1997 German Grand Prix

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Germany  1997 German Grand Prix
Race details
Race 10 of 17 in the 1997 Formula One season
Hockenheimring prior to 2002.svg
Date July 27, 1997
Official name LIX Grosser Mobil 1 Preis von Deutschland
Location Hockenheimring, Hockenheim, Baden-Württemberg, Germany
Course Permanent racing facility
6.823 km (4.256 mi)
Distance 45 laps, 307.035 km (191.537 mi)
Weather Sunny, Dry Track
Pole position
Driver Austria Gerhard Berger Benetton-Renault
Time 1:41.873
Fastest lap
Driver Austria Gerhard Berger Benetton-Renault
Time 1:45.747 on lap 9
Podium
First Austria Gerhard Berger Benetton-Renault
Second Germany Michael Schumacher Ferrari
Third Finland Mika Häkkinen McLaren-Mercedes
Michael Schumacher (Ferrari 310B) finished second, behind Gerhard Berger.

The 1997 German Grand Prix (formally the LIX Grosser Mobil 1 Preis von Deutschland) was a Formula One motor race held on 27 July 1997 at Hockenheimring, in Hockenheim, Baden-Württemberg, Germany. It was the tenth race of the 1997 Formula One season. The race, contested over 45 laps, was won by Gerhard Berger for the Benetton team, from a pole position start. Michael Schumacher finished second in a Ferrarii, with Mika Häkkinen third for the McLaren team.

Report[edit]

Background[edit]

The Grand Prix was contested by 22 drivers, in eleven teams of two, The teams, also known as constructors, were Williams, Arrows, Ferrari, Benetton, McLaren, Jordan, Prost, Sauber, Tyrrell, Minardi and Stewart.

Before the race, Ferrari driver Michael Schumacher led the Drivers' Championship with 47 points; Williams driver Jacques Villeneuve was second on 43 points. Behind them in the Drivers' Championship, Jean Alesi was third on 21 points in a Benetton, with Heinz-Harald Frentzen and Eddie Irvine on 19 and 18 points respectively. In the Constructors' Championship, Ferrari were leading on 65 points and Williams were second on 62 points, with Benetton third on 35 points.

Following the British Grand Prix on 13 July, the teams conducted testing sessions at the Autodromo Nazionale Monza from July 14–17.[1] Shinji Nakano (Prost) set the fastest time on the first day, while Giancarlo Fisichella (Jordan) topped the second day's running. Johnny Herbert (Sauber) was fastest on the third day and Ralf Schumacher (Jordan) set the fastest time on the final day of running.[2]

There was one driver change heading into the race. Having been in one of the two Benetton cars since the seventh race of the season at Canada, Alexander Wurz stood down from his role as race driver and was replaced by Gerhard Berger. Berger was forced to miss the previous three rounds due to a reoccuring sinus problem, requiring two operations.[3]

On 22 July, four days before the event's first free practice sessions took place, Benetton confirmed the team would sign Fisichella for 1998, while the organisers of the German Grand Prix signed a deal with the Fédération Internationale de l'Automobile (FIA), to continue hosting the race until 2001.[4]

Practice and qualifying[edit]

Four practice sessions were held before the Sunday race—two on Friday, and two on Saturday. The Friday morning and afternoon sessions each lasted an hour. The third and final practice sessions were held on Saturday morning and lasted 45 minutes.[5] The two practice sessions were affected by occasionally damp and wet conditions, which made the track moderately slipperly. Ralf Schumacher set the session's fastest time, with a lap of 1:46.196, one-tenth of a second quicker than Michael Schumacher.[6]

Saturday's afternoon qualifying session lasted for an hour. During this session, the 107% rule was in effect, which necessitated each driver set a time within 107% of the quickest lap to qualify for the race. Each driver was limited to twelve laps.[5]

Race[edit]

The drivers took to the track at 09:30 CEST (GMT +1) for a 30 minute warm-up session.

Giancarlo Fisichella took his first ever front-row start, and was challenging Berger for the win until he punctured a tyre on the debris of Jan Magnussen's blown engine. This same incident had helped him gain the lead, as the smoke from the engine delayed Berger prior to his pit stop. Fisichella only led for two laps before Berger repassed him. After Fisichella broke down due to damage from the flailing tyre (caused while he tried to drive back to the pits), Michael Schumacher gave him a lift back to the pits after the race.

Jacques Villeneuve had a disastrous race, spinning off while trying to overtake rookie Jarno Trulli, thus losing championship ground to Schumacher. The latter's team-mate Eddie Irvine and Villeneuve's team-mate Heinz-Harald Frentzen collided at the first corner, with David Coulthard also forced out by damage from the incident.

Berger's last win would also be the last for Benetton, just as Berger's first win had been the team's first. It was also Benetton's only win as an Italian constructor.

