1951 Australian Grand Prix

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Australia  1951 Australian Grand Prix
Race details
Formula Libre race
Date 5 March 1951
Location Narrogin, Western Australia
Course Temporary street circuit
Course length 7.08 km (4.4 mi)
Distance 24 laps, 169.9 km (105.6 mi)
Weather Sunny
Fastest lap
Driver Australia John Crouch Cooper-JAP
Time 3'51
First Reed-Ford
Second Delahaye
Third MG

The 1951 Australian Grand Prix was a Formula Libre motor race held at a street circuit in Narrogin, Western Australia on 5 March 1951.[1] The race was held over 24 laps of the 7.1 kilometre circuit for a race distance of 170 kilometres.[2][3]

The Reed/Ford Special Warwick Pratley drove to win the Grand Prix

It was the sixteenth Australian Grand Prix and the last to feature a handicap start which saw the slower cars starting ahead of the faster cars according to handicap allowance. The first car over the line was the MG TC special of South Australian Steve Tillett. The Australian Grand Prix title was however to be awarded to the driver setting the fastest outright time, regardless of handicap.[1] The scratch race was won by Warwick Pratley driving a George Reed built Flathead Ford V8 powered racing car. It would be the last Australian Grand Prix victory by an Australian built car until Frank Matich won the 1971 race at the wheel of a Matich A50. Pratley started the race ten minutes and thirty seconds behind the first car to start the race, the Morgan of Colin Uphill. Pratley won the race by 96 seconds over the Delahaye of Dick Bland. Both Tillett and Pratley were awarded Commonwealth Jubilee Trophies for their victories in what was effectively two races in one.


Results as follows.[4]

Pos No. Driver Car Laps Time H'cap Pos
1 18 Australia Warwick Pratley George Reed Special / Ford 4.0L 24 1h 39m 15s 3
2 9 Australia Dick Bland Delahaye 135 / Delahaye 3.6L 24 1h 40m 41s 8
3 34 Australia Steve Tillett MG TC / MG 1.3L 24 1h 43m 30s 1
4 15 Australia Barry Ranford Chrysler 6 Special / Chrysler 2.9L 24 1h 47m 03s 7
5 37 Australia Bill Hayes MG TC / MG 1.3L 24 1h 47m 36s 2
6 33 Australia Sid Taylor TS Dodge Special / Dodge 3.6L 24 1h 49m 18s 5
7 41 Australia Ron Kennedy MG TC / MG 1.3L 24 1h 50m 21s 4
8 30 Australia Peter McKenna BMW 328 / BMW 2.0L 24 1h 51m 05s 9
9 44 Australia Colin Uphill Morgan 4/4 / Coventry Climax 1.2L 24 1h 55m 48s 6
10 17 Australia Syd Negus Plymouth 6 Special / Plymouth 3.3L 24 2h 03m 6s 10
Ret 32 Australia Jack Nelson Ford 10 Special / Ford s/c 1.2L 23
Ret 16 Australia George Reed George Reed Monoskate / Ford 4.0L 22
Ret 1 United Kingdom Colin Murray Maserati 6C / Maserati 1.5L 19
Ret 19 Australia Harold Smith Smith Special / 14
Ret 12 Australia Vin Maloney MG TC / MG 1.3L 11
Ret 24 Australia Ron Denney Targa Florio Ballot / Ford 3.6L 9
Ret 10 Australia Eldred Norman Double Ford V8 Special / Ford 7.8L 7
Ret Australia Andy Brown MG TC / MG s/c 1.3L 6
Ret 26 Australia D. Page Ranford Chrysler 6 Special / Chrysler 5
Ret 7 Australia Keith Martin Cooper Mk.IV / JAP 1.0L 5
Ret 25 Australia Bob Brown Alfa Romeo Tipo B / Ford 4.0L 3
Ret 4 Australia John Crouch Cooper Mk.V / JAP 1.1L 3
Ret 38 Australia Noel Aldous MG TC / MG 1.3L 2
Ret 42 Australia Claude LaMotte Fidget Fiat 500 / Ford 1.2L 2
Ret 27 Australia John Cummins Ballot / Oldsmobile 3.9L 2
Ret 40 Australia A. Dry MG TC / MG 1.3L 1
Ret 36 Australia Bob Brown MG TC / MG 1.3L 1
Ret 20 Australia Dennis Curran Ford V8 Special / Ford 4.0L 1



  1. ^ a b "Steve Tillett, winner on handicap of the Narrogin Grand Prix, 5 March 1951 [picture]". National Library of Australia. Retrieved 6 October 2009. 
  2. ^ Western Australia. Government Photographer (1900), Narrogin Grand Prix civic reception to visiting drivers by the Mayor W.A. Manning, March 1951, retrieved 15 April 2012 
  3. ^ The Jubilee Grand Prix, 1951. A brief history and details of the motor car racing grand prix held in Narrogin in 1951. Carlines, March–June 2002, p.14-15
  4. ^ Howard, Graham (1986). "1951". In Howard, Graham. The Official 50-race history of the Australian Grand Prix. Gordon, NSW: R & T Publishing. pp. 158–169. ISBN 0-9588464-0-5. 

Further reading[edit]

  • Narrogin Observer 9 March 1951, p. 1
  • Holland, Keren. (2001) History repeats. Original participants revisit Narrogin and celebrate the 50th anniversary of the 1951 Grand Prix .Narrogin observer, 28 Nov. 2001, p.1,14-16
Preceded by
1950 Australian Grand Prix
Australian Grand Prix
Succeeded by
1952 Australian Grand Prix