Graham Coaker

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Graham Coaker
Graham Coaker 1969.jpg
Graham Coaker, with his wife Carol, pictured at an early test of the March 693P car in 1969.
Nationality British

Graham Vincent Coaker (1932 – 12 April 1971) was a British engineer and businessman, who was one of the four founders of the March Engineering motor racing manufacturer.

He was trained as an accountant and mechanical engineer,[1] and had been a keen amateur Formula Three competitor during the mid- to late-1960s. During this time he became friendly with fellow racers Max Mosley and Alan Rees, and racing car designer Robin Herd. The four created March Engineering in mid-1969, the name of the team being derived from their initials: Max Mosley, Alan Rees, Graham Coaker, and Robin Herd. Coaker was responsible for the workshop and manufacturing side of the new company, drawing on many years of experience as general manager of one of Hawker Siddeley's automotive subsidiaries,[1] and was the driving force behind March's move into the customer-car market.[2] The company's first manufacturing premises were actually in Coaker's own garage and it was here that the first March racing car, the March 693P, was constructed.[3]

Coaker left March in early 1971, and received a March 712M Formula Two car as part of his settlement package. Unfortunately for him, Coaker died that April from septicemia caused by injuries sustained when he crashed the car during practice for a Formule Libre race at Silverstone Circuit.[4]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b Taylor, Simon (2 October 1969). "Enter the March". Autosport: 18–19. 
  2. ^ Diepraam, Mattijs (11 March 2004). "The Champions: Jackie Stewart, The organiser". 8W. Retrieved 6 August 2009. 
  3. ^ Lawrence, Mike (28 September 1989). "Mad March days". Autosport: 51–52. 
  4. ^ Lawrence, Mike (1990). The Story of March. St. Paul, MN: Motorbooks International. ISBN 978-0-946627-24-0.