Desmond Titterington

Born in Northern Ireland in 1928, Titterington came from a wealthy family which was involved in a variety of industries. When he was 14 he was sent to Scotland to attend Glenalmond College in Perth and afterwards went on to St Andrews University in 1946, where he met Archie Scott-Brown. The two men shared an apartment for a while but then went their separate ways.

In 1950 Titterington returned to Ulster and bought an MG and began racing. This was followed by a series of other cars and driving a Fiat Balilla he began to make an impression, finishing second at Phoenix Park in Dublin and third in a race at Dundrod. He also began competing in Europe in an MG. His results improved and in 1952 he won the Leinster Trophy at Wicklow in an Allard and in 1953 had his first races with Ecurie Ecosse. He continued to race in a variety of other machinery but his performances with an Ecurie Ecosse Jaguar won him a drive with the factory team for 1955. That year he shared a car with Mike Hawthorn and led the Tourist Trophy. This led to offers from Mercedes and Ferrari to drive in the Targa Florio. He chose Mercedes and shared a 300SL with John Fitch to finish fourth.

He was by then one of the top names on the British racing scene and it was no surprise that he decided to try his hand at Formula 1, his first outing being in the Gold Cup at Oulton Park in September 1955, driving for Vanwall. He finished third behind Stirling Moss and Mike Hawthorn. The following year he drove a Connaught and raced at Syracuse and then finished third in the BRDC Trophy at Aintree. At the International Trophy he and Scott-Brown raced to second and third and soon afterwards he took part in his one and only World Championship event, the British GP at Silverstone. A promising performance in qualifying did not translate into a good result as his engine broke in the race. Titterington continued to race Jaguars sports cars but at the end of the year announced that he was retiring to concentrate on his business and his family. He did reappear later in a number of minor events, just for fun, but never raced seriously.

In 1972, as Northern Ireland descended into violence, he sold the business and moved to Scotland where he lived for the rest of his life. He died in Dundee in April 2002.