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Charles Crichton-Stuart

Full Name:
Charles Patrick Colum Henry Crichton-Stuart
Born:
10th March 1939
London
Died:
2nd July 2001 (Aged 62)
Philippines, heart attack
Nationality:
British
Most recent race (in database):
Biography

This colourful character was a crucial ingredient in the emergence of the Williams team as a major force in Formula 1.

Family background

A Scottish aristocrat, Charlie Crichton-Stuart added a touch of glamour to the sport during his own short driving career – the grandson of the fifth Marquis of Bute and later married to actress Shirley Anne Field. Educated at Ampleforth private school, his career flying jets in the Royal Air Force ended in 1961 when he was diagnosed with high-altitude deafness.

Racing career

Deprived of his first passion, Crichton-Stuart began racing a second-hand Formula Junior Cooper-BMC in 1962. He joined the Stirling Moss Automobile Racing Team for Formula 3 in 1964 and won the 1966 Temporada F3 Championship with SMART’s Brabham BT10-Ford. Crichton-Stuart retired from racing at the end of that season after a barren European campaign.

Formula 1 team management

He married a year later and trained as a civilian pilot. Frank Williams, who had shared a "notorious" flat with Crichton-Stuart, Bubbles Horsley and Jonathan Williams in the mid-1960s, persuaded him to join his struggling F1 team in 1977.

Crichton-Stuart was charged with sponsorship acquisition and it proved a transformational period for Williams Grand Prix Engineering. From the ranks of also rans, Middle Eastern backing and the arrival of Patrick Head helped establish it as a leading force in F1 during the 1980s.

Crichton-Stuart moved to TAG in 1984 before a spell with the ambitious but ultimately unsuccessful Haas Lola team. He helped his cousin Johnny Dumfries in the junior formulae before settling in the Philippines where he salvaged shipwrecks for a living. It was there that he suffered a fatal heart attack in 2001.

Championship seasons

Season Name Starts Poles Podiums Wins Position Points
1967 Temporada F3 Championship
Frank Lythgoe Racing
3 (1) 0 2 0
0% win rate
3rd 10
1966 Temporada F3 Championship
Stirling Moss
4 0 3 1
25% win rate
1st 21
1965 Autocar British F2 Championship
Stirling Moss
1 0 0 0
0% win rate
0