1979 German Grand Prix
- Sunday, July 29, 1979
- Grosser Preis von Deutschland
- F1 World Championship
Hockenheimring, July 29th
If one did not go to the Eifel mountains on the way down to the Heidelberg/Mannheim plains, and do a lap of the Nürburgring it would be easy to forget that the German Grand Prix used to be a great event. An event where racing drivers could prove themselves and make legends that would join those created since the start of the German Grand Prix, that would live forever in the annals of Grand Prix racing. They could also die on the Nürburgring, just like Jim Clark died on the Hockenheimring.
The German round in the Formula One championship series seems settled in the dusty concrete stadium of the Hockenheimring and nobody seems to be particularly worried either way. You either like Germany or you don’t, and if you do you accept the vastness of the stadium and the paddock area as being convenient for working on racing cars and sending them off into the woods to see if they work. The area beyond the stadium seems a sort of no-man’s land, hidden visually and orally from those inside the amphitheatre, and you get no excited anticipation of hearing the cars approach, and when they are in the stadium the corners do no provide much of interest. While they are gone from view, which is quite a long time by present day standards, with a lap time of 1 min. 50 sec. or more, there is nothing to encourage the imagination, so you simply wait with a vacant stare on your face until they return. When I first went to the Hockenheimring in 1950 I was not very impressed, having already been to the Nürburgring, and nearly 30 years later I am still not impressed.
Permanent road course
Alan Jones (Williams FW07B-Ford), 1m48.49, 139.998 mph, F1, 1980
First Race1949 Hockenheim F2