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Rosemeyer's death 65 years ago


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#51 aldo

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Posted 27 January 2003 - 11:17

On the eve of the anniversary, I'm pleased to confirm that my Technical Draft on the accident will be published tomorrow by Leif Snellman on his Website.
Those who asked for it, will get it tonight.
Hope you may share with me your comments and thoughts.
Aldo

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#52 amorandi

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Posted 27 January 2003 - 20:31

Originally posted by aldo
On the eve of the anniversary, I'm pleased to confirm that my Technical Draft on the accident will be published tomorrow by Leif Snellman on his Website.
Those who asked for it, will get it tonight.
Hope you may share with me your comments and thoughts.
Aldo


Aldo

I´ve just finished reading your working draft on AU´s failure 65 years ago: an outstanding job, really. It´s a striking homage to Rosemeyer and maybe the most accurate analysis ever written on this unsettling subject for motorsport enthusiasts. Sad to know that Rosemeyer's death was, in fact, possibly as a result of a reckless project, a "Chronicle of a Foretold Death".

Congratulations,

#53 Leif Snellman

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Posted 27 January 2003 - 23:07

I considered giving out the document at 11.47 a.m (the time of the crash) but I think you guys have suffered enough.  ;) It's past midnight so I'm uploading the document to my homepage NOW!

#54 Leif Snellman

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Posted 28 January 2003 - 11:26

Ok.. Those who has read Aldo's document. What do you think about it? Comments?

It can be found at http://www.kolumbus....ellman/zana.htm

#55 Tim Murray

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Posted 28 January 2003 - 12:23

I think that Aldo has shown conclusively that the modified streamliner was 'hastily built, untested, badly managed in the record runs, and someway damaged at the start of Run 3.'

I do have a question, which I have already asked Aldo. He states that the plate covering the 9 underbody air outlets was 'mounted using not less than 26 6 mm screws: a mount which could be more apt to an armoured vehicle than a record car'. Yet it would appear to have been this item which failed. Why so?

#56 Brun

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Posted 28 January 2003 - 12:29

It's a fine piece of work, very well documented and the result of a thorough investigation. Nothing to add or comment here. I'm not sure how to read the last paragraph though. Is it meant to blame someone or something for Rosemeyer's death?

#57 Leif Snellman

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Posted 28 January 2003 - 12:44

Originally posted by Tim Murray
He states that the plate covering the 9 underbody air outlets was 'mounted using not less than 26 6 mm screws: a mount which could be more apt to an armoured vehicle than a record car'. Yet it would appear to have been this item which failed. Why so?

Or rather, why did they found it neccessary to use 28 screws in the first place? Yes, Kirschberg says 28 screws , not 26. I must ask Aldo the reason for that.

#58 MichaelJP

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Posted 28 January 2003 - 13:37

The article is very interesting.

It does seem to imply that Auto-Union were grossly negligent in sending Rosemeyer out in that car without proper testing and a gradual run-up to record speeds.

By the standards of today, they probably were, but isn't the history of motor racing littered with accidents caused by teams/drivers taking a chance on an untried car? Such as the early ultra-high rear wings for example.

Land and water record speed attempts have been even more risky over the years.

In such cases surely the blame is shared equally between team and driver, after all, he doesn't have to get in and drive the thing, knowing that it's experimental at best.

- MichaelJP

#59 Holger Merten

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Posted 28 January 2003 - 19:59

Aldo, a big compliment for your Roadmap.

I have some questions:

1. p.5: ZKB Are you sure you are talking about Friedrichshafen and not about the ZKB (Zentrales KonstruktionsBüro of AU in Chemnitz)

2. the whole artcicle; you are talking about some interesting pics, may it's possible to post the here? Especially those we havn't seen before?

And I'd like to add, that at Hasses testdrive the topspeed was not more than 330kmh at the Autobahn, I think it was near Dessau.

Great work Aldo, really, I'm impressed.

Is it meant to blame someone or something for Rosemeyer's death?



Yes. means the same for me, @Aldo, do you mean Eberan?

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#60 aldo

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Posted 28 January 2003 - 21:24

About the number of screws in the air outlet plate, I double checked the original document and, yes, I apologize for a typo: there were 28 screws, not 26. By the way, 28 means that, being the plate of a square shape, there were 8 screws on each side. If they were 26, it would have been impossible to have the same number of screws on each side.

I do think that an apt way to close the 65th anniversary day is to remember the words engraved on the grey stone column still standing in the place where Rosemeyer was found dead:

Dem Andenken an
BERND ROSEMEYER
der an dieser Stelle
am 28. Januar 38 bei
Rekordversuchen
mit dem Rennwagen
toedlich verunglueckte.

It means something like: To the memory of, Bernd Rosemeyer, who in this place, on January 28 '38 during, record runs, with a racing car, suffered a deadly accident.

The monument is still there, in reasonably good conditions (as I saw it last August), at the end of the first lay-by after the Langen-Moerfelden overpass aiming South to Darmstadt. In 1939, that lay-by was named Bernd Rosemeyer Parkplatz (parking) and a large sign was installed.
Last summer, there wasn't any sign at the lay-by, and the monument was also quite hard to reach across the tall grass. A period wooden sign, close to the entrance of a small enclave with green hedges of prunus lauro cerasus on both sides, has the words: Mahnmal BERND ROSEMEYER 1938 (Monument to the memory of B.R.).

Aldo
Of course, my wife and I put fresh flowers in an old vase already placed by someone else.

