To Mr Ferrari, the only Formula 1 car that mattered was his current one; retired grand prix cars were redundant. But that’s not how many of us may see it. Old F1 cars, whether they carried great drivers to famous wins or became over-optimistic duds, represent more than simply money. They represent our memories, their provenance connecting us to our past, or even to years and decades before our own lives, to times that exist only in old photos, films, books and magazines. Old F1 cars matter. And the one you see here, pictured in the flesh for the first time in 30-years, matters more than most – perhaps most of all.
Ferrari 312T chassis ‘023’ carried Niki Lauda to four of his five grand prix victories in a dominant 1975 campaign in which he took the first of his three World Championship titles, ahead of two more race wins early in 1976. In many ways this is the car upon which Niki Lauda’s legend was built. The story of how this car re-emerged, almost exactly as Lauda left it, right down to the scuffed seat and worn steering wheel, is told on page 67. Suffice to say this car is arguably the perfect example of an ‘old F1 car’.
Chassis no023 was only ever driven by Lauda and remains in exactly the state the Austrian left it