1968 Italian Grand Prix

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Italy  1968 Italian Grand Prix
Race details
Race 9 of 12 in the 1968 Formula One season
Monza 1957.jpg
Date September 8, 1968
Official name XXXIX Gran Premio d'Italia
Location Autodromo Nazionale Monza, Monza, Italy
Course Permanent racing facility
5.750 km (3.573 mi)
Distance 68 laps, 391.000 km (242.956 mi)
Weather Hot, Dry
Pole position
Driver United Kingdom John Surtees Honda
Time 1:26.07
Fastest lap
Driver United Kingdom Jackie Oliver Lotus-Ford
Time 1:26.5 on lap 7
Podium
First New Zealand Denny Hulme McLaren-Ford
Second France Johnny Servoz-Gavin Matra-Ford
Third Belgium Jacky Ickx Ferrari

The 1968 Italian Grand Prix was a Formula One motor race held at the Monza Autodrome on September 8, 1968. It was the ninth round of the 1968 Formula One season. [1]

There was a five-week break after the previous Grand Prix in Germany, and before F1 circus resumed in Italy. The season so far had seen both rainfall and tragedy. During the break, the Oulton Park Gold Cup attracted some of the top names, with Jackie Stewart taking the victory, after his dominant victory at the Nürburgring. [2]

Report[edit]

Entry[edit]

A total of 24 F1 cars were entered for the event, making this the biggest of the season, with a couple of notable American drivers on the entry list. An Italian American by the name of Mario Andretti, entered in a third Lotus with and his USAC rival, Bobby Unser, replacing Richard Attwood at Owen Racing Organisation (BRM). Many others team increase their drivers crews. Johnny Servoz-Gavin due to drive the second of Ken Tyrrell’s Matra International cars. Scuderia Ferrari ran a third car for rising English star, Derek Bell,while David Hobbs with fielded by Honda Racing. [1][3]

Qualifying[edit]

The early qualifying session saw Andretti and Unser set the pace, recording fast time, especially as both drivers wanted to fly back to the US for the Hoosier Hundred, at Indiana State Fairgrounds, on the following day. They then intended to fly back to Milan and race in the Grand Prix. The event organisers announced that if the either driver returned to the States and race, they would be banned from competing in the Grand Prix, under a ruling which forbade drivers to complete in an other event within 24 hours of the start of the Grand Prix. Both Andretti and Unser flew back to the US and did not return. [4]

Qualifying resulted in John Surtees taking pole for the Honda Racing team, in their Honda RA301, averaging a speed of 150.314mph. He was joined on the front row by Bruce McLaren in his own McLaren M7A and Chris Amon in a Ferrari 312. The second row saw the Ferrari of Jacky Ickx and the Lotus of Graham Hill. Jackie Stewart, Denny Hulme and Derek Bell shared the third row. [5][6]

Race[edit]

The race was held over 68 laps of the Monza, taking place in sunny conditions, with John Surtees leading straight from the off. By the end of first lap, Bruce McLaren was ahead. McLaren stayed ahead until Surtees slipstreamed back into the lead. The following lap McLaren was ahead again, while the leading Ferrari of Chris Amon lost control on oil dropped by one of the Honda RA301s. Amon’s car flying over the barriers into the trees at one of the fast Lesmo corners. Surtees also hit the wall trying to avoid the Ferrari. This put Jo Siffert into second place, with Jackie Stewart third. The Scotsman moved into second and a slipstreaming battle developed for the lead between McLaren, Stewart, Siffert and Denny Hulme. [7][8]

McLaren’s M7A had to stop for more oil on lap 35 and retired. Stewart disappeared on lap 43, when his Cosworth engine failed. Hulme was by this stage already leading the race, and when Siffert went out with a rear suspension failure, nine laps from the end, Hulme was left to win. He won in a time of 1hr 40:14.8mins., averaging a speed of 146.284mph. There had been a lively battle behind the Kiwi, between Johnny Servoz-Gavin, Jacky Ickx and Jochen Rindt. The Ferrari of Ickx had emerged ahead, only to stop in the closing lap for more fuel. In the process, dropped to third behind Servoz-Gavin. Rindt having retired with an engine failure. Piers Courage, Jean-Pierre Beltoise, and Jo Bonnier rounding out the top six, with no other finishers. [9][10]

Classification[edit]

Pos No Driver Constructor Laps Time/Retired Grid Points
1 1 New Zealand Denny Hulme McLaren-Ford 68 1:40:14.8 7 9
2 5 France Johnny Servoz-Gavin Matra-Ford 68 + 1:28.4 13 6
3 8 Belgium Jacky Ickx Ferrari 68 + 1:28.6 4 4
4 27 United Kingdom Piers Courage BRM 67 + 1 Lap 17 3
5 6 France Jean-Pierre Beltoise Matra 66 + 2 Laps 18 2
6 3 Sweden Jo Bonnier McLaren-BRM 64 + 4 Laps 19 1
Ret 20 Switzerland Jo Siffert Lotus-Ford 58 Suspension 9  
Ret 10 Australia Jack Brabham Brabham-Repco 56 Oil Pressure 16  
Ret 4 United Kingdom Jackie Stewart Matra-Ford 42 Engine 6  
Ret 15 United Kingdom David Hobbs Honda 42 Engine 14  
Ret 19 United Kingdom Jackie Oliver Lotus-Ford 38 Transmission 11  
Ret 2 New Zealand Bruce McLaren McLaren-Ford 34 Oil Leak 2  
Ret 11 Austria Jochen Rindt Brabham-Repco 33 Engine 10  
Ret 26 Mexico Pedro Rodríguez BRM 22 Engine 15  
Ret 21 United States Dan Gurney Eagle-Weslake 19 Overheating 12  
Ret 16 United Kingdom Graham Hill Lotus-Ford 10 Wheel 5  
Ret 14 United Kingdom John Surtees Honda 8 Accident 1  
Ret 9 New Zealand Chris Amon Ferrari 8 Accident 3  
Ret 7 United Kingdom Derek Bell Ferrari 4 Fuel System 8  
Ret 23 United Kingdom Vic Elford Cooper-BRM 2 Accident 20  
DNQ 28 Australia Frank Gardner BRM    
DNQ 12 Switzerland Silvio Moser Brabham-Repco        
EXC 18 United States Mario Andretti Lotus-Ford   Raced in USA within 24 hours    
EXC 25 United States Bobby Unser BRM   Raced in USA within 24 hours    

[11][10][12][13]

References[edit]


Championship standings after the race[edit]

  • Note: Only the top five positions are included for both sets of standings.


Previous race:
1968 German Grand Prix
FIA Formula One World Championship
1968 season
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1968 Canadian Grand Prix
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