#61 Hans Etzrodt

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Posted 28 January 2003 - 21:47

Originally posted by Leif Snellman
Ok.. Those who has read Aldo's document. What do you think about it? Comments?...

4 + 9 pages on my printer, that amounts to 13. Bernd Rosemeyer would have liked that. I will read through these pages during lunch at a Waikiki Pâtisserie. :)

#62 Holger Merten

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Posted 28 January 2003 - 21:51

Originally posted by aldo
About the number of screws in the air outlet plate, I double checked the original document and, yes, I apologize for a typo: there were 28 screws, not 26. By the way, 28 means that, being the plate of a square shape, there were 8 screws on each side. If they were 26, it would have been impossible to have the same number of screws on each side.

I do think that an apt way to close the 65th anniversary day is to remember the words engraved on the grey stone column still standing in the place where Rosemeyer was found dead:

Dem Andenken an
BERND ROSEMEYER
der an dieser Stelle
am 28. Januar 38 bei
Rekordversuchen
mit dem Rennwagen
toedlich verunglueckte.

It means something like: To the memory of, Bernd Rosemeyer, who in this place, on January 28 '38 during, record runs, with a racing car, suffered a deadly accident.

The monument is still there, in reasonably good conditions (as I saw it last August), at the end of the first lay-by after the Langen-Moerfelden overpass aiming South to Darmstadt. In 1939, that lay-by was named Bernd Rosemeyer Parkplatz (parking) and a large sign was installed.
Last summer, there wasn't any sign at the lay-by, and the monument was also quite hard to reach across the tall grass. A period wooden sign, close to the entrance of a small enclave with green hedges of prunus lauro cerasus on both sides, has the words: Mahnmal BERND ROSEMEYER 1938 (Monument to the memory of B.R.).

Aldo
Of course, my wife and I put fresh flowers in an old vase already placed by someone else.




Yes since two or three years Audi Tradition is interested to cover traditional places with their IDEA. In 1988 nobody from Audi was there at the 28 january, to share a moment for Bernd.

#63 Leif Snellman

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Posted 28 January 2003 - 22:21

Originally posted by Hans Etzrodt
4 + 9 pages on my printer, that amounts to 13. Bernd Rosemeyer would have liked that.

Indeed! :D

Aldo, I have changed the number of screws from 26 to 28 on my homepage.

Holger, three of the pictures you ask for are included in the variant of the document found on my homepage.

#64 Leif Snellman

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Posted 28 January 2003 - 22:58

From the text:
"AU wanted to win all over the line: they clad the right side of the surviving Stromlinienwagen with upper fairings à la January 28 car and shot photos from the same angle as Büttner did".

Aldo, looking at the Hakenkreutz on the car ( Nixon page 212) one can see that it is a mirror image. i.e it is the left side that has been photographed. My guess is that for some reason there existed a spare left hand upper fairing but no right hand one. Or then it was the original Rosemeyer fairings and the RIGHT ONE WAS INDEED DAMAGED but not the left one!!!

#65 oldtimer

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Posted 29 January 2003 - 00:44

Thank you Aldo for agreat piece of work.

As for blame, I find it hard, certainly harder, for example, than the loss of the Challenger space shuttle.

Why? Because a whole team, including their driver was ready to push the envelope. They were under pressure, they accepted that and went ahead. Hindsight says they were wrong. What does hindsight say about the loss of Donald Campbell and John Cobb in their water speed record attempts?

As for thorough engineering in such endeavors, I seem to remember a certain amount of sneering when a British team were the first to put a wheeled vehicle through the sound-barrier. "Well, of course, they had all those engineers and aerodynamicists..."

#66 Hans Etzrodt

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Posted 29 January 2003 - 06:04

Originally posted by oldtimer
...Because a whole team, including their driver was ready to push the envelope. They were under pressure, they accepted that and went ahead. Hindsight says they were wrong. What does hindsight say about the loss of Donald Campbell and John Cobb in their water speed record attempts?...

:up: spoken from my heart

#67 Brun

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Posted 29 January 2003 - 06:28

Originally posted by Hans Etzrodt
4 + 9 pages on my printer, that amounts to 13. Bernd Rosemeyer would have liked that. I will read through these pages during lunch at a Waikiki Pâtisserie. :)


Some guys get all the fun ;) It's cold and wet here, and the report says it's going to get even colder...

#68 Hans Etzrodt

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Posted 29 January 2003 - 06:56

Brun, I did read through all pages during lunch at the Waikiki Pâtisserie, a roadside open restaurant, like they have in Paris during the summer. I wisely sat in the shade. It’s too hot in the sun. I have to do some more reading in other magazines about this subject before I submit my comment. :)

#69 byrkus

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Posted 29 January 2003 - 12:35

Excellent written, Aldo. :up:

It gave me an idea of a drawing of Bernd on his final run - pic is based on drawing on Leif's page, and I also added Bernd's portrait.

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#70 eigar

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Posted 29 January 2003 - 13:16

Thanks for an interesting thread.

I remember from Alfred Neubauer's (the mighty Mercedes team manager) autobiography : "Männer, Frauer und Motoren", that he also had a theory in the same line regarding the Rosemeyer crash: Collapsing bodywork due to wind forces, and not the side wind alone which was the official explanation .

Neubauer had dedicated a chapter in his book to Rosemeyer and the speed attempts. He was of course present that fatal day, due to the Mercedes own record attempts earlier in the morning.

