GRAND PRIX RESULTS: GERMAN GP, 1990
July 29, 1990
45 Laps, 6.802 km
At the German GP there was some confusion over the future of Jean Alesi as the young Frenchman had signed for both Ferrari and Williams for 1991, while still under contract to Tyrrell! Elsewhere in the paddock engine supplier Subaru had withdrawn from the Coloni team and Cosworth engines had been acquired but it seemed to make little difference, Bertrand Gachot still failed to pre-qualify.
The system of pre-qualifying was developed in response to the increasing number of teams competing in Formula 1. It was decided that 30 cars were the maximum safe limit to compete for 26 grid places. The cars which had to pre-qualify were decided at the beginning and the midpoint of each season. The 26 cars which had achieved the best results in the previous two-half seasons automatically entered official qualifying for the race. All the other cars had to pre-qualify for the four other slots available for official qualifying. Those that failed to pre-qualify just went home.
In the actual qualifying it was a familiar story at the front with Ayrton Senna ahead of Gerhard Berger, the two McLarens clear of the two Ferraris (Alain Prost ahead of Nigel Mansell) and the two Williams-Renaults (Riccardo Patrese outqualifying Thierry Boutsen). Nelson Piquet (Benetton) shared the fourth row with Alesi's Tyrrell while the top 10 was completed by Sandro Nannini (Benetton) and Ivan Capelli (Leyton House).
At the back of the grid, there had been a nasty incident when Stefano Modena's Brabham's clutch failed. Michele Alboreto jinked his Arrows to the right to avoid the car and behind him David Brabham (in the Brabham) did the same. The only problem with this was that Brabham moved straight into the path of Emanuele Pirro's Dallara. The two cars touched and Pirro's rear wheel was torn off and hurled at head-height across the track. It hit the pit wall just before Pirro himself and bounced back into Philippe Alliot's path. Pirro had received a nasty bang on the head caused by whiplash as he hit the wall. Alliot, trying to find a way out of the melee, had his seat-belts undone by the marshals. He was then push-started and sent on his way - later to be black-flagged for receiving a push-start and sent back to the pits.
There were yellow flags in the early laps as all this was being cleared up, warning the drivers to keep at a steady pace and not to overtake until the all-clear. Senna and Berger ran together, shadowed by Prost and Mansell and Patrese. Boutsen had a gear selection problem and dropped to 10th.
Three laps later as the pits were getting ready for tyre stops Mansell went wide at the Ostkurve, bouncing over the kerbs and going across the grass. He trailed into the pits to retire.
When Senna pitted Nannini had just got ahead of Patrese and as Ayrton accelerated out of the pits, Sandro and Riccardo were going down to the first corner. Nannini got there first and took the lead, driving away from the McLaren. Patrese was soon in the pits to change his tyres while Piquet was running third keeping Berger behind him until the Brazilian suffered an engine failure. In the closing laps Nannini began to struggle as his tyres wore out and with 12 laps to go Senna closed in and went ahead. Nannini followed Senna to the finish line with Berger third, Prost fourth, Patrese fifth and Boutsen sixth.
|7||16||Ivan Capelli||Leyton House-Judd||44||10|
|11r||4||Jean Alesi||Tyrrell-Cosworth||40||Cv Joint||8|
|r||29||Eric Bernard||Lola-Lamborghini||35||Fuel Pressure||12|
|r||2||Nigel Mansell||Ferrari||15||Undertray Damage||4|
|r||15||Mauricio Gugelmin||Leyton House-Judd||12||Dropped Valve||14|
|dq||26||Philippe Alliot||Ligier-Cosworth||12||Push Start After Accident||24|
|nq||22||Andrea de Cesaris||Dallara-Cosworth||30|
German GP, Hockenheim, July 29, 1990, Round: 9, Race Number: 493
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