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When started the idea of Formula 1?


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#1 Holger Merten

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Posted 01 May 2003 - 11:55

Reading some books about the early days of F1, there are differencies in the facts about the date of birth of F1. Some authors wrote, that the idea came up in 1946 and was discussed in Paris, some say that it was later: 1948.

But what is correct? And did F1 later start with the original idea from 1946 or 1948? And which relations were between the idea of a new formula (F1) and about a second class (F2)?

Thanks for your replies.

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#2 Vitesse2

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Posted 01 May 2003 - 12:30

Holger - you will find an introductory discussion here, with links to earlier threads:

http://www.atlasf1.c...&threadid=31437

I'm ashamed to say this is still on the back burner .... too many projects, too little time!!

#3 Holger Merten

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Posted 01 May 2003 - 12:53

Richard, thanks a lot, I saw you online on my Buddy-list and hoped, that you would reply. :wave:

#4 karlcars

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Posted 05 May 2003 - 17:31

This is the way I put it in my book "Classic Grand Prix Cars":

The international association of motoring clubs, the pre-war AIACR, was reconstituted as the FIA (Federation Internationale de l’Automobile), based in Paris. Its sporting commission the CSI (Commission Sportive Internationale) was convened for the first time on 28 February 1946. It elected a new president, Augustin Pérouse, and settled on a new Formula for Grand Prix racing to take effect in 1948 and continue through 1951.

Some of the debate necessary to resolve a new Formula had already taken place seven years earlier. We recall that the last Grand Prix Formula, effective from 1938 through 1940, was the first to attempt a balance between supercharged and unsupercharged engines, imposing respective maximum displacements of 3 and 4½ litres in association with minimum weights. In Europe it hadn’t taken long to discover that the supercharged 3-litre cars were overpoweringly superior (In American racing the pairing worked out better; the pre-war Formula was retained in the Forties and Fifties when unblown engines dominated.).

By 1939 sentiment in European circles strongly favoured the establishment of a future Formula that would carry over the 4½-litre unblown category and pit it against supercharged 1½-litre racing cars. The latter had always been a popular engine size in Europe. It had been used since 1935 for the Voiturette racing category in parallel with the main Grand Prix Formula – what we’d think of later as Formula 2.

In 1939 Italy, fed up with being defeated by the Germans on their own territory, switched her major races to the Voiturette class. All the companies involved in racing were working on new 1½-litre cars because it seemed likely that a change to a 1½ blown/4½ unblown G. P. Formula could come as early as 1940. The only Formula-car road races held that year, two in Italy, were for 1,500 cc cars

Not many 4½-litre unblown cars had competed before the war, but those few – French Talbots, Delahayes and Delages – had somehow survived. So had almost all the supercharged 1½-litre machines. On the other hand the 3-litre blown Grand Prix cars of the Thirties, most of them German, were not immediately available and none, felt the CSI members, was likely to be made for some time.

A Formula was needed, as Alfred Neubauer of Daimler-Benz observed, “to bridge the gap between the difficult war years and the time when firms building racing cars would once more have settled down.” The choice of the CSI was indeed a Formula for Grand Prix cars of 1½ litres supercharged and 4½ normally aspirated. Though it wasn’t officially in effect until 1948, the new Formula was adopted earlier by the organisers of major Grand Prix events.

At the same time consideration was given to a new secondary or Voiturette Formula. This was eventually settled at 2 litres unblown. Initially the two categories were distinguished between as Formulas A and B, but the usage of Formulas 1 and 2 was soon adopted. Thus by the end of the Forties the term ‘Formula 1’ for Grand Prix racing was both established and accepted.

_________________________________________________

Consulting other sources, such as Pomeroy, suggests that the new formula started officially in 1947. This seems unlikely, with the formula only having been announced early the previous year. Thus I'm happy with my explanation that it started officially in 1948 but race organizers, finding plenty of suitable equipment available, jumped the gun by running events according to the new rules in 1947.

#5 Holger Merten

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Posted 05 May 2003 - 20:59

Karl, thanks for that specialist and concentrated answer. Herein I found everything I read a little bit here and there.

Today I got an answer from Johannes Hübner, PR-Manager of the German AvD (Car Club of Germany, which is more than 100 years old). And he wrote to me about the special situation between a new Formula and the competetive cars racing in the "new" Formula after the war.

Now, I understand the situation better, which makes it much more interesting.

#6 GIGLEUX

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Posted 05 May 2003 - 21:02

Sorry Karl but I cannot agree with what you write.The 1500/4500 formula officialy started in 1947 and not in 1948.Three races where run in 1946 ,by anticipation in 1946: GP del Valentino (Milano), Circuito di Milano and GP du Salon (Paris Bois de Boulogne)!

