German GP 1981

AUGUST 2, 1981

German GP, 1981

A couple of weeks after John Waton's popular win at Silverstone - the first victory for a carbon composite chassis in F1 - the F1 circus was in Germany. The field was unchanged apart from the fact that Team Lotus was back in action with a pair of Lotus 87s both sporting new JPS sponsorship. There were some changes of tires with Tyrrell running on Avons, Lotus on Goodyear and Arrows on Pirellis.

It was no surprise to see the two Renault turbo cars on the front row with Alain Prost nearly half a second quicker than Rene Arnoux. World Championship leader Carlos Reutemann was third with his Williams team mate Alan Jones fourth. Didier Pironi was fifth his Ferrari and Nelson Piquet was sixth in his Brabham (apparently without any problems from his Silverstone accident) and the top 10 was completed by Jacques Laffite (Talbot Ligier), Gilles Villeneuve (Ferrari) and the two McLarens of John Watson and Andrea de Cesaris.

At the start Prost took the lead but Reutemann managed to get ahead of Arnoux. On the run down to the first chicane Pironi also went past Rene and Piquet tried the same at the Ostkurve. The Renault and the Brabham touched. This meant that Arnoux had to pit at the end of the lap with a deflated right rear. While this was going on Jones went past Piquet. Halfway around the second lap Pironi disappeared with a blown engine and so Prost led Reutemann, Jones, Piquet, Laffite, Villeneuve and Patrick Tambay (Talbot Ligier). Villeneuve soon dropped away but Jones was in combative form and was challenging Prost for the lead. Behind them Piquet had overtaken Reutemann and was closing up and the fight for the lead was soon between the three cars. But Piquet's tires could not take the pace and he dropped back behind Reutemann.

On lap 21 Jones finally managed to get ahead of Prost when they were lapping Arnoux. Behind the top five Rebaque had moved into sixth but this became fifth when Reutemann stopped on lap 28 with an engine failure.

At two-thirds distance rain began to fall and as the Renault became more difficult to control Piquet was able to take second from Prost and then Jones's car began to misfire and soon Piquet and Prost were both ahead. Jones headed for the pits.

Piquet thus inherited victory with Prost second, Laffite third and Rebaque fourth. Eddie Cheever was fifth with Watson sixth.

Nelson Piquet Brabham-Cosworth  45 1h25m55.600s  
15 Alain Prost Renault  45 1h26m07.120s  
26 Jacques Laffite Talbot Ligier-Matra  45 1h27m00.200s  
Hector Rebaque Brabham-Cosworth  45 1h27m35.290s  16 
Eddie Cheever Tyrrell-Cosworth  45 1h27m46.120s  18 
John Watson McLaren-Cosworth  44  
11 Elio de Angelis Lotus-Cosworth  44  14 
32 Jean-Pierre Jarier Osella-Cosworth  44  17 
22 Mario Andretti Alfa Romeo  44  12 
10 27 Gilles Villeneuve Ferrari  44  
11 Alan Jones Williams-Cosworth  44  
12 30 Siegfried Stohr Arrows-Cosworth  44  24 
13 16 Rene Arnoux Renault  44  
14r 33 Marc Surer Theodore-Cosworth  43 Suspension/ Accident 22 
15 23 Bruno Giacomelli Alfa Romeo  43  19 
nc 14 Eliseo Salazar Ensign-Cosworth  39  23 
10 Slim Borgudd ATS-Cosworth  35 Engine 20 
Carlos Reutemann Williams-Cosworth  27 Engine 
29 Riccardo Patrese Arrows-Cosworth  27 Engine 13 
25 Patrick Tambay Talbot Ligier-Matra  27 Rear Wheel Bearing 11 
17 Derek Daly March-Cosworth  15 Steering Tie Rod 21 
12 Nigel Mansell Lotus-Cosworth  12 Fuel Leak 15 
Andrea de Cesaris McLaren-Cosworth  Spin 10 
28 Didier Pironi Ferrari  Engine 
nq 20 Keke Rosberg Fittipaldi-Cosworth    25 
nq 35 Brian Henton Toleman-Hart    26 
nq 31 Beppe Gabbiani Osella-Cosworth    27 
nq 36 Derek Warwick Toleman-Hart    28 
nq Michele Alboreto Tyrrell-Cosworth    29 
nq 21 Chico Serra Fittipaldi-Cosworth    30