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The superior no 2 driver


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#1 Mohican

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Posted 04 February 2003 - 11:20

Here is another for the history buffs:
the driver taken on as back-up, as definite no 2 - and who then for whatever reasons turn out to be the star of the operation.

I mean where the no 2 driver clearly established himself as faster than the supposed no 1. Cases where the no 1 driver was sidelined through death or injury do not count.

try this for size:

Jackie Stewart at BRM in 1965
Ronnie Peterson at Lotus in 1973
Niki Lauda at BRM in 1973
Gilles Villeneuve at Ferrari in 1979
Alain Prost at McLaren in 1980
Nigel Mansell at Williams in 1985
Jean Alesi at Tyrrell in 1989
Michael Scumacher at Benetton in 1991
David Coulthard at Williams in 1995

There must be more...

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#2 Ray Bell

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Posted 04 February 2003 - 11:36

Juan Manuel Fangio at Alfa in 1950...

#3 scheivlak

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Posted 04 February 2003 - 11:37

Denny Hulme at Brabham in 1967 might qualify.....

#4 scheivlak

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Posted 04 February 2003 - 11:45

Originally posted by Mohican
David Coulthard at Williams in 1995


I'm going to 'Forix' you for that :lol:

WDC points: D Hill 69 vs. Coulthard 49
qualifying results: D Hill 6xpole, 5x2nd vs. Coulthard 5xpole, 2x2nd (OK, plus 7x3rd..)

#5 Geza Sury

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Posted 04 February 2003 - 12:06

Originally posted by Mohican
Nigel Mansell at Williams in 1985

Perhaps this is true even more for 1986. Nelson Piquet was a clear favourite, but Mansell unexpectedly rose up to the challenge and was at least as quick as Piquet.

Other examples:
Niki Lauda at Ferrari in 1974/75
Alain Prost at McLaren in 1980

#6 KWSN - DSM

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Posted 04 February 2003 - 12:26

Afternoon,

I find this an interesting thread, yet have no recallections of may own to add to the above. But I do have "issues" with some of them:

Lauda in Ferrari a CLEAR number 2???? I will have to read up on that, but I am pretty sure that is not what I will find.

Prost in McLaren 1980 a CLEAR number 2???? I will have to read up on that, but I am pretty sure that is not what I will find.

:cool:

#7 holiday

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Posted 04 February 2003 - 12:43

Originally posted by Mohican
Gilles Villeneuve at Ferrari in 1979


Faster, but also better...?

#8 Vitesse2

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Posted 04 February 2003 - 13:20

I'd have to take issue with Stewart in 1965. Rising star, yes: clearly superior to Graham Hill? No, not that year anyway. Hill took two wins to Stewart's one in Italy (with Graham second in a typical Monza slipstreamer). They had three second places and one third place each, plus a few minor places for both. But bear in mind that if Clark finished in 1965, he won .... the true test of that year is who ran Jimmy closer: Graham or Jackie?

By 1966 they were effectively joint number ones at BRM (not that that was anything to write home about!)

#9 bobbo

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Posted 04 February 2003 - 13:47

Originally posted by scheivlak
Denny Hulme at Brabham in 1967 might qualify.....


Or, in this vein, maybe Dan Gurney at Brabham 1963 - 65? He gave the team its first 2 wins, finished higher than the boss in the WDC all 3 years (I think, without looking it up). But maybe the reality was that they were co #1s?

Bobbo

#10 dmj

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Posted 04 February 2003 - 13:49

Ferrari 1979? Well, GV's teammate turned to be a WDC that year...

#11 byrkus

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Posted 04 February 2003 - 14:14

Alain Prost, 1988... He had more points than his teammate, who happened to win WDC.

#12 mikedeering

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Posted 04 February 2003 - 14:45

Originally posted by Mohican

Nigel Mansell at Williams in 1985


Rosberg scored more points and would have scored even more had reliability been better - he lost a win at Monza for example. Mansell for the first half of the season couldn't get near Keke. Only as the season wore on did Mansell start to get on the pace.

His two wins were both assisted by Keke - at Brands Keke was runing ahead but spun off through frustration with Senna. He then rejoined and blocked Senna, letting Mansell through.

