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Old 18 Feb 2006, 00:04 (Ref:1525453)   #1
krt917
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krt917 should be qualifying in the top 5 on the gridkrt917 should be qualifying in the top 5 on the grid
The Greatest Grands Prix

MotorSport have published a list, as voted by their readership, of the 20 Greatest Grands Prix of the first 100 years of Grand Prix racing. Such a list will depend on what people feel consitutes great. Does a virtuoso perfromance by an individual constitue a great race? Or do you prefer a battle which involves many potential winners? It's just the sort of list that creates debate, so I thought I'd post it here and see what people think:

1. 1957 German GP
2. 1979 French GP
3. 1961 Monaco GP
4. 1967 Italian GP
5. 1971 Italoan GP
6. 1935 German GP
7. 1953 French GP
8. 1993 European GP
9. 1982 Monaco GP
10. 1914 French GP
11. 1986 Australian GP
12. 1990 Mexican GP
13. 1981 Spanish GP
14. 1970 Monaco GP
15. 1969 Italian GP
16. 2005 Japanese GP
17. 1968 German GP
18. 2003 British GP
19. 1976 US GP West
20. 1987 British GP

Fairly predictable choices, though I was surprised to see '76 US GP as I reckon there are quite a few candidates that could usurp it. What do people think of the list and, more importantly, which races would you consider adding?
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Old 18 Feb 2006, 10:25 (Ref:1525561)   #2
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A few to ponder!

1970 Belgian GP (Spa-Francorchamps) - Rodriguez & BRM at their finest!

1969 British GP (Silverstone) - Stewart & Rindt going hammer & tongs plus the 4 wheel drive cars acting as mobile chicanes!

1977 French GP (Dijon) - Andretti's dogged pursuit of Watson paying off on the very last lap!

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Old 19 Feb 2006, 08:33 (Ref:1526108)   #3
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I'm also a little surprised at the 1976 US GP being in the list. The fact that it was the first GP at Long Beach doesn't make it great. In fact, I would have thought that John Watson's drive there in 1983, or at Detroit in 1982, made them both more meritorious of that description. In both races, on tight street circuits he drove (from 17th on the grid in 1982, and 22nd in 1983) through the field to score a great victory.

I always thought that the Nurburgring in 1962, when Graham Hill held off Gurney and Surtees in the wet, to win, was a bit special, too.
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Old 19 Feb 2006, 10:59 (Ref:1526174)   #4
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How about the 1933 Monaco GP?- a race-long duel between Nuvolari and Varzi, two of the greatest drivers of the day. This race hardly ever gets mentioned because racing in those days didn't get the exposure it does now.
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Old 19 Feb 2006, 11:46 (Ref:1526204)   #5
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1965 Belgie GP Jim Clark best performance
1967 Italy GP Real motorsport
1961 Monaco GP Driver's technick beat machine performance
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Old 19 Feb 2006, 13:13 (Ref:1526252)   #6
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What about the 79 French GP with Arnoux and Villeneuve wheel to wheel for the last few lapos and Renault winnign there first race aswell wasn't it?
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Old 19 Feb 2006, 20:57 (Ref:1526509)   #7
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That's certainly a popular one, chunder, hence its 2nd place in the MotorSport list. I'm pretty sure most of the race was pretty ordinary, but those last three laps or so stick in people's minds as one of the iconic GP battles.

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Originally Posted by D-Type
How about the 1933 Monaco GP?- a race-long duel between Nuvolari and Varzi, two of the greatest drivers of the day. This race hardly ever gets mentioned because racing in those days didn't get the exposure it does now.
D-Type, you must be psychic! I emailed three GPs to MotorSport for the list, and that was my number two. It was one of the first great duels and it lasted the entire race. The fact that they were each driving the defining GP cars of the pre-Silver Arrows period (Alfa and Bugatti) should only add to its reputation.

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Originally Posted by Steve Wilkinson
1969 British GP (Silverstone) - Stewart & Rindt going hammer & tongs plus the 4 wheel drive cars acting as mobile chicanes!

Good call. I suspect that it might have made the list had the fight lasted to the very end. If it had, my money would have been on Stewart due to his racecraft and ability to plan (winning the '69 Italian GP was a good example), but of course we'll never know.
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Old 20 Feb 2006, 12:19 (Ref:1527006)   #8
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Two more GREAT GPs

1970 German GP - Hockenheimring. The first F1 GP at this circuit. A massive duel which started with Amon, Siffert, Regazzoni, Ickx and Rindt was slowly whittled down to just Ickx and Rindt. So it was Lotus versus Ferrari, Italy versus Germany and the crowd were on the edge of their seats. As the pair started the final lap Rindt ran wide at turn one. Ickx suddenly found himself in the lead with Rindt sat just behind waiting for his moment. It came under braking for the right hander into the stadium complex. With Rindt in the lead the partisan crowd went mental!

