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Thwarted


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#1 Vicuna

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Posted 03 April 2004 - 12:10

This is another thread about drivers that never won a F1 GP.

Is there a driver or drivers who

1. Drove in more than a handful of GPs but never had 'a proper GP career' as such
2. Weren't killed or injured, and therefore were unable to continue
3. Had at least genuine GP winning potential

Roberto Guerroro initially comes to mind but I'm not sure he had 'genuine GP winning potential.

Maybe Michael Andretti is a possibility, or Roberto Moreno.

I'm thinking Ivan Capelli probably had too much of a 'proper GP career' to mmet my criteria.

What do ya' all think?

Who was good and had a career that was thwarted for some other reason other than the normal ones?

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#2 ensign14

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Posted 03 April 2004 - 14:18

Mika Salo?

Carlos Menditeguy?

John Love?

Wondered about Roberto Mieres, but maybe not good enough - or was he? Ditto Tony Maggs?

#3 Vicuna

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Posted 03 April 2004 - 21:11

Thanks E14.

Salo would certainly qualify but I do believe he had a decent F1 career.

Love and Carlos - good calls, but Tony Maggs good enough to win a GP?

Nah.

What about Allan McNish?

#4 Barry Boor

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Posted 03 April 2004 - 22:09

Had Dan Gurney's usual bad luck struck at Rouen in 1962, Tony Maggs WOULD have won a Grand Prix - good enough or not!!!!

I know, I know, if my auntie had a willy, she'd be my uncle.......

#5 ensign14

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Posted 03 April 2004 - 22:14

The main reason why I put in Salo was that his F1 career was so bitty - it always seemed to be a last minute thing for a team struggling along. Bit like Alex Caffi. Or Tarquini. Both of whom were, I thought, pretty good.


McNish - I wonder how much his big F3000 crash took out of him? He was on a par with Hakkinen in the Vauxhall Lotus series.

And talking of McNish - Erik Comas. Runner-up to Alesi in his first F3000 series on the same number of points. But he did have a good few years in F1, albeit with pretty rubbish cars.

#6 Manfred Cubenoggin

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Posted 03 April 2004 - 22:24

Ronnie Bucknum?

(How did Ronnie ever fall into that Honda deal anyway?)

Edit: as I hit 'submit'.

Bob Bondurant?


#7 Vrba

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Posted 03 April 2004 - 22:24

Jan Lammers?

Hrvoje

#8 Vicuna

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Posted 03 April 2004 - 23:02

It has just come to me - the epitome of what I was aiming for here has to Brian Redman.

But what about Dickie Attwood?

Perhaps what I'm really looking for is a driver who dropped F1 rather than one who was dropped by F1.

#9 Paul Newby

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Posted 04 April 2004 - 02:05

Well, back in the 60's and 70's a lot of drivers didn't survive long enough to prove to the world they were the next big thing. :cry:

Drivers like:

Ignazio Giuniti - 4th in his fisrst GP with Ferrari in 1970, lost the drive to Reggazoni for 71.

Helmuth Koinigg - outqualified Bell (Surtess teammate) in his first GP in 1974 & killed in his second.

Tony Brise - a lot of pundits said he was bound for greatness but perished in Graham Hill's plane

Mark Donahue - OK, he was getting on, but a proven US track record. Never got his Penske fully sorted before he was killed.

I'm sure there are plenty of other what ifs.

As for Vicuna's question about drivers who "gave it away" before they were really established.

What about Johnny Servoz-Gavin? Talent to burn, but no real desire to forge a career in F1 and retiring in (at the time) mysterious circumstances.

#10 Vicuna

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Posted 04 April 2004 - 02:21

Yeah I'd thought about JS-G but his eye injury seems to have been his reason for stepping aside.

#11 Zawed

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Posted 04 April 2004 - 10:27

Eric Bernard? Highly touted in F1 prior to 1991 when he had that big shunt in Japan that broke his leg. Came back in 94 but was shaded by Panis.

Karl Wendlinger?

