1990 German Grand Prix
|Race 9 of 16 in the 1990 Formula One season|
|Date||29 July 1990|
|Official name||Grosser Mobil 1 Preis von Deutschland|
near Heidelberg, West Germany
|Course||Permanent racing facility|
|Course length||6.802 km (4.2265 mi)|
|Distance||45 laps, 306.090 km (190.195 mi)|
|Weather||Hot, dry, sunny|
|Time||1:45.602 on lap 31|
The 1990 German Grand Prix was a Formula One motor race held at Hockenheimring on 29 July 1990. It was the ninth round of the 1990 Formula One season. The race was the 52nd German Grand Prix and the 14th to be held at the Hockenheimring. It was the 39th and last Formula One Grand Prix to be held in West Germany prior to its re-unification with East Germany. The race was held over 45 laps of the seven kilometre circuit for a race distance of 306 kilometres.
The race was won by 1988 World Champion, Brazilian driver Ayrton Senna driving a McLaren MP4/5B. He took a six-second victory over Italian driver Alessandro Nannini driving a Benetton B190 who was just two seconds in front of Senna's Austrian teammate Gerhard Berger.
Senna's win put him back into the championship points lead, four ahead of Ferrari driver Alain Prost.
Pre-qualifying was re-shuffled after the British Grand Prix with Larrousse moving into the main field while Ligier was bumped to Friday morning's one hour "make or break" session. It didn't seem to hinder the French team as both Philippe Alliot and Nicola Larini were easily the fastest in their Ford powered JS33B's. Also making it through were the Osella of Olivier Grouillard and the AGS of Yannick Dalmas.
The Coloni team ended their involvement with the uncompetitive Flat 12 Subaru engine. Bertrand Gachot's modified Coloni C3C arrived at the circuit with a customer Cosworth DFR V8 (which the team claimed weighed some 100 kg less than the Subaru) and would remain with the V8 so until season's end.
After three straight wins by Ferraris Alain Prost, McLaren-Honda showed that they were back on top in qualifying. Honda promised McLaren a more powerful V10 engine at Hockenheim and they delivered with pole man Senna and second placed Berger (only 0.2 seconds slower) the only drivers to lap in the 1:40's and they did this during the first qualifying session. The Ferraris of Prost and Nigel Mansell were over 1.5 seconds slower (with the Englishman complaining of a down on power engine compared to his team mate), and the Williams-Renaults of Riccardo Patrese and Thierry Boutsen occupying the 3rd row. So confident were McLaren that their times would not be beaten that both Senna and Berger did over 20 laps each and spent the entire second qualifying session working on their race set up without actually setting anything like a qualifying time, their fastest times over 6 seconds slower than the previous day. McLaren also introduced a new aerodynamic cowling cover for the MP4/5B at Hockenheim designed to lessen the buffeting effect on the drivers heads by diverting air to the sides of the car. This would remain on the car for the rest of the season.
Rounding out the top 10 were Nelson Piquet (Benetton-Ford), Jean Alesi (Tyrrell-Ford), Alessandro Nannini (Benetton-Ford) who had a fiery crash during Friday qualifying at the Bremsschikane 2 after riding a curb and hitting the barrier hard enough to throw the car into the air and back onto the track causing the session to be stopped. Nannini survived the crash with little more than bruised pride. The 10th fastest qualifier was Ivan Capelli in the Leyton House-Judd. Such was the spread in times that Capelli was some 4.151 seconds slower than Senna.
The circuit's fast nature resulted in several engine failures, although the four big teams of the era took all six points-paying positions.
Both Onyx Grand Prix team mates JJ Lehto and Gregor Foitek both got their renamed Monteverdi ORE-1Bs into the race, the last time either car would qualify for a race prior to the team's dissolution in August.
Philippe Alliot was disqualified because marshals helped his Ligier JS33B rejoin the race after being blocked by the spinning Dallara 190 of Emanuele Pirro. Fastest lap of the race was set by Thierry Boutsen in his Williams, his first such achievement.
|10||16||Ivan Capelli||Leyton House-Judd||1:45.025||1:44.349||+4.151|
|14||15||Maurício Gugelmin||Leyton House-Judd||—||1:45.193||+4.995|
|30||22||Andrea de Cesaris||Dallara-Ford||1:48.118||1:48.032||+7.834|
Championship standings after the race
- Note: Only the top five positions are included for both sets of standings.
1990 British Grand Prix
|FIA Formula One World Championship
1990 Hungarian Grand Prix
1989 German Grand Prix
|German Grand Prix||Next race:
1991 German Grand Prix