My sources: Automobilia issue of September 1946.I'll try to translate from French.
"During its meeting of 21 of June the CSI had defined the international formula for races(formule internationale de course) for the 1947-1951 period.This formula will admit cars with supercharger of a maximum cc of 1,5 litre and cars without supercharger of cc up to 4,5 litres.
Weight free.Fuel provide by organizers in 1947 and 1948,free after that.
Fuels provided by organizers will be the following:
For supercharged cars a choice of two fuels,one with methanol 70%, benzol 90 15%, acetone 10%, petrol 5%;the other one will be composed of methylic alcool at 94°up to 98° 85%, acetone 6%, ether of petrol 7,5%, castor oil 1,5%.It is admitted that these fuels could be corrected in a proportion of 5% of the global mass by adjuvants such as water, castor oil, ether of petrol,or a blend of these three products.
For unsupercharged cars the fuel will be composed as following: petrol "supercarburant" 60%, ethanol 25 %, benzol 90° 15%.".
OK?
Addentum by the CSI in its meeting of october 10,1946: International formula 1947-1948, it is decided to give the competitors the possiblity to use indistinctively one of the three forecasted fuels have they cars with or without supercharger.(L'Automobile n°5 november 1946)
Automobila issue of November 1947:"The CSI had decided to extend the international formula up to 1953.It was also decided that the use of fuel will be free from 1st of January of next year.
By other way the CSI had proclaimed a new international formula for the "petites cylindrees"(small cars): supercharged cars cc up to 500,cars without supercharger up to 2000 cc.Fuel:free.Minimal race distance: 200 km.This new formula will be applied from 1st of january 1948 up to 31st of december 1953."
Are you convinced?because I can give more information!

#7 GIGLEUX

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Posted 05 May 2003 - 21:07

Add: I'll be a happy man the day I'll understand how and why those gloomy faces appears in my texts!!!!!!!!!!!!

#8 Holger Merten

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Posted 05 May 2003 - 21:15

:drunk: :stoned: :confused:
Please start the interesting discussion>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

#9 Ray Bell

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Posted 05 May 2003 - 21:51

Originally posted by GIGLEUX
Add: I'll be a happy man the day I'll understand how and why those gloomy faces appears in my texts!!!!!!!!!!!!


Yeah... smilies take over yet again...

Just go back and edit your post, put a space between the ) and the : and the smilie (or gloomy!) will disappear. Or change the type of brackets you use from () to []...

Very interesting information on F1, by the way.

#10 Vitesse2

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Posted 05 May 2003 - 21:58

I am fortunate enough to have Alessandro's (as yet) unpublished manuscript to hand! In addition, I've done some work on this myself, although, as mentioned above, it's not yet collated and sorted. I have to come down firmly alongside Jean-Maurice here: the Formula (be it called Formula A or Formula 1) was de facto in force from late 1946 and de jure from 1947.

The 4.5/1.5 formula was in fact a compromise, proposed not by the French as might be expected, but by the British. I'll try to dig out what I have on this and write it up.

Interesting enough for you Holger? :lol:

Jean-Maurice: the ): appears because it's a Javascript smilie, which appears when you type a closing bracket and a colon without a space between them. We've all done it! To avoid it, type it like this - ) :

#11 Vitesse2

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Posted 05 May 2003 - 23:06

French proposals, early 1946.

1946-7 Continuation of the pre-war International Formula. 3.0 litres s/c, 4.5 litres u/s. BUT with a maximum 100 octane fuel, which would effectively have negated any advantage that the supercharged cars had.

1948-53 1.5 litres s/c, 3.0 litres u/s. Fuel still to be limited to 100 octane.

British proposals, early 1946.

1946-50 1.5 litres s/c, 4.5 litres u/s. Free fuel.

100 octane fuel was, of course, freely available at the time in the form of aviation spirit. The French proposals were said to be in the spirit of getting racing going as soon as possible, giving two years to develop new cars. However, the 100 octane rule would have seriously hobbled not only the remaining 3.0 litre cars, but also the British and Italian 1500cc voiturettes. It was estimated that the power output of the ERAs would be cut from 250bhp to 175bhp - doubtless the Alfas and Maseratis would have been similarly affected. Reference to the winning speeds at Tripoli in 1939-40 will show you just how fast the later Voiturettes had become when compared to the much bigger cars of the previous few years - Farina's winning speed in the Alfa 158 in 1940 (when not really pressed) was almost as fast as Lang's W125 in 1937! I'd like to think Farina's performance at Bremgarten in 1939 had some influence here too.

