History lessons

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Sir,

In accusing you of rewriting history, Alan Baker (Letters, February 2000) is himself guilty of being very selective with the truth.

Yes, Jochen Rindt was lucky at Clermont-Ferrand, but his “poor practice” was due to severe stomach upset and a facial injury caused by a flying stone. Brabham’s misfortune at Monaco was a crash partly brought about by the pressure of Rindt catching him at well over a second a lap in his Lotus 49 (basically a three-year-old design).

When Mr Baker says that Rindt wouldn’t have seen which way Ickx went that year if the Ferrari 312B had come fully on song earlier in the year, he forgets that Rindt had even more problems with the Lotus 72; so much so that he only actually raced it in six Grands Prix.

As for the nonsense of “if Jackie Stewart had had the Tyrrell 001 for more than the last couple of races”; I am sure that many drivers would be winners in next year’s car!

Finally, in suggesting that Rindt’s title was undeserved, Mr Baker forgets the very significant fact of his untimely death at Monza, which caused him to miss the last four races of the year. And he was still the champion — with five more points than Ickx and a full 20 more than Brabham and Stewart!

No, Mr Baker, the 1970 world championship had a very deserving winner.

I am, yours, etc.,

Robert Gill, Portsmouth, Hampshire