Vale John Pizarro

Australian Motorsport Hall of Fame inductee John Pizarro has died, aged 78.

John was 15-time Australian Karting Champion, raced in Karts against Ayrton Senna, and was an inspiration to young karters and to the broader community in his hometown of Parkes, NSW.

He was awarded the Order of Australia Medal in 2019 in recognition of his service to karting and to his community.

John had been a two term president of Rotary and a recipient of Rotary’s Paul Harris Fellowship, a recognition of taking the organisation’s motto of ‘service above self’ to high personal levels.

John won his first National Karting championship in 1968 and became the first Australian to hold an International Super Licence.

He was part of the DAP works team alongside Ayrton Senna and Terry Fullerton – the driver regarded by many as the greatest karter ever.

John described his time with DAP, and with his teammates, as a true baptism of fire.

At the end of his competitive career, John served Karting Australia as a track advisor and inspector.

He designed and built the popular Sprinter brand of karts and helped many youngsters to learn their karting craft.

John had battled Parkinson’s disease for more than two decades.

The Australian Motorsport Hall of Fame offers its condolences to John’s wife Marilyn, daughters Kristine, Lisa, Annette and Narelle and his wider family and friends.