At Kyalami, Rosberg had just passed Mansell for the lead and had the misfortune to hit Ghizani's oil first - spinning out - a grateful Nigel saw Keke spin and slammed on the brakes - just keeping it on the island.

I would say Mansell at Williams 1986 was more apt - Piquet signed as No 1 but scored less wins, less points and was generally less impressive than Mansell. After Brazil, Piquet went AWOL for several races while Mansell put together 4 wins in a 5 race stretch. Nelson fought back in the 2nd half of the year, but it was the #2 Williams driver who finished ahead in the WDC.

#13 Mohican

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Posted 04 February 2003 - 16:46

Yeah, right. I think I said where the supposed no 2 guy was taken on as such and then turned out to be "the star of the operation" in the sense that he was faster than expected, faster than the supposed team leader - and this sometimes by a considerable margin.

My point was not who was champion a particular year or not, or who won how many races.

Who today says that Scheckter was faster than Villeneuve in '79 ? Scheckter's "fast" (and wild) years were much earlier than in '79. Likewise, do not believe that Lauda was anything else than joint no 1 at Ferrar in 1974; at BRM the year before it was a different matter altogether.

#14 Martyj

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Posted 04 February 2003 - 18:44

1973 team McLaren. Pete Revson was usually faster and had more success than team leader Hulme.

In 1976, DePallier in the six-wheeler performed better than Scheckter on most occasions, although there were instances where Jody did well enough to justify his team leader designation.

I'd have to second Gurney during the team Brabham years.

#15 TODave2

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Posted 04 February 2003 - 21:00

Yes, Mansell in 1986 is probably the best example. Here comes Piquet on a multi-million contract, clear favourite to win the WDC, wins the first race as Mansell spins out... and then drops the ball as Mansell finds his feet (mix those metaphors :) )


Hmmm... what about Barrichello in Austria 2002? *runs for cover*

#16 Jesper O. Hansen

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Posted 04 February 2003 - 21:23

I suppose this The Superior no 2 driver ..in F1

In 1991 Tom Kristensen entered the German F3 championship in the position of #2 German driver to Klaus Panchyrz. Tom Kristensen won the Championship, but that was it. No one to pick him up and no one to sponsor him further on. In fact it seemed to have ended not one but two careers! Panchyrz didn't win, and Kristensen wasn't supposed to win, so Volkswagen hired two new drivers for '92?

Jesper O. Hansen

#17 Alan Lewis

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Posted 04 February 2003 - 21:31

Originally posted by KWSN - DSM
Afternoon,

I find this an interesting thread, yet have no recallections of may own to add to the above. But I do have "issues" with some of them:

Lauda in Ferrari a CLEAR number 2???? I will have to read up on that, but I am pretty sure that is not what I will find.

Prost in McLaren 1980 a CLEAR number 2???? I will have to read up on that, but I am pretty sure that is not what I will find.

:cool:


In the case of Lauda I agree with you - for 1975 at least - but with Prost in '80 it's a true statement; it was his debut year whilst his team mate, John Watson, was a Grand Prix winner. History may have proved Prost to be the greater talent and I'm sure at the time many suspected it to be the case but nevertheless, he was hired as McLaren's number 2 driver in 1980.

APL

#18 Roger Clark

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Posted 04 February 2003 - 21:36

Originally posted by bobbo


Or, in this vein, maybe Dan Gurney at Brabham 1963 - 65? He gave the team its first 2 wins, finished higher than the boss in the WDC all 3 years (I think, without looking it up). But maybe the reality was that they were co #1s?

Bobbo


No, Dan Gurney was the clear number 1. If there was a shortage of engines (as there often was), Gurney got the best.

#19 Ray Bell

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Posted 04 February 2003 - 21:58

Originally posted by scheivlak
Denny Hulme at Brabham in 1967 might qualify.....


Like Gurney, always treated fairly by Jack...

It actually shows the sportsmanship of the team owner to appreciate just how Jack gave Denny every chance, even though Jack was team leader again.

But they were so close at the end of the year, you could hardly say that Denny shone out enough to be considered better than the boss.

Likewise, by 1973 he was getting tired. He might have been the team leader, but in a team that had an 'every man for himself' outlook. He wasn't expected to be the fastest, I don't think.

