Tommy Byrne (racing driver)

Tommy Byrne
Born (1958-05-06) 6 May 1958 (age 62)
Drogheda, County Louth, Ireland[1][2]
Formula One World Championship career
NationalityRepublic of Ireland Irish
Active years1982
Entries5 (2 starts)
Career points0
Pole positions0
Fastest laps0
First entry1982 German Grand Prix
Last entry1982 Caesars Palace Grand Prix

Thomas Byrne (born 6 May 1958 in Drogheda, but grew up outside Dundalk [1][2] County Louth) is a former racing driver from Ireland. He participated in two Formula One Grands Prix in 1982 with the backmarker Theodore team, failing to qualify for another three. He failed to finish in either of the Grands Prix he started and scored no Formula One championship points.

After performing well in the Irish Formula Ford Championship in 1981, Byrne won the 1982 British Formula 3 Championship even though he missed some races while he competed in Formula One. At that time, he also tested a McLaren MP4/1 Formula One car in October 1982 against Marlboro-backed Spirit Racing's European F2 drivers like Stefan Johansson and Thierry Boutsen.[3] During the test, even though it was the first time Byrne had ever driven the MP4/1, he matched the pace on three consecutive laps, set by Niki Lauda during the British Grand Prix at the same circuit.[4] After a brief return to Formula Three in 1983, where he raced for Eddie Jordan, Byrne moved to the United States and began racing in the American Racing Series in 1986, where he won ten races in 55 starts, both second place in the series record books. He also was the championship runner-up in 1988 and 1989. He raced in the series until 1992 and then retired. Despite his extended career in the States, Byrne never made a Champ Car start. He lives in Florida, and teaches Honda Teen/Adult Defensive Driving, Advanced Defensive Driving, Acura High Performance and Acura Advanced Performance Driving during the race season at the Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course in Lexington, Ohio. He is also a driver coach for Indy Lights team Brian Stewart Racing.

He co-authored a book with Mark Hughes which was released in the UK on 8 August 2008, titled Crashed and Byrned: The Greatest Racing Driver You Never Saw. The book won the William Hill Irish Sports Book of the Year for 2009.[5]

Byrne was the subject of Seán Ó Cualáin's documentary Crash and Burn in 2016.[6]

Racing record

Career summary

Year Series Pos.
1982 Formula One NC
British Formula Three 1st
1983 British Formula Three NC
European Formula Three 4th
1983 Macau Grand Prix NC
Formula Mondial North American Cup 15th
1984 European Formula Three 6th
1984 Macau Grand Prix 8th
Formula Super Vee 13th
1985 Formula Super Vee NC
1986 Formula 3000 NC
GT 24th
Indy Lights 7th
1987 Indy Lights 3rd
1988 Indy Lights 2nd
1989 HFC American Racing Series Championship 2nd
1990 Firestone American Racing Series Championship 13th
1991 Firestone Indy Lights Championship 12th
1992 Firestone Indy Lights Championship 10th
2001 Grand American Road Racing 13th
American Le Mans NC
2002 Grand American Road Racing 3rd

Complete Formula One results


Year Entrant Chassis Engine 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 WDC Points
1982 Theodore Racing Team Theodore TY02 Cosworth V8 RSA BRA USW SMR BEL MON DET CAN NED GBR FRA GER
NC 0


  1. ^ a b O'Rourke, Steve. "'Better than Senna' - Tommy Byrne was the greatest racing driver you've probably never heard of". Retrieved 8 July 2017.
  2. ^ a b "Crash and Burn review: Tommy Byrne - Far beyond driven". Retrieved 8 July 2017.
  3. ^ The Greatest Racing Driver You Never Saw: excerpt from Tommy Byrne's book
  4. ^ "F1's missed opportunity – Tommy Byrne on McLaren, Theodore & Rosberg: "He was an asshole!"". 2 December 2016. Retrieved 19 June 2020.
  5. ^ Review of Crashed and Byrned archive at Wayback Machine
  6. ^ -, Steven (27 November 2016). "Review of Irish Film @ Cork Film Festival: Crash and Burn". Film Ireland. Archived from the original on 28 November 2016. Retrieved 18 June 2018.CS1 maint: numeric names: authors list (link)

External links

Awards and achievements
Preceded by
first winner
National Racing Driver of the Year

Succeeded by
Martin Brundle
Sporting positions
Preceded by
Roberto Moreno
Formula Ford Festival Winner
Succeeded by
Julian Bailey
Preceded by
Jonathan Palmer
British Formula Three Champion
Succeeded by
Ayrton Senna

This page was last updated at 2021-01-19 23:40 UTC. Update now. View original page.

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