In his final TV studio interview Australian Motorsport legend Peter Brock spoke of his passion for the sport, his fans, and his excitement for the car and event in which he ultimately lost his life.
Speaking on the Melbourne community television show In Pit Lane, Brock spoke at length about the car he was to race at Goodwood in the UK and his plans for the Daytona Coupe he was driving in the Targa West rally.
"It all came about because Holden ceased manufacture of the Monaro and someone within the system there sold the car that I was driving to a private collector... Richard (Bendall) rang me up and said 'would you like to drive the Daytona, it's basically like a Monaro with about 300 or 400 kgs taken out of it and a low, svelte sportscar body.' and I said yeah, I'll have a drive of that thing!"
Brock described the Australian built Sportscar as a work in progress. "It's just been a great project to get involved in." said Brock. "We're sorting this car out, we're getting it cracking I can tell you."
Brock said the plan was to use Targa West as a warm-up event for the forthcoming Targa New Zealand before debuting a new version of the car at the Mt Buller Sprint in November.
Iit's great to get involved in a project like this in terms of developing a car. Talking to tyre people, brake people, shock absorber people about building a car and can really get out there and do the job, taking on the exotics...the Lambos and Porsches and goodness knows what."
Tarmac rallying and Historic Racing had become a new passion for the 10 time Bathurst winner after retiring from full time motorsport several years ago.
"I'm a bit of a fan of these tarmac rallies. I mean, you've got V8 Supercars and everything else is sort of struggling... You go to say Targa and you've got 300 or 400 cars out there."
The future of the sport he loved was a constant concern for Brock who was both a Board member of the Australian Grand Prix and the Australian Motor Sport Foundation.
He spoke of the opportunities for other categories bought about by the decision by V8 Supercars Australia to withdraw from the Australian Grand Prix meeting in March.
Brock also questioned the current direction of V8 Supercars. "Supercars are certainly a very strong game. Very expensive... probably beyond the means of a lot of the participants... when you get down the pecking order a bit it's hard to generate that level of sponsorship."
Brock called on VESCA to allow for more variety in the class. "They all have the same diff ratio, the same exhaust system, so they all change gears at the same point. With other cars, or the way that you could have it, there was a certain means of adjusting the performance parameters on the day."
Brock spoke with great affection for his fans, his love of art and his constantly positive mind-set.
When asked if he ever got depressed he said he didn't "At different times I might sit back and get doubtful about something... and then I give myself a bit of a wake-up call because I know that what happens is your emotions and your thought patterns allow your energy to go down and then you've got to get yourself back up. So the easiest thing to do is have what they call Mastery of the Mind which means, stop your mind from playing mischief. Be reasonable, be understanding and a different time reign yourself in, stop creating a bad experience for yourself.. I guess I realised some years ago... I've got to get my emotions in order and my thoughts in order so I'm happy and balanced and feel good about what I'm doing."
After the interview, Brock stayed for a chat, as Brocky often did, we spoke about cricket, about young Aussie drivers and their struggle to find local support, the pressures placed on them by parents and others.
"I told him that the BMW he drove at Le Mans in 1976 was now eligible for the Le Mans Classic to be held in 2008" said In Pit Lane host Brett Ramsey. "His eyes instantly lit up...'I know where that car is and whose got it!' he said. 'Boy that'd be fun wouldn't it,, mmmm that's interesting' he said.
Passionate to end, Peter Brock's legacy will live long into the future, he will be sadly missed by us all.
A special In Pit Lane episode featuring the interview will screen this Tuesday night at 9.30 p.m. on Melbourne's Channel 31.
-credit: In Pit Lane