Australian GP 1999

Australian GP, 1999

Qualifying in Melbourne had seen the McLarens of Mika Hakkinen and David Coulthard dominant. Michael Schumacher was 1.3secs off the pace in his Ferrari with Eddie Irvine down in sixth place, outgunned by Rubens Barrichello in the Stewart-Ford and Heinz-Harald Frentzen in the first of the Jordan-Mugens.

But Irvine's luck was in. At the start both Stewarts caught fire - causing lots of smoke and red faces. Then Michael Schumacher failed to get away for the parade lap and so he would have to start at the back. The second row of the grid had disappeared and with Irvine beating Frentzen to the first corner it was just a matter of catching the two McLarens.

After five laps the McLarens were 10secs clear. Eight laps later Coulthard headed for the pits with gearbox trouble. A Safety Car bunched up the field again and at the restart everyone went racing except Mika Hakkinen. There was something wrong with the accelerator.

Irvine took the lead and spent the rest of the afternoon controlling the race. Michael Schumacher had a series of adventures as he tried to catch up and so it was left to his brother Ralf to finish third. The retirement rate was such that Barrichello started from the pits in the spare car and was still able to finish fourth.

Eddie Irvine Ferrari  57 1h35m01.659  1m32.289 
Heinz-Harald Frentzen Jordan-Mugen Honda  57 1.026  1m32.276 
Ralf Schumacher Williams-Supertec  57 7.012  1m32.691 
Giancarlo Fisichella Benetton-Supertec  57 33.418  1m32.540 
16 Rubens Barrichello Stewart-Ford  57 54.697  1m32.148 
15 Pedro de la Rosa Arrows  57 1m24.316  1m32.244 18 
14 Toranosuke Takagi Arrows  57 1m26.288  1m34.182 17 
Michael Schumacher Ferrari  56 1 Lap  1m31.781 
23 Ricardo Zonta BAR-Supertec  48 Gearbox 1m34.412 19 
20 Luca Badoer Minardi-Ford  42 Gearbox 1m35.316 21 
10 Alexander Wurz Benetton-Supertec  28 Spin 1m32.789 10 
12 Pedro Diniz Sauber-Petronas  27 Transmission 1m33.374 14 
19 Jarno Trulli Prost-Peugeot  25 Accident 1m32.971 12 
21 Marc Gene Minardi-Ford  25 Accident 1m37.013 22 
18 Olivier Panis Prost-Peugeot  23 Wheel Nut 1m35.068 20 
Mika Hakkinen McLaren-Mercedes  21 Electronics 1m30.462 
Alessandro Zanardi Williams-Supertec  20 Accident 1m33.549 15 
David Coulthard McLaren-Mercedes  13 Gearbox 1m30.946 
22 Jacques Villeneuve BAR-Supertec  13 Accident 1m32.888 11 
17 Johnny Herbert Stewart-Ford  Fire 1m32.991 13 
Damon Hill Jordan-Mugen Honda  Accident 1m32.695 
11 Jean Alesi Sauber-Petronas  Transmission 1m33.910 16