Vern Schuppan

Vern Schuppan

19/3/1943

Racing Driver from Whyalla, South Australia. He drove in many categories, but his greatest fame was as a sports car driver and was heavily associated with Porsche till the end of his career. Schuppan moved to Britain in 1969 to race in Formula Ford and graduated to Formula Atlantic in 1971 with a works Palliser, winning the Yellow Pages championship. He was given a test by Tyrrell in 1972 and was contracted as a junior driver to BRM, but he only made a couple of starts in non-championship races in 1973 it was more of the same in F1, so Vern accepted an offer to join the Gulf Wyer team to replace an injured Watson, taking second place in the Spa 1000 Km sports car race with Ganley. For 1974, Schuppan race with Theodore in F5000 and had did a few Grand Prix with Ensign. Further F1 drives with Hill and Surtees were equally unproductive. Meanwhile he was concentrating on a career in sports cars and F5000, joining up with Dan Gurney's Eagle team in 1975. In 1976, Vern raced in teh States, taking the Rookie of the Year award at Indianapolis. Further races followed but his best finish was a third at Indy in 1981. In the early eighties Schuppan became heavily involved in endurance racing. He won the 1983 Le Mans 24 Hours sharing a works Rothmans Porsche 956 with Al Holbert and Hurley Haywood, and later became a top Porsche preparation expert developing the basic 962 design on behalf of customers around the world, and a partner in Stefan Johansson's Indy Lights team.

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