Dutch GP 1973

Dutch GP, 1973

After missing out on a race in 1972 because of safety problems, Zandvoort was back in the World Championship for 1973, the organizers having spent a considerable amount of money to resurface the track and provide run-off areas and crash barriers. A new chicane had been built at the back of the track to slow the cars.

After the huge crash at Silverstone most of the teams were busy repairing their cars, notably Surtees which had had all three cars damaged. Ferrari did not appear because of the poor performance of the 312B/3 and Team MRD also failed to appear, de Adamich being out of action. Williams had a new pay-driver in the second car with local Gijs Van Lennep partnering Howden Ganley.

Qualifying resulted in a blow to Emerson Fittipaldi's World Championship hopes as the Lotus driver crashed heavily on Saturday and suffered serious bruises to his ankles. Ronnie Peterson gave Lotus some consolation with his sixth pole position in nine races but he had the two Tyrrells of Jackie Stewart (Fittipaldi's title rival) and Francois Cevert alongside him on the front row. The second row was shared by Denny Hulme's McLaren and Carlos Reutemann's Brabham while Peter Revson (McLaren), James Hunt (Hesketh March) and Carlos Pace (Surtees) were on the third row. The top 10 was completed by Jean-Pierre Beltoise (BRM) and Jack Oliver (Shadow) while Fittipaldi was a depressed 16th.

At the start of the race Peterson took off into lead with Stewart being chased by a fast-starting Pace and Cevert. On the second lap Fittipaldi retired, unable to continue. On the sixth lap Pace was overtaken by Cevert while Hunt, Hulme, Reutemann and Revson followed.

On lap 8 Williamson's March - which was running 13th - crashed heavily and was flipped and came to rest beside the track and caught fire. David Purley stopped immediately and tried to rescue Williamson but with no help from the ill-equipped marshals. The race was not stopped and no fire vehicles were sent to the scene. Despite Purley's efforts (for which he was later awarded a George Medal) Williamson died in the flames.

Peterson continued to lead until the 63rd lap when gearbox trouble dropped him behind Stewart and Cevert. The Lotus soon retired and so Hunt came through to finish third behind the two Tyrrells. Revson was fourth with Beltoise fifth and Van Lennep sixth.

Jackie Stewart Tyrrell-Cosworth 006 72 1h39m12.450s  
Francois Cevert Tyrrell-Cosworth 006 72 1h39m28.280s  
27 James Hunt March-Cosworth 731 72 1h40m15.460s  
Peter Revson McLaren-Cosworth M23 72 1h40m21.580s  
20 Jean-Pierre Beltoise BRM P160E 72 1h40m25.820s  
26 Gijs van Lennep Iso Marlboro-Cosworth IR 70  20 
24 Carlos Pace Surtees-Cosworth TS14A 69  
19 Clay Regazzoni BRM P160E 68  12 
25 Howden Ganley Iso Marlboro-Cosworth IR 68  15 
10 16 George Follmer Shadow-Cosworth DN1 67  22 
11r Ronnie Peterson Lotus-Cosworth 72E 66 Gearbox 
nc 12 Graham Hill Shadow-Cosworth DN1 56  17 
23 Mike Hailwood Surtees-Cosworth TS14A 52 Electrics 24 
21 Niki Lauda BRM P160E 51 Fuel Pump 11 
Denny Hulme McLaren-Cosworth M23 31 Engine 
11 Wilson Fittipaldi Brabham-Cosworth BT42 27 Accident 13 
22 Chris Amon Tecno PA123 22 Fuel Pressure 19 
10 Carlos Reutemann Brabham-Cosworth BT42 Tire 
18 David Purley March-Cosworth 731 Stopped To Help Williamson 21 
14 Roger Williamson March-Cosworth 731 Fatal Accident 18 
15 Mike Beuttler March-Cosworth 731 Electrics 23 
Emerson Fittipaldi Lotus-Cosworth 72E Driver Discomfort 16 
17 Jackie Oliver Shadow-Cosworth DN1 Throttle Jammed/ Accident 10 
ns 28 Rikky von Opel Ensign-Cosworth N173  Suspension 14