The 1966 Calendar
The list of motoring events run under the rules of the Federation Internationale de l’Automobile seems to get bigger every year, this list Comprising International events only; the lists of National events for each country in the F.I.A. being truly gigantic. As in previous years, the F.I.A. calendar is divided into three groups, International Speed Events, International Rallies, and National Speed Events in which Foreign participation is allowed. The first group are the straightforward International races and hill-climbs, and there are 106 of them scheduled for 1966 in Europe, the Americas, South Africa, Australia and New Zealand, and they cover events from Grand Prix races to Drag Race meetings, and from unlimited capacity racing cars to saloon cars. Within this great list are events to count towards various Championships, the most important being the Formula One Championships for Drivers and Manufacturers. There is a Championship for Manufacturers in the FIA . Group 4, which is for Production Sports Cars, of which 50 must have been made, and this Championship is Subdivided into three divisions : Up to 1,300 c.c., 1,300-2,000 c.c., over 2,;000 C.C. There is an International Trophy for the manufacturers of Special Cars in Group 6, which are Prototype Sports Cars, or one-off example’s, and finally there is the European Mountain Championship.
As from January 1st, 1966, the new Formula One comes into force, so that Grand Prix races will be those run to this new Formula, it being for unSupercharged cars of up to 3,000 c.c. and supercharged cars of up to 1,500 c.c., all other detail rules being as for the Formula that is just finishing. The first event to this new Formula is due to be held on January 1st in South Africa, while the first event in Europe should be the Siracusa Grand Prix on May 1st, With the B.R.D.C. event at SilverStone following a fortnight later. However, British and European organisers are being rather cautious and for both these events have applied for permits for Formula One and/or Formula Two. All other major organisers seem to have got cold feet over the future of Grand Prix racing and have opted for Formula Two events or sports-car events. Apart from the British Grand Prix. which will be for Formula One, the B.R.D.C. Silverstone race is the only Formula One event on the British part of the International Calendar, which shows pretty poor support for our Formula One teams. The serious Formula One, or Grand Prix, season begins on May 22nd at Monte Carlo, and throughout the season all the major Grandes Epreuves are scheduled to take place, more or less in the order we saw this year.
The Group 4 Sports Car Championship and the Prototype Trophy will be held over the usual list of long-distance classic events, together with some new ones, or existing ones that have been given more exalted status. The established classics are the Sebring 12-hour, the Targa Florio, the A.D.A,C. 1,000 kilometres at Nurburgring, and Le Mans, and these are all being run for Sports/Prototypes and Sports Cars (50 off), and at Sebring and Nurburgring there is the addition of GT cars (500 off). New events in this group are a 24-hour race at Daytona Speedway in February, the 1,000-kilometre race at Monza, the Spa races at Francurchamps in Belgium, and other events such as Hockenhenn, Bridgehampton and Reims, the last named being the annual 12-hour race, for Prototypes and Sports Cars, but held in October instead of July. The Trophy for Constructors of Prototypes will be decided at Daytona 24-hour, Sebring 12-hour, Monza 1,000 kilometres “Farga Florio, Spa, Nurburgring 1,000 kilometres and Le Mans, so that this branch of motor racing will be all over by mid-summer, having had a concentrated six months from the beginning of the season. The Championship for Sports Cars takes in all these events, but goes on through many lesser events until October, including one hill-climb in Switzerland. The event at Spa could have proved interesting, with Le Mans-type Prototypes running on the high-speed road circuit, but unfortunately it falls on the same day as the Monaco Grand Prix, so there is going to be a shortage of high-speed drivers.
The rest of the International Calendar is made up of a great variety of events, including the Tasman 2.5-litre Formula races, American Stock Car events such as the fantastic high-speed thrash round the Daytona speed bowl, Formula Two races all over Europe, including the French series for their National Championship described as the Grands Prix de France (not to be Lonfused with the French Grand Prix, which will be for Formula One), hill-climbs, two American Drag Race meetings, and one-off events such as Indianapolis and our own Tourist Trophy. In 1966 Indianapolis is due to run the week after the Monaco Grand Prix, on May 30th, and it does not clash with any serious event.
