We are sad to report the death of comedy writer and comedian Eric Sykes who has passed away after a short illness at the age of 89. Apart from writing and appearing in his own television shows and short films, Sykes also appeared in that favourite movie for enthusiasts of early aerospace: Those Magnificent Men in their Flying Machines (1965) – a fictionalised comedy describing a London-Paris air race during the Edwardian period.
In the film Eric Sykes amusingly plays the put-upon chauffeur and man servant of the cad-like character played by Terry-Thomas, who often has to do his master’s dirty work such as sabotaging other air race entrants. Sykes later reprised the role in Monty Carlo or Bust (1969) about the early days of the Monte Carlo rally.
We can only assume that in this space race era there were no such characters out there during the Ansari X-prize.