French GP 1982

JULY 25, 1982

French GP, 1982

There was only a week between the British and French GPs but the F1 teams still found time to switch around a little with Nigel Mansell deciding that his wrist was not properly healed. He thus stood down and Geoff Lees drove the second Lotus.

Qualifying saw the expected result of a Renault 1-2 with Rene Arnoux ahead of Alain Prost. Didier Pironi, the World Championship leader, was third in his Ferrari but fourth place went to Riccardo Patrese's Brabham-BMW which forced Patrick Tambay (Ferrari) down to fifth place. Nelson Piquet (Brabham) made it six turbos in the top six places. The Alfa Romeo V12s were next with Andrea de Cesaris just outqualifying Bruno Giacomelli and then came the Cosworth men led by Niki Lauda (McLaren) and Keke Rosberg (Williams).

Arnoux took the lead at the start with Prost second but it was quickly clear that the Brabhams were very competitive as Patrese and Piquet moved into second and third places. On the third lap Patrese went ahead and next time around Piquet was second. It looked as though the team was planning to use its pitstop strategy. But on the eighth lap Patrese disappeared with an engine failure.

There was a spectacular accident on the 11th lap when Jochen Mass (March) and Mauro Baldi (Arrows) tangled at Signes. Mass's car hit the barriers and flew over them, landing upside-down in a spectator area. The car caught fire but Mass quickly scrambled out. Several spectators received injuries but incredibly no-one was killed.

On lap 24 Piquet departed in similar fashion, leaving the two Renault to lead the two Ferraris home: Arnoux, Prost, Pironi and Tambay making it a French 1-2-3-4. Rosberg finished fifth and Michele Alboreto sixth for Tyrrell.

Things were not happy in the Renault team, however, as Prost felt that he should have been given the win to aid his World Championship hopes. Arnoux did not agree.

16 Rene Arnoux Renault  54 1h33m33.217s  
15 Alain Prost Renault  54 1h33m50.525s  
28 Didier Pironi Ferrari  54 1h34m15.345s  
27 Patrick Tambay Ferrari  54 1h34m49.458s  
Keke Rosberg Williams-Cosworth  54 1h35m04.211s  10 
Michele Alboreto Tyrrell-Cosworth  54 1h35m05.556s  15 
Derek Daly Williams-Cosworth  53  11 
Niki Lauda McLaren-Cosworth  53  
23 Bruno Giacomelli Alfa Romeo  53  
10 Brian Henton Tyrrell-Cosworth  53  23 
11 Manfred Winkelhock ATS-Cosworth  52  18 
12 12 Geoff Lees Lotus-Cosworth  52  24 
13 29 Marc Surer Arrows-Cosworth  52  20 
14 26 Jacques Laffite Talbot Ligier-Matra  51  16 
15 35 Derek Warwick Toleman-Hart  50  14 
16 25 Eddie Cheever Talbot Ligier-Matra  49  19 
22 Andrea de Cesaris Alfa Romeo  25 Puncture/accident 
Nelson Piquet Brabham-BMW  23 Engine 
11 Elio de Angelis Lotus-Cosworth  17 Fuel Pressure 13 
John Watson McLaren-Cosworth  13 Battery Lead 12 
17 Jochen Mass March-Cosworth  10 Accident 26 
30 Mauro Baldi Arrows-Cosworth  10 Accident 25 
Riccardo Patrese Brabham-BMW  Engine/fire 
10 Eliseo Salazar ATS-Cosworth  Accident 22 
36 Teo Fabi Toleman-Hart  Oil Pump Drive 21 
31 Jean-Pierre Jarier Osella-Cosworth  Drive Shaft 17 
nq 33 Jan Lammers Theodore-Cosworth    27 
nq 14 Roberto Guerrero Ensign-Cosworth    28 
nq 20 Chico Serra Fittipaldi-Cosworth    29 
nq 18 Raul Boesel March-Cosworth    30