In his Motor Racing Book Brabham says: "Moss is the greatest driver of all time,...better than Fangio." He has not changed his opinion. In identical unbreakable cars he reckoned Stirling would have "that little edge." But Brabham has obviously gained a healthier respect for his own gifts, for he does not now feel obliged to compare his own style unfavorably with Moss's.
In terms of winning the world championship it is patently clear by now that Moss could profit from Brabham's example.
Some people seem to believe that the 1960 Cooper is supernaturally reliable, forgetting that both Brabham and his partner-prot�g�, 22-year-old Bruce McLaren of New Zealand, who is second in the championship standings, preserve and extend the Cooper's inherent sturdiness.
One racing man who wants proof of Brabham's versatility is Rob Walker, owner of Moss's Lotus-Climax racer and a member of the family that gave its name to Johnnie Walker Scotch.
"Jack has improved enormously," Walker says. (Everybody agrees that Jack has improved enormously.) "He was jolly good in 1959 but not, I think', in the world-champion class. Good as he is now, I wonder what Jack could do in another car. He has raced in virtually nothing but Coopers, you know."
The English driver Roy Salvadori brings the whole Brabham-Moss controversy into sharp focus when he says: "If I suddenly came into a great deal of money and got myself a stable of Grand Prix cars and had my choice of drivers, my first choice would be Mr. Brabham. Stirling would be quicker around a given circuit, but for value over a full Grand Prix season, I prefer Jack."
Americans will be able to make their own comparisons when Brabham and Moss race November 20 in the Grand Prix of the United States, at Riverside, Calif. The best cars will be there: British Lotuses and BRMs, whose engines were switched from front to rear this season, following the Cooper's lead, and the doughty Coopers; but not Italy's front-engined Ferraris (Builder Enzo Ferrari is sulking over not having received a "proper" invitation). So will the top drivers, including (if he can get a ride) California's Phil Hill. Hill's Ferrari victory this summer at Monza, Italy, although cheapened by a boycott by the British works teams, was still the first by an American in a Grand Prix since 1921. Riverside's fast-moving home-town boy, Dan Gurney, will also be on hand.
As the last race in the last of seven seasons for the present 2�-liter Formula I (1�-liter engines come in next year), Riverside will mark a turning point in racing history.
It will also be the last performance by Brabham on American soil this fall. Earlier this month he was second to Moss in a free-formula race at Watkins Glen. Then came two sports car scrambles on the West Coast.
It was before the smallest audience that Brabham made his biggest U.S. hit. This was at Indianapolis, which has been a postwar graveyard for European cars. "I just thought I'd like to have a go at it to see what it's like," said Brabham.