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Grand Prix on Sundays.

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#1 man

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Posted 24 September 2002 - 21:04

Sorry to ask a question which must be basic knowledge! When did Grand Prix become a Sunday only fixture?


#2 Leif Snellman

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Posted 25 September 2002 - 05:23


#3 Rob29

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Posted 25 September 2002 - 07:09

Don't think there is or has ever been any rule from the FIA as to what day of the week a race can be held. Sunday has been the normal day since WW1 as organizers found they could get the biggest crowd. Problem is countries with religous fanatics. professional racing was not allowed on the sabbath in UK until 1966. So British GP was on Saturday as was S.African,also Dutch was even run on a Bank Holiday monday. Not sure why the Las Vegas GP was on Saturday-maybe something to do with local gambling habits.
Will be interesting to see if proposed Bahriann GP is held on Friday!

#4 Eric McLoughlin

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Posted 25 September 2002 - 09:59

Sport on Sunday was a major issue in Britain for many, many years. It's only in relatively recent times (the 1980s) that it has become acceptable to hold major sporting events on Sundays. Being Irish, I've always thought this odd. Ireland has a much larger church going populace (as a percentage of population of course) and ALL the big sporting finals etc have always been on a Sunday (eg. All Ireland Gaelic Footbal and Hurling Finals, FAI Cup Final).I guess it's to do with the fairly lax Catholic approach to "Day of Rest" observance compared to the more Puritanical Protestant approach of the UK. For a supposedly secular country, Britain has more Church inspired legislation than most countries.

#5 mikedeering

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Posted 25 September 2002 - 11:56

A guess now, but I think the last World Championship Grand Prix not run on a Sunday was the 1982 Dutch GP. It was hastily arranged due to the cancelation of another race, and a Sunday slot would have clashed with both the Soccer World Cup in Spain and the Men's French Open tennis Final in Paris IIRC.

#6 ensign14

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Posted 25 September 2002 - 12:03

I think South Africa ran on Saturdays right to about 1985.

#7 Vitesse2

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Posted 25 September 2002 - 12:35

Originally posted by ensign14
I think South Africa ran on Saturdays right to about 1985.

Yep - correct. October 19th 1985.

#8 Ray Bell

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Posted 26 September 2002 - 00:48

Longford was always on Saturday and Monday...

It was held on the Labor Day long weekend in Tasmania (not a holiday Australia-wide, Bathurst's annual October meeting is held on the Sunday of the NSW Labor Day weekend, which is based on the first Monday in October and thus the race may well be held in September*)... practice started on Friday and there were more sessions on Saturday with races, including heats for the main event, on the Saturday.

Sunday was always a day off. Whether this has some background in Sunday Observance I have no idea. After Longford closed the weekend became a regular for Symmons Plains, and while in latter years I know it has been held on Sundays (TV rules there...) I don't have my RCNs here and can't check about earlier times.

Lowood was a circuit that had problems with Sunday Observance protagonists, there being a religious group in the area who had the ear of the Defence people who pulled the strings on rental of the airfield for racing. This is why the QMSC (?) had to seek out an alternative venue when they had the Australian Grand Prix allocated for Queensland, ultimately settling on Leyburn. The crowd at that event was nothing short of surprisingly huge.

* Bob Morris was upset when he didn't win in 1975, as he'd observed that many winners of the Bathurst event had won their first victory when they were 26. He was 26 and a few days old at the 1975 race... but 1976 saw the race held on September 30... he was still 26 and he won.