Argentine GP 1995

Argentine GP, 1995

Grand Prix racing's return to Buenos Aires after 14 years away was greeted with great passion by the locals who have a strong tradition in Formula 1. The circus was impressed with the town and if the famous Autodromo was not quite as challenging as once it had been, it was at least ready for action. The problem was the Buenos Aires autumn weather which was - at best - miserable. From Thursday morning - there being an extra day of running because no-one had raced at the track before - rain clouds swirled around the track. At regular tracks practice is usually started on Fridays.

Qualifying was packed with incident as car after car gyrated into the lush green grass or the claggy red earth sandtraps. Thursday was bad. Friday was awful. There were a few minutes at the end of that first qualifying session when the track was vaguely dry and David Coulthard took provisional pole position. But if the Williams-Renaults seemed to take the wet in their stride, the Benettons were dreadful, both spinning several times and ending the day ninth and tenth.

The weather on Saturday was not much better and final qualifying began in the middle of a torrential downpour. It was only in the final 10 minutes of the session that the track suddenly became as quick as it had been the previous day. There was a rush as cars came out and three days of practice were condensed into 10 frantic minutes. Coulthard confirmed his promise - winning his first F1 pole position - ahead of Damon Hill and Michael Schumacher. The Renault-engined cars again dominated, while Eddie Irvine was fourth fastest for Jordan-Peugeot.

On race day the rains finally went away and the weather looked good. The crowd was huge and President Carlos Mennem turned up to watch the show.

This race took a lot of starting. At the first attempt - as Schumacher was engulfed by the pack after a poor start - Jean Alesi spun his Ferrari and caused mayhem in the midfield. The race was red-flagged and halted. At the second attempt Schumacher made a better getaway and grabbed second place from Hill while behind the pair there was further chaos as Mika Hakkinen took out Irvine with an ill-judged manoeuvre on the run down to the first corner.

Coulthard was away and gone up front and it was quickly clear that Schumacher would not be competing with DC. In fact he could barely keep Hill behind him. It was only when Coulthard's engine suddenly missed a beat that David looked vulnerable. He dropped to third place, making the Schumacher-Hill battle become a fight for the lead. For five laps Michael doggedly fought off Damon but it was inevitable that he would have to give way. Once through Damon disappeared up the road and Schumacher dropped back into the clutches of a recovering Coulthard. The Scotsman did not last much longer, his engine dying under him.

Hill and Schumacher chose the same pit stop strategy but Michael never looked like a threat and when he was delayed by a fuel hose refusing to connect to his car, Hill was left unchallenged. Schumacher finished third behind Jean Alesi. Herbert was fourth and Sauber had a good day with Heinz-Harald Frentzen picking up his first points of the year for fifth place.

It had been a good day for Simtek, Jos Verstappen managing to run sixth before a gearbox problem stopped him.

Damon Hill Williams-Renault FW17 72 1h53m14.532s  
27 Jean Alesi Ferrari 412T2 72 1h53m20.939s  
Michael Schumacher Benetton-Renault B195 72 1h53m47.908s  
Johnny Herbert Benetton-Renault B195 71  11 
30 Heinz-Harald Frentzen Sauber-Cosworth C14 70  
28 Gerhard Berger Ferrari 412T2 70  18 
26 Olivier Panis Ligier-Mugen Honda JS41 70  18 
Ukyo Katayama Tyrrell-Yamaha 023 69  15 
11 Mimmo Schiattarella Simtek-Cosworth S951 68  20 
nc 21 Pedro Diniz Forti-Cosworth FG01-95 63  25 
nc 22 Roberto Moreno Forti-Cosworth FG01-95 63  24 
Mika Salo Tyrrell-Yamaha 023 48 Accident 
25 Aguri Suzuki Ligier-Mugen Honda JS41 47 Accident 19 
23 Pierluigi Martini Minardi-Cosworth M195 44 Spin 16 
Gianni Morbidelli Footwork-Hart FA16 43 Electrics 12 
10 Taki Inoue Footwork-Hart FA16 40 Spin 26 
14 Rubens Barrichello Jordan-Peugeot 195 33 Oil Leak/engine 10 
12 Jos Verstappen Simtek-Cosworth S951 23 Gearbox 14 
David Coulthard Williams-Renault FW17 16 Throttle 
Mark Blundell McLaren-Mercedes MP4/10 Gearbox Casing/oil Loss 17 
15 Eddie Irvine Jordan-Peugeot 195 Engine 
17 Andrea Montermini Pacific-Cosworth PR02 Accident/suspension 22 
Mika Hakkinen McLaren-Mercedes MP4/10 Accident 
16 Bertrand Gachot Pacific-Cosworth PR02 Accident 23 
29 Karl Wendlinger Sauber-Cosworth C14 Accident 21 
24 Luca Badoer Minardi-Cosworth M195 Accident 13