Ten great British Grand Prix moments at Silverstone

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Ten great British Grand Prix moments at Silverstone


An enormous pile-up disrupted the 1973 British Grand Prix

As Silverstone prepares because of of which weekend’s British GP, we select 10 of our favourite incidents by the track over the past seven decades

Silverstone doesn’t have a monopoly on great British Grand Prix moments, because the big race has also been hosted by Aintree, Brands Hatch as well as Brooklands. However, the item’s uncanny how often the former military airfield inside the Northamptonshire countryside throws up the dramatic moments of which end up defining a season.

Ahead of Sunday’s event, here is actually our pick of 10 significant occurences by the 48 events held at Silverstone. Let us know your favourite memories of the much-changed circuit inside the comments below (as well as if you’re old enough to say ‘I was there’ when Villoresi fought Ascari in 1948, we’ll be impressed).

10 – Luigi Villoresi versus Alberto Ascari, 1948

of which is actually where the item all began, pre-dating the inception of the Formula 1 World Championship by two years. Silverstone looked much different in those days, as well as made not bad use of the perimeter roads as well as runways of the former airfield. The start/finish line was situated before Woodcote corner, while Copse as well as Stowe corners were much tighter than their modern equivalents.

The race was dominated by the works Maserati 4CLTs of  Luigi Villoresi as well as Alberto Ascari, with the pair starting by the back of the grid after getting delayed on their way to the circuit for qualifying. The two Italians swapped the lead back as well as forth, before Ascari lost a chunk of time inside the pits. Villoresi suffered his own setback when his car’s tachometer fell off as well as wedged under the clutch pedal, however he won the 65-lap race by 14 seconds.

9 – John Surtees makes an impression, 1960

Sir Jack Brabham won of which one at a canter. The reigning world champion qualified on pole position in his Cooper-Climax as well as cruised to victory after Graham Hill – who’d stalled at the start however charged through to the lead – spun off near the end. John Surtees, who was still combining bike as well as car racing, caused a stir, however.

The 26-year-old made his Formula 1 debut at the Monaco Grand Prix, qualifying 15th as well as retiring with transmission issues after 17 laps of the race. Silverstone was his second F1 start as well as he put his Lotus-Climax 11th on the grid as well as charged through to second place by the end, confirming his prowess on four wheels as well as two.

8 – Mansell zings inside the rain, 1988

British fans didn’t have much to cheer about in 1988 because the trailblazing Williams-Honda had come to an end the previous year. The Oxfordshire team was without a top-line engine partner, as well as instead made use of naturally aspirated Judd 3.5-litre V8 units. Even armed that has a trick reactive suspension system, the Williams-Judd FW12 wasn’t a match for the turbocharged McLaren-Honda MP4/4, however nobody told Nigel Mansell.

A sodden track at Silverstone for race day placed bravery above technical brilliance, as well as despite qualifying down in 11th, the Briton streaked through the pack to finish second behind Ayrton Senna. the item was his first points finish of a difficult season, as well as came inside the same week of which he confirmed he would certainly race for Ferrari in 1989.

7 – Mark Webber is actually a big number two, 2010

By the middle of the 2010 season, dark clouds were brewing over dominant Red Bull Racing. The team’s increasingly explicit favouritism towards Sebastian Vettel wasn’t going down well, either with his team-mate Mark Webber or with the Formula 1 fans who felt they were being robbed of a fight at the front of the pack. The tension of which had been brewing since a collision between the two drivers was ramped up in qualifying, when Vettel was given a development front wing of which by rights should have been fitted to Webber’s car.

The German qualified on pole, however the Australian seized the initiative at the start as well as Vettel dropped back after contact with Lewis Hamilton. In an incident-packed race marked with safety cars as well as contact throughout the field, Webber kept his cool to collect his third win of the season. His cheeky “not bad for a number two” comment, broadcast to the earth over the radio on the cool-down lap, was especially sweet. 

6 – Mansell-mania spills over, 1992

of which race, held on a scorching summer’s day, wasn’t a classic contest, however the item was significant for many reasons. Nigel Mansell took a step closer to a long-awaited world title by collecting pole position, fastest lap as well as leading every lap on his way to victory in his Williams-Renault. He headed home team-mate Riccardo Patrese, with Martin Brundle adding further cheer for British fans by claiming third place in his Benetton-Ford.