As far as I can tell, what happened was that the French realised that they were on a loser and when, in March 1946, the AIACR indicated it was in favour of the British proposals they countered with a revised version of the 1.5/3.0 formula, to be introduced in 1947. This must have caused consternation among the French constructors, who would suddenly have been left with a lot of useless metal! In addition, there were no 3.0 litre u/s cars anywhere AFAIK! And of course, there were no French voiturettes either, apart from the (then) proposed Bugatti T73C and the nascent CTA-Arsenal. And we know how good they turned out to be! :rolleyes:

Cutting a long story short, the French 100 octane proposal was defeated and the fuels mentioned above came from a proposal mandated by the CSI at their meeting on Feb 28th 1946, but not revealed until June, as Jean-Maurice noted. By July, as I posted in one of the other threads, the 4.5/1.5 limits had been adopted, but still with the CSI's control fuels, rather than the free fuel as originally suggested by the British.

So, ultimately, a compromise was reached which pleased more or less all concerned. But on the way the French had come very close to shooting themselves in both feet! Bizarre, non?

#12 Ray Bell

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Posted 05 May 2003 - 23:13

They got their way eventually, as I recall...

The 1966 formula was 1.5sc/3.0unsupercharged, with 100 octane fuel, was it not?

Long memories, these French!

#13 Vitesse2

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Posted 05 May 2003 - 23:19

Originally posted by Ray Bell
They got their way eventually, as I recall...

The 1966 formula was 1.5sc/3.0unsupercharged, with 100 octane fuel, was it not?

Long memories, these French!


Good point Ray, but it still took them another 11 years to build a Voiturette!

#14 Hans Etzrodt

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Posted 05 May 2003 - 23:51

Originally posted by Vitesse2
...I have to come down firmly alongside Jean-Maurice here: the Formula (be it called Formula A or Formula 1) was de facto in force from late 1946 and de jure from 1947...

...This is news to me!

I am a bit surprised to say the least. I admit that I have relied only on British and German primary sources to lead me, as we hear now, in the wrong direction.

To prove your point Gentlemen, please do not forget to provide detailed sources, including country of publication. I would like to see at least a scan of the original text. We possibly need at least two primary sources confirming that the formula went into effect already in 1947. If the text was originally issued in French, there is a possibility that the English translation of the years applied or the words (de facto and de jure) is the cause of the misinterpretation. I believe most of us understand the meaning of de facto while de jure is less often seen but I understand it means as much as 'according to the law'. And what are the differences really? Do we have a good attorney amongst us? Either way, I side with Karl's explicit explanation until convinced otherwise. :)

P.S. If we can't settle it here, we can always go to the ATLAS F1 Court. ;)

#15 Don Capps

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Posted 05 May 2003 - 23:51

The AAA Contest Board Official Bulletin of 18 December 1946, mentions the new International Formula which allowed for displacements of up to 91 cubic inches for supercharged engines and retaining the 274 cubic inch displacemnt of unsupercharged cars being effective as of 1 January 1948. The Contest Board would once again run the National Championship Trail to the International Formula. Also, there would be no minimum weights or minimum body widths for the 1947 season.

On 16 September 1947, the AAA Contest Board Official Bulletin was a Special Letter stating that due to the 16 or 17 183 cubic inch supercharged engines available, these engines would be eligible for use during the 1948 season. The letter openly expressed the need for these engines to make up the fields for the events planned in 1948. There were nine of the supercharged engines at Indy, but after that they were not much of a factor.

If Jean-Maurice is using the CSI bulletins, this is a great source for many of the other questions which have popped up here on the forum.

#16 GIGLEUX

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Posted 06 May 2003 - 01:28

JMG to Vitesse2: perhaps it takes us 11 years to buid a Voiturette but after all 11 years is very far less than the 34 years our friends of the other side of the Channel awaited patiently between the 1923 ACF GP and the 1957 British GP to see another british victory in a Grande Epreuve (please don't take it wrong, only an humouristic reply).
JMG to Don: alas I don't have the CSI bulletins but only what was published in the French magazines of the time.
Of course I maintain my position that the international formula officially began in 1947.Some examples:
-From l'Actualite Automobile May 1947,about the GP de Perpignan: "In first this race allowed the comparision between the two categories of cars admitted by the international formula: 1500 supercharged and 4,5 liters without supercharger..."
-From Autocar March 7 1947 page 184,about Jersey Internatioal Road Race: "the race is run under Grand Prix conditions:that is, the cars are limited to 1,5 litre engine capacity if supercharged, 4,5 litre if unsupercharged.The only difference between this and the full-scale Grand Prix is that the fuel to be used is not to be limited to any particular formula.
-Official programme for the GP de Marseille 18/5/1947: "Cars with supercharger maximum capacity 1500 cc-cars without supercharger maximum capacity 4500cc International Formula 1947".
-Revue automobile (swiss) 5/7/1947, about the ACF GP: "Evidently the cars admitted are the ones of the racing category complying with the conditions of the international formula establshed by the CSI for the 1947/48 years,and the same that for our Swiss GP".
-The Motor July 6 1947page 576, about Albi GP: "for the first time the Albi organizers ran their GP as a full-disrace open to formula cars-1,5 litres supercharged and 4,5 litres unsupercharged...".
-Official programme for the GP de Strasbourg 3/8/1947: "cars, racing category,according to the international formula 1947,with superchargers up to 1500cc and without superchargers up to 4500cc"
-Revue automobile about the ACF GP of 1947: "the current formula only authorized the 1500 cc with supercharger and up to 4,5 litres without supercharger...".

