Paddy Hopkirk won Monte Carlo in a Mini and got fan mail from the Beatles - Exclusive video
50 years on Paddy Hopkirk remembers letters from Ringo star and celebrity fans - relive the excitement with our video footage.
Hanging on the wall in rally legend Paddy Hopkirk’s downstairs loo, there is a fantastic reminder of the moment he turned the Mini from a simple car into a global icon.
It is a framed telegram and signed photo from the Beatles, which they sent to congratulate him on winning the Monte Carlo Rally, exactly 50 years ago.
“It’s on my cloakroom wall,” laughs Paddy. “It reads ‘It’s nice to be number one isn’t it. Stop. Congratulations. Stop. Thanks for the lift. Stop. Ringo Starr.’
“One of our mechanics had given Ringo a lift in Paris a few days before – that’s why he was saying thank you”.
All four Beatles signed the picture and added the note, “You’re one of us now Paddy!” in recognition of his giant-killing win and rallying number one status.
The Beatles, who were at the height of their global success in January 1964, weren’t the only famous people clamouring to congratulate Paddy.
“I also got one from the Prime Minister,” he recalls, as he reminisces about his famous win. Paddy Hopkirk won Monte Carlo in a Mini and got fan mail from the Beatles - Exclusive video - Mirror Online
Beatles to Paddy Hopkirk after his 1964 Monte Carlo Rally win.