#12 jph

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Posted 04 April 2004 - 20:57

Quite a few Lotus number two drivers could fall into the definition, though strictly speaking, on Vicuna's original criteria, a number may fall out as their careers were cut short by injury. People like Trevor Taylor, Peter Arundell (injured) and more recently Johnny Dumfries and Martin Donnelly (injured) come to mind.

#13 petefenelon

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Posted 04 April 2004 - 21:19

If Attwood and Redman are on the list, then Vic Elford must also be mentioned. Derek Bell maybe, I'm sure he had more in him in single seats but he made the decision to go with Tecno...

How about the likes of Nino Vaccarella? I'm sure he could've done more in F1 had he concentrated on that rather than sports cars... particularly after the 'return of power' in 66...?

#14 bretonbanquet

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Posted 04 April 2004 - 23:56

I thought of Derek Bell and Vic Elford too, or how about David Purley? Also I always thought Mike Thackwell could have been a winner, but he only managed 2 or 3 GPs :

#15 petefenelon

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Posted 05 April 2004 - 10:38

Originally posted by bretonbanquet
I thought of Derek Bell and Vic Elford too, or how about David Purley? Also I always thought Mike Thackwell could have been a winner, but he only managed 2 or 3 GPs :



I think Purls was a man born too late to reach the top in racing... He probably had the raw talent to get a works F1 drive, but maybe not the application. I think he simply enjoyed life too much to become a real top-line driver and that his attitude to the sport was more suited to the 60s than the 70s, he would've been a perfect companion for the likes of Innes Ireland. He seemed to be racing for his own enjoyment rather than for any external recognition or rewards....

#16 bretonbanquet

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Posted 05 April 2004 - 16:49

Originally posted by petefenelon



I think Purls was a man born too late to reach the top in racing... He probably had the raw talent to get a works F1 drive, but maybe not the application. I think he simply enjoyed life too much to become a real top-line driver and that his attitude to the sport was more suited to the 60s than the 70s, he would've been a perfect companion for the likes of Innes Ireland. He seemed to be racing for his own enjoyment rather than for any external recognition or rewards....


Mmm, yes I think you're right there - perhaps F1 was getting a bit too professional by the mid-70s for the men of Purley's nature. Your idea of him maybe being suited more to the 60s is spot on - surely he would have found GP racing more to his taste back then. Either way, he wouldn't get very far in today's climate... can you imagine him enjoying driving for Ron Dennis?

#17 petefenelon

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Posted 05 April 2004 - 16:58

Originally posted by bretonbanquet


Mmm, yes I think you're right there - perhaps F1 was getting a bit too professional by the mid-70s for the men of Purley's nature. Your idea of him maybe being suited more to the 60s is spot on - surely he would have found GP racing more to his taste back then. Either way, he wouldn't get very far in today's climate... can you imagine him enjoying driving for Ron Dennis?



Oh no.... can't imagine him in Hugo Boss glad-handing corporate bigwigs and not out enjoying himself.

Tell you what though, if His Lordship hadn't hooked up with Young Master James, Purley would've made an absolutely cracking Hesketh driver wouldn't he?

#18 jph

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Posted 05 April 2004 - 17:08

Originally posted by petefenelon: Tell you what though, if His Lordship hadn't hooked up with Young Master James, Purley would've made an absolutely cracking Hesketh driver wouldn't he?



Not sure about that one. Master James, with his taste for the sauce and herbal Woodbines seemed just right for mid-70s Hesketh. Ex-Paratrooper Purley always seemed made of sterner stuff. What if he'd got some funding into Williams - for my money, the archetypal racer - at about that time? Or maybe he could only ever have been an independent?

#19 Lec CRP1

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Posted 05 April 2004 - 18:38

Originally posted by jph


Not sure about that one. Master James, with his taste for the sauce and herbal Woodbines seemed just right for mid-70s Hesketh. Ex-Paratrooper Purley always seemed made of sterner stuff. What if he'd got some funding into Williams - for my money, the archetypal racer - at about that time? Or maybe he could only ever have been an independent?


I can't really imagine Purley as a full time driver. Hammering round obscure tracks evaluating tyre compounds? Corporate glad-handing? Doing PR and praising Niki Lauda? ;) And anyway, someone had to run the family fridge company. David Purley was a man after his time, and most certainly admired because of it.