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From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Larry Perkins
Nationality Australian
BornLarry Clifton Perkins
(1950-03-18) 18 March 1950 (age 71)
Murrayville, Victoria, Australia
Related toJack Perkins (son)
ATCC / V8 Supercar
Years active1981, 1985–2003
TeamsHolden Dealer Team
Perkins Engineering
Best finish4th in 1994, 1995 & 1998 Australian Touring Car Championship
Championship titles


European Formula Three Championship
Australian Formula 5000 Championship
Australian Rallycross Championship
Formula One World Championship career
Active years1974, 19761977
TeamsAmon, Boro, Brabham, BRM, Surtees
Entries15 (11 starts)
Career points0
Pole positions0
Fastest laps0
First entry1974 German Grand Prix (DNQ) / 1976 Spanish Grand Prix (13th)
Last entry1977 Belgian Grand Prix (12th) / 1977 French Grand Prix (DNQ)
Sign proclaiming Cowangie to be the "Hometown of Larry Perkins"
Sign proclaiming Cowangie to be the "Hometown of Larry Perkins"
The 1984 Bathurst 1000 winning Holden Commodore
The 1984 Bathurst 1000 winning Holden Commodore

Larry Clifton Perkins (born 18 March 1950)[1] is a former racing driver and V8 Supercar team owner from Australia.


Early years

Growing up on a farm in Cowangie in the Mallee region of Victoria, Larry, the son of racing driver Eddie Perkins who had won the 1956 RedeX Round Australia Trial, developed a love for cars from a young age and loved tinkering with the farm machinery. In 1970 he was recruited as a mechanic/driver for Harry Firth's Holden Dealer Team, and although he didn't do much road racing for the team, he did race in Rallycross alongside team driver Peter Brock, and was also involved with the development of the stillborn Holden LJ Torana GTR XU-1 V8 project which was canned in mid-1972 by the "Supercar scare".

Racing career

After winning the TAA Formula Ford "Driver To Europe" Series in 1971 and the Australian Formula 2 Championship in 1972 (both times in an Elfin 600), Perkins travelled to Europe where he won the 1975 European Formula Three Championship. He also raced in Formula One during the 1974, 1976 and 1977 seasons. After failing to secure a permanent drive in Formula One he returned to Australia, winning the Rothmans International Series in 1979 in an Elfin MR8 for the Ansett Team Elfin factory team run by Elfin Sports Cars founder Garrie Cooper, and the 1979 Australian Rallycross Championship in a Volkswagen Beetle.[2] During 1982 and 1983 he worked with brother Garry on the construction of The Quiet Achiever solar car. He was one of the drivers of the car during the transcontinental solar crossing of Australia, the car using only a photovoltaic solar cell source.[3] During these years he met with success in Australian Touring Cars and in 1988 he returned to Europe to race at the Le Mans 24 Hour with Tom Walkinshaw Racing, finishing 4th.

After returning home from Europe, Perkins made his Bathurst 1000 debut in 1977 in a Holden LX Torana SS A9X Hatchback where he finished third with Peter Janson. He went on to win the race six times (1982, 1983, 1984, 1993, 1995, 1997), with co-drivers Peter Brock (1982–84), John Harvey (1983) (all for the Holden Dealer Team which by then was owned by Brock with Perkins in charge of race car building and preparation), Gregg Hansford (1993) and in his last two wins in 1995 and 1997 with Russell Ingall, winning each time in an Australian developed Holden Commodore.

Arguably his most memorable win was in the 1995 Tooheys 1000 in which he dropped to last place after a pit stop at the end of the first lap to replace a flat tyre, and subsequently gained the lead with less than 10 laps remaining after the Ford Falcon of Glenn Seton retired having dropped a valve in the engine. Perkins and co-driver Russell Ingall thus became only the second driving combination in the history of the race to recover from last place to win the event. Perkins has however, never won an Australian Touring Car Championship, his best championship results being three fourth places.

Formula One

Perkins made his first appearance in Formula One at the 1974 German Grand Prix for Chris Amon Racing. With regular driver and team owner Chris Amon sidelined with sinustis after just one practice lap, Perkins took over in the AF101, failing to qualify after crashing on the second day of practice.

In 1976 he signed a deal with the works Boro team, for the team's first season. He made his first Formula One start at the Spanish Grand Prix, finishing 13th before achieving a seasons best result of 8th at the following race in Belgium. He failed to qualify at Monaco and retired from the Swedish Grand Prix after blowing an engine. With the team's money drying up, Perkins only made two further appearances in a Boro, retiring from the Dutch and Italian Grands Prix, and after Boro's withdrawal, was left without a drive. He replaced Rolf Stommelen at Brabham for the final three races of the year, finishing in 17th position in Canada and retiring from the remaining two races.

