Frederick Roberts "Bob" Gerard (born 19 January 1914 in Leicester, Leicestershire, England, United Kingdom – died 26 January 1990 in South Croxton, Leicestershire, England, United Kingdom) was a British racing driver who competed in Formula One from it's inception in 1950 to 1957. Notable for wearing spectacles for his nearsightedness on the racetrack, he managed to secure three sixth-place finishes in aging machinery.
Born into an automotive family, Gerard started racing in his father's Riley, taking part in hillclimbs in the 1930s. He later started club races before the war interrupted his career. After the war, he purchased an ERA from Reg Parnell and after buying another ERA, stated competing in Grand Prix races.
He was successful; he won races in the British Empire Trophy (three times), the Jersey Road Race (twice) and the Ulster Trophy; while during the British Grands Prix he managed two podiums in 1948 and 1949.
Gerard competed at the first World Championship race, the 1950 British Grand Prix, but finished in sixth place, just outside of the points. He then proceeded to finish the next race, the Monaco Grand Prix, in sixth place as well.
Switching to a Cooper chassis in 1953, Gerard managed to keep up the impressive performances in home races, winning the Curtis Trophy and Joe Fry Memorial Trophy in 1953 and the Daily Record Trophy. He would score another sixth place at the 1957 British Grand Prix, his final Championship Grand Prix, before finishing his Grand Prix career in 1958. He continued racing into the 1960s, and acted as an entrant for up-and-coming drivers until the 1980s.
Formula One CareerEdit
Before Formula OneEdit
After the war, Gerard purchased his first out and out racing car, an ERA R4A, purchased off Reg Parnell for £1000 and used his engineering nous to tune the car and other ERA's followed as he and his wife Joan contested hillclimbs and circuit races whilst he continued to modify the cars.
Gerard used his modified ERA 14B to win three back to back British Empire Trophies in 1947, 1948 and 1949 and used this decade old car to finish third at the 1948 British Grand Prix behind the two brand new Maserati's of Alberto Ascari and Luigi Villoresi and a year later in the 1949 British Grand Prix finished second to Toulo de Graffenried.
Gerard continued his remarkable performances in his ancient ERA into the 1950 Formula One season with a sixth place finish, ahead of Maserati and Talbot-Lago machinery at the British Grand Prix at Silverstone. A week later, he achieved the feat again at the second round of the season at Monaco, beating Talbot-Lago driver Johnny Claes into sixth place. Gerard would not appear at any further Championship races in 1950 and his two sixth places meant he failed to score any points.
Gerard's only participation was in the International Trophy, and he retired after 30 of the 50 laps.
After Formula OneEdit
Formula One Statistical OverviewEdit
Formula One RecordEdit
|Year||Entrant||Team||WDC Points||WDC Pos.||Report|
|1946||Bob Gerard Racing||ERA||N/A||Report|
|1947||Bob Gerard Racing||ERA||N/A||Report|
|1948||Bob Gerard Racing||ERA||N/A||Report|
|1949||Bob Gerard Racing||ERA||N/A||Report|
|1950||Bob Gerard Racing||ERA||0||NC||Report|
|1951||Bob Gerard Racing||ERA||0||NC||Report|
|1952||Bob Gerard Racing||ERA |
|1953||Bob Gerard Racing||Cooper-Bristol||0||NC||Report|
|1955||Bob Gerard Racing||Cooper-Bristol||N/A||Report|
|Stirling Moss Ltd||Maserati|
|1956||Bob Gerard Racing||Cooper-Bristol||0||NC||Report|
|1957||Bob Gerard Racing||Cooper-Bristol||0||NC||Report|
|1958||Bob Gerard Racing||Cooper-Bristol||N/A|
Note: For Formula One years, italics indicates an entry or constructor that did not participate in World Championship races.
|Front Row Starts||0|
|Distance Raced||2699 km|
|Distance Led||0 km|
|Win Number||Grand Prix|
|1||1947 Ulster Trophy|
|2||1947 British Empire Trophy|
|3||1948 Jersey Road Race|
|4||1949 Jersey Road Race|
|5||1949 British Empire Trophy|
|Win Number||Grand Prix|
|1||1950 British Empire Trophy|
|2||1953 Joe Fry Memorial Trophy|
|3||1953 Curtis Trophy|
|4||1955 Daily Record Trophy|
|Complete Formula One results|
|3rd||DNQ||Did not qualify|
|5th||Points finish||DNPQ||Did not pre-qualify|
|14th||Non-points finish||TD||Test driver|
|NC||Non-classified finish (<90% race distance)||DNS||Did not start|
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