Friday, 07 December 2007 16:58

Tony Fall

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Tony Fall Obituary  From Carol Corliss  
   
    We are so sorry to hear of the death of one of the Nicer characters of motor sport.  My acquaintance with Tony Fall was purely through working alongside him at the Historic Motor Sports Show at Stoneleigh over the past few years.  He was very pleasant company and unfailingly courteous to the many fans who approached him at these events.  We send our condolences to his wife Pat and the family.   Carol Corliss   Quotes below   The death has occurred of Tony Fall, former
works rally driver, successful team manager,
and lately managing director of Safety Devices.

Tony was in Tanzania, assisting the organisers
of the East African Safari Classic Rally, when he
was taken ill. He died in his sleep on the night
of Saturday 1 December, of a suspected heart
attack.

Richard Anthony Fall was born in Bradford,
Yorkshire, in 1940. As a car salesman, he was
a club rally driver in a Mini. He was soon spotted
by BMC Competitions team manager Stuart
Turner, and co-opted into the works team
alongside Paddy Hopkirk, Timo Makinen and
Rauno Aaltonen. His first major international
victory in the Mini was the 1966 Circuit of
Ireland, co-driven by Henry Liddon.

He rallied with BMC for three seasons - including
competing on the original London Sydney
Marathon and finishing 23rd in a Morris 1800 -
and then joined the Lancia team, where he
achieved his highest-ever finish on the RAC Rally
of Great Britain: 3rd in 1969.

He joined Datsun for three seasons, achieving
many high placings on world rallies, at the same
time driving for other factory teams, including
BMW, Porsche and VW.

Tony tackled the World Cup Rally from London
to Mexico in 1970 with a celebrity co-driver,
footballer Jimmy Greaves, and they finished 6th.
Twenty-five years later, he competed on the
re-run of the event, finishing one place higher.
Tony achieved 12 international rally wins in his
driving career.

A long association with General Motors
commenced in 1974, when Tony established
Dealer Opel Team at Tonge Park, Yorkshire,
employing driver talent such as Ari Vatanen
and Tony Pond.

Success in the UK with DOT led to his
appointment as Director of Motor Sport for GM
Euro Sport, based in Russelsheim, Germany, in
1978. Under his direction, Walter Rohrl became
World Rally Champion in 1982, and - in the
latter part of the decade - Tony introduced the
Opel-Vauxhall Lotus formula for single-seat
racing cars, which launched the careers of
many Grand Prix stars, including Mika Hakkinen
and David Coulthard.

Tony Fall returned to the UK in 1990, initially as
manager then owner of the motor sport safety
equipment manufacturer, Safety Devices. He
was managing director of the Newmarket,
Suffolk, based company - famous for the
production of roll-over cages - at the time of
his death.

Tony, who in recent years had driven a replica
of his original Datsun in historic rallies with
Yvonne Mehta, was in Africa on "holiday",
helping with the organisation of an event he
loved, and which had been the scene of many
of his triumphs.

His wife Pat, sons Richard and Oliver from a
previous marriage, and grandchildren Louis (8),
Charles (6) and Mia (4), survive him.
Statement from the chairman of Safety Devices
International, Bevan Braithwaite OBE, FREng:

"Tony's passing comes as a huge shock to
everyone, as he appeared to be in the best of
health and was applying his great energy to his
many interests. His leadership of Safety Devices
International occupied much of his time, and the
past two years had been spent putting systems
in place that ensured the smooth operation of
the business, so that he could take more time
off participating in his great love - motor sport.

"As far as customers of SDI are concerned, you
should be assured that the business is in
excellent shape, with two and half thousand
products fully digitised for production, and
established procedures for the development of
safety cages for new vehicles.

"In the short term, I will be assisting Pat Fall in
the management of the company."


Tony Fall International Results:    1966 Monte Carlo Rally, MGB (Ron Crellin) RTD - oil pipe San Remo, Mini Cooper S (Henry Liddon) DISQ - air cleaner Circuit of Ireland, Mini Cooper S (Henry Liddon) 1st Austrian Alpine, Mini Cooper S (Mike Wood) RTD - steering Scottish Rally, Mini Cooper S (Mike Wood) 1st Geneva Rally, Mini Cooper S (Henry Liddon) 2nd London Rally, Mini Cooper S (Mike Wood) RTD German Rally, Mini Cooper S (Henry Liddon) RTD- engine Polish Rally, Mini Cooper S (A Krauklis) 1st Welsh Rally, Mini Cooper S (Mike Wood) RTD Alpine Rally, Mini Cooper S (Mike wood) RTD- drive shaft Three Cities Rally (Munich-Vienna-Budpest) (Henry Liddon) RTD- RAC Rally, Mini Cooper S (Mike Wood) 5th   1967 Monte Carlo Rally, Mini Cooper S (R Joss) 10th San Remo, Mini Cooper S ()Mike Wood) 4th Scottish Rally, Mini Cooper S (Mike Wood) RTD Geneva Rally, Mini Cooper S (Mike Wood) 1st London Rally, Mini Cooper S (Mike Wood) RTD- accident Danube Rally, Austin 1800 (Mike Wood) 1st Marathon de la Route, Mini Cooper 970S (J Vernaeve/A Hedges) 2nd Alpine Rally, Mini Cooper S (Mike Wood) RTD- accident RAC Rally - cancelled (Foot and Mouth)   1968 Monte Carlo Rally, Mini Cooper S (Mike Wood) 4th Flowers Rally, Mini Cooper S (Mike Wood) RTD Safari Rally, Austin 1800 (Lofty Drews) RTD-OTL Shell 4000 (Canada), Austin 1800 (D Johnson) 8th Marathon de la Route, MGC GT (J Vernaeve/A Hedges) 6th London Sydney Marathon, Morris 1800 (Brian Culcheth/Mike Wood) 23rd   1969 RAC Rally, Lancia Fulvia (Henry Liddon) 3rd   1970 RAC Rally Datsun 240Z (Gerry Phillips) No Finish World Cup Rally, Ford Escort (Jimmy Greaves) 6th   1971 Monte Carlo, Datsun 240Z (Mike Wood) 10th Welsh Rally, Datsun 240Z (Mike Wood) 1st Eithiopian Rally, Datsun  (Rauno Aaltonen)1600SSS 1st   1972  Monte Carlo, Datsun 240Z (Mike Wood) 29th TAP Rally, Datsun 240Z (Mike Wood) 4th Total Rally, South Africa Datsun 240Z (Franz Bosoff) 1st Safari Rally, Datsun 240Z  (Rauno Aaltonen) 6th Acropolis, BMW 2002ti (Mike Wood) 5th   1973    Monte Carlo Datsun 240Z   (Mike Wood) 9th Safari Rally  Datsun 1800SSS  (Mike Wood) 4th Alpenfahrt (Austria), VW 1303S (Mike Wood) 9th TAP (Portugal) VW 1303S (Mike Wood) rear suspension Morocco Peugeot 504 (Mike Wood) front suspension Acropolis (Greece) VW 1303S          (Mike Wood) engine RAC Datsun 240Z (Mike Wood) accident   1974 TAP (Portugal) Opel Ascona (Robin Turvey) front suspension RAC Opel Ascona (Mike Broad)  axle damage   1976 Moroccan Rally Opel KadettGTE  (Paul Hadley) gearbox   1995 World Cup Rally, Volvo 144 (Roy Dixon) 5th  Information: Paul DaviesTel: 01594 541487E Mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.   

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