Notes on the cars at Castellet

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With only one week-end between the Dutch GP and the French GP most teams had to repair the ravages of the Zandvoort circuit in order to get to the Paul Ricard Circuit on time. Gold Leaf Team Lotus repaired 72D/R5 and had Fittipaldi back in the team, with Wisell in 72D/R3 and the turbine car was abandoned for this event. Ferrari repaired their number 7 car and had it as a spare for Ickx, who was as usual in car number 6 and Regazzoni had car number 5. In practice Regazzoni drove number 7 car with Ickx’s practice number on it, which caused some confusion. The Brabham and McLaren teams were as at Zandvoort, with Hill in BT34/1 and Schenken in BT33/3, for Tauranac, and Hulme in M19A/2 and Gethin in M19A/1 for McLaren. The Tyrrell team had straightened out 002 for Cevert, while Stewart as usual had 003 and 001.

The BRM team were as at Zandvoort, with Rodriguez in P160/01 and P160/03 as a training car, Siffert in P160/02 and Ganley in P153/06. The March factory had Peterson in the second Alfa Romeo engined car 711/6, de Adamich in the original Alfa Romeo engined car 711/1 and Soler-Roig as usual in the Cosworth engined car 711/4. During practice both Peterson and Galli drove 711/4 with their own racing numbers on it. Peterson’s usual car 711/2 was in the transporter without an engine, the idea being that if a Cosworth engine could be borrowed Galli could have raced the car, but nothing materialized. Other March cars were 711/3 of Frank Williams and 701/6, which he hired to Jean Max and 701/5 which Siffert hired to Mazet. Surtees had TS9/001 and Stommelen TS9/002 as usual, and there was a brand new car being finished, TS9/004, but it was not used. TS9/003 had recently been finished and sold to John Love in Rhodesia.

During scrutineering the organisers took the responsibility of waiving the FIA rule about rear lights, mainly because no one had one fitted anyway and adherence to the law would have eliminated the entire entry. All the cars were weighed during scrutineering with the fuel tanks empty as far as could be reasonably ascertained and the list makes interesting reading as follows:

Car – Driver – Model – Weight in Kilogrammes – Engine
Lotus – Fittipaldi – 72D/R5 – 578 – Cosworth V8
Lotus – Wisell – 72D/R3 – 562 – Cosworth V8
Ferrari – Ickx – 312B/2 No. 6 – 566 – Ferrari flat 12
Ferrari – Ickx – 312B/2 No. 7 – 569 – Ferrari flat 12
Ferrari – Regazzoni – 312B/2 No. 5 – 569 – Ferrari flat 12
Brabham – Hill – BT 34/1 – 581 – Cosworth V8
Brabham – Schenken – BT 33/3 – 588 – Cosworth V8
McLaren – Hulme – M19A/2 – 589 – Cosworth V8
McLaren – Gethin – M19A/1 – 578 – Cosworth V8
Tyrrell – Stewart – 003 – 565 – Cosworth V8
Tyrrell – Stewart – 001 – 581 – Cosworth V8
Tyrrell – Cevert – 002 – 567 – Cosworth V8
BRM – Siffert – P160/02 – 554 – BRM V12
BRM – Rodriguez – P160/01 – 558 – BRM V12
BRM – Rodriguez – P160/03 – 558 – BRM V12
BRM – Ganley – P153/06 – 574 – BRM V12
March – Peterson – 711/6 – 582 – Alfa Romeo V8
March – Soler-Roig – 711/4 – 558 – – Cosworth V8
March – de Adamich – 711/1 – 589 – Alfa Romeo V8
Matra-Simca – Amon – MS120B/04 – 572 – Matra V12
Matra-Simca – Amon – MS120B/06 – 565 – Matra V12
Matra-Simca – Beltoise – MS120B/05 – 573 – Matra V12
Surtees – Surtees – TS0/001 – 559 – Cosworth V8
Surtees – Surtees – TS9/004 – 541 – Cosworth V8
Surtees – Stomellen – TS9/002 – 571 – Cosworth V8
March – Pescarolo – 711/3 – 581 – Cosworth V8
March – Max – 701/6 – 624 – Cosworth V8
March – Mazet – 701/5 – 652 – Cosworth V8
N.B. Surtees TS9/004 was not 100% complete and was completely dry, hence the very low weight of 541 kilogrammes.

It is worth recalling that the basic minimum weight is 530 kilogrammes, and noting that in general BRM have the lightest cars and Matra the heaviest, also that the works March 711 with Cosworth engine is the lightest they have made at Bicester, the Alfa Romeo engined cars are heavy and last year’s March 701 cars are very heavy, and the original Surtees TS9 is very light.—D. S. J.

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