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Stewart and Tyrrell

30 years on—Sir Jackie Stewart and Hill reminisce while looking over Stewart’s championship-winning Tyrrell 003.

I first got acquainted with Jackie Stewart when I went to work as a mechanic for Ken Tyrrell in 1968, when Jackie was first driving for Ken in F1, and from that point, as I got to know him, I learned how he operated. It was clear that he wanted everything to be absolutely right, exactly how things should be in F1 anyway. I always saw him as a fair person, though he knew exactly what he wanted. I worked closely with him from the very beginning until his last race at Watkins Glen in 1973 when François Cevert had his accident. He was always seen as a pretty demanding driver in the team but in fact he needed to be, as any driver needed to be strong-willed and able to get what he or she wanted.

Roger Hill
Roger Hill

Jackie was like Ken Tyrrell himself in that way, able to get what he needed from his staff. If you were not focussed in that way, you might be able to do the job, but I personally think you would have trouble, whether you were a team manager or a mechanic or a driver. In the early days of working together, there were more highs than lows. We were doing really well in those days, 1968 and 1969 with the Matra, and that was very satisfying to be involved in that, winning, and doing as well as we did even when we didn’t win. There was a great sense of satisfaction in the team in those days. I guess you could say that the Matra-Cosworth came together pretty quickly, but then of course we made the decision to make our own car.

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