Swiss Formula 3 Championships
Posted 03 February 2019 - 13:49
Most irritatingly, I miss the second place finisher of the 1998 Goldpokalrennen at Hockenheim, July 11 or 12. Also, number of laps and/or finishing time(s) would be much appreciated!
Apart from some more minor placings, the following top 6 finishing positions are also still missing:
1999 June 20, Dijon: 4th place
2000 October 1, Slalom at Bière (cheers! 4th, 5th and 6th place
2001 May 27, Salzburg: 6th place
2001 June 23, Dijon: 5th and 6th place
2001 June 24, Dijon: 4th, 5th and 6th place
2001 July 7, Hockenheim: 4th, 5th and 6th place
2001 September 9, Gurnigel hill climb: 4th and 5th place
2001 September 16, La Berra hill climb: 5th and 6th place
2001 September 30, Bière slalom: 4th, 5th and 6th place
Step forward, helpful soul!
Posted 04 February 2019 - 09:29
In most cases I can help you. But for Salzburg and Bière I'll have to dig deeper.
Hockenheim 11.08.1998 2. Michel Frey Dallara-Fiat 393
Dijon 20.06.1999 4. Matthias Denger Ralt 93C Alfa
Bière 1.10.2000 4. Andreas Bähler Dallara 394 Opel, 5. Marcel (?) Heimberg Dallara 399-Opel, 6. Hansruedi Debrunner Dallara 397-Opel
Dijon 23.06. 2001 5. Urs Rüttimann Dallara 396 Opel, 6. Willi Sträuli Dallara 395 Fiat
Dijon 24.06.2001 4. Andreas Bähler Dallara 396-Opel, 5. Urs Rüttimann Dallara 396 Opel, 6. Jürg Felix Dallara 393 Fiat
Hockenheim 07.07.2001 4. Urs Rüttimann Dallara 396 Opel, 5. Andreas Bähler Dallara 396 Opel, 6. Tobias Blättler Ralt RT36 Fiat
Gurnigel 09.09.2001 4. Jürg Felix Dallara 393 Fiat, 5. Bruno Huber Ralt 93C Alfa
La Berra 16.09.2001 5. Peter Marugg Dallara 394 Opel, 6. Bruno Huber Ralt 93C Alfa
PS: Do you know the "Rennsport Schweiz" range of annuals? First edition 1984, now in its 35th year. There aren't complete results, so it's not the perfect tool, but all the information above comes from there. If you are interested, go for www.rennsport-schweiz.ch
Posted 04 February 2019 - 10:58
Many thanks, Urs - I was hoping you'd see this
Posted 04 February 2019 - 16:44
Meanwhile, while we're waiting for another philanthropist to come to the rescue (1998 Goldpokal laps/times, 2001 Salzburg and Bière results, oh, and I'm also missing the laps/times of 2001 Varano, and the times of 1999 & 2000 Bière!), I'll regale you with assorted statistics Be back in a jiffy...
Posted 04 February 2019 - 19:19
Posted 05 February 2019 - 19:58
I also corrected a slight data mistake in my original worksheet, and also deleted Heribert Aeby from the table because, on reflection, it seems he competed in the Formula Libre class, not F 3. This may be as good a time as any to explain that the table reflects only results in the Swiss championship, not necessarily the actual race finishes. There were a few occasions when F 3 cars that did not conform to the special Swiss regulations (which usually included control tyres, a cut-off date for manufacture of the car and/or engine electronics etc.) were allowed to compete, but ignored in the results - like Aeby at Anzère in 1998, for example. Also, only drivers with a Swiss competition licence were allowed to score points, regardless of their actual nationality. This explains why Norberto Fontana is on the list, but some results of Swiss drivers such as Marcel Wettstein or Bernard Leisi are missing, because they were competing with a German or French licence, respectively. In a very few cases, it was not possible to establish whether a driver was eligible to score or not, and these results are still included, if suspect.
A few words to explain the contents of the table: ranked by SPS* and then (in brackets) by the total points scored (in the column at the extreme right), each driver is listed with the number of championship finishes in the top ten positions (columns C1 to C0), then the accumulated SPS, and then the number of race finishes in the first nine (columns R1 to R9), the total number of scores and the accumulated net, then total championship points. Why no number of tenth place finishes, you ask? Because the Swiss award one championship point to every finisher from tenth onwards, and as a result the record of tenth place finishers is rather incomplete! Also, the difference between net and total points is so big in many cases because of the Swiss peculiarity of not only restricting the maximum number of point scores per year, but also stipulating a minimum of scores, usually three but up to six at times.
* SPS = Standard Percentage Score, as explained in a seperate thread a few months ago. This, in my opinion at least, provides a much more balanced ranking than any other, like total points scored (which would see drivers who never finished even near the top ten ranked ahead of race winners) or quality-then-quantity of race finishes, or even championship positions. The *real* value of SPS, however, will come to light in subsequent posts about car and engine performances over the years.
