Australian GP 1988
NOVEMBER 13, 1988
Australian GP, 1988
The last race of the turbocharged era in Formula 1. There was some controversy in the run-up to the Australian GP with McLaren boss Ron Dennis demanding an apology from the FISA President Jean-Marie Balestre over suggestions that the team had not supplied identical machinery to Ayrton Senna and Alain Prost. aside from this it was a relaxed affair as the World Championship was settled in Senna's favor and the Brazilian was keen to finish the year with a 15th McLaren victory in 16 races. Ayrton took pole as usual with Prost second and Nigel Mansell third in his last race for Williams before moving to Ferrari. His future Ferrari team mate Gerhard Berger was fourth with Nelson Piquet fifth and Riccardo Patrese sixth in his record-breaking 176th Grand Prix start. The top 10 was rounded off by Derek Warwick (Arrows-Megatron), Sandro Nannini (Benetton), Ivan Capelli (March) and Thierry Boutsen (Benetton). Alex Caffi did an impressive job in his Dallara, qualifying 11th ahead of Michele Alboreto in the second Ferrari.
Senna made a poor start and Prost went into the lead. Mansell was right with Senna as they went into the first corner but had to give way and dropped behind Berger and Piquet. Further back Alboreto and Caffi collided.
On the third lap Berger overtook Senna and went after Prost. He shadowed the Frenchman until lap 14 when he took the lead and he seemed to be on his way to victory until he collided with Rene Arnoux's Ligier while trying to lap the Frenchman. That put Prost back into the lead and he duly led all the way to the flag with Senna over half a minute behind him. Piquet was third with Patrese fourth, Boutsen fifth and Capelli sixth.
McLaren thus finished the year with 15 victories in 16 races, a record which is going to be very hard to better.
|8r||22||Andrea de Cesaris||Rial-Cosworth||77||Out Of Fuel||15|
|9r||26||Stefan Johansson||Ligier-Judd||76||Out Of Fuel||22|
|10r||30||Philippe Alliot||Lola-Cosworth||75||Out Of Fuel||24|
|r||9||Piercarlo Ghinzani||Zakspeed||69||Fuel Pump||26|
|r||33||Stefano Modena||EuroBrun-Cosworth||63||Half Shaft||20|
|r||3||Jonathan Palmer||Tyrrell-Cosworth||16||Crown Wheel & Pinion||17|
|r||32||Oscar Larrauri||EuroBrun-Cosworth||12||Half Shaft/accident||25|
|npq||21||Nicola Larini||Osella-Alfa Romeo||31|