For the beginning of 1977, the Australian secured a drive for Stanley BRM, the remnants of the once great BRM team. After his car failed to be delivered on time for the opening Grand Prix, he made his first appearance at the Brazilian Grand Prix, albeit 12.1 seconds off the pace and retiring after one lap. Lapped five times before finishing 15th in South Africa, Perkins lost his seat to Conny Andersson at the beginning of the European season. He had a brief stint at Surtees, finishing 12th in Belgium and failing to qualify in Sweden. At the French Grand Prix, he drove in Friday practice, but was replaced by Patrick Tambay the next day. This marked the end of Perkins' brief and unsuccessful Formula One career.

Retirement and legacy

Perkins retired from driving in 2003, aged 53 and was inducted into the V8 Supercars Hall of Fame in 2008. In addition to his racing credentials as a driver he is an accomplished automotive engineer and engine-builder having built many race cars for both his own team and for other racing teams. He is well known for his outgoing and humorous personality. His nickname is "LP", but he is often referred to as "Lightning Larry" or "Larrikin Larry". Larry is the father of V8 Supercar race winner Jack Perkins.

On 7 December 2017, the "Larry Perkins Trophy" was named in his honour. It is awarded to the driver who accumulates the most points across the four races at the Beaurepaires Melbourne 400, the Supercars event supporting the Australian Grand Prix.[4]

In 2018 Perkins and his brother Peter discovered the lost cache of equipment left behind in the Simpson Desert by explorers Henry Vere Barclay and Ronald MacPherson in 1904. The explorers had been forced to abandon the load, which included camel tanks, tools, scientific equipment and personal belongings, in order to cross sandhills to get to a water source. The Perkins' discovery was described as a "highly significant archaeological find".[5]

Racing record

Career summary

Season Series Position Car Entrant / Team
1970 Formula Ford National Series 5th Elfin 600 Ford B.S. Stillwell & Co.
1971 National Formula Ford Driver to Europe Series 1st Elfin 600 Ford BS Stillwell & Co Pty Ltd
1972 Australian Drivers' Championship 11th Elfin 600B Ford Provincial Motors
Australian Formula 2 Championship 1st
1975 European Formula Three Championship 1st Ralt RT1 Ford Team Cowangie
British Formula 3 Championship 5th
1978 Peter Stuyvesant International Formula Pacific Series [6] 2nd Ralt RT1 Ford Scuderia Veloce
1978/79 Formula Pacific New Zealand International Series [7] 3rd March 78B Ford [8] Colin Giltrap Racing
1979 Rothmans International Series 1st Elfin MR8 Chevrolet Ansett Team Elfin
Australian Rallycross Championship 1st Volkswagen Beetle Kruger Motors
1981 Australian Touring Car Championship 26th Holden VC Commodore Cadbury Schweppes Racing
1982 Better Brakes AMSCAR Series 10th Holden VH Commodore SS Marlboro Holden Dealer Team
Australian Endurance Championship 14th
1983 Australian Endurance Championship 8th Holden VH Commodore SS Marlboro Holden Dealer Team
1984 Australian Endurance Championship 5th Holden VK Commodore Marlboro Holden Dealer Team
1985 Australian Touring Car Championship 38th Holden VK Commodore Mobil Holden Dealer Team
1986 Australian Endurance Championship 24th Holden VK Commodore SS Group A Enzed Team Perkins
South Pacific Touring Car Championship 14th
1987 Australian Touring Car Championship 5th Holden VK Commodore SS Group A Enzed Team Perkins
1988 Australian Touring Car Championship 7th Holden VL Commodore SS Group A Holden Special Vehicles
Asia-Pacific Touring Car Championship 6th Holden VL Commodore SS Group A Holden Special Vehicles
World Sports Prototype Championship 29th Jaguar XJR-9 Silk Cut Jaguar
1989 Australian Touring Car Championship 17th Holden VL Commodore SS Group A SV Perkins Engineering
1990 Australian Touring Car Championship 11th Holden VL Commodore SS Group A SV Perkins Engineering
Australian Endurance Championship 2nd
1991 Australian Touring Car Championship 11th Holden VN Commodore SS Group A SV Mobil 1 Racing
1992 Australian Touring Car Championship 10th Holden VL Commodore SS Group A SV Perkins Engineering
1993 Australian Touring Car Championship 12th Holden VL Commodore SS Group A SV
Holden VP Commodore
Castrol Perkins Racing
1994 Australian Touring Car Championship 4th Holden VP Commodore Castrol Perkins Racing
1995 Australian Touring Car Championship 4th Holden VR Commodore Castrol Perkins Racing
1996 Australian Touring Car Championship 5th Holden VR Commodore Castrol Perkins Racing
1997 Australian Touring Car Championship 5th Holden VS Commodore Castrol Perkins Racing
1998 Australian Touring Car Championship 4th Holden VS Commodore Castrol Perkins Racing
1999 Shell Championship Series 9th Holden VT Commodore Castrol Perkins Racing
2000 Shell Championship Series 13th Holden VT Commodore Castrol Perkins Racing
2001 Shell Championship Series 14th Holden VX Commodore Castrol Perkins Racing
2002 V8 Supercar Championship Series 18th Holden VX Commodore Castrol Perkins Racing
2003 V8 Supercar Championship Series 36th Holden VY Commodore Castrol Perkins Racing

