During Bill Pitt’s funeral yesterday his family showed remarkable footage of their father’s famed but mostly unseen D-Type crash at Albert Park in November 1956. The car, co-purchased new by Bill, is XKD526.
As you will see, the car hit hay bales at ‘Jaguar Corner’, ploughed through them and instantly flipped onto its back. In those days the circuit ran in the opposite direction, and the crash happened close to what is now turn four (near the grandstand of the old South Melbourne Football Ground)
Spectators and marshals all thought Bill was dead under the car which was in just its second race outing. Bill explains the story best here.
The stunning footage was found by the Nine television network in Australia about 20 years ago, and they interviewed Bill about the crash as a result.
It is remarkable and historic unlike anything else, and the Pitt family kindly agreed to share the dramatic scene – including the interview with their father and grandfather.
We have put this up here not just to show it to Jaguar Magazine followers – but to ensure this classic period document is preserved for posterity.
Thanks to Bill’s children Rob, Peter and Kym plus grand daughter Claire for their generosity.
The car was quickly repaired and continued to be raced very successful by Bill until 1959 when he sold it. It was replaced by a very rare and special factory-built ‘Mk1’ racer in which he won the Australian Touring Car Championship in 1961 and finished second twice.
I am sure you will agree it is a remarkable film.