1985 F1 World Championship

  • 1985
  • F1
  • F1 World Championship
Champion
Other seasons
Other 1985 Championships
Drivers' Champion
Constructors' Champion
Most Wins
Races
16

After coming so close in the two previous seasons, Alain Prost finally became the first Frenchman to win the World Championship. He clinched the title thanks to six wins and with two races to spare. At Zandvoort, McLaren team-mate Niki Lauda won by less than 0.3sec from Prost in his final year as a Grand Prix driver.

Prost’s closest challenger was Ferrari’s Michele Alboreto, who led the series after a winning the Canadian GP in June. But Prost re-established his supremacy on the quick circuits that followed, beating Alboreto by more than a lap at Silverstone. A series of three retirements finally ended Alboreto’s hopes. Ferrari replaced Rene Arnoux with the highly rated but underused Stefan Johansson after just one race. The Swede led at Imola but his race performances were often hampered by poor grid positions.

Ayrton Senna moved to Lotus and proved to be the quickest driver in Formula 1. Although he scored a tremendous first victory in the wet Portuguese GP, he was unlucky for most of the season and had to wait until September for a second win at Spa-Francorchamps. That meeting had actually started in June, but was postponed after first qualifying when the newly laid track surface broke up, rendering the course’s fast corners highly dangerous.

Senna’s Lotus team-mate Elio de Angelis managed one win (after Prost had been disqualified at San Marino) and a pole position, but he signed for Brabham at the end of the season after six years with the team. Pirelli supplied their tyres to Brabham and Nelson Piquet won in France but otherwise did not figure strongly in his final year with the team.

Williams-Honda was the quickest combination by the end of the season, with three successive victories. Nigel Mansell finally won his first Grand Prix at Brands Hatch after more than seventy unsuccessful attempts. He followed that up with victory in the South African GP, a race which some teams boycotted for political reasons. Keke Rosberg, who had previously won in Detroit, completed the Williams hat-trick at the final round, the first World Championship race to be held in Australia.

The Renault team withdrew from racing at the end of the season after nine seasons that had promised much but never quite delivered the title. They would continue to supply Lotus, Ligier and Tyrrell with their turbocharged engines. Toleman had a troubled season that was delayed by problems securing a tyre contract. The team was eventually bought by its sponsor, Benetton, and the cars would be renamed for 1986.

Races

Round Race name Date Circuit Laps Winner

1

John Player Special Grande Premio do Brasil

07/04/1985

Rio de Janeiro

61

Alain Prost

Marlboro McLaren International

2

Grande Premio de Portugal

21/04/1985

Estoril

67

Ayrton Senna

John Player Special Team Lotus

3

Gran Premio di San Marino

05/05/1985

Imola

60

Elio de Angelis

John Player Special Team Lotus

4

Grand Prix de Monaco

19/05/1985

Monte Carlo

78

Alain Prost

Marlboro McLaren International

5

Grand Prix Labatt du Canada

16/06/1985

Montreal

70

Michele Alboreto

Scuderia Ferrari

6

Detroit Grand Prix

23/06/1985

Detroit

63

Keke Rosberg

Canon Williams Honda Team

7

Grand Prix de France

07/07/1985

Paul Ricard

53

Nelson Piquet

Motor Racing Developments

8

Marlboro British Grand Prix

21/07/1985

Silverstone

65

Alain Prost

Marlboro McLaren International

9

Grosser Preis von Deutschland

04/08/1985

Nurburgring

67

Michele Alboreto

Scuderia Ferrari

10

Grosser Preis von Osterreich

18/08/1985

Osterreichring

52

Alain Prost

Marlboro McLaren International

11

Grote Prijs van Nederland

25/08/1985

Zandvoort

70

Niki Lauda

Marlboro McLaren International

12

Gran Premio d'Italia

08/09/1985

Monza

51

Alain Prost

Marlboro McLaren International

13

Grand Prix de Belgique

15/09/1985

Spa-Francorchamps

43

Ayrton Senna

John Player Special Team Lotus

14

Shell Oils Grand Prix of Europe

06/10/1985

Brands Hatch

75

Nigel Mansell

Canon Williams Honda Team

15

Southern Hotels Grand Prix of South Africa

19/10/1985

Kyalami

75

Nigel Mansell

Canon Williams Honda Team

16

Mitsubishi Australian Grand Prix

03/11/1985

Adelaide

82

Keke Rosberg

Canon Williams Honda Team

3,128

Championships

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12,833

Results

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15,933

Drivers

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8,248

Teams

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856

Circuits

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