South African GP 1975

South African GP, 1975

There was a gap of a month after the Brazilian GP before the F1 field gathered again at Kyalami. The biggest change was that Ferrari had finished the new 312T, with a transverse gearbox. The new Hill GH1 appeared for Graham Hill to drive but the veteran crashed heavily and damaged the car enough to be forced to miss the race. Shadow had completed a second DN5 for Tom Pryce to drive. The Stanley-BRM team had hired Bob Evans to replace Mike Wilds and March had the new 751 for Vittorio Brambilla and rented the old 741 to Lella Lombardi. As usual there were several local teams taking part with Team Gunston entering its Lotus 72s for Eddie Keizan and Guy Tunmer, Dave Charlton in a Lucky Strike McLaren and Ian Scheckter in a Tyrrell.

Qualifying resulted in a Brabham 1-2 with Carlos Pace (the winner in Brazil) ahead of team mate Carlos Reutemann. Niki Lauda was on the second row in his new Ferrari alongside Jody Schecketer's Tyrrell. Fifth place went to Mario Andretti in the Parnelli while Patrick Depailler was sixth for Tyrrell. The top 10 was completed by Brambilla's March, Ronnie Peterson's Lotus, Clay Regazzoni's Ferrari and John Watson in the Surtees. Emerson Fittipaldi was a disappointing 11th in his McLaren while Jean-Pierre Jarier (pole man in the first two races of the year) was 13th after engine trouble. At the back of the field Lombardi became the first woman to qualify for a Grand Prix since 1958.

Pace took the lead at the start with Scheckter jumping into second and Ronnie Peterson storming up to third ahead of Reutemann, Depailler, Regazzoni, E Fittipaldi and Lauda. On the third lap Scheckter took the lead (to the delight of the locals) and Reutemann overtook Peterson. The Swede would drift back behind Depailler, Regazzoni, Fittipaldi and Lauda in the laps that followed. Pace too began to struggle with his brakes and let Reutemann through into second before he dropped back behind Depailler and Fittipaldi (who had overtaken Regazzoni by that point). The order was then set for nearly 20 laps until Fittipaldi's engine began to misfire and he had to pit after being repassed by Pace. The top four then remained unchanged until the finish with Scheckter leading home Reutemann, Depailler and Pace. Lauda took fifth after Regazzoni went out with a throttle problem near the end of the race and Mass picked up the final point in the second McLaren.

Jody Scheckter Tyrrell-Cosworth 007 78 1h43m16.900s  
Carlos Reutemann Brabham-Cosworth BT44B 78 1h43m20.640s  
Patrick Depailler Tyrrell-Cosworth 007 78 1h43m33.820s  
Carlos Pace Brabham-Cosworth BT44B 78 1h43m34.210s  
12 Niki Lauda Ferrari 312T 78 1h43m45.540s  
Jochen Mass McLaren-Cosworth M23 78 1h44m20.240s  16 
23 Rolf Stommelen Lola-Cosworth T371 78 1h44m29.810s  14 
28 Mark Donohue Penske-Cosworth PC1 77  18 
16 Tom Pryce Shadow-Cosworth DN5 77  19 
10 Ronnie Peterson Lotus-Cosworth 72E 77  
11 34 Guy Tunmer Lotus-Cosworth 72 76  25 
12 Jacky Ickx Lotus-Cosworth 72E 76  21 
13 33 Eddie Keizan Lotus-Cosworth 72 76  22 
14 31 Dave Charlton McLaren-Cosworth M23 76  20 
15 14 Bob Evans BRM P201 76  24 
16r 11 Clay Regazzoni Ferrari 312T 71 Throttle Linkage 
17r 27 Mario Andretti Parnelli-Cosworth VPJ4 70 Cv Joint 
nc 21 Jacques Laffite Williams-Cosworth FW 69  23 
nc Emerson Fittipaldi McLaren-Cosworth M23 65  11 
32 Ian Scheckter Tyrrell-Cosworth 007 55 Accident 17 
24 James Hunt Hesketh-Cosworth 308 53 Mechanical 12 
17 Jean-Pierre Jarier Shadow-Cosworth DN5 37 Engine 13 
10 Lella Lombardi March-Cosworth 741 23 Engine 26 
20 Arturo Merzario Williams-Cosworth FW 22 Engine 15 
18 John Watson Surtees-Cosworth TS16 19 Clutch 10 
Vittorio Brambilla March-Cosworth 751 16 Mechanical 
30 Wilson Fittipaldi Copersucar-Cosworth FD02 Withdrew (reserve Entry) 27 
ns 22 Graham Hill Lola-Cosworth T370  Accident 28