Notes on the cars in the Americas

Browse pages
Current page

1

Current page

2

Current page

3

Current page

4

Current page

5

Current page

6

Current page

7

Current page

8

Current page

9

Current page

10

Current page

11

Current page

12

Current page

13

Current page

14

Current page

15

Current page

16

Current page

17

Current page

18

Current page

19

Current page

20

Current page

21

Current page

22

Current page

23

Current page

24

Current page

25

Current page

26

Current page

27

Current page

28

Current page

29

Current page

30

Current page

31

Current page

32

Current page

33

Current page

34

Current page

35

Current page

36

Current page

37

Current page

38

Current page

39

Current page

40

Current page

41

Current page

42

Current page

43

Current page

44

Current page

45

Current page

46

Current page

47

Current page

48

Current page

49

Current page

50

Current page

51

Current page

52

Current page

53

Current page

54

Current page

55

Current page

56

Current page

57

Current page

58

Current page

59

Current page

60

Current page

61

Current page

62

Current page

63

Current page

64

Current page

65

Current page

66

Current page

67

Current page

68

Current page

69

Current page

70

Current page

71

Current page

72

Current page

73

Current page

74

Current page

75

Current page

76

Current page

77

Current page

78

Current page

79

Current page

80

Current page

81

Current page

82

Current page

83

Current page

84

Current page

85

Current page

86

Current page

87

Current page

88

Current page

89

Current page

90

Current page

91

Current page

92

Current page

93

Current page

94

Current page

95

Current page

96

Current page

97

Current page

98

Current page

99

Current page

100

Current page

101

Current page

102

Current page

103

Current page

104

Current page

105

Current page

106

Current page

107

Current page

108

Current page

109

Current page

110

Current page

111

Current page

112

Current page

113

Current page

114

Current page

115

Current page

116

Current page

117

Current page

118

Current page

119

Current page

120

Current page

121

Current page

122

Current page

123

Current page

124

Current page

125

Current page

126

Current page

127

Current page

128

Current page

129

Current page

130

Current page

131

Current page

132

Current page

133

Current page

134

Current page

135

Current page

136

Current page

137

Current page

138

Current page

139

Current page

140

Current page

141

Current page

142

Current page

143

Current page

144

Current page

145

Current page

146

Current page

147

Current page

148

Current page

149

Current page

150

Current page

151

Current page

152

Current page

153

Current page

154

Current page

155

Current page

156

WHEN the teams packed up their cars and boxes of spares, tools, and equipment to go to the Brazilian Grand Prix in mid-March, they had to prepare to be away for at least three weeks, and nearly four in some cases, for all the cars and equipment were flown direct from Brazil to California. This meant that generally speaking the mechanical scene in Rio de Janeiro was the same as that in Long Beach and the only team who had to conjure up another car was the Williams team. In Brazil Rosberg had finished a fighting second in FW07C/17 but in doing so he had been over kerbs and on the rough and the underside of the monocoque was damaged. Immediately after the race he flew to Europe to test the new FW08 car at Dijon and FW07C/14 was also there being used to test components. After the testing FW07C/14 was stripped down and the monocoque sent to Long Beach by air for it to be built up as the spare car for the team in California. While that was happening another part of the team took FW07C/16 (Reutemann’s car) to Willow Springs circuit north of Los Angeles for Andretti to practise with prior to the official Long Beach practice. Meanwhile, back in England Jonathan Palmer was testing the new FW08 at Silverstone and put in a lap at 151 m.p.h. There is no resting in the Williams team and Rosberg explained how he had driven more test miles in the short time he has been with the Williams team than in all his previous years totalled up with other teams. “I’m not complaining,” he said, “it’s marvellous to virtually live in a Formula One car, but it is hard work”.

The use of the BMW turbo-charged engine by the Brabham team seems a bit fraught at the moment, though the reason is not clear, and two new Cosworth-powered BT49 cars to the latest D-specifications were taken to Brazil and on to Long Beach. Piquet had number D16 and Patrese D17, while C15 was the spare car. The differences are many but subtle so that outwardly you might not notice, but they involve more stiffness to the monocoque, lighter components, carbon-fibre brake discs, better aerodynamics and so on. After damaging D17 in Friday morning testing at Long Beach Patrese had to use C15 for the rest of practice and the race.

Two further new cars making their debut in Brazil, and going on to Long Beach, were the Lotus 91 cars for de Angelis and Mansell. The car of de Angelis was 91/6 (carrying on the car numbers in the Kevlar / Carbon Fibre series) and was actually built up around the monocoque from one of the Lotus 87 cars. As an emergency spare 87B/3 was taken along. While doing some pre-race testing at Willow Springs Mansell had an excursion off into the rough in 91/7 which caused quite a lot of work to be done straightening it all out. Another team with two new cars for their drivers in Brazil was Alfa Romeo with their Tipo 182, with number 1 for Giacomelli and number 2 for de Cesaris and they had a third new one as the T-car. The Tipo 182 still uses the 3-litre V12 engine and Alfa Romeo / Hewland gearbox but they have moved on to a tidy-looking monocoque of carbon-fibre manufactured in England. Clearly the car is lighter, smaller, stiffer and better than the old Tipo 179 cars which had undergone so many modifications to something that was fundamentally wrong that they had become to look awful. The new cars made an impressive showing in Long Beach, but then last year the Tipo 179 looked quite good and got steadily worse all season. The long-awaited turbo-charged 1 1/2-litre V8 has been out on test at the Misano Autodromo over near the Adriatic coast of Italy but when it will be raced is not known.

The Theodore team had a brand new car for Brazil, which survived and went on to Long Beach, as did the other small team, Ensign. Both of these one-car teams with limited financial and technical resources can do little but bring up the rear and try and survive as the giants at the front forge on to bigger and better things.

Renault took a brand new car for Arnoux (RE 30B/7 or RE37 to be more logical) as Prost had his new one in South Africa and Ferrari took two new cars across the Atlantic to supplement Pironi’s South African car. All three were the new 126C2 model with Postlethwaite designed chassis. The original C2 car, number 055, which Villeneuve raced in South Africa was the car in which Pironi had a monumental accident while testing at the Paul Ricard circuit in which it was virtually written off. In the Brazilian race Villeneuve crashed 057 lightly so it became the T-car for Long Beach and he took over 058 while Pironi stayed with 056.

For the rest there were no major changes, most of them using the same cars they had run in South Africa, though the McDonald March team finished their third 1982 car in time and were well equipped with three of the new cars for their drivers Mass and Boesel, all finished in their bright paintwork advertising Rothmans cigarettes. — D. S. J.

You may also like

Related products