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Opinions, please - Italian Grand Prix 1960


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#1 Barry Boor

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Posted 23 September 2002 - 22:30

Today I began to wonder just what sort of race the 1960 Italian Grand Prix would have been if all the British cars had turned up.

I suppose there are 2 scenarios: the race including the banking and the race without.

Would any of those old enough to remember 1960 care to offer up hypotheses.....?

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#2 David Holland

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Posted 23 September 2002 - 23:08

I guess it's more of what we would not have seen.
Victory would have gone to a rear engine Cooper or Lotus on either versions of the track (after all they used the banking again the following year) so we would not have seen the final WC victory of a rear engined car.
Plus we would have missed the only Grand Prix appearence of drivers such as Piero Drogo, Fred Gamble, Alfonso Thiele and Arthur Owen (the later two being banked circuit specialists with their speed record experience) who let's face it are not really Grand Prix material - but who would deny their moment of World Championship glory? These are the people that add spice and colour to the championship who lucked in on the big time and more power to their elbow I say.
I've always thought this race and the US GP at Sebring had the most interesting grid line ups with those unusual names and cars that took part.

#3 Richard Jenkins

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Posted 23 September 2002 - 23:22

Today I began to wonder just what sort of race the 1960 Italian Grand Prix would have been if all the British cars had turned up.


Originally posted by David Holland
Plus we would have missed the only Grand Prix appearence of drivers such as Alfonso Thiele and Vic Wilson. I've always thought this race and the US GP at Sebring had the most interesting grid line ups with those unusual names and cars that took part.


If all the British cars had turned up, then I probably would've been saved an awful lot of hassle 42 years later!! :lol: :lol:

As David said, the story of Fred Gamble is a delightful one. Because of that, I'd leave it just the way it is, thank you. (Nervous breakdowns & lurking in librabies, not withstanding!)

#4 Roger Clark

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Posted 24 September 2002 - 18:55

I don't think we could definitely say a British car would have won. Ferrari had shown at Reims that power could still be competitive with frontal area on a fast circuit, and he always found a little extra for Monza. On the other hand he had stopped development of the 2.5 litre cars.

THere probably wouldn't have been a formula 2 class, so would Ferrari have raced a 2.5 rear engined car? Probably not as he was concentrating on development for 1961.

If a British car were to win, which would it be? Brabham had aleady won the championship and there is often some reaction when a dominant champioinship is completed. Would a Lotus 18 have finished? Moss might have done and if he did he would surely have won, but I can't see the works cars lasting the distance.

It would surely be a race of attrtion and such races often go to the most unexpected of victors.

As an ousider, and just to wind up the originator of this thread, how about Dan Gurney in a BRM?

#5 Joe Fan

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Posted 24 September 2002 - 19:19

Originally posted by David Holland
I guess it's more of what we would not have seen.
Victory would have gone to a rear engine Cooper or Lotus on either versions of the track (after all they used the banking again the following year) so we would not have seen the final WC victory of a rear engined car.


There were actually quite a few privateer Coopers in the event, with the best one finishing fourth.

I have often wondered why Masten Gregory, who was a regular Centro Sud driver at that time, did not compete in the race. Mimo Dei had American Alfonso Thiele and Italian Giorgio Scarlatti entered in his Centro Sud Coopers for this race. Masten wasn't afraid of Montlhery or AVUS or anything for that matter so I cannot understand his absence.

#6 Barry Boor

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Posted 24 September 2002 - 21:18

so would Ferrari have raced a 2.5 rear engined car? Probably not


Almost certainly not, Roger, because the only F1 rear-engined car had, by then I believe, been cannibalised into the 1.5 litre car that von Trips won with at Solitude, and that appears on another thread that has only just left page 1.

#7 Ray Bell

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Posted 24 September 2002 - 21:54

Questions would surround Moss...

Would he have driven a rugged Cooper to survive the bumps... or a Lotus?

#8 Roger Clark

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Posted 24 September 2002 - 22:45

Originally posted by Joe Fan



I have often wondered why Masten Gregory, who was a regular Centro Sud driver at that time, did not compete in the race. Mimo Dei had American Alfonso Thiele and Italian Giorgio Scarlatti entered in his Centro Sud Coopers for this race. Masten wasn't afraid of Montlhery or AVUS or anything for that matter so I cannot understand his absence.


THere was some pressure from the British constructors, or possibly the GPDA, not to take part in the race. According to Autosport, Horace Gould sent his Maserati to Monza, but his driver, Jack Fairman and his mechanic, Stan Ellworth both remained in England. Wheher Masten Gregory also succumbed to this pressure, or whether Signor Dei wanted to offfer an opportunity to two Italian drivers, I don't know.


Orignally psted by Barry Boor


the only F1 rear-engined car had, by then I believe, been cannibalised into the 1.5 litre car that von Trips won with at Solitude, and that appears on another thread that has only just left page 1.



I know, but it surely wouldn't have been too difficult to have installed a 246 engine. I agree it's unlikely they would have done so though.

#9 Don Capps

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Posted 24 September 2002 - 23:06

Well, I was at the race and loved the fact that I got to cheer for Phil Hill -- Bravo Feel Heel!!! :clap:

Well, had the boycott not occurred -- mull over the fact that the same circuit in 1961 attracted the same folks who sat it out the year before -- it could have been really interesting with perhaps Phil Hill still coming out on top, but then again it could have just as easily seen Dan Gurney or Graham Hill or any number of others end up at the top end of the finishing order since it would have been a race of attrition.

I have the sneaking suspecion that one of the factory Coopers may have given Phil Hill and Richie Ginther a run for their money. I also think that Monza would have been littered with Lotus pieces all over the place....

#10 Roger Clark

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Posted 25 September 2002 - 18:41

Originally posted by Barry Boor

Almost certainly not, Roger, because the only F1 rear-engined car had, by then I believe, been cannibalised into the 1.5 litre car that von Trips won with at Solitude, and that appears on another thread that has only just left page 1.


Well....

Aweek before the race Ferrari tried out a new F1 rear-engined car, which was very satisfactory, but with no opposition in the Grand Prix there was no point in running it.



Motor Sport report of the 1960 Italian Grand Prix.

#11 Barry Boor

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Posted 25 September 2002 - 21:27

Mmmmmmm.......... I wonder how true that statement actually is. Or is it perhaps a bit of Ferrari propaganda?

#12 oldtimer

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Posted 25 September 2002 - 21:49

Can't see the BRM team surviving on such a bumpy, and fast circuit. IIRC, they couldn't hold the Ferraris on the fast circuits anyway.

#13 Ray Bell

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Posted 25 September 2002 - 23:58

Graham Hill was more than a match for everyone at Silverstone that year...

#14 oldtimer

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Posted 26 September 2002 - 00:50

yes, Graham was marvellous until his tired brakes caught him out. But he was angry, and Silverstone was a nice smooth surface, with medium speed corners and short straights. I suspect the flat-out stretches would haved tired the BRM engine.

#15 Barry Boor

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Posted 26 September 2002 - 06:20

Graham WAS magnificent that day; very much like his Monaco drives a few years later, but it was very much a one-off in 1960. Nowhere else did he shine anything like that brightly. (Or is it that the car never allowed it?)