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#20 Tim Murray

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Posted 04 February 2003 - 22:29

Originally posted by Roger Clark
No, Dan Gurney was the clear number 1. If there was a shortage of engines (as there often was), Gurney got the best.


Yes indeed - remember the 1965 British GP. Gurney's car failed during the warm-up, so Jack gave up his car to Dan. Unfortunately it didn't quite fit - Dan looked most uncomfortable projecting a long way out of the cockpit, but managed to bring it home in 6th place.

#21 Mac Lark

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Posted 04 February 2003 - 23:49

So who was no.1 at McLaren in 1968 and 69??

What about Clark in 1961?

#22 KWSN - DSM

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Posted 05 February 2003 - 06:12

Originally posted by Alan Lewis


In the case of Lauda I agree with you - for 1975 at least - but with Prost in '80 it's a true statement; it was his debut year whilst his team mate, John Watson, was a Grand Prix winner. History may have proved Prost to be the greater talent and I'm sure at the time many suspected it to be the case but nevertheless, he was hired as McLaren's number 2 driver in 1980.

APL


Sorry but I have to be somewhat "dense" here.

Prost was comming out of F3 as "THE" junior formula driver. I have read the question in this thread as a "clear number 2". I do not belive that Prost was installed a "clear number 2" at McLaren. He may have been installed "under" Watson to "learn from the old guy". But his arrival into F1 was as hyped up as hype would go in those days.

:cool:

#23 Mohican

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Posted 05 February 2003 - 08:39

The McLaren situation in 1979/80 is interesting anyway. People tend to forget that the team leader for 1979 was to have been Ronnie Peterson, with Patrick Tambay as no 2. John Watson was not in the picture before RP's fatal accident at Monza; and was very much a second best choice. I think that history shows that the McLaren team never had much of a commitment to Watson; admittedly he became a true team leader (with de Cesaris as no 2) by default in 1981, but even though he won a race that year the new team management (Ron Dennis & John Barnard) lost no time in persuading Lauda out of retirement for 1982. And that, effectively, was the end of Watson as a front runner - nice guy as he is.

Anyway, it is interesting to think about what would have been the result of Ronnie driving the McLaren M28. Even he would have been demotivated from finding himself back in a hopeless car after driving the Lotus 79. Having said that he would have made it go much faster than Watson ever did.

#24 Ray Bell

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Posted 05 February 2003 - 09:10

Originally posted by Mac Lark
So who was no.1 at McLaren in 1968 and 69??

What about Clark in 1961?


Ireland was team leader in 1961 and Ireland was the only one to win a GP... other than that I really know little about that season.

But it's clear that Chapman and Moss recognised what was happening with Clark, that he would be the fastest driver in short order.

As for McLaren, we saw a lot of hullaballu about 'joint number one' drivers with the teaming of Clark and Hill the previous year. It was spoken of loudly and so introduced what was probably a concept that was either considered new or was largely forgotten.

With Hulme as the reigning champ, McLaren would have naturally been more or less obliged to treat him as number one, but it may well have been a 'joint number one' scenario.

As it was with them in the Can-Am at the time...

#25 ianm1808

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Posted 05 February 2003 - 12:03

Herbert at Benetton in 1995 before the German/Italian mafia put the kibosh on him! :)

#26 Geza Sury

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Posted 05 February 2003 - 12:25

Originally posted by Mohican
The McLaren situation in 1979/80 is interesting anyway. People tend to forget that the team leader for 1979 was to have been Ronnie Peterson, with Patrick Tambay as no 2. John Watson was not in the picture before RP's fatal accident at Monza; and was very much a second best choice.

That's a good point actually and raises another question. Why did Peterson sign for McLaren instead of Lotus? Perhaps he had had enough of playing second fiddle to Andretti? Did he give an interview about this subject? I've read Alan Henry's 'SuperSwede', but I can't recall reading anything about this.

#27 Yves

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Posted 05 February 2003 - 16:37

Originally posted by Ray Bell


Like Gurney, always treated fairly by Jack...

It actually shows the sportsmanship of the team owner to appreciate just how Jack gave Denny every chance, even though Jack was team leader again.

But they were so close at the end of the year, you could hardly say that Denny shone out enough to be considered better than the boss.

