British GP 1968
JULY 20, 1968
British GP, 1968
The dreadful 1968 season had seen four Formula 1 drivers killed between April and July in a variety of racing machinery. British fans has lost both Jim Clark and Mike Spence but Graham Hill arrived at Brands Hatch with a big lead in the World Championship and with seven other British drivers in the 20-car field there was plenty for the fans to cheer.
The only major change from the miserable French GP (where Honda driver Jo Schlesser had been killed) was the arrival in the Cooper-BRM team of Robin Widdows.
The cars had sprouted increasingly dramatic rear wings in an effort to get as much downforce as possible.
Qualifying showed that Team Lotus was dominant with Hill fastest by half a second and Jack Oliver alongside him. Chris Amon completed the front row in his Ferrari. On the second row Jo Siffert (Rob Walker Lotus) lined up alongside Jochen Rindt's Brabham while the third row featured Dan Gurney (back in action after missing several races in his Eagle-Weslake because of engine problems), Jack Stewart in Ken Tyrrell's Matra-Ford and Jack Brabham's Brabham.
There was light rain at the start (for the third consecutive race) and Oliver took the lead from Hill and Siffert. The leading Lotus was trailing smoke and on the fourth lap Oliver was overtaken by Hill. Despite the smoke trail Oliver remained second. On the 27th lap. however, Hill went out with a rear suspension failure and so Oliver went back into the lead. behind him Siffert fought for second place with Amon but gradually the Lotus driver moved away.
On lap 44 Oliver came to a halt with a transmission failure and so Siffert inherited the lead and went on to win Rob Walker's first victory in seven years. The Ferraris of Amon and Ickx came home second and third.
|1||22||Jo Siffert||Lotus-Cosworth 49B||80||2h01m20.300s||4|
|2||5||Chris Amon||Ferrari 312||80||2h01m24.700s||3|
|3||6||Jacky Ickx||Ferrari 312||79||12|
|4||1||Denny Hulme||McLaren-Cosworth M7A||79||11|
|5||7||John Surtees||Honda RA301||78||9|
|6||14||Jackie Stewart||Matra-Cosworth MS10||78||7|
|7||2||Bruce McLaren||McLaren-Cosworth M7A||77||10|
|8||20||Piers Courage||BRM P126||72||16|
|r||4||Jochen Rindt||Brabham-Repco BT26||55||Fuel System||5|
|r||10||Pedro Rodriguez||BRM P133||52||Mechanical||13|
|nc||19||Silvio Moser||Brabham-Repco BT20||52||19|
|r||9||Jackie Oliver||Lotus-Cosworth 49B||43||Transmission||2|
|r||16||Robin Widdows||Cooper-BRM T86||34||Ignition||18|
|r||15||Vic Elford||Cooper-BRM T86B||26||Engine||17|
|r||8||Graham Hill||Lotus-Cosworth 49B||26||Mechanical||1|
|r||18||Jean-Pierre Beltoise||Matra MS11||11||Engine||14|
|r||11||Richard Attwood||BRM P126||10||Radiator||15|
|r||24||Dan Gurney||Eagle-Weslake T1G||8||Fuel Pump||6|
|r||23||Jo Bonnier||McLaren-BRM M5A||6||Engine||20|
|r||3||Jack Brabham||Brabham-Repco BT26||0||Engine||8|