OldRacingCars.com

Basil van Rooyen

Basil van Rooyen. Copyright Richard Jenkins/Basil van Rooyen 2009. Used with permission.

Basil van Rooyen. Copyright Richard Jenkins/Basil van Rooyen 2009. Used with permission.

Basil van Rooyen, 2009. Copyright Richard Jenkins 2009. Used with permission.

Basil van Rooyen, 2009. Copyright Richard Jenkins 2009. Used with permission.

Born:

19 Apr 1939
Johannesburg

Nationality:

South Africa

Grands Prix:

2 (1968-1969)

Lives in New South Wales, Australia, but still has links and a farm in South Africa. Started off as an engineer and motorcyclist before becoming a fine driver in sports and touring cars. Basil started his career in 1957, when he rode a Puch 250 motorcycle, before moving into touring cars, racing his own modified Ford Anglia. He won the South African touring car championship of 1966 and 1967, both times racing a Ford Mustang. John Love was impressed by Basil's driving and offered him a chance to race in Formula 1. Initially he impressed in a McLaren M7 in the South African national championship, being a frequent rival of his supporter Love, before making it at Grand Prix level. His racing career was ended by a huge F1 crash and the deaths, shortly after, of McLaren and Courage was enough for him to call it a day. However had fate intervened elsewhere, he had both a Matra drive for 1969 and a March Formula 1 drive in 1970. He then ran a performance company and a package manufacturing business. He retired in 1981 from driving. He emigrated to Australia in 1987 to set up a manufacturing business and retired in 2005. He has since patented a pool cleaning device, which is now in production and still follows the sport and plays tennis. In 2012, he was behind a new crankcase independent two-stroke engine, and Basil has been nominated for engineering excellence for his work towards it. The website for the CITS engine is https://www.citsengine.com.au. He also gave https://www.citsengine.com.au an interview, which can be found below. Basil was diagnosed with mesothelioma caused by asbestos, but despite this prognosis, he is living life to the full, enjoying visits overseas and is as busy as ever promoting his CITS engine to potential investors around the World.

Read interview.

Biography last updated 7 Feb 2018