More sad news to report today, with reports that former F1 team manager Charlie Moody has passed away.
Moody’s first motorsport foray occurred in the 1970s, when he joined the Wolf team as a mechanic. He stayed on with the outfit when it was taken over by the Fittipaldi concern in 1979; following driver Keke Rosberg when he switched to Williams in 1982, the year the Finn claimed his World Championship.
Moody remained at Williams for a further five years, and then joined Benetton – now run by his former Williams colleague Peter Collins – to head up its test team. He remained with the team until 1989 when he joined Leyton House, and was promoted to the role of team manager just a year later.
He stayed with the team over its steady decline over the next five years, until the outfit closed its doors at the start of the 1993 season. He was then picked up by the fledgling Simtek team as it made its debut in 1994, and played a crucial role in keeping the team on track after the tragic death of its rookie driver, Roland Ratzenberger, at the ill-fated San Marino Grand Prix.
The team would collapse in early 1995, and Moody dropped out of Formula 1. He made a return in 1999 to head up BMW’s F1 testing programme (run by his former employer, Williams).
His attentions then shifted to motorcycle racing where he enjoyed a long association with Suzuki, firstly as one of the head figures in Kenny Roberts’ team, and then later as the operations manager for the Rizla Suzuki outfit.
In a tragic case of irony, his death came just days after Suzuki announced it was withdrawing from the MotoGP circuit.
His death comes just days after the death of former Williams commercial manager Sheridan Thynne.
[Image via F1 Nostalgia]
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