John Fitch’s 95th Birthday Party

John Fitch’s 95th birthday was celebrated on August 5, 2012 at his home in Connecticut.  Bob Melhado attended the party and has allowed me to use a couple of his pictures.

Many of the most notable people in racing in the northeast USA attended John’s party.  The picture below shows John Fitch surrounded by people with a strong connection to John Fitch and the Lime Rock race track.

Bob Sharp, Oscar Koveleski, Judy Stropus, Skip Barber, Sam Posey, and Gordon MacKenzie Surround John Fitch Sitting on the Chair 

John Fitch’s life has been very full.  He was a war hero, a winning race car driver with the Mercedes-Benz racing team, a renown safety engineer, car designer, and one of the main developers of the Lime Rock race track in Connecticut.  For example, those yellow barriers/barrels near bridge abutments are John Fitch’s invention.  John also developed his own car – the Fitch Phoenix.  There was a birthday cake at the party that had an image of John and the Phoenix.

Birthday Cake With A Likeness of John Fitch and the Fitch Phoenix Car

The Phoenix was on display at the birthday party and Bob Melhado took the following picture of the car.

John Fitch’s Phoenix at the Birthday Party

I saw the Fitch Phoenix at the Lime Rock race track in 2010.  It is an attractive car.

John Fitch’s Phoenix Car at the 2010 Lime Rock Historic Festival

From what I’ve seen John Fitch enjoyed his 95th birthday party and the attendees enjoyed seeing John.  John Fitch is a very remarkable man and there are very few people like him.  Happy birthday John!

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2 Responses to John Fitch’s 95th Birthday Party

  1. John Gray says:

    Finally John Fitch is getting some well deserved recognition for his accomplishments. Thanks Steve for doing your part! I had hoped to see John Fitch at the Corvair convention back in July but he was not well enough for the trip. Ever the gentleman, he made certain his Fitch Phoenix was on display even though he couldn’t be there himself. I hope he recovers and can once again take a spirited drive at Limerock.

    • Hi John,
      Your comment reminds me of the last time that I saw the Fitch Phoenix. Last year I attended the Lime Rock Historic Festival. At the end of the day, I was heading south on the road from Lime Rock on my motorcycle, making pretty good time. As I approach a left turn, the Fitch Phoenix came around the corner coming in the opposite direction, also going quite fast. I did not have time to see who was driving it, but it certainly was a “spirited drive”.

      I remember thinking: “Wow! That was the Fitch Phoenix. You don’t see that every day.”


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