Rally legend Paddy Hopkirk is taking on another high-profile new challenge – president of prestigious racing driver association the British Racing Drivers’ Club (BRDC). Hopkirk succeeds former F1 racer Derek Warwick, who’s stepping down after a decade of being involved in the running of the club.
84-year-old Hopkirk was elected during the Club’s AGM this week at Silverstone Circuit – it actually owns the racetrack and the famous BRDC clubhouse is a familiar sight during the British Grand Prix.
A BRDC member since 1965, Hopkirk has previously been a director of the club between 1993-2002 and a vice president since 2006. He joins a role call of presidents that also includes F1 stars Sir Jackie Stewart and Damon Hill.
The BRDC used the appointment of Hopkirk to reveal a little-known fact: although he’s world famous for his rally driving career, which included victories at the Monte Carlo, Alpine, Acropolis and Australian Alpine rallies, he was actually elected a BRDC member for his racing career.
Away from rallying, Hopkirk also scored class wins at Le Mans, Sebring, the Targa Florio and various other world-famous endurance events. His most famous win will always be the 1964 Monte Carlo rally though; he and co-driver Henry Liddon drove a red Mini Cooper S with the registration 33 EJB.
Paddy Hopkirk was also honoured with an MBE in the 2016 New Year’s Honours list.