Pat Moss

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Pat Moss
Pat Moss (1963).jpg
Pat Moss (1963).jpg
Born Patricia Ann Moss
27 December 1934
Thames Ditton, Surrey
Died 14 October 2008 (aged 73)
Nationality English
Occupation Auto Rally Driver
Spouse(s) Erik Carlsson (m. 1963–2008; her death)
Parents Alfred Moss
Aileen (née Craufurd)
Relatives Sir Stirling Moss (brother)

Pat Moss, after her marriage Pat Moss-Carlsson, (27 December 1934 – 14 October 2008) was one of the most successful female auto rally drivers of all time, achieving three outright wins and seven podium finishes in international rallies. She was crowned European Ladies' Rally Champion five times (1958, 1960, 1962, 1964–65). She was the younger sister of Formula One Grand Prix star Stirling Moss and, from 1963 until her death, the wife and driving partner of Swedish rally driver Erik Carlsson.

She is the author of a memoir The Story So Far (1967) and, with her husband, co-author of The Art and Technique of Driving (1965).

Biography[edit]

Pat Moss was born in Thames Ditton, Surrey, England, to British race car driver Alfred Moss and Aileen (née Craufurd). She grew up in Bray, Berkshire and was taught to drive at the age of 11 by her brother, Stirling. But she started her sporting career on horseback, becoming well known as a successful show-jumper and member of the British showjumping team. In 1953, aged 18, she started driving in club rallies after being introduced to the sport by boyfriend Ken Gregory, Stirling's manager. In 1954, Pat bought a Triumph TR2 and started rallying more seriously. She asked Standard-Triumph to cover her expenses to drive her TR2 on the 1955 RAC Rally, but they declined.

A more astute MG Cars offered Pat expenses and a works MG TF 1500. Thus began a relationship that lasted seven years, netting three championships and benefiting the British Motor Corporation with valuable publicity. As a BMC Works Team driver, Pat had her breakthrough in 1958, when she drove her Morris Minor to 4th place on the RAC Rally. She achieved another 4th place at Belgium's Liège-Rome-Liège Rally in an Austin-Healey 100/6 and won the first of her five European Ladies' Rally Championships.

In 1960, Moss took over-all victory at the Liège-Rome-Liège in an Austin-Healey 3000 and went on to finish 2nd at the Coupe des Alpes. In 1961, she finished 2nd at the RAC Rally. In 1962, she was 3rd at the East African Safari Rally in a Saab 96 and, at the RAC, with the Austin-Healey. Her biggest achievement, however, was winning the Netherlands Tulip Rally in a Mini Cooper. Although Moss considered the Mini "twitchy, and pretty unruly on the limit",[1] the Tulip Rally was the first of many international rally wins for the Cooper.

In 1963, Moss joined Ford of Britain and managed a 6th place at the Acropolis Rally in her Lotus-tuned Ford Cortina. On 3 March 1963, she married fellow rally driver Erik Carlsson. Ford tried to sign Erik Carlsson; but instead, in 1964, Pat Moss switched to the Saab factory team to partner her husband, nicknamed Mr. Saab for his long-time association with the company. Together, they competed in 11 international rallies. Her most notable results were 3rd at the Acropolis Rally and 4ths at the Liège-Sofia-Liège and the RAC Rally. At the Monte Carlo Rally, she came in 5th in 1964 and 3d in 1965.

In 1968, Moss joined Lancia to drive the new Fulvia. She did not like the car's strong understeer, but nevertheless drove it to 14th place at the Monte Carlo Rally and 2nd place at the Rallye Sanremo, losing to Pauli Toivonen in a Porsche 911. Her other notable results of the season included winning the Sestriere Rally and finishing 8th at the Acropolis and 7th at the Tour de Corse. At the 1969 Monte Carlo Rally, Moss drove her Fulvia to 6th place.

In December 1969,[2] Moss and Carlsson had a daughter, Susan Moss-Carlsson. By that time, Moss was becoming less active in rallying; but she did join Renault Alpine and drive her Alpine A110 to 10th place at the Monte Carlo Rally (1972) before finally retiring (1974).

On 14 October 2008, "Top Female Rally Driver" Pat Moss-Carlsson died of cancer, aged 73,[3] at home in Eaton Bray, Bedfordshire.[4] She was survived by her husband Erik Carlsson and her daughter Susan Rawding, a successful showjumper.

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Pat Moss – Obituary". The Daily Telegraph. 17 October 2008. Retrieved 19 October 2008. 
  2. ^ Bulmer, Charles, ed. (20 December 1969). "Sporting side: Susan Moss-Carlsson...". Motor: 146. 
  3. ^ Guardian obituary
  4. ^ Top female rally driver dies

External links[edit]