Slim Borgudd, whose real name is Karl Edward Tommy Borgudd, is a Swedish former racing driver who recorded ten starts in the Formula 1 World Championship in 1981 and 1982, driving for ATS and Tyrrell.
Prior his F1 debut, Borgudd was Swedish F3 champion in 1979. Later in a career, he was successful in other racing disciplines, taking championship titles in touring car and truck racing.
Karl Edward Tommy 'Slim' Borgudd
Musician turned into racing driver
Born in November 1946 in Borgholm, Slim Borgudd first had a music career, playing drums in some bands. He was also connected with the most popular Swedish group Abba. That connection was later revived when Abba was sponsoring his Formula 1 car.
Borgudd's racing career started in the mid-1960s with a Lotus Formula Ford car. He gained first notable success in 1972, winning some sports car racing club events and participating in the Swedish Touring Car Championship in a Hillman Imp and Volvo 122. He finished second in the touring car championship in 1972 and third in 1975.
Swedish Formula 3 champion in 1979
In the single-seaters, he races in the Formula Ford and then moved to Formula 3 in 1976. In 1978, he formed his own team Strike Ten Racing to compete with Ralt-Toyota both in Swedish and European Formula 3. He was Swedish F3 champion in 1979 and finished third in Europe, behind Alain Prost and Michael Bleekemolen.
He failed to make progress to Formula 2 in 1980, occasionally raced in Formula 3 event under the banner of Abba Racing Team.
Slim Borgudd at 1981 British Grand Prix, where he scored one championship point
Formula One debut in 1981
In 1981, at the age 34, Borgudd made a debut in the Formula One World Championship. His first race with German Team ATS was San Marino Grand Prix in May, where he was driving the #10 ATS D4-Cosworth. He finished in 13th place, three laps behind race winner Nelson Piquet (Brabham). Borgudd's car had Abba logo at sidepods.
After a successful debut, Borgudd failed to qualify for four Grand Prix events and then scored the best result in a career. He finished sixth in the British Grand Prix at Silverstone, taking one championship point. Until the end of the season, he took 10th place at Dutch Grand Prix, retired in four races and failed to qualify for Caesars Palace Grand Prix.
Three starts with Team Tyrell
For the 1982 Formula 1 season, Ken Tyrrell hired Borgudd to drive the #4 Tyrrell 011-Cosworth alongside Michele Alboreto in the #3 car. Borgudd finished 16th in South Africa, 7th in Brasil and 10thin the US Grand Prix West.
Those results weren't satisfying for Tyrrell and sponsorship money ran out, so Borgudd was replaced by Brian Henton from the fourth round. It was the end of his F1 career.
Slim Borgudd in 1982 as Tyrrell driver
Occasional racing in a post-F1 career
In the following years, Borgudd raced occasionally. In 1984, he joined Trivellato Racing in F3 races, including Macau Grand Prix, where he finished sixth. He returned to Macau in 1985, finishing 11th with Chantaler Avia Ralt-Volkswagen.
In 1985, Borgudd recorded few starts in the Formula 3000, driving rebuilt F1 car Arrows A6-Cosworth for Roger Cowman Racing. In 1987, Borgudd appeared at Circuit de la Sarthe to race at 24 hours of Le Mans, but he failed to qualify for the race. He was sharing the #171 Tiga GC286-Volvo with Andrew Ratcliffe and Tryggve Gronvall.
Successful in truck racing
In 1986, Borgudd started a career in truck racing and he was pretty successful. In 1986 and 1987, he was Division 2 and Division 3 champion in the European Truck Racing Cup, driving a Volvo White. In the following years, his best finish was third place in Class B in 1992.
In that period, Borgudd occasionally appeared in some car racing competitions, such were Camaro Cup Sweden, Wellington 500 race in New Zealand or British Touring Car Championship with Andy Rouse's Ford Sierra RS500 Cosworth.
1994 Nordic Touring Car Champion with Mazda
In 1993, Borgudd joined Mazda factory team to drive a Mazda Xedos 6 at FIA World Touring Cup at Monza but without notable results. The initial plan was to drive Mazda in the British Touring Car Championship but it failed.
Borgudd entered the Nordic Touring Car Championship instead, driving a Mazda Xedos 6 for Team Magic and winning the championship title in 1994.
Slim Borgudd in 1995
European truck racing champion in 1995
Also in 1994, Borgudd returned to truck racing, fighting for the title in the FIA European Truck Racing Cup against Steve Parrish. Borgudd lost a title in 1994 but became European champion in 1995, driving a Mercedes-Benz 1834-S.
He stayed in the competition for two more seasons, continuing to drive for Mercedes. He was fifth in 1996 and fourth in 1997. After that, he announced a retirement from racing. During the 2000s, he returned few times to races at the amateur level, participating in Radical Sweden or Radical European Masters. His last appearance was as a guest driver in the 2010 VW Scirocco R Cup.