Tom Belsø

Last updated

Tom Belsø
Born(1942-08-27)27 August 1942
Søborg, Copenhagen, Denmark
Died12 January 2020(2020-01-12) (aged 77)
Rushden, United Kingdom
Formula One World Championship career
Nationality Flag of Denmark.svg Danish
Active years 19731974
Teams Frank Williams Racing Cars
Entries5 (2 starts)
Championships 0
Wins 0
Career points0
Pole positions 0
Fastest laps 0
First entry 1973 Swedish Grand Prix
Last entry 1974 British Grand Prix

Tom Belsø (27 August 1942 – 12 January 2020) [1] was a motor racing driver, credited as the first Formula One driver from Denmark.


Early career

Belsø started out in touring cars, where he won his debut race and went on to become Scandinavian Touring Car Champion in 1969. [2] He became a Formula Two racer in 1972, with his best result being a fourth place at the Albi Grand Prix, finishing 17th in the European F2 Championship. In 1973 he raced a Lola in Formula 5000. He also raced in a few non-championship Formula One races, finishing 7th in the 1973 Race of Champions and 8th in the 1973 BRDC International Trophy, and retiring in the 1974 BRDC International Trophy and 1975 Race of Champions. He contested the 1974 Rothmans 5000 European Championship winning at Snetterton and finishing 8th in the Series. He also competed in the 1977 Shellsport 5000/Libre series and finished fifth in a Radio Luxemburg-sponsored Lola T330-Chevrolet.

Formula One

Belsø qualified a Formula One Iso-Marlboro for the Frank Williams Racing Cars team at the 1973 Swedish Grand Prix, but could not start the race because his sponsorship money did not arrive. In 1974 he tried four times to qualify for Williams, but was only successful in South Africa and Sweden. In South Africa, the clutch on Belsø's FW failed on the first lap of the race. In Sweden, he finished his only complete Grand Prix, in eighth place.

Racing record

Complete Formula One results


1973 Frank Williams Racing Cars Iso-Marlboro IR Cosworth V8 ARG BRA RSA ESP BEL MON SWE
1974 Frank Williams Racing Cars Iso-Marlboro FW Cosworth V8 ARG BRA RSA
Source: [3]

‡ Belsø took part in practice only. The car was driven in the race by Howden Ganley. [3]

Complete British Saloon Car Championship results

(key) (Races in bold indicate pole position; races in italics indicate fastest lap.)

1969 Tom Belsø Ford Escort TC C BRH SIL SNE THR SIL
1970 British Vita Racing Ford Escort TC C BRH SNE THR SIL CRY SIL SIL CRO BRH OUL BRH BRH
Source: [4]

Personal life

In 1977 he founded Belso Cereals, a manufacturing company based in Peterborough. [2]

On 12 January 2020 Belsø died from stomach cancer; [1] [5] he was 77 years old.

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  1. 1 2 "Tom Belso". Retrieved 31 March 2020.
  2. 1 2 "Tom Belso". Motor Sport magazine database. 12 June 2017. Retrieved 29 March 2018.
  3. 1 2 Small, Steve (1994). The Guinness Complete Grand Prix Who's Who. Guinness. p. 55. ISBN   0851127029.
  4. de Jong, Frank. "British Saloon Car Championship". History of Touring Car Racing 1952-1993. Retrieved 29 September 2022.
  5. Pye, Marcus (13 January 2019). "Obituary: Denmark's first F1 driver Tom Belso 1942-2020". Autosport . Retrieved 13 January 2019.