John Goss

John Goss

2/5/1943

Goss made his racing debut in 1966 driving a Holden 48/215 at Hobart’s Baskerville circuit, completing a four year automotive engineering course at about the same time. He soon realised that the Holden wasn't quite up to the task and swapped to Ford, preparing a Ford Customline.

Seeking something faster, he designed and built a prototype 2.8-litre Tornado Ford sportscar, which he raced for several years. During this time he moved to Victoria to work for Repco Brabham Engines, helping prepare the units that powered Sir Jack Brabham's F1 cars.
Then, in 1970, came a stint as chief engine mechanic with Frank Matich Racing in Sydney, before joining McLeod Ford’s service department.

His role with the Rockdale dealer was often token, enabling him to concentrate on his Falcon GT and
GTHO racing programs. Winning the 1974 Hardie Ferodo 1000 opened many doors. In the late 1970s Goss competed at the Le Mans 24 Hours enduro, in a Porsche 934, and enjoyed three successful years in F5000, including a win in the Australian Grand Prix at Sandown in ‘76.

After ten years with Ford, Goss switched again, this time to Jaguar. Three Bathurst 1000 attempts with a Group C XJS provided him with an engineering challenge, but little in the way of results. That all changed in 1985, when Goss joined Tom Walkinshaw Racing’s three-car Jaguar assault on Bathurst, in the first year of the Group A era. Team boss Tom Walkinshaw was to share one XJS with fellow Brit Win Percy, the second was for Jeff Allam and Australian Ron Dickson, and the third for Goss and Hahne. However the Australian public had written the big Cats off, saying they would be too unreliable for our Great Race, and while the Walkinshaw and Allam cars had qualified on the front row of the grid, the #10 Goss/Hahne entry was back in 6th. Goss also had a broken seat to contend with in later stages of the race, so to take his second Bathurst, was a win against the odds and he is now one of only 15 multiple Bathurst winners.

Coincidently, that year’s race fell on October 6, the date of his first victory! Despite the calendar quirk, the two Great Race victories were very different experiences. The first came with the stress of being an entrant whose livelihood was on the line. For the second, Goss was largely a hired gun. Goss raced his own Jaguar at Bathurst the following year, before disbanding his team in 1986. But that didn’t stop him from racing a Glenn Seton Sierra in 1989, and partnering Phil Ward the following year to Bathurst class honours.

Goss now has yacht and aviation business.

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