's Pro race four weeks earlier but did not start and may not have been present. He also finished second in two SCCA Regionals at Marlboro in October and November. Craw, now President & CEO of ACCUS, confirms that he traded the BT21C back to Fred Opert for his new BT29s in 1969 so this BT21C must be the car that he raced in early 1969.

Driven by: Nick Craw. First race: Reading Municipal Airport, 25 Aug 1968. Total of 5 recorded races.

Brabham BT21C
'the Malcolm Starr car'

Malcolm Starr (Union City, NJ) and Anthony Koshland (New York, NY) bought a new Brabham BT21C in 1968 but Starr only raced it three times before he advertised it in December 1968. Nothing more known.

Driven by: Malcolm Starr. First race: Lime Rock (US R6), 2 Sep 1968. Total of 3 recorded races.

Brabham BT21C
'the Peter Roberts car'
Wayne Spears in Pete Roberts' Brabham BT21C in late 1969 or early 1970. Copyright John Lo Bosco  2020. Used with permission.

Wayne Spears in Pete Roberts' Brabham BT21C in late 1969 or early 1970. Copyright John Lo Bosco 2020. Used with permission.

New to Peter Roberts (Granby, Quebec) and his mechanic Wayne Spears (Chomedey, Quebec), and raced in Formula B in 1968 and 1969, when it was described simply as a BT21. Spears drove the car again in 1970 when it was listed at Harewood Acres as a BT21C. Nothing more known.

Driven by: Wayne Spears and Peter Roberts. First race: Trois-Rivières (R7), 8 Sep 1968. Total of 9 recorded races.


Unidentified Formula B cars in 1969

Of the known cars, Delamore had only just received BT21C/8, McGlothlin retained BT21C/14 and Andreini still had BT21C/16. Of the unidentified cars, Nick Reynolds sold his to Bill Monson, but Charlie Adams, Howard Brown, Nick Craw, Mike Hayman, Jay Jamison, Peter Roberts and Ted Thomas all retained their cars.

The cars that cannot be traced after 1968 are the BT21C/1 of Peter Goetz (Mohrsville, PA) and the unidentified cars of Edmund Hessert (Haddonfield, NJ), Jerry Nelson (Minneapolis, MN), Malcolm Starr (Union City, NJ) and Bob Welch (Alexandria, VA). Those five untraced cars should be explained by new BT21C drivers appearing in 1969: Bill Bowman (Palm Beach, FL), Karl Kohnke (Chicago, IL), Bill Baldwin (Bound Brook, NJ) and Gerald Crow (Denver, CO). All these four made their first appearance by June so must be explained by cars that are untraced after the 1968 season. The fifth BT21C might be the car raced on one or two occasions by Dale Lang. At the Runoffs in November 1969, a sixth BT21C appeared in the hands of Howard Jackson (Cedar Rapids, Iowa) but this was after the BT29s had arrived so could be any of the BT21Cs that were traded in during the latter part of the 1969 season.

Current owner
Brabham BT21C
'the Bill Bowman car'

Bill Bowman (Palm Beach, FL) raced his Brabham BT21C for the first time at the Gator Region SCCA National at Fernandina Beach in March 1969. According to a 'Scorecard' in Fred Opert's advert in CP&A a few weeks later, he was driving a BT21C with Vegantune engine, presumably supplied by Opert. Advertised by Bowman in May 1969 with a comment that it had been bought from Opert in January 1969 and was "nearly new". Nothing further known.

Driven by: Bill Bowman. First race: Fernandina Beach, 30 Mar 1969. Total of 3 recorded races.

Brabham BT21C
'the Karl Kohnke car'

Karl Kohnke (Chicago, IL) raced a blue #6 Brabham BT21C in SCCA Nationals and Regionals in the western part of Central Division during 1969. He ended the CenDiv FB season with 15 points for a second place behind Fred Opert at Milwaukee in June and a class win at Blackhawk Farms in August. He also won a Regional at Blackhawk Farms. The SCCA points table identified his Brabham as a BT21C. Nothing more known.