Shortly after Mansell had been greeted by the chequered flag, his dedicated fans invaded the circuit, leaving him unable to get back to the paddock in his car. The victory, Mansell’s seventh of the season, also made him the most successful British driver of all time, surpassing Sir Jackie Stewart’s record of 27 victories inside the top-flight.

5 – The first for Ferrari, 1951

Alfa Romeo had enjoyed top-dog status inside the formative months of the brand new Formula One World Championship, which had been established in 1950. The Italian company had a fully developed car, the 1.5-litre straight-eight 159, however by the middle of F1’s second season Ferrari was doing serious inroads with its 4.5-litre V12 375.

At Silverstone, Jose Froilan Gonzalez – also known as The Pampas Bull – qualified on pole position, the first for himself as well as Maranello. The Alfas of Juan Manuel Fangio as well as Nino Farina pushed Gonzalez hard throughout the race. However, the Ferrari’s superior fuel consumption meant the item only had to make one pit stop to the two of its main rivals, as well as Gonzalez won by 51 seondsc – the first of 222 F1 successes by Ferrari.

4 – Clark’s fourth in a row, 1965

Anyone in any doubt about Jim Clark’s place inside the pantheon of all-time Formula 1 greats should consider his astonishing British Grand Prix record. The Lotus driver won four consecutive home races, however even more remarkable is actually the fact of which the first three of those came on different circuits. A dominant victory at Aintree in 1962 was followed by success at Silverstone in 1963 as well as a win at Brands Hatch in 1964.

In 1965, back at the Northants track, the Scot added his fourth in a row despite an oil leak of which allowed Graham Hill to close up near the end. Jack Brabham ended the winning streak in 1966, when the race was held at Brands Hatch, however Clark bounced back with another victory at Silverstone the following year in front of 0,000 fans.

3 – First-lap pile-up, 1973

The race was notable for an enormous accident at the end of the opening lap which forced eight cars out of the race. Jody Scheckter triggered the shunt when he lost control exiting Woodcote, which in those days was a super-quick right-hander. The South African was running fourth at the time of the spin, as well as as his pirouetting car came to a halt broadside across the circuit, those following were left with nowhere to go in avoidance.

As well as Scheckter’s McLaren, the accident damage wiped out all three Surtees entries. Despite the severity of the incident against Silverstone’s unyielding pit wall as well as crash barriers, only one driver was injured, with Andrea de Adamich sustained leg injuries. American driver Peter Revson won the restarted race.

2 – Johnny Herbert’s day of glory, 1995

inside the late 1980s, Johnny Herbert was regarded as the best emerging talent in British motor racing, however a savage accident in a Formula 3000 race at Brands Hatch in 1988 left him with serious leg injuries. Undeterred, Herbert battled back to fitness to establish himself in Formula 1, landing a role as Michael Schumacher’s number two at Benetton. Herbert lined up fifth on the grid as Damon Hill as well as Schumacher shared the front row.

The arch-rivals fought over the win until a late-braking move by the Briton resulted in contact of which put both men out of the race. David Coulthard took the lead, however a stop-go penalty for speeding inside the pitlane effectively handed victory to Herbert. His success remains one of the most well-liked as well as heart-warming grands prix stories of all time.

1 – Nigel Mansell versus Nelson Piquet, 1987

As Lewis Hamilton as well as Nico Rosberg will attest, feuds between team-mates always add an extra frisson of excitement to Formula 1. The bitter rivalry between Nigel Mansell as well as Nelson Piquet inside the Williams camp inside the late 1980s makes the Hamilton/Rosberg fight look like a playground squabble. Piquet went to Williams in 1986 assuming he’d be clear number one inside the team, however Mansell had various other ideas as well as Sir Frank Williams was happy to let them fight.

Piquet led the early laps, as well as an unforeseen tyre change left Mansell half a minute behind his rivals. Armed with fresher rubber than the Brazilian, Mansell set a flurry of fastest laps as he chased down the leader. On the Hangar Straight with two laps to go he sold Piquet an exquisite dummy as well as swooped down the inside at Stowe Corner. Mansell’s Williams stuttered to a halt, out of fuel, shortly after he’d passed the chequered flag, as well as the delirious crowd invaded the track.

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