And I can go on during pages and pages but is it useful? I give you what was published at the time from official texts; Vitesse2 give you brillant explannations , you have at your disposal extracts from official programmes an from french, british and swiss magazines.What do you want more to be convinced.A last point: it is your right not to agree but we too await prooves! but please prooves and not feelings...

#17 Wolf

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Posted 06 May 2003 - 02:33

Hans, the difference between de facto ('in reality', but in legal terminology it does not imply leagality of the referred state or action) and de jure ('according to the law' or 'by the law') could be illustrated by saying that practice of racial segregation in US was ended 'de jure' much earlier than 'de facto' (meaning it was outlawed, but still continued to exist)... Or that '52 and '53 WDC events were for F2 cars 'de facto' but 'de jure' were open to both F1/F2 cars (at organizers' discretion), Indy being excluded in this definition.

In this paticular case, 'de jure' would mean that it was mandated by CSI and 'de facto' that it just happened to be 1.5/4.5 formula (without CSI prescribing it) because race organizers found it most convinient, or whatever (chance or anything but the force of law/CSI).

#18 Holger Merten

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Posted 06 May 2003 - 05:55

Originally posted by Vitesse2
I am fortunate enough to have Alessandro's (as yet) unpublished manuscript to hand! In addition, I've done some work on this myself, although, as mentioned above, it's not yet collated and sorted. I have to come down firmly alongside Jean-Maurice here: the Formula (be it called Formula A or Formula 1) was de facto in force from late 1946 and de jure from 1947.

The 4.5/1.5 formula was in fact a compromise, proposed not by the French as might be expected, but by the British. I'll try to dig out what I have on this and write it up.

Interesting enough for you Holger? :lol:



Yes, very interesting, thanks a lot. :clap:

#19 Roger Clark

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Posted 06 May 2003 - 08:03

Before I lose track...

Is this discussion about when the term Formula 1 was first used or about when the 1.5/4.5 litre formula became official. The former is the name of the thread but most of the posts seem to concern the latter. They are not necessarily the same thing.

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#20 Holger Merten

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Posted 06 May 2003 - 08:43

Is this discussion about when the term Formula 1 was first used or about when the 1.5/4.5 litre formula became official. The former is the name of the thread but most of the posts seem to concern the latter. They are not necessarily the same thing.



My question came up, when I read different statements about “when the new Formula 1 was settled”: in 1946 - or 1947 - or 1948? And then my second question depends to the consequences on races. When was the first F1 race? And than the third question came up: What about F2. Was the Formula 2 even settled at the same time as F1?

And if F1 and F2 were settled together, what does it mean for races in the years between 1946 and 1952 - with F1 cars or F2 cars?

I know, many questions, but as you can see in this thread, it's not totally clear. And as Hans came up with the same question in november 2001, may we find out more in this thread.

#21 karlcars

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Posted 06 May 2003 - 09:31

I'm observing with great interest until I have a chance to look in my own archive. Great stuff! :D

#22 Doug Nye

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Posted 06 May 2003 - 09:43

:blush: Very, very, very, very interesting indeed to hear Jean-Maurice's authoritative verification of contemporary, predominantly French, sources.

We are still left with the question of when these regulations were first characterised as 'Formula 1' by the responsible body within the FIA.....???? Was that somewhere in their wording for 1946 - 1947 - 1948 - 1949 - or 1950....?

Was it 'Formula 1' which made its debut in 1948, or was it recognition of a resumed series of 'Grandes Epreuves' which took place for 1948 or is there NO valid reason at all which made the season of 1948 in some way special?

Thinking back, I'm pretty sure my acceptance of 1948 as marking some kind of formal launch for the Anglicised form of 'Formula 1' as opposed to the old 'Grand Prix Formula' stems from reading Rodney Walkerley of 'The Motor' as a child, and in his book which I first bought and read as a mid-teen... Early conditioning is hard to shake off.

DCN

#23 Holger Merten

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Posted 06 May 2003 - 09:51

We are still left with the question of when these regulations were first characterised as 'Formula 1' by the responsible body within the FIA.....???? Was that somewhere in their wording for 1946 - 1947 - 1948 - 1949 - or 1950....?

