Harald Ertl

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Harald Ertl
HaraldErtl1977.jpg
Born (1948-08-31)31 August 1948
Zell am See, Salzburg, Austria
Died 7 April 1982(1982-04-07) (aged 33)
Nr. Giessen, Hesse, West Germany
Formula One World Championship career
Nationality  German
Active years 19751978, 1980
Teams Hesketh, Ensign, ATS
Races 28 (19 starts)
Championships 0
Wins 0
Podiums 0
Career points 0
Pole positions 0
Fastest laps 0
First race 1975 German Grand Prix
Last race 1980 German Grand Prix

Harald Ertl (31 August 1948 – 7 April 1982) was an Austrian racing driver and motorsport journalist.

Career[edit]

Ertl was born in Zell am See and attended the same school as drivers Jochen Rindt and Helmut Marko. In 1969 he bought a Formula 5 car, won six races, but also rolled at the Nürburgring. He was second in the European Cup with a Kaimann chassis in 1970, and started also in Formula 3 with a March Engineering 703.

In 1971 he moved to Touring car racing, driving an Alfa Romeo in the Deutsche Rennsport Meisterschaft (DRM) and the European Touring Car Championship.

From 1974 to 1978, Ertl raced in Formula 2 including the ADAC Eifelrennen.

Based on experience with their BMW, Schnitzer Motorsport developed a Toyota Celica LB Turbo for Ertl in 1977. His career highlight was winning the DRM championship in 1978 driving a BMW 320i Turbo for Schnitzer Motorsport.

In 1979 and 1980, he drove successfully for Zakspeed, winning several races with their Ford Capri turbo. They also developed a mid-engined Lotus Europa for the 1000km Nürburgring. Harald Ertl did not race in 1981, but planned a return for the 1982 Renault 5 Turbo Cup.

Ertl was killed in an aircraft accident at the age of 33. He was travelling in a Beechcraft Bonanza flown by his brother-in-law Dr. Jörg Becker-Hohensee from Mannheim to their holiday home in Sylt in Northern Germany for an Easter vacation. Less than a quarter of the way through the intended flight distance engine failure caused the plane to crash near Giessen. Ertl's wife Vera and son Sebastian were injured but Becker-Hohensee, Ertl and his niece perished.

F1 career[edit]

In 1975, sponsorship by Warsteiner Brauerei had allowed him to drive in Formula One with a Hesketh in their golden livery. In his debut at the 1975 German Grand Prix he finished 8th, retired in the next GP, to finish ninth at Monza.

Encouraged by the results, a full season with Hesketh was planned for 1976. In the 1976 South African Grand Prix he qualified in the last row and finished 15th. The next races saw him either not qualify at all, or at the back of the grid, with early retirements due to mechanical failures. Despite not being satisfied with the value the team gave him for the money, he almost scored a point when coming in seventh at the 1976 British Grand Prix, albeit three laps down.

Two weeks later at the 1976 German Grand Prix Ertl was one of the four drivers who helped pull Niki Lauda from his burning Ferrari after Lauda's infamous crash during the second lap of the race. The rest of the season saw two other eighth places as highlights, at home and at the wet 1976 Japanese Grand Prix.

Ertl continued with Hesketh for some European races, finishing 9th at the 1977 Belgian Grand Prix. He left Hesketh after the 1977 French Grand Prix where he again failed to qualify for the race.

For a few races in 1978, Ertl entered with Ensign, but things were even worse there, with the cars failing to finish or even to pre-qualify, like in the 1978 Italian Grand Prix. He got a chance on the spare car of German Team ATS but could not qualify that either.

Ertl tried once again with ATS in the 1980 German Grand Prix with the same result. The last Formula One Grand Prix he took part in was the 1978 Austrian Grand Prix, in his home country.

Complete European Formula Two Championship results[edit]

(key) (Races in bold indicate pole position; races in italics indicate fastest lap)

Year Entrant Chassis Engine 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 Pos Pts
1974 Team Obermoser Jörg - Eurorace March 742 BMW M12 BAR
HOC
Ret
PAU
SAL
HOC
MUG
KAR
PER
NC 0
Chevron Racing Team Chevron B27 HOC
22
VAL
1975 Fred Opert Racing Chevron B27 BMW M12 EST
THR
Ret
HOC
Ret
NÜR
3
PAU
Ret
18th 4
Chevron B29 HOC
7
SAL
11
ROU
Ret
MUG
Ret
PER
12
SIL
Ret
ZOL
NOG
VAL
1976 Motor Racing Company March 752 BMW M12 HOC
6
15th 2
private entry Chevron B35 THR
Ret
Fred Opert Racing VAL
12
SAL
17
PAU
HOC
Ret
ROU
MUG
15
PER
7
HOC
Ret
Chevron Racing Team EST
10
NOG
1977 Team Warsteiner Eurorace Chevron B35 BMW SIL
THR
HOC
Ret
NÜR
Ret
VAL
PAU
MUG
ROU
NOG
PER
MIS
EST
DON
NC 0
1978 Autovermeitungen March 782 BMW THR
HOC
Ret
NÜR
PAU
MUG
VAL
ROU
DON
NOG
PER
MIS
NC 0
ICI Chevron Cars Chevron B42 HOC
DNQ

Complete World Championship Formula One results[edit]

(key)

Year Entrant Chassis Engine 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 WDC Points
1975 Warsteiner Brewery Hesketh 308 Cosworth V8 ARG
BRA
RSA
ESP
MON
BEL
SWE
NED
FRA
GBR
GER
8
AUT
Ret
ITA
9
USA
NC 0
1976 Hesketh Racing Hesketh 308D Cosworth V8 BRA
RSA
15
USW
DNQ
ESP
DNQ
BEL
Ret
MON
DNQ
SWE
Ret
FRA
Ret
GBR
7
GER
Ret
AUT
8
NED
Ret
ITA
16
CAN
DNS
USA
13
JPN
8
NC 0
1977 Hesketh Racing Hesketh 308E Cosworth V8 ARG
BRA
RSA
USW
ESP
Ret
MON
DNQ
BEL
9
SWE
16
FRA
DNQ
GBR
GER
AUT
NED
ITA
USA
CAN
JPN
NC 0
1978 Sachs Racing Ensign N177 Cosworth V8 ARG
BRA
RSA
USW
MON
BEL
ESP
SWE
FRA
GBR
GER
11
AUT
Ret
NED
DNPQ
NC 0
ATS Engineering ATS HS1 ITA
DNQ*
USA
CAN
1980 Team ATS ATS D4 Cosworth V8 ARG
BRA
RSA
USW
BEL
MON
FRA
GBR
GER
DNQ
AUT
NED
ITA
CAN
USA
NC 0
* Ertl had failed to pre-qualify for this race in his Ensign, then took part in qualifying sessions in the ATS, and again failed to qualify.

External links[edit]