Likewise, by 1973 he was getting tired. He might have been the team leader, but in a team that had an 'every man for himself' outlook. He wasn't expected to be the fastest, I don't think.


In both case, Gurney and Hulme at Brabham, I remember Gurney was clearly the number one as demonstrated by Roger. And for Hulme, I think that no real N°1 was defined. Of course, Sir Jack with the title has a psychologic advantage but the battle has been fair and ... the best won ...

Remember, Sir Jack was a little bit ambiguous, telling each saturday morning to his wife it was the last one ;) and the game was repeated years after years ...
I also remember a certain GP start with a long beard ... But I don't remember the year ...

Y.

#28 MPea3

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Posted 05 February 2003 - 17:28

i had always thought that brabham had been the #1 in his own team in 1967, but his use of the more "bleeding edge" bits left him with a less reiable car, and helped hulme in his championship quest. input?

#29 Bladrian

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Posted 05 February 2003 - 17:45

Originally posted by Yves
Remember, Sir Jack was a little bit ambiguous, telling each saturday morning to his wife it was the last one ;) and the game was repeated years after years ...
I also remember a certain GP start with a long beard ... But I don't remember the year ...

Y.


Zandvoort, 1966. Jack limped around the paddock, sporting a long false beard and a cane.

Then the silly old bugger got in his car and won the race. And lapped the entire field in doing so. :rotfl:

#30 Ray Bell

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Posted 05 February 2003 - 21:13

...and wrote later that he would have felt a fool if he hadn't won!

During 1966, Denny certainly had the second best, but I think Jack recognised that the stakes were higher in '67 and that he couldn't afford to shortchange either car.

#31 Alan Lewis

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Posted 05 February 2003 - 21:33

Originally posted by KWSN - DSM


Sorry but I have to be somewhat "dense" here.

Prost was comming out of F3 as "THE" junior formula driver. I have read the question in this thread as a "clear number 2". I do not belive that Prost was installed a "clear number 2" at McLaren. He may have been installed "under" Watson to "learn from the old guy". But his arrival into F1 was as hyped up as hype would go in those days.

:cool:


I see what you're getting at; I didn't take "clear number 2" to mean "that's all he ever be", I took it to mean "was the junior partner at that point in time", as Prost certainly was for all the hype. My turn to be dense (a quality I specialise in).

Good point elsewhere about Ronnie, he would indeed have been there in happier times. I have idly speculated in the past (though I know that way madness lies) about how history might have changed had he stayed on after 1979 to the Dennis/Barnard/TAG Porsche years. Would Niki have ever bothered coming back? No Watson at Silverstone '81? No safety net for Prost after getting fired by Renault? (Not sure about that last one, that would probably have happened anyway)

APL

#32 John Fransson

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Posted 06 February 2003 - 08:00

What about Williams in 1982?
Might be a long shot, but wasn't Keke made a teamleader only after Carlos' walked away?

- John :wave:

#33 Henri Greuter

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Posted 06 February 2003 - 08:47

Long toes to step on (and as far as I have found out: many of them too) :

Lotus in '85: Was Senna hired as equal #1 or second man to Elio?



Henri Greuter

#34 KWSN - DSM

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Posted 06 February 2003 - 09:23

Originally posted by John Fransson
What about Williams in 1982?
Might be a long shot, but wasn't Keke made a teamleader only after Carlos' walked away?

- John :wave:


I still think that most of you elude the original question. A driver taken on as a decidedly number 2, then outperforming the number one driver.

Keke Rosberg (my personal all time favorite driver!!! :) ) can not be an example, Reuteman walked away and Daly as a replacement were NOT!! the designated number 1 at Williams.

#35 KWSN - DSM

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Posted 06 February 2003 - 09:24

Originally posted by Henri Greuter
Long toes to step on (and as far as I have found out: many of them too) :

Lotus in '85: Was Senna hired as equal #1 or second man to Elio?



Henri Greuter


At best for Elio Senna came on as equal number 1, but really think that Elio were demoted to decided number 2 by the Senne signing.

:cool:

#36 Henri Greuter

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Posted 06 February 2003 - 09:49

KWSN - DSM wrote:


At best for Elio Senna came on as equal number 1, but really think that Elio were demoted to decided number 2 by the Senne signing.