Post-race[edit]

Classification[edit]

Qualifying[edit]

Pos No Driver Constructor Time Gap
1 8 Austria Gerhard Berger Benetton-Renault 1:41.873
2 12 Italy Giancarlo Fisichella Jordan-Peugeot 1:41.896 +0.023
3 9 Finland Mika Häkkinen McLaren-Mercedes 1:42.034 +0.161
4 5 Germany Michael Schumacher Ferrari 1:42.181 +0.308
5 4 Germany Heinz-Harald Frentzen Williams-Renault 1:42.421 +0.548
6 7 France Jean Alesi Benetton-Renault 1:42.493 +0.620
7 11 Germany Ralf Schumacher Jordan-Peugeot 1:42.498 +0.625
8 10 United Kingdom David Coulthard McLaren-Mercedes 1:42.687 +0.814
9 3 Canada Jacques Villeneuve Williams-Renault 1:42.967 +1.094
10 6 United Kingdom Eddie Irvine Ferrari 1:43.209 +1.336
11 14 Italy Jarno Trulli Prost-Mugen-Honda 1:43.226 +1.353
12 22 Brazil Rubens Barrichello Stewart-Ford 1:43.272 +1.399
13 1 United Kingdom Damon Hill Arrows-Yamaha 1:43.361 +1.488
14 16 United Kingdom Johnny Herbert Sauber-Petronas 1:43.660 +1.787
15 23 Denmark Jan Magnussen Stewart-Ford 1:43.927 +2.054
16 2 Brazil Pedro Diniz Arrows-Yamaha 1:44.069 +2.196
17 15 Japan Shinji Nakano Prost-Mugen-Honda 1:44.112 +2.239
18 17 Argentina Norberto Fontana Sauber-Petronas 1:44.552 +2.679
19 19 Finland Mika Salo Tyrrell-Ford 1:45.372 +3.499
20 18 Netherlands Jos Verstappen Tyrrell-Ford 1:45.811 +3.938
21 21 Brazil Tarso Marques Minardi-Hart 1:45.942 +4.069
22 20 Japan Ukyo Katayama Minardi-Hart 1:46.499 +4.626

Race[edit]

Pos No Driver Constructor Laps Time/Retired Grid Points
1 8 Austria Gerhard Berger Benetton-Renault 45 1:20:59.046 1 10
2 5 Germany Michael Schumacher Ferrari 45 +17.527 4 6
3 9 Finland Mika Häkkinen McLaren-Mercedes 45 +24.770 3 4
4 14 Italy Jarno Trulli Prost-Mugen-Honda 45 +27.165 11 3
5 11 Germany Ralf Schumacher Jordan-Peugeot 45 +29.995 7 2
6 7 France Jean Alesi Benetton-Renault 45 +34.717 6 1
7 15 Japan Shinji Nakano Prost-Mugen-Honda 45 +1:19.722 17  
8 1 United Kingdom Damon Hill Arrows-Yamaha 44 +1 Lap 13  
9 17 Argentina Norberto Fontana Sauber-Petronas 44 +1 Lap 18  
10 18 Netherlands Jos Verstappen Tyrrell-Ford 44 +1 Lap 20  
11 12 Italy Giancarlo Fisichella Jordan-Peugeot 40 Radiator 2  
Ret 22 Brazil Rubens Barrichello Stewart-Ford 33 Engine 12  
Ret 19 Finland Mika Salo Tyrrell-Ford 33 Clutch 19  
Ret 3 Canada Jacques Villeneuve Williams-Renault 33 Spun off 9  
Ret 23 Denmark Jan Magnussen Stewart-Ford 27 Engine 15  
Ret 20 Japan Ukyo Katayama Minardi-Hart 23 Out of fuel 22  
Ret 16 United Kingdom Johnny Herbert Sauber-Petronas 8 Collision 14  
Ret 2 Brazil Pedro Diniz Arrows-Yamaha 8 Collision 16  
Ret 10 United Kingdom David Coulthard McLaren-Mercedes 1 Transmission 8  
Ret 4 Germany Heinz-Harald Frentzen Williams-Renault 1 Collision 5  
Ret 6 United Kingdom Eddie Irvine Ferrari 1 Collision 10  
Ret 21 Brazil Tarso Marques Minardi-Hart 0 Gearbox 21  

Standings after Grand Prix[edit]

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

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Formula One July 1997 Test-Times". Atlas F1. Haymarket Publications. Retrieved 19 July 2014. 
  2. ^ "Last week at Monza". GrandPrix.com. Inside F1, Inc. 21 July 1997. Retrieved 19 July 2014. 
  3. ^ "Berger back in business". GrandPrix.com. Inside F1, Inc. 21 July 1997. Retrieved 19 July 2014. 
  4. ^ "Germany to host 2 Grands Prix through 2001". Atlas F1. Haymarket Publications. 21 July 1997. Retrieved 19 July 2014. 
  5. ^ a b Domenjoz, Luc (1997). Formula 1 Yearbook - 1997-98 (8th edition ed.). Parragon. p. 220. ISBN 0-7525-2386-4. "
    119. Free practice will take place:
    a) two days (Monaco : three days) before the race from 11.00 to 12.00 and from 13.00 to 14.00.
    b) the day before the race from 09.00 to 09.45 and from 10.15 to 11.00"
     
  6. ^ "News 97 - German Grand Prix". Gale Force F1. 27 July 1997. Retrieved 19 July 2014. 


Previous race:
1997 British Grand Prix
FIA Formula One World Championship
1997 season
Next race:
1997 Hungarian Grand Prix
Previous race:
1996 German Grand Prix
German Grand Prix Next race:
1998 German Grand Prix