Thursday 30th March 1961
Born on this day, Mike Thackwell, New Zealender racing driver, who participated in a number of prominent racing categories, including Formula One.The third youngest driver ever to qualify for a Grand Prix, he participated in five of them, making his first start on 28 September 1980 at the Canadian Grand Prix. He scored no championship points. Thackwell has been described as a “teenage sensation”, a “maverick” and as “something of a cult hero”. Outside Formula One, he competed successfully in Formula Three, Formula Two, Formula 3000 and sports cars, amongst other categories. In 1984, Thackwell won the European Formula Two Championship. He was runner up in that championship in 1983, and in its successor, the International Formula 3000 Championship, in 1985. In each case, he was driving a works Ralt. Also in 1986, he won the Pau Grand Prix, again in a works Ralt. Later in the year, he combined with Henri Pescarolo to win the 1000km Nürburgring sports car race, in a Sauber C8.