French GP 1966
JULY 3, 1966
French GP, 1966
After visits to Rouen in 1964 and Clermont-Ferrand in 1965, the French GP returned to Reims in 1966. A fortnight earlier at Le Mans John Surtees had finally lost his temper with the politics at Ferrari and had walked out. He appeared at Reims at the wheel of a Cooper-Maserati alongside Jochen Rindt and McLaren's Chris Amon (who had moved to Cooper for the weekend after Ritchie Ginther left the team and Bruce McLaren was trying to sort out the problems with his Ford engines). Ferrari promoted British engineer-driver Mike Parkes to the F1 team.
In qualifying Jim Clark hit a bird and suffered sufficient injury to his eye to pull out of the meeting, Lotus putting Pedro Rodriguez in as his replacement. Peter Arundell continued with the frustrating Lotus-BRM 43.
As a result Lorenzo Bandini was fastest in his Ferrari with Surtees in the middle of the front row and his Ferrari replacement Parkes on his outside. Jack Brabham and Rindt shared the second row while the third row featured Jo Siffert (Rob Walker Cooper), Amon and Graham Hill in the BRM (he practiced with the H16 but raced on old V8). With Jackie Stewart out of action as a result of his crash at Spa BRM decided to run only one car.
At the start Surtees got off the line quickly but his fuel pump failed and so Bandini took the lead with Brabham and Parkes giving chase. They were followed by the Cooper-Maseratis of Amon, Rindt and Siffert. As Bandini built up his lead over Brabham and Parkes, Denny Hulme made good progress through the field (having a Repco-engined car for the first time) and moved up to fourth. On lap 32 Bandini's Ferrari suffered a throttle cable failure. Brabham took the lead and went on to win his first victory with the Repco engine. Parkes came home second on his F1 debut, one of the best debut results in Grand Prix history, and Hulme finished third.
|1||12||Jack Brabham||Brabham-Repco BT19||48||1h48m31.300s||4|
|2||22||Mike Parkes||Ferrari 312||48||1h48m40.800s||3|
|3||14||Denny Hulme||Brabham-Repco BT20||46||9|
|4||6||Jochen Rindt||Cooper-Maserati T81||46||5|
|5||26||Dan Gurney||Eagle-Climax T1G||45||14|
|6||44||John Taylor||Brabham-BRM BT11||45||15|
|7||36||Bob Anderson||Brabham-Climax BT11||44||12|
|8||8||Chris Amon||Cooper-Maserati T81||44||7|
|nc||42||Guy Ligier||Cooper-Maserati T81||42||11|
|r||2||Pedro Rodriguez||Lotus-Climax 33||40||Mechanical||13|
|nc||20||Lorenzo Bandini||Ferrari 312||37||1|
|nc||30||Jo Bonnier||Brabham-Climax BT22||32||17|
|r||16||Graham Hill||BRM P261||13||Engine||8|
|r||38||Jo Siffert||Cooper-Maserati T81||10||Overheating||6|
|r||32||Mike Spence||Lotus-BRM 25||8||Clutch||10|
|r||10||John Surtees||Cooper-Maserati T81||5||Overheating||2|
|r||4||Peter Arundell||Lotus-BRM 43||3||Gearbox||16|
|ns||2||Jim Clark||Lotus-Climax 33||Hit By Bird||18|