West has lived at Tamborine, on the flat country out the back of the Gold Coast, for the past 22 years. He and his wife Debbie raised two daughters and a son.
“I’m a Bachelor of Science, mechanical engineer. But I never did any of it. I was in the plastics industry, then started an exchange component business doing MacPherson struts, steering racks for Minis and stuff. I played in the tourist industry in the Whitsundays, then came back to industry.
“I was in New Guinea and the Solomons for a while on the yacht. So it’s been a very varied life.”
For a man with so much in his life, the decision to call time on motorsport was surprisingly easy. As he scaled the racing ranks he was keen to discover just how good he was. And when he’d answered that question to his satisfaction, it was time to pull the pin. In any case, there was the matter of financing his racing.
“If David McKay had still had a car for me to drive, I might have continued. But I wasn’t interested in working on a racing car five nights a week. There were all these dusky maidens in the south Pacific that needed me.
“I raced twice at Warwick Farm in 1969 and then retired. There were other things. I could see after a season in the Formula 1 car that I wasn’t going to worry Stirling Moss or Jim Clark.
“From the Morgan on, racing was to find out how good I was. I wasn’t good enough, simple as that. So it was stupid to spend my whole life just to drive eight times a year.”