According to the book, and if I remember correctly, Mr. Neubauer drove the Audi Union boss Dr. Feuerreissen in his Mercedes, from the starting point down to the place of accident. They were among the first to arrive at the scene. Neubauer was scocked from the sight of the crashed car, and did not want to see Rosemeyers body. He wanted to remember the great driver as he had seen him alive.

The most of you may have seen this link before, but I enclose it anyway. There are some pictures showing the remainings of the car.
http://www.f1-plus.c...meyerbernd.html

#71 aldo

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Posted 29 January 2003 - 15:11

Thanks for the interesting link. The article by Christian Sandkuehler is filled with the well known stuff, yet it's well written.
I found the same photo of Parkplatz Bernd Rosemeyer in a 1939 German magazine: it's therefore rather difficult that it was placed there in 1948. Look also at the car in the background, hardly from 1948 vintage.
The last photo is rather puzzling. Maybe, it has been printed reversed (i.e, one has to flip over right and left sides), but, doing so, the wreck in foreground should be on the track not used by the car: it's likely.
Looking at the shadows of the persons, if the photo has been correctly printed, they are very, very puzzling.
Knowing the orientation of the Autobahn, the photo should have been taken before the hour of the accident. It's impossible, unless there was some kind of daylighyt saving time even in winter: can anyone provide such an information?

#72 Holger Merten

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Posted 29 January 2003 - 20:08

Aldo, I saw this photo before, must have a look, if I can find it in my archive, but I'd just moved to my new house and there Miss Chiquita takes care of all my inputs.

#73 Tim Murray

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Posted 29 January 2003 - 21:26

Originally posted by aldo
The last photo is rather puzzling. Maybe, it has been printed reversed (i.e, one has to flip over right and left sides), but, doing so, the wreck in foreground should be on the track not used by the car: it's likely.
Looking at the shadows of the persons, if the photo has been correctly printed, they are very, very puzzling.
Knowing the orientation of the Autobahn, the photo should have been taken before the hour of the accident. It's impossible, unless there was some kind of daylighyt saving time even in winter: can anyone provide such an information?

This photo appears to be a cropped version of the photo on page 104 of Le Leggendarie Auto Union by Cancellieri and De Agostini. The full size version shows clearly that the wreckage is on the carriageway used by Rosemeyer; a number of parked cars can be seen on the opposite carriageway.

#74 Brun

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Posted 30 January 2003 - 10:30

Originally posted by Hans Etzrodt
Brun, I did read through all pages during lunch at the Waikiki Pâtisserie, a roadside open restaurant, like they have in Paris during the summer. I wisely sat in the shade. It’s too hot in the sun. I have to do some more reading in other magazines about this subject before I submit my comment. :)


Hans, if you don't stop, I will come over and slap you :rotfl:

On the other hand, while YOU were baking in the shade, I drove along a deserted autobahn at almost 200 km/h in a wonderfully growling post-war Auto Union, in order to catch a domestic flight. Doing my own little Rosemeyer, so to speak.

To stay on-topic: the f1-plus article is very interesting. I probably will be visiting Holger's in the spring, maybe I'll stop at this lay-by and take a look at Rosemeyer's memorial?

#75 eigar

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Posted 30 January 2003 - 10:47

Aldo.
Last night I made a printout of your impressive report, in order to read it more thoroughly. I saw that you aleady have mentioned Alferd Neubauer's theory regarding the crash.

I find your conslusions very interesting, and can agree.

I have a few questions/comments:

Quote from your report:
"Nevertheless, the explanation given by Eberan for keeping the front intake wide open and the radiator in place: "To cover up the fact that we, too, used ice cooling"(*) is puerile and it looks like an offense to Mercedes people, bystanders, and readers. Ditto for the use of the metal plate to reduce the front air intake in Run 3, as explained in Eberan's statement of February 14(*)."

Why do you think that AU made the two first run with the air intake wide open, and then closing it for Run 3? Was it for doing more aerodynamic testing before the final run? As can be seen from the quote above Mercedes had already run their car with ice cooling, and a cover-up looked puerlie as you say. The ice cooled Mercedes is also mentioned in Neubauers book.

Another quote:
"Otto Geyer(*) writes that, already in northbound Run 2 the car looked unstable, travelling close to the grass median. About Run 3, he adds to have heard an "explosion" when the left rear wheel of the car touched the grass. He also believes that Rosemeyer applied the brakes."

Do you think that the "explosion" heard by the timekeeper came from 2mm dural sheet loosning under the car and damaging the underpan and lower rear fins? Or was it the left front wheel collpsing (exploding?) Or a combination? The timekeepers must have beed several hundred meters away from the start of the accident, and the sound they heard was generated earlier than they saw it happend. However, everything happend very quickly and was over i few seconds as you say.

Last quote:
"AU reacted quickly, calling Herr Büttner and obtaining his agreement to say, even under oath, that the Stromlinienwagen body was in perfect shape at the start of Run 3(*). They bought the film and got an affidavit by him stating that no warps were on the body, but only reflexes of light, and that no, he didn't even see them until some third party pointed them out to him. They also agreed he would say to have immediately discarded such a vicious gossip and that, by the way, yes, he had mailed the photo to Stuttgart (guess whom!) ten days earlier, but without any malicious caption."

The "Guess Whom" was that Professor Porsche? According to Alfred Neubauer's book he met Porsche accidentally at the railway station i Stuttgart some few days after the accident, and Porsche was indignant and showed him a photo of the car with damages before the start. Neubauer answered that there were no damages visible before the start as far as he could remember.

