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Wolfgang Seidel

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#1 Roger Clark

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Posted 25 August 2001 - 09:29

In late 1962 or early 63, Seidel's racing licence was suspended, presumably by the AvD. It was restored in April 1963. Can anyone tell me when and why?


#2 Gary Davies

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Posted 25 August 2001 - 11:01

Roger, Don't know the "why" but that excellent book "The Formula One Record" - John Thompson, Leslie Frewin of London, perhaps narrows down the "when" a little.

Seidel's last entry in a Formula One race was the Mexican Grand Prix of November 4 1962.

Interestingly, his car, a Lotus 24-BRM, chassis number 946 next appeared in the Gran Premio d'Imola, April 21 1963, this time driven by Gunther Seifert. The entrant was Autosport Team Wolfgang Seidel. Seifert raced it once more for Seidel, at Siracusa on April 25 1963. The last entry I could find for Seidel as an entrant was at the Aintree 200 on April 27. There were two entries, both withdrawn.


#3 fines

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Posted 25 August 2001 - 14:08

Oh, for want of better memory... I THINK, but can't be too sure, it had to do with the Mitter/FJunior scandal. If noone comes up with the story, I will have to dig into my magazines, but right now it's too hot... :sweat:

#4 Roger Clark

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Posted 25 August 2001 - 16:30

I thought it was connected to an illegal Formula Junior, but I can't find any details.

#5 tombe

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Posted 25 August 2001 - 20:40

According to the Swedish magazine ILLUSTRERAD MOTOR SPORT, the story was something like this:

Seidel's F1 car broke down after 4 laps in practice for the '62 German GP. Altough the regulations stipulated that every competitor had to do at least 5 practice-laps, Seidel thought his literary hundreds of laps at the Ring in races and practices througout the years was sufficient to be allowed to start. But the organizer, AvD, refused.
The German newspaper MITTAG made a story on this, in which Seidel harshly critisized AvD, and even his fellow racers Heini Walter and Bernard Collomb.
For this he was stripped of his membership in AvD. Later ONS took away his racing licence for lifetime. This was soon after shortened to two years.
Without the right papers, Seidel later that same year took part in the Mexican GP. Following this, the case was brought in for CSI.

As this story was published before CSI had their say, I don't know about the outcome. The Swedish magazine did not follow the story up.


#6 Vitesse2

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Posted 25 August 2001 - 20:56

One or two inconsistencies arise from that Tom - Seidel is listed as DNQ, but his time was faster than Bianchi:confused: and Taylor was placed at the back of the grid because he hadn't completed 5 practice laps, but was allowed to start:confused: :confused:

Looks like he might have had a point ...

#7 Milan Fistonic

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Posted 25 August 2001 - 21:39

The 1962 Autocourse has this to say about Seidel.

The last name on the entry list was that of Wolfgang Seidel who had brought along his Lotus-BRM with the wild notion that he might get it to go!

.....but not in time for Taylor to complete the required five laps of practice. Wolfgang Seidel, Tony Shelly, and Jay Chamberlain also failed to complete five laps in practice and were excluded, while Colin Chapman managed to persuade the organisers into allowing Trevor to start from the back of the grid.

#8 Roger Clark

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Posted 26 August 2001 - 11:01

THere is some confusion over Trevor Taylor's situation in the 1962 German GP. some, including Motor Sport , say that Chapman persuaded the orginisers that Taylor had done the required laps, others say that he persuaded them to allow Taylor to start despite not having done five laps.

The five lap rule was enforced quite rigidly at the 'ring in the 60s. In 1967, no less than Graham Hill almost didn't make the race, having wrecked two Lotus 49s and only done four laps in the process. He did one careful lap in Clark's car to qualify.

From tombe's post, it seems that Seidel lost his licence for his criticism of the AvD. It sounds like the sort of thing that couldn't happen today? If he did drive in Mexico with his licence suspended, it is surprising that there was no penalty for the organisers.