Driven by: Karl Kohnke. First race: Meadowdale Raceway, 11 May 1969. Total of 6 recorded races.

Brabham BT21C
'the Bill Baldwin car'
Bill Baldwin in his Brabham BT21C at Thompson Raceway in Connecticut. Copyright Frank Cornell  2019. Used with permission.

Bill Baldwin in his Brabham BT21C at Thompson Raceway in Connecticut. Copyright Frank Cornell 2019. Used with permission.

Bill Baldwin (Bound Brook, NJ) ran a red Brabham BT21C at Lime Rock in Sep 1970 and this may be the "BT21A" that he also raced in NEDiv Nationals in 1969. He advertised the BT21C "in immaculate condition" in August 1970 and again in March 1971.

Driven by: Bill Baldwin. First race: Cumberland Airfield, 18 May 1969. Total of 5 recorded races.

Brabham BT21C
'the Gerald Crow car'

Gerald Crow (Denver, CO) appeared in the 1969 US FB season in a Brabham, identified by the Brainerd entry list as a BT21C-Ford. The car was described at Seattle in July as green/yellow. Fred Opert Racing mentioned his debut in this car at Wentzville (Mid-America Raceway) at the end of March 1969 and said that it was a BT21C with Vegantune engine. Nothing more known.

Driven by: Gerald Crow. First race: Continental Divide (R3), 8 Jun 1969. Total of 6 recorded races.

Brabham "BT21"
'the William Marsh car'
(1969 only)

William Marsh (Muncie, IN) raced a Brabham in Formula B in SCCA Regional and Nationals in 1969. Nothing more is known of this car, but Marsh, who was heir to the Marsh Supermarket fortune, bought a Brabham BT29 for the 1970 season. It seems likely that his 1969 car would have been nearly new, suggesting it was a BT21C.

Driven by: William Marsh. First race: Waterford Hills, 26 Jul 1969. Total of 3 recorded races.


Unidentified Formula B cars from late 1969 onwards

From late 1969 onwards, it gets much more difficult to determine whether cars described as BT21Cs are real BT21Cs or updated BT21As. The cars shown below could be third hand by this time.

It is worth attempting a review of what we know by the spring of 1970. Of the three known cars, Delamore still had BT21C/8 and Andreini still had BT21C/16, but McGlothlin was not seen with BT21C/14 after the end of 1969. Of the unidentified cars from 1968, Nick Reynolds’ was with Gary Gove, Charlie Adams still had his car, Peter Roberts’ was with Wayne Spears, and Ted Thomas retained his car; but Howard Brown’s was not seen after 1969, Nick Craw’s was unknown after mid-1969, Mike Hayman was advertised in August 1969, and Jay Jamison’s was advertised in March 1970. So the cars of McGlothlin, Brown, Craw, Hayman and Jamison are added to the cars of Peter Goetz (BT21C/1), Edmund Hessert, Jerry Nelson, Malcolm Starr and Bob Welch, all of which went missing after 1968. So ten BT21Cs are missing going into the 1970 season, one of which is accounted for by Bill Baldwin’s second-hand car.

Five new drivers move into BT21Cs for 1970, including Bruce Jensen, John Marshall, Bill Bovenizer, Quin Calhoun and John Babchek. It is quite possible that the other four BT21Cs continued to race at Regional level.

Current owner
Brabham BT21C
'the Bud Jackson car'
(late 1969-Jan 1971)

Howard Jackson (Cedar Rapids, Iowa) raced a Brabham BT21C in Formula B in 1969 and 1970. The car had an Alfa Romeo engine in 1969, when Jackson finished third in Central Division, but that had been replaced by a Vegantune FLB/2 by the time Jackson advertised the car in Jan 1971, commenting that it had never finished lower than fourth and never been bent. Up to July 1969, Jackson had raced the "Cyclone-Alfa" until he had flipped it end over end at Blackhawk Farms and "destroyed" it. The BT21C presumably replaced the Cyclone so would have been second-hand, Subsequent history unknown.

Driven by: Howard "Bud" Jackson. First race: Daytona, 29 Nov 1969. Only one recorded race.