===

I kind of wondered already. Didn't know on what terms Senna was signed but considering the fact that Elio was generally believed to be the #1 in the previous years with Mansell as teammate, I wondered if he nominally still retained that status when Senna arrived.

If so, then this is a classic example of the #2 outdoing the teamleader.
But for now I must give Elio the benefit of the doubt.




I wonder: are there any cases in which the #3 outperformed the two nominated drivers when given a chance to race? or one could say that the #3 proved himself to be worthy of a full season ride instead of being a testdriver?
Or a driver hired for a one-off deal doing such?

Hakkinen ('93), Verstappen ('94) Wurz ('97) come up to my mind. Others?


henri greuter

#37 Mohican

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Posted 06 February 2003 - 09:49

Originally posted by Alan Lewis


I see what you're getting at; I didn't take "clear number 2" to mean "that's all he ever be", I took it to mean "was the junior partner at that point in time", as Prost certainly was for all the hype. My turn to be dense (a quality I specialise in).

Good point elsewhere about Ronnie, he would indeed have been there in happier times. I have idly speculated in the past (though I know that way madness lies) about how history might have changed had he stayed on after 1979 to the Dennis/Barnard/TAG Porsche years. Would Niki have ever bothered coming back? No Watson at Silverstone '81? No safety net for Prost after getting fired by Renault? (Not sure about that last one, that would probably have happened anyway)

APL


I think it is clear that Ronnie signed for McLaren as he wanted clear no 1 status in a top team, which he would certainly not have had with Lotus in 1979 - particularly not with Mario as reigning World champion ! Just possibly he had his doubts about the forthcoming Lotus 80, having lived through the Lotus 76 fiasco of 1974.

The sad thing is that of course both Lotus and McLaren were also-rans in '79, and the McLaren M28 in particular was both slow and unreliable. In fact, think that the prospect of yet another wasted year in an uncompetitive car may well have been the end of Ronnie's career - or athe very least would have blighted his competitive edge vs incoming new stars as the turen of the decade.
Having said that, he would have been faster and more spectacular to watch than Watson.

#38 Henri Greuter

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Posted 06 February 2003 - 10:00

I wrote:I

wonder: are there any cases in which the #3 outperformed the two nominated drivers when given a chance to race? or one could say that the #3 proved himself to be worthy of a full season ride instead of being a testdriver?
Or a driver hired for a one-off deal doing such?

====

Can answer myself on that final question at least twice after all:

Silverstone 1977: The driver in the third McLaren: Gilles Villeneuve...
Spa 1991, a certain Michael Schumacher hired to replace Bertrand Gachot......

Henri Greuter

#39 Ray Bell

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Posted 06 February 2003 - 10:20

Wasn't Villeneuve's performance in the McLaren something of a reflection of what happened when they screwed one Jody Scheckter into another McLaren?

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#40 Mohican

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Posted 06 February 2003 - 10:21

Jacky Ickx's one-off drive for McLaren at the '73 German GP comes to mind; a pity that McLaren's Marlboro-Texaco plans for 1974 did not leave any room for him.

And of course the Andretti / Hakkinen situation at McLaren in 1993.

#41 Rediscoveryx

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Posted 06 February 2003 - 10:29

Originally posted by John Fransson
What about Williams in 1982?
Might be a long shot, but wasn't Keke made a teamleader only after Carlos' walked away?

- John :wave:


Keke pretty much overshadowed Carlos in preseason and the first races of the season when Carlos was very much the team leader. Perhaps this contributed to Reutemann's retirement.

#42 Ray Bell

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Posted 06 February 2003 - 10:32

Probably not as much as being an Argentinian working in England...

...while the Brits were haring down the Atlantic hell-bent on making the Argentinians look like fools in the rather more serious sport of Exorcet vs. Harrier.

#43 Rediscoveryx

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Posted 06 February 2003 - 10:33

Originally posted by Henri Greuter
Long toes to step on (and as far as I have found out: many of them too) :

Lotus in '85: Was Senna hired as equal #1 or second man to Elio?



Henri Greuter


I think Senna was officially hired as "joint number one" with Elio. I never had the impression that de Angelis was "nr.1" and Mansell "nr.2" in Lotus, and Senna was rated very highly indeed prior to the 1985 season.

