PEOPLE: BRIAN HART
Name: Brian Hart
Nationality: Great Britain
Hart was trained in airframe and aero-engine design by Britain's De Havilland aircraft company before working as an engineer at Cosworth in its early years. He also enjoyed a very successful racing career in Formula Junior, F3 and, ultimately, as an F2 driver with Ron Harris's Lotus factory team. In the early 1960s he even raced in a few non-championship F1 races.
In 1969 he established Brian Hart Ltd., to service Ford's FVA racing engines. He was soon commissioned to develop Ford products and designed the Ford BDA, which would become the backbone of Ford's rally programs throughout the 1970s.
The arrival in F2 of BMW and Renault and Ford's unwillingness to increase its involvement prompted Hart to design his own F2 engine and he produced the Hart 420R, first raced in 1976 in a Chevron sportscar. This went on to become an effective F2 engine, winning races in 1977 and 1978.
The winter of 1978-79 proved to be a turning point for Hart, when the Toleman F2 team decided to finance his R&D programs. The result was Toleman-Hart domination of the European F2 Championship in 1980 with Brian Henton and Derek Warwick sweeping to a 1-2 finish in the championship. Toleman then commissioned a 1.5-liter turbocharged version of the 420R for F1 and the team entered GP racing in 1981.
Towards the end of 1982 the Toleman-Hart combination began to show its potential and by 1984 the team was good enough to attract Ayrton Senna. In his first F1 season Ayrton finished second at Monaco and third at Brands Hatch and Estoril.
For the next three years Hart supplied a variety of F1 teams - notably Carl Haas's FORCE Lola operation - but at the end of 1987 the F1 rules changed to 3.5-liter normally-aspirated engines. Hart did not have the money to build his own engine and so he joined forces with Cosworth to develop the company's DFZ and DFR engines, notably with Tyrrell. This work continued into 1990 when Jean Alesi produced some stunning performances.
By 1992 Hart had funded the design of his own V10 engine - the Type 1035 - and in November that year he announced an exclusive deal to supply Jordan Grand Prix in 1993 and 1994. The result was highly competitive but at the end of 1994 the team was given the chance to use free Peugeot V10 engines and Hart had to do a deal with Arrows, which was struggling for money. The team used Brian's V8 engines because there was no money to build the new V10 that Hart was planning. In 1998 Hart moved on to Minardi but in the summer he began to work on another V10 design. This became the Arrows V10 in 1999 when Tom Walkinshaw bought Brian Hart Ltd. There was legal action over money in the course of the 1999 season and Hart disappeared from the F1 scene.