The following people are considered by Pantheon to be the top 10 most legendary Australian Racing Drivers of all time. This list of famous Australian Racing Drivers is sorted by HPI (Historical Popularity Index), a metric that aggregates information on a biography’s online popularity. Visit the rankings page to view the entire list of Australian Racing Drivers.
With an HPI of 73.27, Jack Brabham is the most famous Australian Racing Driver. His biography has been translated into 49 different languages on wikipedia.
Sir John Arthur Brabham, (2 April 1926 – 19 May 2014) was an Australian racing driver who was Formula One World Champion in 1959, 1960, and 1966. He was a founder of the Brabham racing team and race car constructor that bore his name.Brabham was a Royal Australian Air Force flight mechanic and ran a small engineering workshop before he started racing midget cars in 1948. His successes with midgets in Australian and New Zealand road racing events led to his going to Britain to further his racing career. There he became part of the Cooper Car Company's racing team, building as well as racing cars. He contributed to the design of the mid-engined cars that Cooper introduced to Formula One and the Indianapolis 500, and won the Formula One world championship in 1959 and 1960. In 1962 he established his own Brabham marque with fellow Australian Ron Tauranac, which in the 1960s became the largest manufacturer of customer racing cars in the world. In the 1966 Formula One season Brabham became the first – and still, the only – man to win the Formula One world championship driving one of his own cars. He was the last surviving World Champion of the 1950s. Brabham retired to Australia after the 1970 Formula One season, where he bought a farm and maintained business interests, which included the Engine Developments racing engine manufacturer and several garages.
With an HPI of 68.51, Alan Jones is the 2nd most famous Australian Racing Driver. His biography has been translated into 38 different languages.
Alan Stanley Jones, (born 2 November 1946 in Melbourne, Victoria) is an Australian former Formula One driver. He was the first driver to win a Formula One World Championship with the Williams team, becoming the 1980 World Drivers' Champion and the second Australian to do so following triple World Champion Sir Jack Brabham. He competed in a total of 117 Grands Prix, winning 12 and achieving 24 podium finishes. In 1978 Jones won the Can-Am championship driving a Lola. Jones is also the last Australian driver to win the Australian Grand Prix, winning the 1980 event at Calder Park Raceway, having lapped the field consisting mostly of Formula 5000 cars while he was driving his Formula One Championship winning Williams FW07B.
With an HPI of 62.34, Mark Webber is the 3rd most famous Australian Racing Driver. His biography has been translated into 55 different languages.
Mark Alan Webber (born 27 August 1976) is an Australian former professional racing driver, who last competed in the FIA World Endurance Championship as a Porsche works driver in LMP1, in which he won the championship in 2015. Webber won nine Formula One Grands Prix and finished third in the championship in 2010, 2011 and 2013, all of which achieved while driving for Red Bull Racing. After some racing success in Australia driving Formula Ford and Formula Holden, Webber moved to the United Kingdom in 1995 to further his motorsport career. Webber began a partnership with fellow Australian Paul Stoddart, at that time owner of the European Racing Formula 3000 team, which eventually took them both into Formula One when Stoddart bought the Minardi team. He also beat future F1 World Champion Fernando Alonso, then 19, in the 2000 International Formula 3000 season. Webber made his Formula One debut in 2002, scoring Minardi's first points in three years at his and Stoddart's home race. After his first season, Jaguar took him on as lead driver. During two years with the generally uncompetitive team, Webber qualified on the front two rows of the grid several times and outperformed his teammates. His first F1 win was with Red Bull at the 2009 German Grand Prix, which followed second places at the 2009 Chinese Grand Prix, 2009 Turkish Grand Prix and 2009 British Grand Prix. By the end of 2009, Webber had scored eight podiums, including another victory in Brazil. His eight podiums in 2009 compares with only two podiums in the first seven years of his career. He added ten more podiums in 2010, including victories in Spain, Monaco, Britain and Hungary. Webber finished the 2010 season in third place having led for a long period, losing out to teammate Sebastian Vettel in the final race of the season. Webber added another race victory in the 2011 Brazilian Grand Prix, as he once again finished third behind champion Vettel and runner-up Jenson Button. Webber partnered Vettel again in the 2012 season, outperforming him in the early season and looked to be a major title contender but fell away with no wins in the second half of the season after two in the Monaco and British Grands Prix. The latter win turned out to be his final Grand Prix victory. He finished the season in sixth position. Webber was also a long-term director of the Grand Prix Drivers' Association, the Formula One drivers' union. On 27 June 2013, Webber announced he would be retiring from Formula One at the end of the season. He began to race for Porsche in 2014, on a long-term deal, racing LMP1 Sportscars in the FIA World Endurance Championship. Webber is one of six drivers of the Porsche 919 Hybrid, and in November 2015 he became World Endurance Champion in the #17 car, alongside Timo Bernhard and Brendon Hartley. The trio raced with the #1 on their car in 2016. After his retirement from F1 Webber joined the BBC F1 team as an occasional pundit and reporter from 2014–2015 and has joined the Channel 4 F1 Team in the UK for their coverage in 2016 as a full-time pundit. On 13 October 2016, Webber announced that he would retire from driving at the end of the 2016 season in order to take up a representative role with Porsche and to focus on media roles with Channel 4's coverage of F1 and WEC.