One should not belive everything in Neubauers book. He may have wanted to make himself more important that he was, but he seemed to pop up everywhere when something interesting was happening.

Aldo, I think you should try to collect as much as possible of relevant photos to accompany your report. Maybe Leif Snellman could make a gallery on his homepage.

#76 Leif Snellman

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Posted 30 January 2003 - 14:13

Aldo has technical problems with TNF right now so he asked me to post this answer:

Eigar:
Your words and questions are straight to the point. Let me try to answer something.
Q1. Ice Cooling. The puerile explanation is written in Eberan's memo dated Feb 11. It's also "puerile" what he writes in the Feb 16 document (sorry, I don't have all documents here and I'm writing dates out of the cuffs) saying that, having seen, on that morning, that MB used ice cooling, he didn't deserve it any longer necessary to conceal that they, too, used ice cooling.
Q2. Yes, they ran Run 1 and 2 with open intake. They partially closed it for Run 3. It's photographic evidence.
Q3. Explosion. I doubt that Geyer's "explosion" could have been felt so far away. Wind was blowing against the car and he was apparently located at km. 9.2. If we assume, like it appears, that the slide started before/at the end of the measured km (at km. 8.6), such an explosion should have been rather strong to be heard. We cannot, anyhow, rule against such an option. He links the explosion to the very moment in which the left rear wheel went on the grass median. By the way, everything Geyer writes is quite confused: he closes the letter apologizing for being in such a hurry, but he had to leave immediately to Frankfurt.
Q4. Neubauer, by all means. I found the photo taken at the arrival of Run 2 in the DaimlerChrlysler Archives. The agreement between AU and the photographer mentions "photos" mailed to Stuttgart, not only the well-known one. About Dr. Porsche's reactions, I'd rather think that he, too, was building up an explanation to download the accident unto something/someone else. Don't forget that he was deeply involved into the design of the 1938 car.
Q5. Additional photos. I have more, but I wish to keep them for myself, to be released in my future essays on the subject. You'll surely understand.

Aldo

#77 eigar

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Posted 31 January 2003 - 06:37

Aldo, thank you for the reply. I am looking forward to the essay and the photos
best regards.

#78 Hans Etzrodt

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Posted 31 January 2003 - 09:50

The articles by Leif and Aldo are each a great piece of work and I enjoyed reading both of them. Without going here into too much detail, let me say the following:

Aldo Zana delivers some rather interesting aspects in a new light, which elevates his story to a highly entertaining and provoking article. However, I have neither the intellect nor the aerodynamic know-how to follow or agree with all of Aldo’s theories brought forward. I can understand that certain sections of this working draft article will be revised. Maybe some of his ideas could then be explained differently for the layperson, like me, in order to present a more convincing account of those theories. This should include more detail and proof to substantiate the theory of the floor cover blown out. I have read certain paragraphs a few times over and still don’t fully understand them. Therefore I am waiting in suspense to read many of the supporting documents to come, because they would probably answer many of my questions.

Unfortunately, Aldo Zana’s Epilogue mirrors a certain amount of anger or bitterness by trying to solve the question of guilt, instead of looking at this tragedy more objectively. In an operation like that it is a futile exercise and will always be very difficult to point out one single person as the guilty party, especially where the driver has the last call. Let’s not forget that the people involved did their best with what was available and what was known 65 years ago about aerodynamics. I hope that the final version of Aldo’s story will make available the full account by Carlo Wiedmann.

Details of how the crash happened can only be reconstructed by tire marks left on concrete and grass median, (cut off trees, scattered pieces of the car) and with the help of the only true eyewitness account from head timekeeper Carlo Wiedmann. The experts should be able to answer with ease, why the body separated from the chassis when the car flipped over at a speed of around 400 km/h. But the experts were already of divided opinion 65 years ago.

Here some utterances by others:


1 – Aerodynamicist and “Streamline” bodywork engineer Paul Jaray in Automobil Chronik No. 11, 1974:
…Jaray was also substantially involved with the body design of the Auto Union record car from 1937/38.
“However, they [Auto Union] changed my specifications subsequently. I insisted on 1.2 mm thick sheet metal, but they used such of 0.7 and even 0.6 mm.” Jaray opinionated, “The formation of a low pressure zone, that probably tore apart the Rosemeyer car, would not have led to the catastrophe if they had stuck to my specifications.”


2 – Professor Dr. Eberan von Eberhorst (Auto Union Technical Director at that time) in Automobil Chronik No. 4, 1975:
“…A gust of wind must have caught Rosemeyer’s car and moved it over half of the available concrete width, so that the car came with the left wheels onto the grass of the center median. Only a few hundred meters away, the center pillar of a bridge across the Autobahn forced Rosemeyer to steer heavily towards the right, which first became fully effective and then too strong, after the left front wheel came off the soft grass medium onto the gripping concrete surface. In this moment, the car was apparently over-steering, moving to the right and –suggested by the tire track– had to flip over the left front wheel. Rosemeyer was hurled out of the car. We found him without external injuries, lifeless at the forest’s edge with a broken neck.”
“…The fairy tale about the exploded body shell, however, remained firmly …”


3 – Aerodynamicist Baron Reinhard König-Fachsenfeld in Automobil Chronik No. 6, 1975 under reader’s comments:
[I don’t have the time to translate that lengthy article, which is not supporting Paul Jaray’s statement and briefly explains Jaray’s lack of involvement with Auto Union and other German companies of repute. It mentions König-Fachsenfeld’s encounter with Alex Büttner, talks about photographs and basically supports the statement made by Eberan von Eberhorst.]

