The Canadian Grand Prix followed only two weeks after the Italian so the majority of cars had to be transported back to England and loaded up on the Tradeswinds aircraft for Canada inside ten days. This left little time for anything other than a quick wipe over and spanner check plus replacing the bent parts on those cars that had bounced off the chicanes. However, one completely new car appeared in the Canadian paddock along with a second BRM P180, which was last seen as long ago as the Spanish GP.
Elf-Team Tyrrell had the No. 1 and 2 spots on the programme and in addition to 005 for Stewart also brought along a brand new car designated 006 to the same design as 005. Both cars had outboard front brakes but provision is still made for the location of the inboard brakes originally tried on this design. The huge airscoops first seen in Austria were still in rather rough fibreglass. The last of the “Mk. 1” cars, 004, was on hand as a spare. Matra had little of interest, bringing along just the single MS120D. It seems that the team may not continue in Formula One next year which will be a great shame as there is no more exciting noise in racing than their screaming V12.
John Player Team Lotus brought along all three of their 72 models (5, 6, 7). The surprise here was that Fittipaldi had a new team-mate in Reine Wisell who so far this season has driven spasmodically for BRM. Wisell drove for Lotus last year and in fact, took over the same car (72/6) that he raced for the latter part of the season and, in which, Dave Walker has driven this year. Fittipaldi had the choice of the other two cars, 72/7 now repaired after its transporter accident. Former Brabham owner/designer Ron Tauranac, who has been giving Frank Williams a helping hand this season, was ensconced in the Lotus pits. It seems that there was the possibility he may join the team and this was a sort of “trial marriage”.
As usual there were three Brabhams, the pair of BT37s for Carlos Reutemann and Graham Hill and the older BT34 for Wilson Fittipaldi and no sign of the Weslake powered car. Ferrari brought along three of their B2 versions of the flat 12 car (nos. 5, 6, & 7) for Ickx and Regazzoni. Arturo Merzario was entered in the third car when withdrawn at the last minute.
There were four BRMs, all in the red and white Marlboro colours including the cigarette company’s badge and motto which, believe it or not, actually says in Latin “We Came, We Saw, and We Conquered”!
In the case of BRM this year (with the exception of Monaco) the motto should read “We Came, We Saw and We Retired”. Anyway, the team were back to P180s (disregarding the plastic imitations) both cars having first been seen at Jarama but chassis no. 1 having since resided at Bourne. Both cars had the latest rear oil tank etc. Beltoise drove the same car he tried at Monza while Canadian Bill Brack made a guest appearance with the team as he did three years ago and drove P180/01. The two P160Cs were the Monaco winning 01 which Gethin took over and Ganly with his regular 06.
Team McLaren were their usual neat selves with the two M19Cs for Hulme and Revson and the older M19A in reserve in case of disaster. Team Surtees were fielding their smallest effort for some time with only two cars racing. Tim Schenken and Andrea de Adamich had their TS9Bs, Schenken’s in Brooke Bond Oxo—Rob Walker colours on this occasion as Mike Hailwood was concentrating on the Formula Two race at Albi where he had a chance of clinching the European (Non-Graded) Championship. John Surtees was also at Albi leaving the team in Rob Walker’s hands although Hailwood’s TS9B was available as a spare but was never touched.
The STP-March outfit had their regular pair of 721Gs for Peterson and Lauda. Peterson’s mount was in side radiator form while Lauda had the latest front radiator set-up for the first day of practice. But he bashed this about a bit on Saturday so he too reverted to side rads. Also with Marches, but to the earlier 711/721 design, were the Frank Williams entries for Carlos Pace and Henri Pescarolo, both in their usual trim but using the wheels from the abortive Politoys project. Of the Politoys there was no sign, a problem with the rear uprights and drive shafts has halted its progress. Yet another March 721 was in the hands of American Skip Barber entered by Gene Mason Racing. This car was seen in last year’s US GP and since has been competing in the American L. & M. Continental Championship. It features a special nose and rear suspensions modifications by Barber’s team.
A. R. M.