Was it 'Formula 1' which made its debut in 1948, or was it recognition of a resumed series of 'Grandes Epreuves' which took place for 1948 or is there NO valid reason at all which made the season of 1948 in some way special?




Yes, that's the point.

#24 David McKinney

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Posted 06 May 2003 - 11:12

How's this for a guess?
The new 1500/4500 Grand Prix formula came into effect in 1947
But it was only in 1948, with the new voiturette formula joining the mix, that the terms Formula A (1) and Formula B (2) came into use

#25 alessandro silva

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Posted 06 May 2003 - 12:36

Let me just state a few facts about which I am pretty sure of, which agree with what Richard and Jean-Maurice have posted already. I hope to have the time tonight to write them better:
a) the Formule Internationale (no numbers or letters attached since there was only one formula at that stage) was discussed for the first time after the war in February 1946 at Paris CSI meeting.
b) the 1500 s/c 4500 u/s was instituted in late June 1946 at Paris CSI meeting (I have to check im my records the original validity in time of the formula and the very important problem of the fuel: free or given by the organisers)
c) the races at Turin, Milan and Bois in the fall of 1946 were explicitly (in programs at least in Italy) )run under the Formule Internationale (1947) specs.
d) the "second formula " (Formule Internationale II, Roman numerals) was instituted in October 1947 at the CSI meeting in Paris, valid until the end of 1953. In the same meeting validity for the Formule Internationale I was extended to the same limit of the end of 1953 and on free fuel.

The story can be very well followed in French sports daily L'Equipe of the relevant days. Charles Faroux was very keen on the political aspects of the sport reporting and expounding his views at length.
I checked Faroux reports with Gazzetta dello Sport and Auto Italiana, and with the British magazines provided by Richard and they agree.

I have also a finding about when the Formule Internationale was called F1 for the earliest time at least as my research of the period allows, but I have to look at home. Lunch time finished now.

#26 Vitesse2

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Posted 06 May 2003 - 13:50

Doug: if you have it to hand, there's an article by Walkerley in the Motor, Jan 2nd 1946, page 425, which neatly sums up the situation as it was at that time. It's called Fumbling with the Formula.

#27 alessandro silva

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Posted 06 May 2003 - 16:45

Suggested readings on the matter:

Autocar Nov. 23 1945 by Casque
Motor Dec 12 1945 by Walkerley
Motor Dec 26 1945 by Overdrive
Motor Jan 2 1946 by Walkerley
Autocar Jan. 25 by Casque

On the February 1946 Paris meeting
Autocar March 22, 1946
Motor, March 27, 1946 by Grande Vitesse

On the June 1946 Paris meeting
L’Equipe June 22
L’Equipe June 26
L’Equipe July 4

The AIACR – Association Internationale des Automobile Clubs Reconnus – convened in Paris for a long session at the end of June. It started its debates by re-electing the Viscount de Rohan as president on June 25th and ended them by changing name to FIA on July 3rd. Its Sporting Commission – CSI – had met earlier and took a momentous decision on June 21st. A new Formula for top international racing dating from the 1947 season was instituted: it required a maximum capacity of 1500cc for supercharged and of 4500cc for unsupercharged cars. No rocket engines or propellers were allowed and the only other provisions were a maximum of two seats and two compulsory rear view mirrors, one for each side of the car, of minimum diameter of 60mm.
It was a sensible decision that reversed the previous one taken in February. It had taken into account the existing racing material. The agreement on the change was reached by yelding to the French on the fuel issue. Three kinds of different fuels – to be provided by the organizers - were allowed for 1947, while fuel would be free in the period 1948-1953. The British had been the early advocates of the engine capacities adopted by this decision, but “Casque”, in Autocar, July 12th, complained about the change! It was ruled also that the 1938 International Formula which had received a weak response outside Germany, to say the least, was still formally in force for 1946. Finally, no entry would be accepted by a German national; a German car entered and driven by somebody who was not German might compete. No German driver could obtain an international competition licence, however. But at any event no German driver could obtain an international competition licence since there was no German body affiliated to the newly-renamed FIA.

Was then the 1946 Circuito di Torino “the first Formula 1 race ever”? The 1947 Formule Internationale allowing 1.5L s/c and 4.5L u/s cars became Formule Internationale I when the second international formula (Formule Internationale II) was introduced for 1948. Hence the need to distinguish between them (and with Formule Internationale III, later). Strictly speaking then the first “ Formula 1” race had been the Grand Prix de Pau, held on March 29th, 1948. The terms Formula A or B were in my opinion journalistic simplifications of the official French diction with Roman numerals. But I have seen once a CSI set of regulations for 1949. The diction was already “Formula 1. (F.I.1), Formula 2. (F.I.2). I suppose F.I. stands for Formule internationale.