#79 Hans Etzrodt

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Posted 01 February 2003 - 06:47

The guy who took the controversial picture of the 1938 record car was Alexander Büttner, born July 12, 1897 [Source: MOTOR-Rundschau 1947, No. 21/24, p.274]. He had made himself a name as motor sport journalist during the 20's and 30's and signed as “Alebü”. I don’t think he qualifies as a “Paparazzo”.

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#80 Leif Snellman

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Posted 01 February 2003 - 10:57

From Aldo (forwarded again)

"I read Hans Etzrodt' s mail with great interest and respect. He really brings up many useful and significant items, on which we must go further in depth.
I have my own theory, which I wrote in what is called a Roadmap to a Tentative Explanation. It never wanted to deliver the revealed truth. Of course, I'm open to all contribution, comments, critics.
As a journalist, writer, and automotive historian as well as a person knowing something about aerodynamics, vehicle dynamics, and structural engineering, I dare to say that nothing, never, has been dealt with "objectively", and not only in motor history. Everyone has his/her background, know-how, education, civilization, society, nationality etc: all these factors are strong influencers on his/her thinking, and his/her writing.
I'm trying to build up an explanation of the accident, yet it's only a tentative explanation, a theory based on my own understanding of facts, as we know them, now. I don't dare to be "objective".
I understand that the Thirties and Nazi Germany were something highly different from today. Beyond being a country ruled by a gang of criminals, there were some issues on tune with the "esprit du temp". The worship of the hero, the national pride, the need to please the ruling powers, the race were so high to shake the whole framework of morality and values, including science, sport and life.
Yet, by all means, I refuse any statement saying that we should accept and share any decision pushing someone or someone else into the unknown, at the danger of his/her life, in the name of motor sport.
No risk shall be taken if it changes motor sport into a killing field. If the risk is taken and it ends up in a tragedy, we must (if we wish) try to understand why it happened and who shall be acknowledged as guilty.
As human beings of today, we are different from our ancestors living in the Thirties: we have a wider set of knowledge which allows us to look at the past in a novel way. Such an attitude has always driven historic researches and essays.
If we agreed on the acknowledgement that someone, somewhere, sometime, did that because that was what he knew and therefore he had to be a-priori excused on what he did (or, God forsaken, had someone suffering for what he did), research, society, civilization, and mankind would never have advanced in every field, not only in history and motor sport.
Sorry for all those words, Hans and all. Let's go back to the point.
Wiedmann's and Geyer's letters have been published in Kirchberg's book. I have copy of the originals. They don't explain that much even on the sequence of events since the skid marks. Furthermore, both guys didn't know anything on the car and we have to assume that they were busy checking their instruments: they cannot have seen that much.
The drawings of the Police reports have been partially published in the same book, but there are additional ones, much more detailed: I used them and reported data and figures written there. Unless we assume that drawings made a few days after the accident, based on Police reports and measurements, are less credible than some words said off the cuffs by Eberan 37 years after the event, the front left wheel never left the concrete and the rear left wheel went on the grass median when the skid was already beyond control. The skid marks start at the end of the clearing: if someone says that the car was already with both left wheels on the grass before the skid marks, he automatically cancels the sidewind option.
About understanding how the body separated from the chassis, it's a matter of looking at the photos, reading through the documents, and adding some common sense. No body, not only made of thin aluminum, could have survived intact those impacts with the ground. Before stopping on the bank of the overpass, it slided on the ground for many meter, thus ending the destruction. Yet, photos show some elements of the body not that far from the wrecked chassis. Once again, one has to be very careful in taking for granted what he sees in a photo, e.g. the positions of the ice tanks and some pieces of the wrecked body are very different in the two photos of the wreck laying upside down on the bank, that I know.
Plenty of books and articles have been written on that Jan 28, 1938 run; AU files are open to everybody, from every corner of the world; other documents and daily articles are filed somewhere in Germany, ready to be retrieved.
I' m so fascinated by this event, by Rekordwochen, by Bernd Rosemeyer (I rate him as one of the top 4 drivers in the history of motor sport, no more than four) that I ask everybody for keeping this Forum going on. As soon as I'll understand the reason why I've been denied posting replies since yesterday (writing too much, perhaps?), I wish to continue.
Aldo"

#81 Hans Etzrodt

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Posted 01 February 2003 - 17:24

Originally posted by Leif Snellman
From Aldo (forwarded again)...
...As soon as I'll understand the reason why I've been denied posting replies since yesterday (writing too much, perhaps?), I wish to continue.
Aldo"

Aldo - every time I clear my "Temporary Internet Files" from my hard drive, I cannot post at TNF. That means I have to sign on again with TNF. Is it possible that you overlook an error when signing on again? It has happened to me in the past a few times. Such a scenario would be the most logical explanation for preventing you access.

#82 aldo

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Posted 01 February 2003 - 18:20

Thanks, Hans for you clue. You are right: I cleaned up my Temporary Internet Files and it didn't work any more. Doing that, one probably cancels the cookie opening the access. By the way, the small problem is over.

About calling Buettner "paparazzo", it's only a literary way to deliver the feeling on how unfair and unbalaced was the fight AU vs him.