Complete Formula One World Championship results


Year Entrant Chassis Engine 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 WDC Points
1974 Dalton-Amon International Amon AF101 Cosworth V8 ARG BRA RSA ESP BEL MON SWE NED FRA GBR GER
1976 HB Bewaking Alarm Systems Boro Ensign N175 Cosworth V8 BRA RSA USW ESP
NC 0
Martini Racing Brabham BT45 Alfa Romeo Flat 12 CAN
1977 Rotary Watches Stanley BRM BRM P207 BRM V12 ARG BRA
NC 0
BRM P201B/204 RSA
Team Surtees Surtees TS19 Cosworth V8 USW ESP MON BEL

Complete World Sportscar Championship results

(key) (Races in bold indicate pole position) (Races in italics indicate fastest lap)

Year Team Car 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 DC Points
1984 Australia Team Australia
United Kingdom John Fitzpatrick Racing
Porsche 956B MNZ SIL
1988 United States Silk Cut Jaguar
United Kingdom Tom Walkinshaw Racing

Complete World Touring Car Championship results

(key) (Races in bold indicate pole position) (Races in italics indicate fastest lap)

Year Team Car 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 DC Points
1987 Australia Enzed Team Perkins Holden VK Commodore SS Group A MNZ JAR DIJ NUR SPA BNO SIL BAT
NC 0
Holden VL Commodore SS Group A CLD

† Not eligible for series points

Complete Asia-Pacific Touring Car Championship results

(key) (Races in bold indicate pole position) (Races in italics indicate fastest lap)

Year Team Car 1 2 3 4 DC Points
1988 Australia Holden Special Vehicles Holden VL Commodore SS Group A SV BAT
FJI 6 27

Complete 24 Hours of Le Mans results

Year Team Co-Drivers Car Class Laps Pos. Class
1978 United Kingdom Charles Ivey Racing United Kingdom Gordon Spice
United States John Rulon-Miller
Porsche 911 Carrera RSR IMSA +2.5 278 14th 2nd
1984 Australia Team Australia
United Kingdom John Fitzpatrick Racing
Australia Peter Brock Porsche 956B C 145 DNF DNF
1988 United States Silk Cut Jaguar
United Kingdom Tom Walkinshaw Racing
Republic of Ireland Derek Daly
United States Kevin Cogan
Jaguar XJR-9LM C1 383 4th 4th

