Meet a forgotten world champion.
He beat Lewis Hamilton, Was tipped for F1 – then fell hard into obscurity. Now Colin Brown is back from the brink…
In 2000 Hamilton stepped up to the Formula A class of racing, where he and Brown would go head to head, albeit with Hamilton in a well-sponsored multi-kart team and Brown racing a shoe string outfit..
“He was such a cool racer. The videos of those races are still on the internet, and we just seemed to pass each other constantly; if one of us got ahead, the other would come straight back by. It was hard racing but it was always fair.”
Brown’s day of days came in that year’s World Championship event, a one-off race in Braga, Portugal. Hamilton’s crankshaft seized mid- race while the pair were dicing, and Brown crossed the line the victor after fighting off the attentions of Clivio Piccione, who himself got to the cusp of F1. Other racers competing that day included future F1 racers Nico Rosberg, Robert Kubica, Lucas di Grassi, Giedo van der Garde and Pastor Maldonado. A few weeks later, Brown repeated the feat to win another one-off, the Monaco Kart Cup.
“The competition between us all was so fierce, and for Lewis and I it was more so, because we both wanted to be top Brit,” says Brown.
Brown did get a chance in car racing, moving up to single-seaters and facing Hamilton again in the first-tier Formula Renault Championship.
His results were good, too, but he never had the money to progress and the racing dream soon ended.
“But Lewis was the complete package, both in himself and in the support he had. As I sit here today, though, I have nothing but admiration for what he achieved.
Needs your help!
This year we want to get Colin back on track where he belongs, let’s all pull together and help a world class performer realise his full potential…
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