Conny Andersson

Conny Andersson

28/12/1939

The likeable and humorous Andersson spent his younger days as a top motocross rider in his native Sweden while helping run his father's garage dealership and at the same time raising a family which comprised four daughters. There was little time to contemplate a racing career until he was bitten by the bug after a visit to a racing school and a drive in a Formula Vee car at the Nurburgring. By wheeling and dealing in second-hand cars he scraped together enough cash to buy a Brabham BT21 and, at the relatively late age of 29, began his racing career. Conny became trapped in F3 from 1970 to 1976 by his lack of the finance to move into higher spheres. But in his travels he acquitted himself well against the likes of Hunt, Scheckter, Jabouille and Lafflte, who were all carving out top-line careers for themselves. In 1974, armed with a March-Toyota, he took six wins, four seconds and four thirds from twenty starts and began to be considered a serious prospect. More success followed in 1975, despite the disappointment of a 'win' in the Monaco F3 race which was taken away when he was penalised for jumping the start. This drive caught the eye of John Surtees, who gave him an end-of-season test in one of his F1 cars, but he failed to land a full-time ride for 1976, so it was back to the European championship, where he was particularly unlucky to be pipped by Riccardo Patrese for the title. His efforts finally brought him a one-off chance to drive a Surtees in the Dutch Grand Prix that season and, unwilling to face a further year in Formula 3, Conny then opted for another shot at F1 with the uncompetitive Stanley-BRM before calling it a day.

(c) 'Who is Who' by Steve Small, 2000

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