Driver’s suit test at Sebring in 67

In the early days driving suits were cotton (think pale blue Dunlop suits worn by all F! drivers). To fireproof them these suits had to be soaked in a mixutre of Borax and something else (can’t remember!). I had never had my suit tested until Sebring. Every driver had to endure a medical by a local GP… a delightful character, I recall. After the mandatory prodding and blood pressure tests, he asked where my suit was. I duly offered it up and he immediately turned it inside out, took a pair scissors and cuts a chunk off an inside seam. Without hesitation he strikes a match on his ass, like any good ‘ole boy would to light a ceegar. As the patch smoldered into life, he scowls and says (think southern drawl), “Y’all seee that tuuub outthar?” “Ah yeah,” says I. “Well ya’ll take that suit of yours and dunk it real good and hang on that there clothesline.”

I duly follow his instructions and dump my suit in the tub. To my amazement I am surrounded by some serious hitters: Joe Siffert, a couple of Porsche drivers whose names escape me and I think Phil Hill. I hung my suit and returned after a couple of hours. There hanging on the clothesline were a dozen or suits all stiff as cardboard dried by the hot Florida sun. They looked like caricatures out of a scary movie waving in the breeze. Anyway a quick rub a dub and the suit was ready to wear…

Can anyone imagine a scenario like that today?

Entry list via Racing Sports Cars. You will see Gary entered in the Canadian Auto Racing Team MGB.


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