About the photos taken in the plant yard to show the world that the right side was in perfect shape, I followed a very acute thought by Leif: the picture is reversed, i.e. what we see is the left side of the surviving Stromlinienwagen. No doubt, after carefully looking at 1938 and 1937 photos and doing some research on how the Hakenkreuz (swastika) is used on planes and everywhere there are two sides. It looks like, beyond doubt, it must always rotate clockwise, while in the photo, it clearly rotates anticlockwise.
They simply slided the negative upside down in the enlarging machine and the trick was done. Maybe, they had only a left fairing and they didn't have time enough to build a new one. Or, as Leif suggested following Jugel affidavit, the left fairing was the one in better shape when recovered from the wreck. Therefore, they fixed and used it.
The photos are, even without such a trick, laughable because they were taken in a snow covered yard and everybody knows that snow has higher reflective power than the gravel at the side of the Autobahn. I have a photo in a set of four, in which no reflection at all appears: it's a basic move known by all professional photographer. One fits a polarizer filtre and, when there are unwanted reflections, it's enough to rotate it until reflections are either mininmal or canceled.
Looking at the photos, one can by the way see some warps at the screw mountings, but they haven't been tightened so strong like on the Autobahn.

#83 Ray Bell

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Posted 01 February 2003 - 21:51

Glad you've solved your cookie problem, Aldo...

And keep it up, this is indeed fascinating.

#84 dmj

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Posted 01 February 2003 - 23:12

Well, it is historically inaccurate to call anyone "paparazzo" before 1960. It was the year when Fellini's "La dolce vita" was released. That movie brought two new words to everyday language all around the world. One is, of course, "dolce vita", a piece of clothing Marcello Mastroianni wore in movie. Other is "Paparazzo" - name of his character in it.
And there, of course, was Anita Ekberg in a fountain... but that's another story. ;)

#85 fines

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Posted 02 February 2003 - 02:29

Uhh, ahh... this very night, I was walking past a fountain in Luxembourg City, and I made a joke mentioning Arsula Undress in a Roman fountain... :blush: now that I read this, I realise I was confusing a Swiss girl with a Swede... at least nobody else caught my error, they still laughed... :smoking:


__________________
Michael Ferner

Mr. Bush and cohorts have done a lot of damage to the relationship with their European friends and allies, and it will take them a lot of effort to patch that up.
Yet they haven't even stopped damaging - Does it really take that long to wake up???

#86 Frank S

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Posted 02 February 2003 - 05:18

dmj:

Well, it is historically inaccurate to call anyone "paparazzo" before 1960. It was the year when Fellini's "La dolce vita" was released. That movie brought two new words to everyday language all around the world. One is, of course, "dolce vita", a piece of clothing Marcello Mastroianni wore in movie. Other is "Paparazzo" - name of his character in it.



I'm sure dmj and everyone else knew this, and declined to make the inconsequential correction, but . . .

Mastroianni played "Marcello Rubini," rudderless ship and self-pleasurer nonpariel.

"Paparazzo" was the single-name photographer who seemed to appear from thin air whenever Marcello got a glimpse of something that seemed it might disturb his blase gaze.

Walter Santesso played the photog, according to IMdB.

Frank S

#87 dmj

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Posted 02 February 2003 - 21:58

I stand corrected. It has been more than 20 years since I've seen that movie. I only remember Anita Ekberg (and a giant ray at the and of movie, that is...). And Croatia is handball champion of the world, after beating Germany in finals. That said, i am feeling very, very well right now (helped with some surprisingly good Montenegrin Sauvignon and Canadian Club, must admit...) So sorry for such an obvious mistake...

#88 Rosemayer

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Posted 03 June 2009 - 12:14

Is Elly Beinhorn Rosemeyer still alive ?
Or, if not, when did she die ?









Thirteen Flowers:
The Story of Bernd and Elly Rosemeyer

Until she passed away last year, and for the past 69 years, Elly Beinhorn made sure that thirteen flowers were placed every January 28th on the grave of her husband, Bernd Rosemeyer, in Berlin's Walfried Dahlem cemetery. Why January 28th? Why thirteen flowers? Thomas O'Keefe tells the remarkable story of Bernd and Elly Rosemeyer
By Thomas O'Keefe
autosport.com contributing writer



They are both gone now, the uber-couple of the Golden Age of Grand Prix racing: Elly, the dashing, tomboyish aviatrix, who flew solo flights around the world at the tender age of twenty four; and Bernd, the handsome young racing driver who mastered the magnificent rear-engined V16 Auto Union in the high summers of the 1930s when the Silver Arrows of Mercedes-Benz and Auto Union raced across the earth.
A lucky couple who seemingly had everything, they nonetheless bucked the odds and adopted the unlucky number 13 as their talisman since so many good things - for example, some of Bernd's most important race victories and their marriage - seemed to take place on the 13th day of the month or on multiples of 13.
And, they were lucky - in love at least.
But on January 28, 1938, 70 years ago this week, luck began to run out for this charmed couple when 28-year-old Rosemeyer had a fatal accident during a speed record attempt on the Frankfurt-Darmstadt autobahn in his Auto Union streamliner.
The streamliner touched 265 mph before it skidded, rolled and crashed, throwing Rosemeyer into a clump of trees in the nearby woods where he died soon after.
And on November 28, 2007, Elly Beinhorn Rosemeyer died of natural causes, in a nursing home near Munich, having turned 100 years old in May 2007.
Elly was literally the last survivor of the Silver Arrows era and for the first time in 70 years, when January 28th comes around, Bernd's beloved wife and fellow sportsman will not be there to remember him and their life together, a life that summed up an age.
Romance and Racing
How did the Bernd and Elly story begin?
By 1935, because of her dangerous solo flights around the world, Elly Beinhorn was already a world famous sportsman and a household name.

