European GP 1999

European GP, 1999

World Championship hopeful Heinz-Harald Frentzen needed a good result to stay in the running and he took pole position in his Jordan-Mugen Honda, ahead of the McLarens of David Coulthard and a demoralized Mika Hakkinen. Ralf Schumacher confirmed the progress made by Williams by qualifying fourth while Ferrari was in disarray with World Championship challenger Irvine in ninth place and Mika Salo 12th.

At the start Frentzen led Hakkinen and Coulthard but there was a nasty crash in the midfield: when Damon Hill slowed suddenly, Alexander Wurz swerved to avoid the Jordan and tipped Pedro Diniz's Sauber into a roll which tore the rollbar off the Sauber. The Safety Car had to come out to slow the cars down while the debris was removed from the track. After it was withdrawn Irvine made some progress through the field but then it began to rain. Some drivers pitted and others did not. Amid the confusion Irvine was left sitting in the Ferrari pit with only three wheels on his car. Hakkinen stopped and rejoined with wet tires. The star in the damp conditions was Ralf Schumacher who overtook Coulthard and challenged Frentzen for the lead. The rain stopped and so Hakkinen had to pit again and then, during the mid-race pit stop sequence, Frentzen's Jordan cut out as he went into the first corner after his stop.

This left Coulthard in the lead but it rained again and David made a mistake and slid off. Ralf Schumacher took over but soon afterwards suffered a puncture. That left Giancarlo Fisichella in the lead in his Benetton but he too made a mistake and spun out, leaving Johnny Herbert to come home for a most unexpected victory in his Stewart-Ford. He was followed by the Prost-Peugeot of Jarno Trulli under heavy pressure from Rubens Barrichello in the second Stewart-Ford. For a while Luca Badoer was fourth in his Minardi but this broke down and Ralf Schumacher took the place while Hakkinen managed to scramble past Marc Gene in the second Minardi to score two points for fifth place.

Irvine finished seventh - out of the points.

17 Johnny Herbert Stewart-Ford  66 1h41m54.314  1m21.379 14 
19 Jarno Trulli Prost-Peugeot  66 22.618  1m20.965 10 
16 Rubens Barrichello Stewart-Ford  66 22.865  1m21.490 15 
Ralf Schumacher Williams-Supertec  66 39.507  1m20.444 
Mika Hakkinen McLaren-Mercedes  66 1m02.950  1m20.376 
21 Marc Gene Minardi-Ford  66 1m05.154  1m22.760 20 
Eddie Irvine Ferrari  66 1m06.683  1m20.842 
23 Ricardo Zonta BAR-Supertec  65 1 Lap  1m22.267 17 
18 Olivier Panis Prost-Peugeot  65 1 Lap  1m20.638 
10 22 Jacques Villeneuve BAR-Supertec  61 5 Laps  1m20.825 
20 Luca Badoer Minardi-Ford  53 Mechanical 1m22.631 19 
15 Pedro de la Rosa Arrows  52 Gearbox 1m23.698 22 
Giancarlo Fisichella Benetton-Supertec  48 Spin 1m20.781 
Mika Salo Ferrari  44 Brakes 1m21.314 12 
14 Toranosuke Takagi Arrows  42 Accident 1m23.401 21 
David Coulthard McLaren-Mercedes  37 Spin 1m20.176 
11 Jean Alesi Sauber-Petronas  35 Transmission 1m21.634 16 
Heinz-Harald Frentzen Jordan-Mugen Honda  32 Mechanical 1m19.910 
Alessandro Zanardi Williams-Supertec  10 Spin 1m22.284 18 
10 Alexander Wurz Benetton-Supertec  Accident 1m21.144 11 
12 Pedro Diniz Sauber-Petronas  Accident 1m21.345 13 
Damon Hill Jordan-Mugen Honda  Mechanical 1m20.818