On the 1947 October meeting:
L’Equipe 17/10.
Gazzetta dello Sport 17/10


FIA convened in Paris for the fall meeting in occasion of the Salon de l’Auto. Its sporting commission CSI met on October 17th with a rich agenda. The new board was elected: Baron de Knyff was acclaimed honorary President, acting president was elected M. Pérouse from France (the inventor of the Fonds de Course!!) with Lord Howe as vice-president. The Board was composed by two delegates from each of the following countries: Belgium, U.S.A., Brazil, Great Britain (Howe and Mathieson), Italy (Brivio and Canestrini), Portugal, Switzerland and three from France, including Pérouse, and by one advisory member from each of the following countries: Austria, Hungary, Luxembourg, The Netherlands, Yougoslavia, Roumania, Sweden, Czechoslovakia. The international calendar for 1948 was discussed and approved. It is interesting to notice the absence of Argentina either from the Board and from the Calendar, that started with the Brazilian races omitting the rich Temporada series. A true Coup de Théatre ended the session. The Formule Internationale I (or Formula 1 as it was started to be called) saw its validity extended to 1953 included and was accompanied by a Formule Internationale II (or Formula 2) also valid until 1953 included. The success of the voiturettec season raced under the ACF regulations had been so evident that CSI thought correctly that an international regulation was called for. The biggest surprise came when the the approved limitations were known: they called for s/c cars with cylinder volume up to 500cc, u/s cars with cylinder volume up to 2000cc. The new rules ruled out effectively either the 1100cc u/s or s/c and the fewer 1500cc u/s racers. It was shocking and it was - probably with some reason – linked to the appearance in the same days of the meeting of the new Ferrari 159 2L engine and the equally new Maserati A6G. It was noticed that it was not the first time that international regulations followed in the direction of existing Italian racing material. Charles Faroux was furious. A staunch Gordini supporter, Amédée’s shortcomings notwithstanding, he clearly saw that the SIMCA engine, even enflated to 1450cc as it was beginning to be tested, stood no chance against the Italian engines that, albeit mounted in much heavier cars, were designed only for racing. “We cannot believe to our eyes” was the title of his terrible outburst, the day after the decision.

On the Use of the term F1:
I found the he term F1 used for the first time in the Equipe report on the 1947 Coupe du Salon at Monthléry L’Equipe 18/11/1947

#28 Doug Nye

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Posted 06 May 2003 - 17:04

Alessandro - very interesting indeed. Particularly the published use of 'Formula 1' as early as November 1947.

DCN

#29 alessandro silva

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Posted 06 May 2003 - 18:34

Originally posted by Doug Nye
Particularly the published use of 'Formula 1' as early as November 1947.

DCN

Besides, it was even earlier than I wrote; it was used in L'Equipe of November 3rd 1947. Got mixed up in typing from my notes. the article was about the forthcoming Coupe du Salon.

#30 Ray Bell

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Posted 06 May 2003 - 20:37

Originally posted by alessandro silva
.....No rocket engines or propellers were allowed.....


Almost a strange inclusion... none had ever been tried, had they? Nor would I think that anyone would think of them.

Gas turbines, on the other hand, wouldn't have been considered at that stage because of their need for very special materials and the almost completely military use at the time. At that time, I think, there was no use of gas turbines other than as jets, but it wasn't far off...

Just when was the Nomad engine designed?

It does beg the question, however... were gas turbines considered in the drafting of the 1954 regulations?

#31 Hans Etzrodt

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Posted 06 May 2003 - 20:49

Jean-Maurice, Richard and Alessandro, three thumbs up! :up: :up: :up:
I am converted and shall correct the information displayed on my list at Leif's home page.

Alessandro - my admiration and great credit for your meticulous research with help from Richard's library trips. Is your story going to be a new chapter in your 40's opus or just an appendix? :confused:

#32 Vitesse2

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Posted 06 May 2003 - 20:55

Originally posted by Ray Bell


Almost a strange inclusion... none had ever been tried, had they? Nor would I think that anyone would think of them.


A precaution carried over from older regulations perhaps? There was the Opel RAK2, after all ....

Posted Image

... and a prop wouldn't have looked out of place on the front of the Trossi-Monaco!

#33 Ray Bell

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Posted 06 May 2003 - 21:07

Typical FIA...

Looking backward instead of forward.

BTW, I endorse Hans' comments completely. After the previous thread on the subject I never expected to see such an authoritative essay on this topic.

#34 Don Capps

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Posted 06 May 2003 - 21:44

Wow! Like Hans, I have to give this :up: :up: :up:

Now, the rest of the "world" has to catch up with us.....;)

#35 Ray Bell

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Posted 06 May 2003 - 23:30

With reference to the gas turbine thing once again, and I do think it's relevant that they weren't considered as they were actually in production at the time...