Brabham BT21C
'the Bruce Jensen car'
(May-Oct 1970)

Bruce Jensen (Kitchener, Ontario, Canada) raced a yellow #41 Brabham BT21C in Canadian and US Formula B events during 1970. He bought the car from Brabham dealer Fred Opert and it was yellow with a black stripe. It came with a Vegantune but that blew up and was replaced by a BRM twin cam. Jensen bought a Chevron B17 for 1971 and the Brabham is believed to have gone back to Fred Opert in that trade.

Driven by: Bruce Jensen. First race: Harewood Acres (R1), 10 May 1970. Total of 11 recorded races.

Brabham BT21C
'the John Marshall car'
(Jun-Sep 1970)

John Marshall (Sandusky, OH) drove a red Brabham BT21C in Formula B in 1970, entered by Suzy Dietrich's 'Team Suzy'. He finished sixth in Central Division with 21 points. Marshall had raced a Lola Mk 5A in Formula C the two previous years and took over John Bisignano's F5000 McLaren M10A for 1971. Nothing more known.

Driven by: John Marshall. First race: Road America, 21 Jun 1970. Total of 8 recorded races.

Brabham BT21C
'the Bill Bovenizer car'
(July 1970-Sep 1971)

Bought from Fred Opert by Bill Bovenizer (Toronto, Ontario) and raced in Canadian Formula B events in 1970. Bill believes Horst Kwech may have raced it before he did. He sold it to Reg Forth for 1971 who continued to race it in Canadian events. Subsequent history unknown.

Driven by: Bill Bovenizer and Reg Forth. First race: Rockcliffe Airfield (R4), 1 Jul 1970. Total of 7 recorded races.

Brabham BT21C
'the Quin Calhoun car'
(July 1970-Jun 1971)

Quin Calhoun (Chicago, IL) raced a yellow Brabham BT21C in Pro Formula B in 1970 (as #83) and in SCCA Central Division FB in 1971 (as #8), where he finished tenth with 10 points. In July 1971, he acquired a new Lola T240, and the Brabham may have gone to Carl Haas in trade. It is likely to have stayed in Central Division.

Driven by: Quin Calhoun. First race: Road America (R7), 18 Jul 1970. Total of 3 recorded races.

Brabham BT21C
'the John Babchek car'
(Aug-Sep 1970)

John R. Babchek (Romulus, MI) upgraded from his old Cooper T76 to a white-and-blue Brabham BT21C in either late 1969 or early 1970. The BT21C is likely to have been second hand but it has not yet been identified.

Driven by: John R Babchek. First race: Mont-Tremblant (R8), 1 Aug 1970. Total of 4 recorded races.


Unidentified Brabham BT21Cs from 1971 onwards

From 1971, the problems tracking the BT21C are compounded by two further issues: firstly the reporting of all BT21 derivatives simply as BT21s, so BT21As can not be distinguished from BT21Cs, and secondly the ever-increasing number of BT21s in Formula C, some of which are likely to be converted Formula B cars.

By the start of 1971, Gari Andreini was still racing BT21C/16; Quin Calhoun still raced his car; Gary Gove was racing the ex-Nick Reynolds car; Ted Thomas still had his car; Reg Forth was racing the ex-Bill Bovenizer car; and Charlie Adams was still using his car. Bill Middleton had a BT21C in California; Jack Kane had a FB BT21 of some type in Connecticut; and Don Flores from New York used a FB BT21 at the Runoffs.

From 1972 to 1974, Warren "Bud" Pauge raced a black BT21 in Californian Formula B; this car is currently covered on the Brabham BT21A page but could have been a BT21C. Various models of BT21 were also used in Formula Ford and in autocross events.

Current owner
Brabham BT21C
'the Bill Middleton car'

Bill Middleton (Temple City, CA, an eastern suburb of Los Angeles) raced a black Brabham BT21C in Formula B in 1971. He acquired a new Lola T240 in late August 1971. Nothing more known

Driven by: Bill Middleton. First race: Riverside, 25 Apr 1971. Total of 7 recorded races.

