The British Automobile Racing Club, along with the rest of the motorsport community, are deeply saddened over the loss of Murray Walker OBE, who passed away this past weekend aged 97.
Making his first public broadcast at Shelsley Walsh Hill Climb in 1948, Murray went on to become a legend in the sport as he commentated on everything from bike racing and rallycross to truck racing and touring cars – as well as everything in-between – and all with the same infectious enthusiasm that everyone grew to love.
It was Formula 1 where he really came to prominence though, providing the soundtrack to generations of fans from 1978 through to 2001 on the BBC and later ITV.
As the ‘Voice of F1’, Murray’s high-octane and knowledgable commentary became renowned, as did what became known as the ‘Murrayisms’ – the mistakes or slips of the tongue that added to the viewing experience.
In 1996, Murray was awarded the BARC Gold Medal – the most prestigious accolade the Club awards – for his outstanding contribution to motor racing. That same year also a saw him appointed an OBE for his services to broadcasting and motor racing.
Over the years Murray remained a dear friend of the BARC and repeatedly gave up his time to help us whenever possible, most recently in 2018. Alongside former Formula 1 and Indycar champion Nigel Mansell, he officially opened the brand-new Thruxton Centre as part of the venues 50th Anniversary celebrations.
The superlatives to describe Murray are endless, he was simply a wonderful man that had an unrivalled enthusiasm for the sport.
Our thoughts and condolences go out to Murray’s family and friends at this sad time.
Thank you, Murray.
Murray Walker: 1923 – 2021