What if Gordon Murray or someone with his native lateral thinking ability had been about at the time?

#36 Roger Clark

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Posted 07 May 2003 - 04:23

Have I missed something again? I thought we already knew (from research Vitesse posted here last year) that the term formula 1 was first adopted at the CSI meeting in October 1947 and came into general use in the 1948 season. What is new that is causing all the excitement and Hans to change his views?

#37 Hans Etzrodt

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Posted 07 May 2003 - 06:00

I had written the following:
Formula for 1.5 liter for S/C (supercharged) cars and 4.5 liters for U/S (unsupercharged) cars, which had been already determined at the end of 1946, coming officially into force from 1948 on but went in effect already in 1947. Relation of supercharged to unsupercharged engine 1:3. There were no weight restrictions. Minimum race distance of 300 km - 186 mi or minimum of three hours.
It is wrong and needs to be corrected. :blush:

#38 Holger Merten

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Posted 07 May 2003 - 07:11

I never believed, while opening this thread, that there will be so many replies, with such interesting material. Great. :up:

#39 taylov

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Posted 09 November 2006 - 14:33

I have looked back to this thread as a result of my inaccurate statement to the recent discussion on "Formula One cars at the Brighton Speed Trials", in which I implied that the term Formula One had its origin with the 1950 Driver's Championship.

I had hoped to find exactly when the official descripton of the 4.5L U/Supercharged /1,5 L Supercharged Grand Prix formula became Formula One.

My reading of the several related threads suggests that the term "Formula One" became used commonly in 1948 particuarly in English publications. This is certainly the case in the first Silverstone Grand Prix of 1948 where the programme gives "Interesting Extracts from the Race Regulations" stating that "the race is only open to cars of the International Formula I category".

Curiously the Silverstone International Trophy race programme for 1949 makes no mention of Formula I at all. Instead the race is stated to be for "racing cars that confirm to the Sporting Commission of the F.I.A." and then goes on to note the two capacity limits.

This approach was also used in the 1948 Swiss GP - again no mention of Formula 1, I or One. Instead the programme references the "Internationalen Sportreglementes der FIA" and states that cars must meet the "Internationalen rennformel...Jahre 1947-1951"

I may have missed it, in which case I apologise for re-opening the thread, but is there a definitive answer to when the FIA regulations first refer to the post 1947 Grand Prix formula as "Formula One"?

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#40 D-Type

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Posted 09 November 2006 - 17:42

On this thread, post 27 seems to answer your question.

The earlier threads referenced may say different.

I think the problem is that the CSI may well have used the terms 'Formule A and Formule B', 'Formule I and Formule II' and 'Formule 1 and Formule 2' almost indiscriminately depending on the whim of the stenographer. So there was probably no such thing as the official adoption of the term 'Formula 1', or in French 'Formule 1'. It just 'happened' that it became the accepted 'standard terminology'. Nobody was in the least bit bothered about the name of the formula they were running races and later a championship for cars .

In parallel, the French, British, Italian and German press will have used whichever term was most appropriate to their languages.

The only definites are that a formula was agreed at a meeting in 1946 to be official from 1948, but race organisers ran races from 1947 in accordance with the new formula and the CSI instituted the World Championship in 1950.

#41 uechtel

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Posted 09 November 2006 - 18:28

Perhaps the answer is not that easy to be given. From my point of view the term "Formula 1" for sure did not have that meaning as a synonym for Grand Prix racing itself. The word "Formula" was in use for a long time, mainly in combinations like "the Grand Prix Formula", "the Voiturette Formula" etc.. In that Formula 1 was nothing revolutionary at all, there had been Formulae right from the earliest years of racing, and Formula 1 in particular was only "yet another new Grand Prix Formula".

In that the real novelty was not the "top" Formula (you may call this "Formula 1", "Formula I" or "Formula A" or whatever), but the introduction of a second official Grand Prix formula (= what became known as Formula 2). In my opinion only this made it necessary to specifiy the "top" Formula explicitly. Or in other words my answer to the initial question of this thread would now be: "There was no 'idea' of Formula 1, only the idea of Formula 2".

To underline this I would like to give the following extract of a report in Swiss magazine "Automobil Revue" about the AIACR meeting in June 1946:

"The main issue of the meeting was the fixation of the international racing formula, where the decision was to maintain the formula of 1938/1940 also for 1946.
Beyond that for 1947 and 1948 the comission will propose the following formula: Cars up to 1500 cc supercharged and up to 3000 cc uncharged, no weight limit neither restrictions on bodywork. Fuel, the specification of which still has to be defined, has to be delivered by the race organization."

