John Brise was a pig farmer who, at the age of 19 acquired a Jaguar SS100 and scored third places at Goodwood in May and June 1950 in 5 lap BARC Member's races. John's older brother Bob Brise raced a Cooper-JAP in 1951 and John made his debut in 1952 in a Kieft at Castle Combe finishing fourth in the third heat to Stirling Moss and Andre Loens.
In 1953, after buying John Cooper's Cooper Mk IV, he was consistently a frontrunner. He finished second in the second and final heats at Orleans on 31 May to Stuart Lewis-Evans and second in the second heat at Amiens on 9 June, to Eric Brandon but went on to win the final.
At Brands Hatch in a Martin, he finished sixth in the Easter Handicap race and in May, he finished second to Bernie Ecclestone in the Consolation Race in the Cooper. An impressed Daphne Arnott offered him a works drive alongside Ivor Bueb. The car was difficult to drive but Brise was able to achieve a fourth place in the production car race at the Commander Yorke meeting at the Silverstone in August. John drove the streamlined Arnott, to set a series of Class I records at Montlhéry in October. The 500 Km record of 108.13 mph still stands.
Early in 1954, John sold his Cooper to George Dardenne.
When stock car racing arrived in Britain, John built a car based upon a
Massey-Ferguson tractor gearbox, a Mercedes chassis, a Jeep rear-axle and
Oldsmobile Rocket 88 V8 engine bored out to 7.5 litres. Described as a car
that "changed the game" in stock-car racing, Brise won the 1956 World Stock
Car Championship and the British Trophy the following year. He was double
world champion in 1959 and 1960.
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