1976 Canadian Grand Prix
- Sunday, October 3, 1976
- Labatt's 50 Canadian Grand Prix
- F1 World Championship
Mosport Park, Toronto, October 3rd
The Canadian Grand Prix re-entered the World Championship calendar in 1976 follow-a year’s absence, and the general feeling amongst the Formula One teams was one of satisfaction at the prospect of competing at the picturesque 2.4-mile circuit set in colourful woodland not far from the shores of Lake Ontario. The reason for the race being cancelled in 1975 was a protracted squabble between the Formula One Association and the Canadian organisers, the general feeling being that the Mosport race had been “sacrificed” on a point of principle, that principle being that you don’t argue with Ecclestone, Mosley and Company about money; you might well be able to haggle over more trivial details, but if you are a Grand Prix organiser you accept the demands of the Formula One Association and pay up the prize fund they request if you want your race to take place. As there are no fewer than 16 races on this year’s calendar and the scheduled return of the Argentine Grand Prix at the beginning of next January stretches next year’s programme to a remarkable 17, one assumes that organisers all over the World must be happy with the current arrangement and arc making a great deal of money themselves; but that’s really another story!
This year’s race provided the latest instalment in the dispute for World Championship honours between McLaren’s James Hunt and reigning title-holder Niki Lauda. Unlike last year, when Lauda’s victory was clear-cut and without doubt, this year’s Championship has been clouded with all sorts of unsavoury disputes, with race results being decided in courtrooms months after the event. Immediately prior to the Canadian race the McLaren team and Hunt were told by an FIA Court of Appeal that they had been disqualified from their victory in the British Grand Prix on the grounds of some obscure technical ruling in the International regulations as the result of an appeal from the Ferrari team. Just as Hunt was firstly disqualified from victory in the Spanish Grand Prix and later reinstated at a Court of Appeal, he’d been allowed by the RAC to take part in the British Grand Prix and now, months after winning it in fine style, had to accept that this victory was negated on some obscure point of law. This whole business only goes to prove what Motor Sport has been saying for many years, namely that the World Championship as such can appear very stupid so it’s individual races that count, and that top-line motor racing is unnecessarily cluttered with a host of silly and complicated rules. As far as this magazine is concerned James Hunt (McLaren-Cosworth M23/6) won the 1976 British Grand Prix at Brands Hatch.
Permanent road course
Marco Werner (Audi R10 TDI), 1m05.823, 134.488 mph, ALMS Sports Cars, 2008
First Race1966 Canadian Grand Prix