Isle of Man TT press officer Simon Crellin has paid tribute to leading motorcycle journalist John Brown, who died at the weekend aged 77.
JB, as he was known, had a 60-year career reporting for top publications including Motorcycle News and Motorcycle Racing Magazine.
In later years he worked for Mortons Media publications like Classic Racer and was also a correspondent for the Daily Telegraph, Daily and Sunday Mirror. JB also covered Grand Prix racing for the Sun during the Barry Sheene era. He was also a press officer for World Superbike and ran a PR company with clients such as Shell and Donington Park.
JB was along-serving TT reporter. His first races were in 1948, the year that Harold Daniell won the Senior TT on a Norton after Les Graham had seemingly built up an unassailable lead. He attended every year until 2010, when illness prevented him from returning. Grateful tourism chiefs presented him with a bus pass and tankard in 2008 for his 60 years of support for the Island and the event.
Mr Crellin said:
“John was one of the TT’s truly great supporters and during a period when the UK’s national newspapers shied away from the event, his support and coverage in the Daily Mirror stood out and kept interest in the event going.”
“John was a real character in the press office. He had his own desk space, which we reserved every year for him and was always cracking jokes and playing tricks on the press office team.”
“He was hugely knowledgeable about the TT races and the Island and will be sorely missed.”
JB, who had been suffering heart and lung complications, passed away on September 29 at Kettering General Hospital near to his Northamptonshire home. His wife Anne and son Tony were at his bedside.