Posted 05 February 2019 - 20:23
For a time in the thirties, the seperate category championships were discontinued, and only two overall titles were awarded for "expert" and "amateur" drivers, respectively. By 1938, the Racing Car Championship was back in the form of a "Gold Medal of the ACS" with Max Christen of Zürich the winner in his 2-litre Maserati, who repeated the following year as the Champion proper. More importantly, however, 1939 saw the introduction of the (in)famous Leistungsprinzip as the scoring method for the Swiss Championships for all categories, which was only discarded completely following the 1979 season (in 1977 already for the Sports and Racing Car categories). Some of you may remember the thread in which I applied this scoring method to the 1970 World Championship Formula One season, with the result that Jochen Rindt ended up in 12th place instead of being Champion - it was THAT wacky!!
As eccentric and convoluted as it may appear for us today, it was actually and quite probably not the very worst solution for the particularity of a small country with a sense of individuality and freedom that may be unique in Europe, and certainly was for its time! In Switzerland, everybody who wishes to compete is welcome to do so, no matter whether in his road-going Mini or 2CV, or last year's Formula One Ferrari! A multitude of categories, classes and divisions takes care of the various performance levels of all entries, and some form of comparison of the results simply had to be found to arrive at only three National Champions per year for Racing, Sports and Touring Cars, respectively (a fourth title for "Grand Touring" cars was added in 1957, renamed "Special Cars" in 1970 when the Touring Cars became "Stock Cars").
The Leistungsprinzip, actually invented by the Swiss Motorcycle Federation a few years earlier, was the pride and joy of the ACS, who regarded it as the only "fair" way to award championships, though in reality it probably rewarded plodder quality over excellence, and transpiration over inspiration. Mostly, however, it favoured the guy who was lucky in picking the class he was going to compete in: a low car count and a relative lack of talent amongst one's class mates was the best ticket for championship success. Another weak point was the frequency of ties at the head of the table, like in that 1939 Racing Car Championship: only Max Christen and Bernard Blancpain of Fribourg in his 1.5-litre Maserati scored the necessary four results that year, and with both having won their class four times, the better average speed (!) of Christen in his bigger Maser at the Bremgarten race proved decisive.
One of the nice things about the Swiss Racing Car Championships was the number of exotic cars competing, and after the war gap the title went twice to Emmanuel de Graffenried of Frbourg in his Formula One Maserati (1949 & '50), then twice to Rudolf Fischer of Zürich in his Formula Two Ferrari (1951 & '52). In 1954, Willy Daetwyler of Zürich won on a big supercharged 4.5-litre Alfa Romeo, then Hansjörg Gilomen of Lengnau near Biel took two in his little 1100 cc Cooper (1954 & '55) before Albert Leuenberger of Lausanne took his turn in a 1200 cc Cisitalia (1956). Harry Zweifel of Glarus (halfway between Zürich and Liechtenstein) took four in a row (1957 - '60) in various F 2 and F 1 Coopers, then Karl Foitek of Zürich a couple in a Formula Junior Lotus (1961 & '62). Charles Vögele of Neftenbach near Winterthur in an Intercontinental Brabham (1963) and André Périat of Porrentruy near the French border in a Junior Cooper (1964) marked time before the "arrival" of Walter Habegger of Herzogenbuchsee/Oberönz near Solothurn as a three-time Champion (1965 - '67) in Brabham and Lotus F 2 cars - Habegger had been runner-up six times before that (including three years in a row tied on points with Champion Zweifel!!), and finished in the top 3 every year bar one from 1956 till '68!
Formula 3 drivers Jürg Dubler of Dielsdorf near Zürich (Brabham, 1968) and Roland Salomon of Frauenkappelen near Berne (Tecno, 1969) paved the way for the seventies and Xavier Perrot of Zürich in his F 2 March (1970 & '71) and Jo Vonlanthen of Frauenfeld near Konstanz in an F 3 Tecno (1972), before Salomon came back in an F 2 March/BMW 732 himself for a couple of da capos (1973 & '74). Markus Hotz of Sulgen near Konstanz took his brand new March/BMW 752 to the championship in 1975, then a new nom de course appeared on the scene and dominated the 1976 season in a Formula Atlantic Modus: "Ruby", who turned out to be none other but the recently and very publicly retired (and now secretly unretired) Roland Salomon! In 1977, it was the turn again of Markus Hotz in another brand new March/BMW 772, but the seeds for the future had already been sown with the introduction of a class of its own for the two-litre Formula 3 cars, which hitherto had been lumped together with the Atlantics, Super Vees and what-have-you.