It is on the other hand a pretty good example. Similar, if you will, to the Schumacher-Piquet situation in late 1991.


I'm not sure if it's been mentioned (I only found this thread recently and I've not read every post in it), but Frentzen beating Hill in Jordan in 1999 seems to fit this thread pretty good. Hill was very much nr.1 at Jordan in 1998, and Frentzen came in and more or less blew him away into retirement.

#44 Rediscoveryx

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Posted 06 February 2003 - 10:34

Originally posted by Ray Bell
Probably not as much as being an Argentinian working in England...

...while the Brits were haring down the Atlantic hell-bent on making the Argentinians look like fools in the rather more serious sport of Exorcet vs. Harrier.


You're right, I forgot about that...

#45 Henri Greuter

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Posted 06 February 2003 - 10:53

Rediscoveryx wrote

quote:
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Originally posted by Ray Bell
Probably not as much as being an Argentinian working in England...

...while the Brits were haring down the Atlantic hell-bent on making the Argentinians look like fools in the rather more serious sport of Exorcet vs. Harrier.
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------



You're right, I forgot about that...

==

And maybe the season '81 ending also had something to do with it? Williams still supporting Alan Jones who had no chance for the title anymore, almost orphaning their title candidate Carlos who lost the title in the final race to Piquet?
And instead of the team expressing their regrets about a lost world title, cheering because of Alan Jones winnin his (what was till then supposed to be) his farewell race?
That must have left an impression on the sensitive Carlos too I suppose.


Henri Greuter

#46 Vitesse2

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Posted 06 February 2003 - 12:16

Originally posted by Ray Bell
Probably not as much as being an Argentinian working in England...

...while the Brits were haring down the Atlantic hell-bent on making the Argentinians look like fools in the rather more serious sport of Exorcet vs. Harrier.


Reutemann quit Williams before the Argentinian invasion of the Falklands. In view of his subsequent career in politics, it seems very likely that he was advised that it would not be sensible to continue to drive for a British team. In that respect, he seems to have been better-informed than the Foreign and Commonwealth Office were at the time ... but I suppose he had better contacts in the Argentinian government than they did!

#47 Yves

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Posted 06 February 2003 - 17:48

Originally posted by Vitesse2


Reutemann quit Williams before the Argentinian invasion of the Falklands. In view of his subsequent career in politics, it seems very likely that he was advised that it would not be sensible to continue to drive for a British team. In that respect, he seems to have been better-informed than the Foreign and Commonwealth Office were at the time ... but I suppose he had better contacts in the Argentinian government than they did!


Wouah ... Suppositions or informations :eek: ??

Do you really think he was engaged so deeply in politics at that time ????? And on this side of the argentinian scene ?

I heard he is not really on the same side as the former colonnels !!!

Y.

#48 Bladrian

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Posted 06 February 2003 - 18:27

Originally posted by Yves


Wouah ... Suppositions or informations :eek: ??

Do you really think he was engaged so deeply in politics at that time ????? And on this side of the argentinian scene ?

I heard he is not really on the same side as the former colonnels !!!

Y.


Supposition, I'd say. The situation had already been mediated to everyone's satisfaction (by Peru or Chile, if I remember correctly) when the Belgrano was torpedoed sailing out of the area. After that it was Katie bar the door ....

#49 holiday

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Posted 06 February 2003 - 19:16

Originally posted by Rediscoveryx
....but Frentzen beating Hill in Jordan in 1999 seems to fit this thread pretty good. Hill was very much nr.1 at Jordan in 1998, and Frentzen came in and more or less blew him away into retirement.


More than less, in fact. :)

Frentzens 1999 season will go down into motorsport history as one of the most accomplished of the 90s. That is if not someone doing the recording is messing up on the way. :wave:

#50 Ray Bell

Ray Bell
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Posted 06 February 2003 - 21:15

Originally posted by Vitesse2
Reutemann quit Williams before the Argentinian invasion of the Falklands.....


A lot of things happened before the invasion...

There was an Argentinian takeover of the British outpost...

There was much banter about what should be done (by the Brits)...

There was the assembly of a Naval contingent... and the subsequent trip to the area...

My recollection of it all was that it was well and truly brewing when he left. Or is my subsequent recognition of the judiciousness of the departure clouding things?