Hi, my name is Mark and I'm raising funds to establish a memorial for British Formula 1 motor racing driver Peter Collins who died at the Nürburgring in 1958.
Peter could have been Britain's first Formula 1 world champion in 1956 but in the days when drivers could change cars during a race, Peter stopped in the last race of the season and gave his car to Fangio, when the Argentinian's car suffered mechanical problems. This gesture prevented Peter from winning the world title and allowed Fangio to claim his fourth title.
"When Collins came in," Fangio said, "he saw me stuck there and without being asked he got out of his car and offered it to me to finish in. That was a fantastic gesture. My anxiety and misery gave way to joy, so much so that I threw my arms around him and kissed him. After that I finished second to Moss and that was enough."
Peter later explained the reason for his action. "I am only 25 years old and have plenty of time to win the championship on my own". Sadly, he died two years later without fulfilling his dream and leaving his great friend Mike Hawthorn to become Britain's first world champion in 1958.
Peter, along with Stirling Moss, Mike Hawthorn and many others, was at the vanguard of British motor racing in what many still consider to be its greatest period, yet he remains one of the few without a permanent memorial which is why I am heading this campaign.
Peter came from Mustow Green near Kidderminster and through his passion and skill became one of the foremost drivers in the world. He met and married American actress Louise King within a week and together they became one of the world's most recognised celebrity couples, living for a time on a yacht in the harbour at Monaco. Peter also became a close friend of Dino Ferrari during his terminal illness and spent much time at his bedside prior to his death.
Our memorial to Peter will be in the form of a life-sized bronze bust which will be situated on a pedestal. The bust will be cast by Bronzecast in Ormskirk Lancashire and the model will be crafted by eminent sculptor Stephen Charnock. The memorial will be sited at Shelsley Walsh, Peter's "home" circuit. In addition, a replica of the bust is to be sited at the Wolfgang von Trips exhibition at the Nurburgring, we feel that this is a fitting location due to Peter's great friendship with "Taffy" as von Trips was known by his fellow drivers.
Thank you for your support of this project. Please pass on the details of this project to anyone that you may think would be interested in helping us.