Complete Bathurst 1000 results

Year Team Co-Drivers Car Class Laps Pos. Class
1977 Australia NGK Janson New Zealand Peter Janson Holden LX Torana SS A9X Hatchback 3001cc – 6000cc 162 3rd 3rd
1979 Australia Cadbury Schweppes Racing New Zealand Peter Janson Holden LX Torana SS A9X Hatchback A 157 2nd 2nd
1980 Australia Cadbury Schweppes Racing New Zealand Peter Janson Holden VC Commodore 3001-6000cc 162 2nd 2nd
1981 Australia Cadbury Schweppes Racing New Zealand Peter Janson Holden VC Commodore 8 Cylinder & Over 67 DNF DNF
1982 Australia Marlboro Holden Dealer Team Australia Peter Brock Holden VH Commodore SS A 163 1st 1st
1983 Australia Marlboro Holden Dealer Team Australia John Harvey
Australia Peter Brock
Australia Phil Brock
Holden VH Commodore SS A 163 1st 1st
Australia Peter Brock Holden VH Commodore SS A 8 DNF DNF
1984 Australia Marlboro Holden Dealer Team Australia Peter Brock Holden VK Commodore Group C 163 1st 1st
1985 Australia Palmer Tube Mills Australia Dick Johnson Ford Mustang GT A 159 7th 7th
Ford Mustang GT A - DNS DNS
1986 Australia Enzed Team Perkins Australia David Parsons Holden VK Commodore SS Group A C 140 25th 18th
1987 Australia Enzed Team Perkins New Zealand Denny Hulme Holden VK Commodore SS Group A 1 2 DNF DNF
1988 Australia Holden Special Vehicles New Zealand Denny Hulme
United Kingdom Tom Walkinshaw
Holden VL Commodore SS Group A SV A 137 DNF DNF
1989 Australia Holden Racing Team Czech Republic Tomas Mezera Holden VL Commodore SS Group A SV A 158 6th 6th
1990 Australia Perkins Engineering Czech Republic Tomas Mezera Holden VL Commodore SS Group A SV 1 161 3rd 3rd
1991 Australia Mobil 1 Racing Czech Republic Tomas Mezera Holden VN Commodore SS Group A SV 1 65 DNF DNF
1992 Australia Perkins Engineering Australia Steve Harrington Holden VL Commodore SS Group A SV A 135 9th 8th
1993 Australia Castrol Perkins Racing Australia Gregg Hansford Holden VP Commodore A 161 1st 1st
1994 Australia Castrol Perkins Racing Australia Gregg Hansford Holden VP Commodore A 161 3rd 3rd
1995 Australia Castrol Perkins Racing Australia Russell Ingall Holden VR Commodore A 161 1st 1st
1996 Australia Castrol Perkins Racing Australia Russell Ingall Holden VP Commodore 160 6th 6th
1997 Australia Castrol Perkins Racing Australia Russell Ingall Holden VS Commodore L1 161 1st 1st
1998 Australia Castrol Perkins Racing Australia Russell Ingall Holden VT Commodore OC 161 2nd 2nd
1999 Australia Castrol Perkins Racing Australia Russell Ingall Holden VT Commodore 161 7th 7th
2000 Australia Castrol Perkins Racing Australia Russell Ingall Holden VT Commodore 159 11th 11th
2001 Australia Castrol Perkins Racing Australia Russell Ingall Holden VX Commodore 161 8th 8th
2002 Australia Castrol Perkins Racing Australia Paul Dumbrell Holden VX Commodore 161 5th 5th
2003 Australia Castrol Perkins Racing New Zealand Steven Richards Holden VY Commodore 161 4th 4th


  1. ^ "Drivers:Larry Perkins". Retrieved 28 August 2013.
  2. ^ John Lemm, Perkins is Australian Champ!, Racing Car News, August 1979, page 68.
  3. ^ "The Journey". Snooks Motorsport. Archived from the original on 23 March 2012. Retrieved 7 May 2012.
  4. ^ Adam, Mitchell (7 December 2017). "Supercars to race for Larry Perkins Trophy at AGP". Supercars. Retrieved 7 December 2017.
  5. ^ Moodie, Claire (16 July 2018). "Racing legend Larry Perkins swaps racetrack for outback and returns with buried treasure". Australia: ABC News. Retrieved 16 July 2018.
  6. ^ Peter Stuyvesant International Formula Pacific Series 1978 Retrieved from on 30 January 2011
  7. ^ Formula Pacific New Zealand International Series 1978-79 Retrieved from on 30 January 2011
  8. ^ New Zealand Formula Pacific 1977-1982 Archived 14 July 2011 at the Wayback Machine Retrieved from on 30 January 2011

External links

Sporting positions
Preceded by
European Formula Three Champion
Succeeded by
Riccardo Patrese
Preceded by
Dick Johnson
John French
Winner of the Bathurst 1000
1982, 1983, 1984
(with Peter Brock and John Harvey (1983))
Succeeded by
John Goss
Armin Hahne
Preceded by
Jim Richards
Mark Skaife
Winner of the Bathurst 1000
(with Gregg Hansford)
Succeeded by
Dick Johnson
John Bowe
Preceded by
Dick Johnson
John Bowe
Winner of the Bathurst 1000
(with Russell Ingall)
Succeeded by
Craig Lowndes
Greg Murphy
Preceded by
Craig Lowndes
Greg Murphy
Winner of the Bathurst Classic
(with Russell Ingall)
Succeeded by
Jason Bright
Steven Richards
This page was last edited on 23 March 2021, at 06:45
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