On April 19 1963, Autosport repported: "So as to ensure German participation in formula 1 events following the withdrawal of the Porsche team, the German automobile Club have cancelled the suspension of Wolfgang Seidel's licence and have bought the Lotus-BRM car that he raced last year. The car is to be driven by Seidel and Leo von Diergardt, of the club, in Formula 1 events this season.

I have to confess that Herr von Diergardt is not known to me.

#9 Marcor

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Posted 04 September 2001 - 20:31

In the Belgian newspaper Les Sports I've found some interesting things about this affair. I think it adds only some details, about Leo von Diergardt for example and also about the chronology of the facts.

Wolfgang Seidel disqualified for life time by the National sport Commitee of the German Automobile Club.
According to those authorities, the driver would have slandered (libelled) the Organisers of the German GP (the AvD) and some foreign drivers (Heini Walter and Bernard Collomb), undermining seriously the reputation of German and international motorsport.

In a letter to the AvD's President, Prince Metternich, dated from August 6, Wolfgang Seidel accused that they had prevented him by their intrigues from taking part in the German GP.

President had underlined that Seidel was not allowed to take the start because his time in practice had been inadequate.

*** (August 62) ***

The life time suspension was shortened to 2 years.
*** (October 1962) ***

In the entrance (of the Mexican GP), there is Wolfgang Seidel. It's strange because he's suspended by his federation.
*** (November 1st, 1962) ***

Porsche announced that he will stop the F1 in 1963
*** (November 1962) ***

Inquiry of the CSI on the appearance of Wolfgang Seidel in the Mexican GP
*** (22 November 22 1962) ***

Wolfgang Seidel asks 9000 £ for his Lotus BRM. Syd van der Vyver was interested but it was too expensive !!
*** (15 December 15 1962) ***

Wolfgang Seidel is expelled from the Deutsch Sportfahrer Kiers (Circle of the German drivers) since March 7th to have taken part in the Mexican GP while he was suspended until December 1964 by his national sport commission (the ONS).

He had given words incompatible with the motorsport spirit at the time of the last German GP.
*** (March 63) ***

Wolfgang Seidel reinstated
Following the withdrawal of Porsche from the F1, the German automobile Federation had taken 2 measures to ensure German participation in F1 events. The ONS (Oberste Nationale Sportkommission) had decided:
1- to cancel immediately the suspension of Wolfgang Seidel's licence.
2- to buy the Lotus BRM that he raced in 1962 and which he was the owner. This car will be alone to defend the German colour and is to be driven by Wolfgang Seidel and Leo von Diergardt, the sport manager of the German Club, in F1 events this season.
*** (March 29, 1963) ***

Among the entrances of the 4th Shell GP at Imola: Wolfgang Seidel (Lotus BRM) and Gunther Seifert (Lotus Climax 4 cyl) entered by Autosport Team Wolfgang Seidel.
*** (April 17, 1963) ***

Entered at Siracuse:
Seifert (Lotus BRM) and Seidel (Lotus Climax). Seifert did not finish and Seidel did not arrived.
*** (April 1963) ***

The Seidel's cars:
Lotus BRM = Lotus 24-946 BRM
Lotus Climax 4 cyl = Lotus 18 373 Climax

In the end of 1962 Syd van der Vyver finally bought an other Lotus 24, the ex-Brabham 947 with V8 Climax engined.

#10 ry6

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Posted 05 September 2001 - 18:38

Siedel had some good results in sportscars in long distance racing driving a variety of Porsches and Ferraris.

He also it appears raced for Ecurie Ecosse!

At one time he raced under the banner of Scuderia Colonia (?) with Cooper-Climax and Lotus 18 Climax.

In 1960/61 he took part in some races in South Africa - the SAGP, the Cape GP and the Fairfield 100. He was driving the Cooper.

In the SAGP and Cape GP he entered the "18" for Wolfgang von Trips. I seem to recall that Tony Maggs drove the 18 in the Fairfield.

Ironically when he finished 5th in the 1960 (Dec) SAGP the man that beat him to 4th was Syd van der Vyver (Lotus 18 Alfa). Syd of course being the man who tried to bnuy Wolfgang's Lotus 24 a year or so later.

I understand that Seidel died by suicide.