Tim Parnell

Tim Parnell

25/6/1932 - 5/4/2017


Popular and easy going son of Reg Parnell, Tim never quite managed to match the success of his father, however he had an enjoyable career in minor F1 and F2 races in the late fifties and early sixties.

Reginald Harold Haslam 'Tim' Parnell grew up in the Derby area, the son of a farmer and owner of the Standard Transport Company, a haulage business. 

Tim first got involved in motor sport racing in 1957 in a Frazer-Nash, before progressing to a Bob-Tail Cooper-Climax 1100 Sports Car. He also worked as a mechanic for his father.

After a degree of success he had acquired a Formula 2 Cooper Mk3 in 1959, taking a win at Mallory Park.

Racing a Cooper-Climax in 1960 he had some success but he concentrated on Formula Junior with a Lotus 18. In 1961 with the Lotus becoming increasingly uncompetetive, he campaigned it throughout the Continent in non-championship events.

The Lotus 18 was replaced by a later 18/21 for the 1962 season but a bad crash at Brands Hatch kept him out of the car

Tim's father was running the Bowmaker Lolas at the time and for a while Gary Hocking drove the Lotus before being signed up to drive one of Rob Walker's Lotus 24-BRM V8s in the Natal Grand Prix at Westmead on December 22nd, 1962. Sadly he crashed fatally in practice.

Tim returned to racing in 1963, only for the sudden death of his father the following January to thrust him into the role of running Reg Parnell Racing Ltd with drivers Chris Armon, Mike Hailwood and Peter Revson.

The team ultimately became the BRM Junior Team and from 1966 to 1975 he was the BRM Team and Works Manager. He was a member of FOCA from 1969 to 1975 and a committee member of Society of Motor Manufacturers and RAC Safety.

After retiring from racing he returned to pig farming and was an active director of the British Racing Drivers' Club.

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