Elly Beinhorn in 1933 © SV-Bilderdienst/Scherl
Bernd, two years younger than Elly, was in a lesser league, only having recently graduated from racing motorcycles for DKW to the Auto Union team, where he was still a journeyman driver. Because of Elly's prominence, Bernd must have known who Elly was, but the reverse was not true, until the autumn of 1935.
The day Bernd and Elly met it all came good for Bernd Rosemeyer, in more ways than one. It was towards the end of the 1935 Grand Prix season on September 29, 1935, at Brno for the Masaryk Grand Prix.
Elly, who happened to be in Brno to give a lecture to a local flying club, had been invited by Auto Union to the Grand Prix as a celebrity in the paddock, and she assumed she would be greeting Auto Union's principal driver, Hans Stuck, as the winner when all was said and done.
But life had a surprise waiting for Elly when young upstart Rosemeyer beat his betters, outlasting Auto Union teammates Stuck and Achille Varzi as well as Alfa Romeo's Tazio Nuvolari, to win the race.
Auto Union's press officer saw that Beinhorn was reluctant to congratulate the rookie winner and said to her: "Please be kind - go and congratulate the young man. It is his first victory - he'll be so happy."
Elly complied, and so, at the victory ceremony - Rosemeyer's first victory in a car race, let alone a Grand Prix - 26-year-old Bernd and 28-year-old Elly first met and, after a vigorous pursuit on his part, he finally won Beinhorn over.
Inch by inch, by means of theatre dates, visits to the Berlin Zoo and the occasional spirited ride in Bernd's company car, a Horch sedan, Bernd continued to insinuate himself into Elly's busy life in the off-season, almost against her will, finally blurting out one day: "It must always be like this. And when the racing season begins, you must come with me."
Even then, Elly stubbornly resisted, though weakening to his boyish charm:
"That made me smile! 'Bernd, you innocent child, I thought to myself, 'you don't seriously imagine that I'm going to associate with your traveling circus of motor racing hooligans, do you?' Oh no, not me, not Elly Beinhorn."
But, by the time of the 1936 season, Elly had succumbed completely to Bernd's blandishments and the pair were a serious item. Rosemeyer and Auto Union were also an item and were about to have their best season, winning five Grands Prix and two mountain climbs, with Bernd taking the 1936 European Championship and humbling the better financed Mercedes-Benz and their star driver, Rudolf Caracciola.
To top off the extraordinary 1936 season, after their whirlwind courtship, the pair got married, choosing July 13 (their lucky number) as the date.
The Honour Guard they chose was a distinguished one, composed of Bernd's Auto Union mechanics and the Shell Oil Company flying mechanics that helped Elly with the logistics of her record flights.

Bernd and Elly Rosemeyer in 1936 © SV-Bilderdienst
Elly drives the Auto Union
By the time of the 1936 Italian Grand Prix at Monza on September 13, Mercedes-Benz had seen the writing on the wall - this was to be Auto Union's year - and did not even bother to put in an appearance.
With Rosemeyer guaranteed the 1936 championship and Mercedes-Benz not among the competitors, there was perhaps a kind of end-of-term atmosphere in the air at the Royal Park that surrounds Monza, and in that context, Elly got the chance to do yet another extraordinary thing: to drive the Auto Union.
Bernd had been scheming for months to give his wife a chance to drive the magnificent beast. At Monza, Auto Union had brought along an older, long-tailed version of the Grand Prix car as a training/spare car and, once practice was completed, that car could be considered surplus - or so Bernd had convinced Auto Union's team manager, Dr Feuereissen.
This is what happened next, told in a very personal way by Elly herself in My Husband, the Racing Driver:
"Bernd presented me with the challenge and at first I was not at all keen to accept it. I had always had a burning desire to drive what was by now the fastest car in the world, but not at Monza, where I was surrounded by friends and dozens of reporters and photographers.
"Before I knew it I found myself seated in the silver car with the long, long tail, equipped with Bernd's helmet and goggles and listening to his instructions.
"One of the reporters bent down towards Bernd, who was squatting by the car. 'Why are you so anxious to get rid of your wife, Rosemeyer?' The mechanics pushed me off. 'Let her go!'
"It was just like a race. I carefully dabbed at the accelerator and five hundred horsepower roared behind me. At first I was somewhat stunned and it took me a lap to begin to find my bearings. Miraculously enough, the monster could be driven slowly. Not very slowly, it's true - but slowly - and the gearbox was very easy to deal with.
"After another, even more exciting lap I was given the signal to stop from the pits, just like one of the aces, and naturally, like a well-disciplined driver, I drew up at once. 'Bernd, I'm so pleased and grateful. That was wonderful!'
"'I'm glad that you are still safe and sound,' he said. 'But you could have gone a bit faster on the straight - 200 km/h [125 mph] at least!'
"Needless to say, I have never forgotten the excitement of those two all-too-brief laps."
And make no mistake about it, the Auto Union Type C that Rosemeyer turned over to Elly was the mightiest of the Auto Unions, with its brutish-looking six-litre, 16-cylinder engine developing 520 bhp at 5000 rpm, making it quite a handful for any driver, let alone a novice like Beinhorn.