With an HPI of 61.03, Tim Schenken is the 4th most famous Australian Racing Driver. His biography has been translated into 22 different languages.
Timothy Theodore Schenken (born 26 September 1943) is a former racing driver from Sydney, Australia. He participated in 36 Formula One World Championship Grands Prix, debuting on 16 August 1970. He achieved one career podium at the 1971 Austrian Grand Prix, and scored a total of seven championship points. He did however have two non-championship race podiums – he finished third in the 1971 BRDC International Trophy and third in the 1972 International Gold Cup.
With an HPI of 60.73, Mick Doohan is the 5th most famous Australian Racing Driver. His biography has been translated into 21 different languages.
Michael "Mick" Sydney Doohan, (born 4 June 1965) is an Australian former Grand Prix motorcycle road racing World Champion, who won five consecutive 500 cc World Championships. Only Giacomo Agostini with eight (seven consecutive), Valentino Rossi with seven (five consecutive) and Marc Márquez with six (four consecutive), have won more premier class titles.
With an HPI of 59.75, Daniel Ricciardo is the 6th most famous Australian Racing Driver. His biography has been translated into 49 different languages.
Daniel Joseph Ricciardo ( "Ricardo"; born 1 July 1989) is an Italian-Australian racing driver who is currently competing in Formula One, under the Australian flag, for McLaren. He made his debut at the 2011 British Grand Prix with the HRT team as part of a deal with Red Bull Racing, for whom he was test driving under its sister team Scuderia Toro Rosso. Ricciardo’s driver number is 3. Ricciardo joined Toro Rosso in 2012 full time after the team changed its driver lineup and drove a Ferrari-powered car for them in 2012 and 2013. In 2014, Ricciardo was promoted to Red Bull as a replacement for the retired Mark Webber alongside multiple time world champion Sebastian Vettel. In his first season with Red Bull under Renault power, Ricciardo finished third in the championship with his first three Formula One wins, in Canada, Hungary, and Belgium.After two years without victory, Ricciardo returned to the top of the podium at the 2016 Malaysian Grand Prix, eventually sealing third in the championship for the second time in three years at the 2016 Mexican Grand Prix. He has since added victories at the Azerbaijan Grand Prix in 2017 and the Chinese and Monaco Grands Prix in 2018. After 2018, Ricciardo signed with Renault and has raced for them in the 2019 and 2020 seasons. He is due to join McLaren for the 2021 and 2022 Formula One seasons alongside Lando Norris.
With an HPI of 58.50, Casey Stoner is the 7th most famous Australian Racing Driver. His biography has been translated into 36 different languages.
