Vale Frank Gardner OAM

On Friday 28 August 2009, a part of the GT40 story came to a close with the passing of Mr Frank Gardner, OAM.

Frank was famous for his pragmatic approach to the business of racing, and was paid very well by Ford NOT to drive in F1.

Among his famously dry quotes were; "I never wanted to be the fastest driver in the world, just the oldest", and regarding Porsche 917, "The computer reckoned 8 inch tyres were wide enough, but the computer wasn't trying to steer the thing around the Eifel Mountains".

After a European career spanning over 15 years, Frank returned to Australia and as a driver, engineer and team owner, played a major role in Australian racing for another 15 years, playing a significant role in the careers of Alan Grice, Jim Richards and Tony Longhurst.

Vale Frank.


+1 mate. Frank was a demon tin top racer - one of the best. Met him a couple of times over here racing some awesome big bangers. Another legend passes on...
One of the Best, wrote a small hardcover book with assistance from Castrol which detailed a lot of stuff about basic car prep etc. Many short storys along the way of 'incidents' that happened during his very varied racing career. One that has stuck with me was one of the Porsche cars with a gauge on the dash with a constant pressure reading, when Frank enquired from one of the German engineers whether the gauge was correct/broken etc the reply went something like this.... Herr Gardner,when the gauge drops to zero you shall drive the wagen very slowly back to the garage, that gauge is the pressure contained in the chassis tubes & if the pressure drops it means the chassis is broken,.... Franks reply was along the lines of....'' stuff that ,if that bloody gauge even flickers Ill park the bloody car & walk back to the pits!!
Dont know if the book is still around, if you find a copy in the market its a damn good read, mine was loaned to a friend & never came back!
Motorsport needs more people like him.
R.I.P. Frank .

very sad to hear of Frank Gardner's passing, he was a true inspiration to the motor racing scene for many decades. I purchased his book Castrol racing drivers' manual in 1974 just when I started out in motor racing, without doubt this is the best hands on book ever published to keep you safe and fast. The book is still on my shelves, a real good read and a tribute to a real good guy. R.I.P.


Pete McCluskey.

Lifetime Supporter
Very sad, Frank was a friend of my Father in Law, and he always spoke highly of him as a say it how it is, no nonsense person. Not only was frank a terrific driver himself, he helped many others with their careers along the way.
R.I.P. Frank. I wonder if St. Peter will let him wear his floppy hat in heaven?
For the locals - Queenslanders. A nice tribute article on Frank in todays Courrier mail, Frank pictured with GT40 - page 79 i think.

May be available on line also for others.