John Surtees awarded CBE for services to motor sport in New Year honours

30 Dec 2015 22:53

John Surtees, the only man to win world titles on two and four wheels, has been awarded a CBE in recognition of his services to motor sport.

The 81-year-old won seven world motorcycling championships between 1956 and 1960, before trying his luck in car racing, initially for the Lotus team.

He joined Ferrari in 1963 and secured the Formula One world title with the Italian team the following year.

Asked what had been the highlight of his life in an interview with the Daily Telegraph to mark his 80th birthday last year, Surtees said: "Doing something that I was emotionally involved in, on and off the track, and being fortunate enough to get paid for it."

He left Ferrari in acrimonious circumstances in 1966, and admitted in quotes on his official website "The parting was costly to Ferrari and to me.

"I believe we lost one or two World Championships as a result."

He set up Team Surtees in 1970, but, despite some success in other motor sport series, they were unable to establish themselves in Formula One. He retired from racing in 1972.

"The main thing is that whatever I've done, I've done from the heart," he said.

"I have loved being involved in first building and riding motorcycles and then driving cars - but above all, competing."

Surtees set up the Henry Surtees Foundation charity in 2010 in honour of his son, who was killed at the age of 18 in a racing accident at Brands Hatch the previous year.

Surtees was awarded an OBE in 2008.