6.8 C
Mount Panorama
Tuesday, June 25, 2024


IT was 40 years ago that two Australian motorsport icons teamed up to win the nation’s biggest race – but it almost didn’t happen.

The anniversary of Larry Perkins and Peter Brock’s 1982 Bathurst 1000 victory will be celebrated next weekend by a suite of tributes – including a replica livery and moustache – Jack Perkins will don during the Dunlop Super2 Series round at Sandown.

The occasion is a fitting chance to delve into the archives, back to when Larry explained on the V8 Sleuth Podcast in 2020 how the all-star combination came to be.

Perkins had chalked up a series of Formula 1 world championship starts in the ‘70s, while Brock was by now a five-time Great Race winner.

“It was around that ‘81-‘82 period, when I was back from Europe and not sure what I wanted to do, that Brocky rang me up to say ‘look, would I drive with him at Bathurst in ’82?’” Perkins recalled.

“Oh, I said, ‘Peter, look, I’m not that fussed about driving’… that’s where I placed the touring car category of Australia on the world stage. It was just not my focus, it was as simple as that.

Jack Perkins with the tribute livery. Pic: Supplied

“I said to Brocky, look, and I went down to the workshop and had a look around, I said ‘jesus Brocky, it’s a real shitfight, your workshop’. It was dirty and scruffy and shocking.

“I said ‘look, if you want me to run the workshop and, alright, if you want me to co-drive at Bathurst and Sandown I’ll do that’. But it was not a big desire of mine.

“So that’s how we started and that’s why we got on, again, because I wasn’t constantly saying to Peter ‘give me a drive! Give me a drive!’

“I just weren’t that interested in it because I was still wounded from not getting into F1, that was the goal.

“And we had a good time there. Peter just left me alone to do my preparation, he let me hire and fire, I didn’t have any influence or whatever on the commercial side of his road business or getting his sponsors or anything.

“He’d give me a budget – ‘say we’ve got this signed up and this signed up, that’s the amount of money, can you run a car on that?’ and all three years I gave him a cheque back, he made a profit each year that I was running it. We got on well.”

Brock and Perkins would go on to conquer Bathurst in three successive years: 1982-84.

Want to read more?

Subscribe to V8 Sleuth to receive regular updates of news and products delivered straight to you.

Latest News

Want to read more?

Subscribe to V8 Sleuth to receive regular updates of news and products delivered straight to you.