That year, Rolf Egger of Fribourg in a Ralt/Toyota RT1 won five of the 12 championship rounds in the new class, took two seconds, three thirds and a fourth to wind up second in the points chase to Hotz, who had virtually no opposition in taking ten wins in the F 2 class - only Fredy Amweg in his home-built Formula 2 special made it into the top ten in points, a very distant ninth. By contrast, four other F 3 drivers joined Egger in the top ten, with Fritz Straumann in his semi-works Chevron/Toyota B38 in fourth with three wins, two seconds and two thirds, as well as other race winners Dieter Wälti (5th in a March/Toyota 743-77) and Louis Maulini (8th in a Ralt/Toyota RT1). The other two wins fell to Fridolin Wettstein and Armin Conrad, both in Ralt/Toyota RT1s, while Heinz Loosli was tenth in points in his March/Toyota 753-77 on the strength of seven top eight finishes, including a third. Other top 3 finishers were Ruggero Grüt (March/Toyota 743), Hasi Kaufmann (Chevron/BMW B38), Luciano Arnold (March/Toyota 763-77), Laurent Ferrier (Lola/BMW T670) and Bruno Huber (Argo/Toyota JM1).
Edited by Michael Ferner, 05 February 2019 - 23:56.
Posted 06 February 2019 - 18:01
I am deeply impressed by your knowledge about the Swiss F3 Championship and Swiss Championships in general, and I am happy to add a few missing details.
27.05.2001 Salzburg: 6th Hansruedi Debrunner Dallara 397 Opel
30.09.2001 Bière: 4. Debrunner Dallara 397 Opel 2'31.93, 5.Fabian Gysin Ralt RT34 Alfa 2'32.51, 6. Dominique Salamin Dallara 393 Opel 2'34.79
And a few first name for your charts:
Richard Vogel (not sure)
Ruggero Grüt is in reality Ruggero Gruet (French pronounciation)
"Albin" is Albino Fontana (no connection with Norberto)
I don't think Wenzelburger ever had a Swiss licence, and there are also doubts for Heinzelmann (D), Scherle (D), Ferrier (F) and "Albin" (MC).
And I can't imagine Caprez and Amweg in F3 cars (until the contrary is proven).
Keep on your excellent work!
Posted 07 February 2019 - 16:26
But really, I learned to love the sometimes somewhat quirky Swiss racing scene by that, and in the meantime have made an effort to learn more by delving into historic Automobile Revue issues. It's great fun, actually!
Thank you for the additional info, and the first names. I had a feeling about "Grüt" being wrong, but thanks for confirming. Also thanks for confirming that Albin is Albino Fontana - that had been bugging me for years! It seemed so obvious, but I never found any firm connection. Gaston Zen-Ruffinen I'd found in the meantime, and I also found out that there we two drivers with the family name Aymon, both from Ayent so probably related: according to this (https://www.ayent-an...s_2_minutes.pdf) Georges Aymon drove mainly a Lola sports car, while the driver of the F 3 Brabham was Fernand Aymon.
I share your doubts about Wenzelsburger, but Heinzelmann was listed in a copy I have of the "Offizielle Rangliste/Resultats Officiels" of the ACS in 1982, as was Scherle in 2000 (but not in 1999!) and Albin in 1979, '80, '81 and '83. Not really sure about Ferrier, that was during the time of the "Leistungsprinzip", hence his presence in the results did not affect other drivers, irrespective of the origin of his licence. I take your word, then.
Ruedi Caprez drove a Ralt at the 1978 Goldpokalrennen, finishing tenth (see Motorsport aktuell 30/78, p8). Amweg didn't drive F 3, as far as I can tell - I only mentioned him as the best placed F 2 driver besides Hotz in 1977.
Posted 07 February 2019 - 22:27
I don't think Wenzelburger ever had a Swiss licence, and there are also doubts for Heinzelmann (D), Scherle (D), Ferrier (F) and "Albin" (MC).
Don't know about the others but isn't this Laurent Ferrier the watchhmaker from Geneva who also drove in the Le Mans 24 hours and was born in Neuchâtel in 1946?
Posted 08 February 2019 - 08:07
Yes, it's the same Laurent Ferrier. He sometimes used a French, sometimes a Swiss licence, but I can't tell you which one in what year.
The same also applies to Heinzelmann. He is/was German, but he lived and worked in Switzerland. He started racing with a German licence, but I don't know when he switched.
"Albin" briefly raced a Lotus Elan in 1967 with Swiss licence, then he made his comeback many years after in F3 as a Monegasque, but probably only in his first year. That allowed him - and some others as well - to step around the mandatory ACS "Ausbildungskurs".
Sorry for the wrong Aymon. I didn't know about Fernand. And I don't know anything about Zen-Ruffinen's family.
Posted 14 February 2019 - 22:26
Posted 15 February 2019 - 09:25
Thank you for mentioning the resultatscotes.ch website. I didn't know about it. There is another one which might help in some cases: www.autosport-ranglisten.ch