Casey Joel Stoner (born 16 October 1985) is a retired Australian professional motorcycle racer, and a two-time MotoGP World Champion, in 2007 and 2011. Stoner served as a test and development rider for Ducati from 2016 to 2018.Born in Southport, Queensland, Stoner raced from a young age and moved to the United Kingdom to pursue a racing career. After first competing internationally in 2002, Stoner became MotoGP World Champion in 2007 for Ducati. One of Stoner's greatest talents was his ability to ride any motorcycle beyond its perceived limits, even producing race wins on the inferior Ducati chassis after both Honda and Yamaha had forged ahead in development during his later racing years. Stoner won the MotoGP World Championship riding for Ducati and the win in 2007 remains as Ducati's only championship. During 2008 and 2009 Stoner remained a strong contender, winning multiple races, but not being able to consistently challenge Valentino Rossi and Yamaha for the title during those seasons. In mid-season of 2009, he even missed a few races due to chronic fatigue due to anaemia, having started the season strongly. In 2010, Ducati failed to cope with Yamaha and Honda until very late in the season, when Stoner went out on a winning note winning three races. After his departure from Ducati to Honda following the 2010 season, Stoner won a second world championship title in 2011 for Repsol Honda. The championship was won in a dominant fashion with ten Grand Prix wins and sealed by winning his home race with two races remaining. Prior to the 2012 French Grand Prix, Stoner announced that he would retire from Grand Prix racing at the conclusion of the 2012 season. Stoner was also the winner of his home Grand Prix of Australia on six consecutive occasions between 2007 and 2012. Due to a crash during practice at Indianapolis, Stoner missed several races due to injury, curtailing his championship challenge for his last season. He rounded off his MotoGP career with a remarkable sixth consecutive win in his home Grand Prix at Phillip Island and with a podium in his final race. On 27 March 2015, HRC announced that Casey Stoner would return to competition in a one-off ride in the 2015 Suzuka 8 Hours. Stoner crashed out of the race due to a stuck throttle, and Honda apologised to Stoner over the technical failure that caused him to injure his ankle and shoulder.
With an HPI of 57.41, Ken Kavanagh is the 8th most famous Australian Racing Driver. His biography has been translated into 20 different languages.
Thomas Kenrick Kavanagh (12 December 1923 – 26 November 2019) was an Australian Grand Prix motorcycle road racer and racecar driver. In 1952, Kavanagh became the first Australian to win a motorcycle Grand Prix race when he won the 350cc Ulster Grand Prix. In 1956, he won the Junior TT at the Isle of Man TT races. Kavanagh entered two Formula One Grands Prix in 1958 with his own Maserati 250F, firstly in Monaco where he failed to qualify, and lastly in the Belgian Grand Prix where he missed out on the race having blown his engine in practice, after having qualified 20th of 28 entrants.
With an HPI of 55.80, Vern Schuppan is the 9th most famous Australian Racing Driver. His biography has been translated into 17 different languages.
Vernon John Schuppan (born 19 March 1943 in Booleroo Centre, South Australia) is a retired Australian motor racing driver. Schuppan drove in various categories, participating in Formula One, the Indianapolis 500 and most successfully in sports car racing. Although he considers himself to be a single-seater driver, Schuppan's biggest career victory was with the factory-backed Rothmans Porsche team when he partnered Americans Hurley Haywood and Al Holbert to win the 1983 24 Hours of Le Mans driving the Porsche 956. In 1984 he was made a Member of the Order of Australia for "service to the sport of motor racing".
With an HPI of 54.42, Frank Gardner is the 10th most famous Australian Racing Driver. His biography has been translated into 17 different languages.
Frank Gardner OAM (1 October 1931 – 29 August 2009) was a racing driver from Australia. Born in Sydney, he was best known for touring car racing, winning the British Saloon Car Championship three times, and sports car racing driver but he was also a top flight open wheeler driver. He was European Formula 5000 champion, and participated in nine World Championship Formula One Grands Prix, debuting on 11 July 1964. He scored no championship points. Gardner also participated in numerous non-Championship Formula One races and his results included a third placing at the 1965 Mediterranean Grand Prix at the Autodromo di Pergusa in Sicily, fourth in the 1965 Race of Champions at Brands Hatch and third in the 1971 International Gold Cup at Oulton Park. He participated each year in the open wheeler Tasman Series held in New Zealand and Australia during the European winter, and shared the grids with the likes of Jim Clark, Graham Hill and Jochen Rindt and won the New Zealand Grand Prix. He is unrelated to the former Grand Prix motorcycle and touring car racer Wayne Gardner. Frank was an Australian champion surf boat rower in 1953, rowing for Whale Beach Surf Life Saving Club. The coach was Jack Uren, brother of Tom Uren, politician. Both now deceased
Pantheon has 21 people classified as racing drivers born between 1923 and 1995. Of these 21, 16 (76.19%) of them are still alive today. The most famous living racing drivers include Alan Jones, Mark Webber, and Tim Schenken. The most famous deceased racing drivers include Jack Brabham, Ken Kavanagh, and Frank Gardner.
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Which Racing Drivers were alive at the same time? This visualization shows the lifespans of the 5 most globally memorable Racing Drivers since 1700.