The New Zealand Grand Prix

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Some modifications to the Pukekohe circuit reduced the lap distance from 2.2 miles to 1.75 miles and the Grand Prix was held over 57 laps. Before this there was a short warm-up race to decide grid positions and during this the favourite, Jack Brabham, went off course and damaged his Brabham-Repco V8. Though he started in the Grand Prix he did not get far, retiring with a broken drive shaft. The Grand Prix proved to be a tussle between Stewart (B.R.M. V8 2-litre) and Clark (Lotus-Climax V8 2-litre), both cars being works entries. Clark being on his own and Stewart having Attwood as his number two.

After 54 laps Stewart was leading Clark, as he had done from the start, but the outcome was wide open, and while they were lapping a back-marker Clark was struck by the slower car, the accident damaging the Lotus bodywork. This ended any hope of a last-minute attempt to get past Stewart, and though the Lotus had lost its nose and cockpit cowling Clark put in a lap record in trying to catch up again. This may sound like hard luck, but if Clark had been leading instead of being second it would not have happened; leading a race is always the safest and best place to be.

The Brabham team had a bad time, with the team-leader going out early and Hulme having to borrow a 4-cylinder-Climax-powered Brabham in order to take part, his V8-engined car being unfit to race. After driving splendidly and working his way up to third place, Hulme was forced to retire with mechanical trouble, leaving Attwood to fill third place with the second works 2-litre B.R.M. V8.

***

Results: Tasmin — 57 laps– 95.75 miles (160.5 kilometres). 18 starters, 6 finishers.

1st: J. Stewart (B.R.M. V8 2-litre) 59 min. 16.45 sec. — 100.9 m.p.h. (162.738 k.p.h.)

2nd: J. Clark (Lotus-Climax V8 2-litre) 59 min. 21.85 sec.

3rd: R. Attwood. (B.R.M. V8 2-litre) 1 lap behind

4th: J. Palmer (Brabham-Climax 4-cyl 2-1/2-litre) 3 laps behind

5th: G. Lawrence (Brabham-Ford 1-1/2-litre) 5 laps behind

6th: D. Hollier (Lotus-Ford 1-1/2-litre) 7 laps behind.

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