When a small-town racing car driver takes on the high-octane world of Formula One, he soon learns that to stay at the top he will have to risk more than just his life on the track.
“Black-Jack” Brabham, revolutionised the sport of Formula One in the 1950s and 60s. His innovation and engineering of open wheeled racing cars is legendary, over a career spanning three Formula One World Titles – on the third occasion, winning in a car of his own making. Sir Jack Brabham remains the only person to hold the Driver’s and Constructor’s Championship title in the same year.
Sir Jack was also a great mentor and is credited for instrumentally supporting the careers of young drivers and engineers, including: Bruce McLaren, Ron Dennis, Phil Kerr and countless others.
Five decades on from Sir Jack’s unparalleled accomplishments, his youngest son, David Brabham (Le Mans 24 Hour Champion), stands on the precipice of his life’s greatest achievement, the launch of Brabham Automotive.
With everything on the line, David and his team are now poised to take the reigns and fly the Brabham flag once more.
How does the project meet the aims of a philanthropic foundation?
Apart from the entertainment value contained within this film, the story also features a critical element that we believe offers significant social impact – this is its underlying theme of mentorship.
Brabham is one of Australia’s all time great sportsmen and was the first driver to be knighted for his services to motorsport. His successes remained unparalleled in the world of Formula One. Not only was he the first Australian ever to win the Formula One World Grand Prix, but on the third occasion, he did so in a car of his own making. He remains the only person ever to achieve such a feat.
Brabham was not alone in his journey; along the way he was mentored, guided and supported by those more knowledgeable and experienced then himself. These people guided him into positions and challenges that allowed him to experiment, succeed and fail: a demonstration of the strength and importance of teamwork.
Brabham would not have achieved the success he did without the substantial mentoring he received in the early part of his career. In turn, he went on to support, collaborate with, mentor and guide numerous other designers, engineers and racing devotees in both this country and internationally. The potential for highlighting the importance of mentoring, we believe, is one of the critical elements in this film. Through our ongoing discussions with vocational training provider, the Australian Grand PriX Corporation (AGPC) and the Australian Racing Drivers Club (ARDC), it is our intention that this film will be used as a tool to inspire and motivate teachers, students and enthusiasts from all over the country to form formal relationships that see young students of vocational institutes matched with work opportunities, community development projects and companies in order to further refine skills and individual potential.
It is further envisaged that the experience of the Brabham movie will encourage tertiary institutions to match students with backyard and grass roots enthusiasts in order to supplement and ‘round out’ their learning experience. To this end, we are devising an ‘all-media’ strategy that incorporates this perspective.
Brabham’s achievements have, in many ways, gone uncelebrated in recent years. As filmmakers we believe that by profiling his achievements in the public arena, there is a huge capacity to invigorate and excite the next generation of emerging designers, engineers, scientists, manufactures, sports participants and motorsport enthusiasts. At the same time, this acknowledgment would confirm the important role that Brabham played in the history of Australian sport, motor racing and vocational training. Given the emerging national discussion surrounding vocational training, we believe our film is a significant celebration of this valuable resource.
What outcomes do you hope to achieve by making this film and how will you measure its impact?
Aims & Objectives
This is a story of triumph against the odds and an example of the rewards of education, innovation and perseverance. Our aim is to make this film a creative and exhilarating work that will have the capacity to inspire, delight and inform audiences.
The filmmakers want to recognise this great Australian sportsman, achiever and industrial innovator and pay respect to his enduring entrepreneurial legacy. It would be a travesty if this story were to become lost and unavailable to future generations in this country.
We believe that the film has the capacity to reach out to and motivate the current Gen.Y and Millennials in Australia, to remind them of the great tradition and the enormous entrepreneurial spirit and productivity that we, as Australians, are capable of.
The Brabham story may be the greatest success story to come out of vocational based training that this country has ever seen. This is not a story of privilege or outstanding scholarly success, rather that of a young person taking advantage of the applied training available to him and using those skills to attain more sophisticated expertise.
It is our intention that this story will inspire young people who feel that university is not for them, while reminding them that other pathways are available. The 2014 Ernst & Young CAMS commissioned report states that in 2013, four-wheeled motor sport attributed $2.7 billon directly to industry output, $1.2 billion in direct value added and created 16,300 full-time jobs.Motor racing is the fourth most watched sport in Australia. A large portion of this watching and involvement is on a ‘grass roots’ level. Local tracks and speedways introduce young people to the thrill of fast driving in a safe and controlled environment.
With our established support from well respected industry stakeholders, we have an opportunity to reflect & reinforce the importance of safe and responsible road practices to ongoing generations of young Australians. The thrill of fast cars and racing endures. We want to ensure that this thrill is acted out in a manner that will reduce harm and misadventure.It is envisaged that this film will have broad mainstream appeal for both television and cinema audiences.
What is your education and outreach strategy?
The Brabham movie has the capacity to appeal to a broad demographic, with particular appeal to men and women of all ages with a passion for motorsport.
Brabham revolutionised the arena of Formula One, and his contribution to engineering, design, entrepreneurial invention, intellectual property and motor racing has the capacity to enthuse viewers both young and old. Brabham’s “ordinariness” reveals an accessible person, despite his phenomenal success; young people will be able to identify with his humility as they reflect on their own potential.
As part of our ongoing commitment to educational outreach, we have invited the participation of vocational training organisations, the ARDC, HSRCA and Brabham Estate to collaborate on any partnership/mentorship opportunities that may arise out of the development and production of this project.
Skills based apprenticeship has an established footprint in the automotive and manufacturing industries and it is the filmmakers' focus to further facilitate a meaningful dialogue between vocational institutions and our project’s motorsport foundation partners.
Further to our collaboration with vocational training orgs, we are initiating an associations with significant motorsport organisations for partnership on education opportunities.
Our education and outreach points include:
1.Broad national screenings in both traditional and non-traditional venues
2. Launch the film with national touring circuit that also host Q and A sessions and invite members of the racing fraternities to be part of these panels
3. Contacts to be made with the various racing peak bodies and the RAAF to look at diverse forms of promotion and education
4. Innovative and engaging website will be developed to promote the work
5. Film will be distributed with notes and further reading on various aspects of history, mechanics, design, science and sport
6. Study Guides: With a focus also on promoting affirmative action – how to further engage young women in traditional trades
7. Filmmakers will be available for public speaking and sponsorship engagements and national and grass roots motorsports events
8. Continue to work with peak racing bodies around the country to distribute the film and engage in educational talks, workshops and speaking appointments
9. All Media strategy: Engaging with audiences across multiple and dynamic platforms and further generating interest in the educational aspects of the film; ensuring that distribution and access to the work occurs throughout schools and other educational facilities