As the 1961 season drew to a close, Ferrari's Wolfgang von Trips was leading team mate Phil Hill and only needed a podium to claim the crown. In the end, death betrayed the German – with von Trips dead in the circuit’s medical unit and Sir Stirling Moss eleven points adrift; Hill became the first American World Champion with one race to spare.
------ This post was originally published on Too Much Racing in August of last year, as part of the VivaF1 blogger swap shop. The Grand Débutante reappears here today, as it marks the 50th anniversary of Giancarlo Baghetti's great achievement. ------ In terms of startling Grand Prix débuts, few will ever rank as highly as … Continue reading “Giancarlo Baghetti: The Grand Débutante”
It's hard to imagine in today's professional era but until the eighties it was common practice in minor Formula One countries for local drivers to bring some local colour to the grid, joining the regulars for a one-off in their privately entered machines. One such privateer was John Love.
Before the 1965 French Grand Prix, Lotus driver Jim Clark was quietly confident. After three rounds, the legendary Scot had a three-point advantage over BRM's Graham Hill when they arrived at Clermont-Ferrand. With skill and smoothness a premium at the French circuit, Clark possessed an advantage that often superseded the superb engineering of his nimble Lotus 33. In the race, he would made it look so easy.