1982 Austrian GP - Osterreichring. The proper circuit! One week after the horrendous crash which saw Pironi's F1 career come to an end & Tambay win an emotional race, the circus moved to Austria. Tambay fell foul early on with a puncture. His drive back through the field to take a brilliant fourth having been dead last after his pit stop on lap two. Overshadowing all this was the drive of Keke Rosberg who chased down Elio de Angelis who inherited the lead when the second Renault expired. The last lap was nail-bitingly close with de Angelis winning by 0.125 seconds!
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Old 20 Feb 2006, 12:39 (Ref:1527032)   #9
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Originally Posted by chunder
What about the 79 French GP with Arnoux and Villeneuve wheel to wheel for the last few lapos and Renault winnign there first race aswell wasn't it?
This race is also my favourite race.
Both Arnoux and Villeneuve were fare and aggressive.

Different from Senna vs Prost.
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Old 21 Feb 2006, 06:58 (Ref:1527695)   #10
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Originally Posted by Steve Wilkinson
So it was Lotus versus Ferrari, Italy versus Germany and the crowd were on the edge of their seats.
Were't Lotuses made in England?

I hadn't heard of the last lap incident you describe. Rindt was 0.9 seconds ahead at the end of lap 49 and 0.7 ahead at the end of the race. If Ickx did take the lead during the 50th lap he must have lost a lot of time somewhere. most reports said that Rindt had a lot in hand throughout the race and could overtake the Ferrari whenever he wished.

Of course, we don't really know the truth because Denis Jenkinson was watching a Formula 2 race at the place where the Grand Prix should have been.
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Old 21 Feb 2006, 07:47 (Ref:1527740)   #11
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They've got all those I would consider greats up there. Monaco 1982 was fantastic edge of the seat stuff. I know I'm a little biased here because Derek Daly 'nearly' won it. Can you imagine if he had :-) I remember Murray Walker up to Mach 9 towards the end of the race.
That last lap slipstreaming through the Parabolica in 1971 and fan-out to Peter Gethin's photo-finish win was amazing too, you only get that in karting now... but the real essence of Formula 1 at its best was Dijon in 1979. Back then, it was inevitable that two of the wildest drivers ever would lock horns and when they did, Rene Arnoux and Gilles Villeneuve didn't disappoint. This reminds me, its so long since I've seen that race, I gotta get a hold of a tape of it to confirm how fabulous Formula One RACING can actually be.
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Old 21 Feb 2006, 13:15 (Ref:1528046)   #12
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Cool hand Rindt!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Roger Clark
Were't Lotuses made in England?

I hadn't heard of the last lap incident you describe. Rindt was 0.9 seconds ahead at the end of lap 49 and 0.7 ahead at the end of the race. If Ickx did take the lead during the 50th lap he must have lost a lot of time somewhere. most reports said that Rindt had a lot in hand throughout the race and could overtake the Ferrari whenever he wished.

Of course, we don't really know the truth because Denis Jenkinson was watching a Formula 2 race at the place where the Grand Prix should have been.
The Italy versus Germany was in reference to the supporters not the cars!

Rindt did lead across the line but deliberately ran wide at Turn 1 to let Ickx through. He apparently wanted to be second on the run back into the stadium rather than let Ickx slipstream up behind! As you say Rindt had easily the fastest car in a straight line and as he could slice past the Ferrari under braking second place was the best place to be.

Another interesting factoid was to do with the prize money. At that race (possibly all the GPs that year I am not certain) there was prize money at quarter, half and three-quarter distance. Rindt led on all those laps! Chunky was a stickler for grabbing as much dosh as possible!
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Old 21 Feb 2006, 16:24 (Ref:1528156)   #13
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ss_collins should be qualifying in the top 3 on the gridss_collins should be qualifying in the top 3 on the gridss_collins should be qualifying in the top 3 on the gridss_collins should be qualifying in the top 3 on the grid
and the list missed the 57 french GP out - a race that autosport heralded the 'race of the century'.
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Old 21 Feb 2006, 17:49 (Ref:1528201)   #14
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Are you sure ss?

The race did provide us with one of the iconic Grand Prix photographs - Fangio drifting through the Rouen esses in his 250F - but I don't think it was particularly memorable otherwise. Musso and Behra both managed to get ahead of Fangio at the start, but the poleman was ahead by lap 4 and controlled the pace thereafter. Mike Lang ('Grand Prix - Volume 1 1950-1965') recounts that Collins then came through to take second, but had to slow due to gearbox problems, allowing Musso into back passed, which is how they finished. There were quite a number of retirements (7 finishers, only 3 on the lead lap) and it should perhaps be noted that the two drivers probably most capable of taking the fight to Fangio - Moss and Brooks - both had to miss the race for health reasons.

I must confess that my (rather large) short list that I came up with for this vote did not contain the 1957 French GP....
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Old 21 Feb 2006, 18:20 (Ref:1528233)   #15
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ss_collins should be qualifying in the top 3 on the gridss_collins should be qualifying in the top 3 on the gridss_collins should be qualifying in the top 3 on the gridss_collins should be qualifying in the top 3 on the grid
nope I made a boob - meant '53 (must read my own books!) - which is on the list - apparently there is footage of that race - god I#d love to see it
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