John Fitch, The Last Checkered Flag

On Wednesday October 31, automotive legend John Fitch took his last checkered flag. John was born on August 4, 1917 in Indianapolis, Indiana. John was a renaissance man when it came to automobiles...he not only raced them, he was a mechanic, built succesful specials, invented new technologies, track proprieter, and safety pioneer. John was perhaps best known for his racing career where he raced MG's, Cunninghams, Maserati's, Jaguar's, Corvette's, Formula 1, and an Allard.

In 1951, John was invited to race in the inaugural General Peron Grand Prix in Buenos Aires. There was only one problem...he didn't have a suitable car. John talked his friend Tommy Cole into selling him his wrecked J2 (#1514) for cheap. John straightened the chassis, pounded out the body, bled the brakes, and then kissed his very pregnant wife goodbye as he left for Argentina. Two other Allard owners were entered, Fred Wacker and good friend Tommy Cole in his new J2. John led the race from the start with his only serious competition coming from Wacker who finished a lap down in second. It was John's first win and it earned him a seat at Le Mans with the Cunningham team later that year.

To learn more about the life of John Fitch, click here to visit his Wikipedia page. The photo above was taken of John at the 2002 Monterey Historics where Corvette was the featured maque.