Brabham BT21C
'the Mike Bowers car'

Mike Bowers appeared at Gurston Down in August 1973 in a Brabham BT21C, running in the 1600cc class. He then raced the car in Monoposto in 1974, when the car was given as yellow. As both the UK's resident BT21Cs can be accounted for during this period, BT21C/6 with Peter Varley and BT21C/17 with Nigel Pow, it is likely that this is a different BT21-series car that had been updated to 'C' specification at some point, perhaps through the fitting of a Ford twin cam. Most likely is chassis BT21/30, last seen when advertised by Nick Overall as a BT21C early in 1973, but another possibility is BT21A/8, last seen in the hands of Philip Guerola at the end of 1972. Subsequent history unknown.

Driven by: Mike Bowers. First race: Gurston Down (R12), 27 Aug 1973. Total of 3 recorded races.

Brabham BT21C
'the Gary Robinson car'

Gary Robinson (Dearborn Heights, MI) raced a Brabham BT21C in Central Division Formula B in 1975, scoring six points and representing Northeast Michigan Region. In November 1975 he advertised the car from Dearborn Heights, stating that it was a BT21C with Vegantune engine and Hewland FT200 gearbox. This is believed to be the same Gary Robinson who raced in CenDiv Formula B in 1976, although he had moved by then to Broken Arrow, Oklahoma, more than 900 miles to the west.

Driven by: Gary Robinson. First race: Indianapolis Raceway Park, 21 Sep 1975. Only one recorded race.


Current BT21Cs that have not been identified

Current owner
Brabham BT21C

This Brabham BT21C has lost its chassis plate but has been recorded as having Arch Motors number AM288. The exhaustive research done on the car by Ed Holly traces it back to an owner in Milwaukee who sold it to Kevin Culver (Portland, Oregon) in 1979. It was bought from Culver in pieces in 1981 by Don Smethers (Portland, Oregon) and converted to a sports car with a red and yellow body and 2-litre Ford engine. He raced this in SCCA CSR, as did the next few owners until the car was crashed in 1986. Then sold to Philippe de Lespinay, still with the sports car body but it also came with its original pale blue Brabham bodywork, which de Lespinay kept when throwing away the sports car body. De Lespinay only wanted the gearbox and sold the rest of the car on to Russ Baldwin. A restoration was then started by Bill Schlossnagel but was not completed. Sold by Russell to John Delane in 2001, then via a "Mortimer" and "Gould" in 2004, during which time it was taken to Australia where it was bought by Ed Holly in 2005. The frame was straightened by ex Brabham fabricator Elwyn Bickley and the car was rebuilt, debuting at HSRCA Eastern Creek in May 2010. Offered for sale in 2014 and sold to Wayne Wilson later that year. Taken to Europe for a 'summer foray' and raced by Wilson at Brands Hatch in July 2015. It remained in Europe for four seasons, racing with numerous organisations. Wayne advises that it returning to Sydney in January 2020.

Driven by: Don Smethers. First race: Seattle, 18 Apr 1982. Total of 4 recorded races.

Wayne Wilson (Australia) 2020

In addition to the above, unknown Brabham BT21Cs were driven by Dale Lang, Lee Mueller, Pete Premo, Bob Saunders and Olly Ross.


As it is difficult to separate Brabham BT21Cs from Brabham BT21As, I hope some degree of repetition is excusable here. My thanks to Ted Walker of the Brabham Register, the late David McKinney, Chris Townsend, Bryan Miller, and Denis Lupton for the original work on this subject which started back in 2002, and for the valuable contributions of Steve Wilkinson, Michael Oliver, Alan Brown, Simon Hadfield, Andrew Fellowes, Ian Hebblethwaite, Philippe Demeyer and John Lo Bosco.

My thanks to the many other people who have helped with this research over the years. Unfortunately, my carefully maintained list was accidentally overwritten, so while I reconstruct it, please be assured I am grateful to each and every one of you. I have over 350 emails in my inbox relating to these cars, so this may take some time!

If you can add anything to these histories, please contact Allen Brown (allen@oldracingcars.com).

These histories last updated on .