On 7 April 1968, Jim Clark crashed during the Deutschland Trophae European F2 Championship race at Hockenheim. The cause is still something of a mystery but the man who had set the Formula 1 pace for six years was dead. Motor racing was sent into a state of shock and then the deaths of Ludovico Scarfiotti in a hillclimb, Mike Spence during practice at Indianapolis and Jo Schlesser during the French Grand Prix further compounded a black year for the sport.
The responsibility for lifting the Lotus team after Hockenheim was grasped by Graham Hill, who won the next two GPs and would eventually become World Champion for a second time. Lotus also gave Mario Andretti his first chance in F1 at Watkins Glen, where the young Indycar star responded by qualifying on pole position for his debut.
The Ford Cosworth DFV was now widely available, and both McLaren and the Ken Tyrrell-run Matra team both recorded their first wins using the engine. Bruce McLaren scored his team’s maiden victory at Spa-Francorchamps while his new team-mate and reigning champion Denny Hulme added two more to finish third in the championship. Jackie Stewart was reunited with his former F3 boss Ken Tyrrell and won three races to challenge Hill until the final event of the season. In addition, Jo Siffert – driving a Lotus 49 for Rob Walker – and Ferrari’s Jacky Ickx each recorded their first GP victory.
The most visible technical development was the introduction of high aerodynamic wings, which increased cornering speeds by improving downforce. So often the innovators, Team Lotus brought Indianapolis-style commercial sponsorship to F1 in 1968, repainting its cars red and white in deference to Gold Leaf cigarettes. Ironically, the arrival of visible sponsorship came immediately after Jim Clark’s final race and victory in the South African season-opener – truly a changing of eras.
|1||South African Grand Prix||01/01/1968||Kyalami||80||Jim Clark|
|2||Spanish Grand Prix||12/05/1968||Jarama||90||Graham Hill|
|3||Monaco Grand Prix||26/05/1968||Monte Carlo||80||Graham Hill|
|4||Belgian Grand Prix||09/06/1968||Spa-Francorchamps||28||Bruce McLaren|
|5||Dutch Grand Prix||23/06/1968||Zandvoort||90||Jackie Stewart|
|6||French Grand Prix||07/07/1968||Rouen-les-Essarts||60||Jacky Ickx|
|7||British Grand Prix||20/07/1968||Brands Hatch||80||Jo Siffert|
|8||German Grand Prix||04/08/1968||Nurburgring||14||Jackie Stewart|
|9||Italian Grand Prix||08/09/1968||Monza||68||Denny Hulme|
|10||Canadian Grand Prix||22/09/1968||St Jovite||90||Denny Hulme|
|11||United States Grand Prix||06/10/1968||Watkins Glen||108||Jackie Stewart|
|12||Mexican Grand Prix||03/11/1968||Mexico City||65||Graham Hill|
|Graham Hill||1st||Team Lotus||GBR||48|
|Jackie Stewart||2nd||Matra International||GBR||36|
|Denny Hulme||3rd||Bruce McLaren Motor Racing||NZL||33|
|Jacky Ickx||4th||Scuderia Ferrari||BEL||27|
|Bruce McLaren||5th||Bruce McLaren Motor Racing||NZL||22|
|Pedro Rodriguez||6th||Owen Racing Organisation||MEX||18|
|John Surtees||7th||Honda Racing||GBR||12|
|Jo Siffert||7th||Rob Walker/Jack Durlacher Racing||CHE||12|
|Chris Amon||10th||Scuderia Ferrari||NZL||10|
|Jim Clark||11th||Team Lotus||GBR||9|
|Jochen Rindt||12th||Brabham Racing Organisation||AUT||8|
Cooper Car Co
|Richard Attwood||13th||Owen Racing Organisation||GBR||6|
|Jackie Oliver||13th||Gold Leaf Team Lotus||GBR||6|
|Ludovico Scarfiotti||13th||Cooper Car Co||ITA||6|
|Lucien Bianchi||17th||Cooper Car Co||BEL||5|
|Vic Elford||17th||Cooper Car Co||GBR||5|
|Brian Redman||19th||Cooper Car Co||GBR||4|
|Piers Courage||19th||Reg Parnell Racing||GBR||4|
Brabham Racing Organisation
|Jo Bonnier||21st||Joakim Bonnier Racing Team||SWE||3|
|Silvio Moser||23rd||Ecurie Charles Vogele||CHE||2|
|Jack Brabham||23rd||Brabham Racing Organisation||AUS||2|
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