1976 German Grand Prix

1976 German Grand Prix

Infobox Grand Prix race report
Type = F1
Country = Germany
Grand Prix = German
Date = August 1
Year = 1976

Race_No = 10
Season_No = 16
Official name = XXXVIII Großer Preis von Deutschland
Location = Nürburgring, Nürburg, Germany
Course = Permanent racing facility
Course_mi = 14.19
Course_km = 22.835
Distance_laps = 14
Distance_mi = 198.65
Distance_km = 319.690
Weather = Rain at start, later drying
Pole_Driver = James Hunt
Pole_Team = McLaren-Ford
Pole_Time = 7:06.5cite book |last=Lang |first=Mike |title=Grand Prix! Vol 3 |publisher=Haynes Publishing Group |date=1983 |pages=p135 |isbn=0-85429-380-9]
Pole_Country = United Kingdom
Fast_Driver = Jody Scheckter
Fast_Country = South Africa
Fast_flag_suffix = 1928
Fast_Team = Tyrrell-Ford
Fast_Time = 7:10.8cite book |last=Lang |first=Mike |title=Grand Prix! Vol 3 |publisher=Haynes Publishing Group |date=1983 |pages=p138 |isbn=0-85429-380-9]

First_Driver = James Hunt
First_Team = McLaren-Ford
First_Country = United Kingdom
Second_Driver = Jody Scheckter
Second_Country = South Africa
Second_flag_suffix = 1928
Second_Team = Tyrrell-Ford
Third_Driver = Jochen Mass
Third_Team = McLaren-Ford
Third_Country = Germany
The 1976 German Grand Prix was a Formula One race held at the Nürburgring on August 1, 1976.

The race weekend began with some changes to the drivers' lineup: Jacky Ickx was fired from the Walter Wolf Racing team and was replaced by Arturo Merzario, and there was a new team present, Scuderia Rondini, which bought an old Tyrrell 007 for Alessandro Pesenti-Rossi. RAM was going to run Rolf Stommelen in one of its ex-works Brabham BT44s, but in the middle of the practice session the local police impounded the cars (because of a legal action by former driver Loris Kessel), and as a result Stommelen transferred to the works Brabham team to drive an Alfa-Romeo-powered BT45.

In qualifying James Hunt took the pole with Niki Lauda second, while Patrick Depailler lined up third in the six-wheeled Tyrrell P34. Hans Stuck was fourth in his March ahead of Clay Regazzoni, Jacques Laffite, Carlos Pace, Jody Scheckter, Jochen Mass and Carlos Reutemann.

The weather turned to wet before the race and so most drivers started the race on wet tyres, except Jochen Mass, who, having lots of experience at the Nürburgring and expecting a change for better weather, decided to use dry weather tyres. At the start Regazzoni took the lead while both Hunt and Lauda fell back. Hunt took second, third was a fast-starting Mass, fourth was Laffite who took advantage from the fact that Stuck's car had been pushed off the grid with a clutch problem (although the German started at the back of the field). In the course of the first lap Regazzoni spun and dropped to fourth. At the end of the lap, the weather changed back to dry and most pilots pitted for dry tyres, leaving Mass with the second place behind Peterson, who decided to go on wet tyres for another lap. At the end of lap 2 Mass was in front with Gunnar Nilsson (who had not stopped) in second place and Hunt third.
Niki Lauda had also changed his tyres and was trying hard to make up for the lost time. At the Bergwerk curve Lauda lost control of his Ferrari and spun through the fencing into an earth bank. The car (which was enveloped in flames) bounced back onto the circuit and on the track. Guy Edwards managed to avoid the Ferrari but Harald Ertl and Brett Lunger both hit it. All three drivers stopped and tried to get Lauda out of the flames and they were joined by Merzario who stopped his Wolf Williams after seeing the wreck. Lauda had suffered serious burns and was rushed by helicopter to the "Bundeswehr" hospital in Koblenz; from there he was flown from there to the Trauma Clinic in Ludwigshafen, home to Germany's most advanced burn ward at the time, where he fought for his life for the next few days.The race had been stopped after the accident and at the restart there were only 20 cars (4 cars less than the first start), but Chris Amon decided not to start the race again. The rain had gone and Hunt took the lead from Regazzoni, Scheckter, Depailler and Pace. At the Flugplatz Peterson lost control of his March and crashed heavily while Regazzoni had another spin and Depailler went off avoiding the Ferrari. Pace overtook Scheckter and so ended the first lap in second place. On the second lap Scheckter passed Pace and the Brazilian fell behind Regazzoni on the third lap, during which sixth placed Vittorio Brambilla crashed at Adenau Bridge because of a brake failure on his March. Mass took advantage of it and overtook Gunnar Nilsson on the fifth lap and Pace on lap 10. On the 12th lap Regazzoni spun again and Mass moved to third with Pace fourth, Nilsson fifth and Stommelen sixth.

Chris Amon decided to end his career immediately after the race.



"Unless otherwise indicated, all race results are taken from cite web |title=The Official Formula 1 website |url=http://www.formula1.com/results/season/1976/451/ |accessdate=2007-06-16

F1 race report
Name_of_race = German Grand Prix
Year_of_race = 1976
Previous_race_in_season = 1976 British Grand Prix
Next_race_in_season = 1976 Austrian Grand Prix
Previous_year's_race = 1975 German Grand Prix
Next_year's_race = 1977 German Grand Prix

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