The following dates are for the most important International events :—
Grand Prix Races for World Championships—to Formula One :
May 22nd Monaco—at Monte Carlo.
June 12th Belgium—at Francorchamps.
July 3rd France—at Reims (also the European Grand Prix title
July 16th Britain—at Brands Hatch.
July 24th Holland—at Zandvoort.
Aug. 7th Germany—at Nurburgring (we hope!).
Sept. 4th Italy—at Monza.
Oct. 2nd U.S.A.—at Watkins Glen.
Oct. 23rd Mexico—at Mexico City.
Long-Distance Races for Category B—Group 6, Special Cars, Prototype Sports Cars
Feb. 5/6th .. Daytona 24-hour—Prototypes, Sports II, III, and GT.
Mar. 26th Sebring 12-hour—Prototypes, Sports I, II, III and GT.
April 25th Monza 1,000 kilornetres—Prototypes, Sports II, III.
May 8th Targa Florio—Prototypes, Sports II,III,
May 22nd Spa-Francorchamps—Prototypes, Sports II,III
June 5th Nurburgring 1,000 kilometres—Prototypes. Sports I, II, III, and GT.
June 18/I9th .. Le Mans 24-hour—Prototypes, Sports II, III.
The above events count for the Constructors’ Trophy for Prototypes. They also count for the Sports Car Championships for Divisions I, II and III, where shown, together with the following events :—
July 17th .. Circuit of Mugello—Sports I.
Aug. 7th Circuit of Enna—Sports I.
Aug. 14th Circuit of Hockenheim—Prototypes, Sports II
Aug. 28th Swiss Mountain Hill-Climb—Sports I,II. III.
Sept. 4th Nurburgring 500 kilometres—Prototypes, Sports I, GT and T.
Sept. 11th .. Austrian Grand Prix—Sports I, II. Ill.
Sept. 17/18th.. Bridgehampton Double 500—Prototypes, Sports I, II, III, and GT.
Oct. 2nd .. Reims 12-hour—Prototypes, Sports I, II, III.
Sports cars must have been made in a series of at least fifty cars, and the Divisions are :
Sport’s I — up to 1,300 c.c.
Sports II — up to 2,600 c.c.
Sports III — over 2,060 c.c.
Division I will include such cars as the Abarth-Simca 1300, Division II will include the Porsche 916, and Division III will include the Ferrari LM and the Ford GT 40.
In the second part of the F.I.A. International Calendar is listed the International Rallies, and these number 101 events in almost every country affiliated to the F.I.A., which means practically anywhere where the motor car is used for sport. Of these the more important ones are as follows :
Jan. 14th-22nd .. Monte Carlo Rally.
Feb. 7-13th .. .. Swedish Rally.
April 25-29th .. .. Dutch Tulip Rally.
May 26-29th .. .. Greek Acropolis Rally.
June 10-12th .. .. Swiss Geneva Rally.
July 13-17th .. .. German Westphalia Rally.
Aug. 3rd-6th .. .. Polish Rally.
Aug. 19th-21st .. .. 1000 Lakes Rally, Finland
Sept. 5-10th .. .. French Alpine Rally.
Nov. 19-25th .. .. R.A.C. British Rally.
The third and final part of the calendar is for National events with foreign participation allowed, but only for drivers not on a list of graded drivers. This list includes all the Grand Prix stars, so it means that these events can only have World Champion-type drivers of their own country, any foreign driver having to be of lower than Championship status. This list has 187 events scheduled in almost every part of the world, from the Argentine to Japan, across the length and breadth of Europe. They are too numerous to list in detail, but cover Formula Two and three all types of sports cars, saloon cars and Forrnule Libre cars, and cover circuit races, ice races, hill-climbs, slaloms, speed trials and drag race meetings. This list includes some small events that used to be on the International Calendar many years ago for quite large Grand Prix races, but due to economics and the changed pattern of motor racing they are now restricted to Formula Three or saloon-car categories.
All the above is from the official F.I.A. Calendar, but is subject to changes, alterations, additions and deletions from time to time, but in the main the important events are unlikely to alter from this pattern.—D. S. J.