Bernd Rosemeyer drives the Auto Union C in the 1937 German Grand Prix at the Nordschleiffe © LAT
Bernd and Elly: Sidesaddle at the Nurburgring
Elly would have one more go in the Auto Union, this time as a passenger and, as it would turn out, a pregnant one at that.
Rosemeyer had lost a hard fight at AVUS against Mercedes-Benz on May 30, 1937, Elly's 30th Birthday, when a lengthy pitstop to replace his Continental tyres cost him victory in the final heat.
Earlier on he had battled his arch rival Caracciola in the Mercedes-Benz streamliner in the first heat, turning a lap of 172.75 mph and losing by only seven tenths of a second.
The next race was to be the Eifelrennan at the Nurburgring on June 13th. It was a track that no one drove better at than Rosemeyer, and he won his third successive victory at Nurburgring.
The day after the race, Bernd was asked by the Auto Union team to return to the Ring to do some filming, which gave the always-mischievous Bernd an idea, according to Elly's biography:
"He had long wanted to take me around the Ring in his racing car and here was his chance. 'This is a golden opportunity, Elly. You simply sit on the edge of my seat and I will drive very carefully, but fast enough that you may get an idea of what its like when I'm racing.'
"I was all for it, but my enthusiasm evaporated after the very first corner! At every bend I was ready to swear an oath that we would never get round and I was almost thrown out of the Auto Union by the centrifugal force.
"As I clung on for dear life my husband laughed himself silly. 'What are you complaining about? I can't drive fast at all on these running-in plugs. Dawdling along like this wouldn't get us tenth place!'
"I was by no means ashamed of my timidity. On the contrary, I was grateful for the chance to get some idea of what Bernd got up to on a circuit and it was abundantly clear to me that driving a racing car was infinitely more difficult than flying."
According to the records, Rosemeyer put in a 12-minute lap with Elly on board; his qualifying time was nine minutes and 46 seconds.
America and the Vanderbilt Cup Race
Bernd Rosemeyer was able to win four Grands Prix for Auto Union that year, but the 1937 Vanderbilt Cup race at Roosevelt Raceway on Long Island in New York was the most prominent of his wins, a kind of race of two worlds, pitting Europe's best against America's Indy 500 drivers, "My man's greatest success," is the way Elly characterised this victory.
It was a profitable weekend for the pair as Bernd's first prize was $20,000, a considerable sum of money.
What Bernd and Elly did with at least some of his winnings was revealing as to their true state of mind in the middle of 1937, after four years of Hitler's rule.
Although trotted out by the Nazis as the ultimate Aryan couple - the affable, handsome blonde Rosemeyer and his attractive and accomplished aviator wife - none of the German drivers and their wives were committed Nazis, least of all the Rosemeyers.
Interestingly, this is what they did with the 1937 Vanderbilt Cup winnings: as a hedge against future events, Bernd and Elly opened up a bank account at a New York bank and into the account went a portion of the $20,000 prize money.
Many years later, when Beinhorn became aware of a group of American women pilots who wanted to honour Amelia Earhart with a US postage stamp, Elly tracked down the New York bank account she and Bernd had established, and the proceeds were used to support a successful campaign to honour Earhart with a commemorative stamp.

The Bernd Rosemeyer memorial in 2007 © Schlegelmilch
Bernd Jr
Elly had been pregnant during this trip to America for the Vanderbilt Cup race and at Nurburgring, for her joyride in the Auto Union after the Eifelrennen. On November 12, 1937, Bernd Junior was born, with Tazio Nuvolari picked by the couple to be his Godfather.
A charming picture dated January 25, 1938, has come down to us of Bernd Sr holding 10-week-old Bernd Jr at home in Berlin-Charlotteburg, Bernd Sr looking up at a model of the Auto Union Type C on top of a cabinet that contained Bernd's trophies, the same kind of Auto Union driven by both Bernd and Elly.
Six months after the Vanderbilt Cup race in the summer of 1937 and only three days after that picture with Bernd Jr was taken, the Bernd and Elly fairytale ended abruptly on a winter's day, on a windswept autobahn that ran between Frankfurt and Darmstadt.
Elly wanted desperately to be at the record run but was giving a sold-out lecture that day in what was then Czechoslovakia, the same country where they first met at Brno less than four years earlier. The last words in her autobiography are: "I never got to Frankfurt on time."
Although Elly subsequently remarried and had other children, she never forgot her whirlwind courtship and marriage to Rosemeyer. The son Bernd and Elly had together just before the accident, Bernd Jr, is still with us and is a professor of orthopedics in Munich.
Elly, in recognition of their bittersweet life together and the couple's lucky 13, made sure throughout her life years that there were 13 roses placed upon Bernd's grave on January 28th, the anniversary of Bernd's death.
This year on January 28th, Bernd Jr will honor his mother's tradition and provide the 13 roses in honor of both of his remarkable parents, who lived and loved so well.

Author's Note: Elly Beinhorn was a fabulous writer as well as an ace flyer. She wrote 'Mein Mann, der Rennfahrer' (My Husband, the Racing Driver) in what she called "The darkest hours of my life." In 1986, Silver Arrows expert Chris Nixon worked with Elly on an English translation called 'Rosemeyer!' which has been relied upon here.




Edited by Rosemayer, 03 June 2009 - 12:17.


#89 Egor

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Posted 01 January 2011 - 13:05

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#90 Egor

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Posted 27 January 2013 - 13:19

28.01- 75 yrs.

Bild: © Unternehmensarchiv Audi AG

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