Jim Clark Weekend

Duns enjoyed the 2015 Jim Clark Weekend when over 6,000 people turned out to see an array of classic Formula One cars and star drivers Sir Jackie Stewart and Allan McNish.

Sir Jackie Stewart recalled how Jim Clark was “the man to beat” when he started his own Formula One career 50 years ago and said Clark had been a “very good friend” and would have been his second son’s godfather but for the crash which claimed his life in 1968.

Sir Jackie Stewart. Jim Clark weekend on Sunday. Celebrating fifty years of Jim Clark winning his second Formula One World Championship, his famous Indianapolis 500 victory, Formula 2 Championship and Tasman Championship, all in 1965.

Sir Jackie Stewart. Jim Clark weekend on Sunday. Celebrating fifty years of Jim Clark winning his second Formula One World Championship, his famous Indianapolis 500 victory, Formula 2 Championship and Tasman Championship, all in 1965.

Fellow motor racer Allan McNish was also in Duns for the event, helping to mark the 50th anniversary of the season in which Jim Clark became the only man to win both the F1 and Indy 500 titles in the same year. It was the same season that Sir Jackie made his F1 debut.

“He was a very, very good friend,” he said. “We shared an apartment in London together - two fellow Scots - in 1965, my first year in Formula One.

“I was on the podium with Jimmy three times, I think, the Belgian, the French and the Dutch grand prix. We were, in those days, called Batman and Robin and there was no doubt who was Batman and who was Robin. It was a great period in my life.”

Former Team Lotus chief mechanic Bob Dance said Clark was a gifted but down-to-earth individual.

“He was exceptionally talented, naturally talented,” he explained. “He was sympathetic to the car and just a high quality driver - quite calm and collected and easy to get on with. He just used to get on with the job.”

More modern-day driver McNish said he thought it would be hard to repeat Clark’s feats.

“Those times have definitely changed - the world of motorsport has definitely changed and that is probably what made so many people come here today to remember him,” he said.

“He was a Borders farmer that went on and dominated the world of motorsport.

“I think it would be very difficult for someone to be able to do it again - however, I don’t think anything is impossible.

“You never know, there might be somebody here today that will just be inspired by it and want to take up karting and go on.”

The event was also designed to raise the profile of plans for a renovated Jim Clark Museum in Duns, projected for 2018.

Ben Smith, secretary of the Jim Clark Trust, said that he hoped the enthusiastic response to the weekend would prove to be a springboard in terms of attention and funding for the development of the museum.

“It was wonderful to see the array of cars in Duns,” he said, “and we are very grateful to all our partners, who are too numerous to name, Scottish Borders Council, and all the local businesses who helped provide an army of volunteers, as well as Sir Jackie, and Allan. We hope the event is a springboard in terms of funding for the museum.”