France’s Jaguar Mk2 hero


Classic Car Weekly (UK) - - This Week -

Four-times Tour de France Au­to­mo­bile win­ner Bernard Consten has died, aged 84. While much less well known to­day than Jaguar race driv­ers like Gra­ham Hill or Roy Sal­vadori, Consten achieved a spec­tac­u­lar run of suc­cesses for Jaguar in Europe with the 3.8-litre Mk2 sa­loon.

His ca­reer cen­tred around the Tour de France Au­to­mo­bile – es­sen­tially a car rally cov­er­ing over 3000 miles of pub­lic roads, in­clud­ing mul­ti­ple speed hill climbs and cir­cuit and en­durance events

From 1960 to 1963 Consten and his co-driver Jack Renel en­joyed a su­perb run of four vic­to­ries with their Mk2 in the Tourisme cat­e­gory. 1964 saw not only the end of his dom­i­na­tion of the event, but also the tem­po­rary demise of the Tour it­self due to lack of money. Then in 1969 it was re­vived with the help of Consten, who had be­come pres­i­dent of France’s na­tional mo­tor sport body. He was a true Jaguar hero, and one who de­served to be bet­ter known. Paul Skil­leter

Bernard Consten in ac­tion dur­ing the 1961 Tour de France Au­to­mo­bile.


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