And in a later issue the report of the next meeting:

"On the friday the meeting of the of the international sporting committee a number of decisions were made, of which the new international racing formula is of the main interest. The new formula, that was defined on the experience of the races of the 1946 season and the proposals of the technical commissions of the national automobile clubs is defined as following:

For the years 1947 and 1948:
Vehicles up to 1500 cc supercharged and 4500 cc uncharged; no weight limit. The race organizers deliver fuel, the teams have the choice from the follwoing specifications for cars with supercharging:
1 Methanol: 70%, Benzol 90: 15%, Azeton: 10%, fuel with boiling temperature between 35 and 70°: 5%
2. Methylalkohol 94-98°: 85%, Azeton: 6%, Petroläther 30-60°: 7,5%, Rizinusöl: 1,5%
[sorry for the German words, but I don´t know the translations]
The contestants are free to modify each of these mixtures by a maximum of 5% of water, Rizinusöl or Petroläther or any mixture of these three components
For cars without supercharging:
Hochklopffestes Benzin: 60%, Methylalkohol 25%, benzol 90: 15%

For the years 1949, 1950 and 1951:
Same capacity limits as before, no weight limit, free choice of fuel."

So while this is what later became known as Formula 1 no term like this is mentioned at all. It was simply not necessary as long as there was only one "official" formula.

Unfortunately I do not have the report of the decision to introduce the second formula (should have been in 1947), but in the preview for the Swiss Grand Prix 1948 the formula is still described as "the international racing formula No. 1"!!!

#42 uechtel

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Posted 09 November 2006 - 18:30

Overlapping replies...

D-type is exactly writing, what I tried to express.

#43 Kvadrat

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Posted 10 November 2006 - 02:11

taylov, please, don't overrate importance of Formula 1 term which has been actively promoted by those who make money on present Formula One series. There was no such a thing called Formula One in terms of series of races. Formula 1 was just a name of racing class of Grand Prix cars. It's quite difficult for understanding but it's so.

Marcus, good thought on idea of Formula 2. :up:

#44 FerrariV12

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Posted 11 November 2006 - 12:45

Is it true that "Formula 1" only became incorporated in the official Championship title in 1981? And before that the World Championship just happened to be for cars conforming to F1 regs (1952-3 excepted)?

#45 uechtel

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Posted 11 November 2006 - 14:22

http://forums.autosp...&threadid=53806

To the secon question maybe "just happened" is not really correct, as when you read my last post, Formula 1 (or the International Formula or what ever it may have been called) was intended as the top international formula and the world championship of course was run according to that reglement - wherever useful. The exceptions were of course 1952 / 53 when Formula 1 virtually did not exist any more and the Indianapolis races from 1950 to 1959 for a quite similar reason - to have cars on the grid...

#46 HDonaldCapps

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Posted 11 November 2006 - 18:18

Is it true that "Formula 1" only became incorporated in the official Championship title in 1981?


Yes.

Postscript.

It was also, legally, a different series since the original series launched during the 1950 season by the CSI was terminated at the end of 1980 as the result of actions taken at Rio in April by the FISA.

Not that anyone cares or that scores here at Atlas/Autosport get their panties in a wad whenever this is mentioned.

Like Joe Friday, just reporting the facts, ma'am.

#47 jimmyc

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Posted 12 November 2006 - 16:30

I have a question. Prior to WWII the voiturette class was never an official internatonal formula( ie one established by the CSI), is that correct?

#48 Wielki Wdz

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Posted 12 November 2006 - 18:16

I'm afraid that's not. CSI established the voiturette class for 1934 and next seasons as 1500 ccm supercharged cars.

#49 jimmyc

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Posted 12 November 2006 - 21:04

Originally posted by Wielki Wódz
I'm afraid that's not. CSI established the voiturette class for 1934 and next seasons as 1500 ccm supercharged cars.

Thanks; now for part two. If the CSI had two concurrent formula prior to WWII, What titles were they given? I have seen one, postwar, reference to formulas A + B existing in 1940.

#50 Kvadrat

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Posted 13 November 2006 - 11:13

Originally posted by FerrariV12
And before that the World Championship just happened to be for cars conforming to F1 regs (1952-3 excepted)?


Originally posted by uechtel
...the world championship of course was run according to that reglement - wherever useful. The exceptions were of course 1952 / 53 when Formula 1 virtually did not exist any more and the Indianapolis races from 1950 to 1959 for a quite similar reason - to have cars on the grid...


WDC wasn't for any particular racing car class, it was for Grands Prix. That's why change to Formula 2 in Grand Prix racing was so simple and fast. It wasn't official decision for multistage competition called WDC, it was individual decision of most of Grands Prix organizers. WDC was just procedure of awarding points in the end of the whole International Grand Prix season. WDC wasn't series of races with general management like modern Formula One.