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1968 Formula One season

1968 FIA Formula One
World Championship season
Drivers' Champion: Graham Hill
Constructors' Champion: Lotus-Ford
Previous: 1967 Next: 1969

The 1968 Formula One season included the 19th FIA Formula One World Championship season, which commenced on 1 January 1968, and ended on 3 November after twelve races.

Season summary

Although they had failed to win the title in 1967, by the end of the season the Lotus 49 and the DFV engine were mature enough to make the Lotus team dominant again. For 1968 Lotus lost its exclusive right to use the DFV. McLaren built a new DFV-powered car and a new force appeared on the scene when Ken Tyrrell entered his own team using a Cosworth-powered car built by French aeronautics company Matra and driven by ex-BRM driver Jackie Stewart.

Unsurprisingly the season-opening 1968 South African Grand Prix confirmed Lotus' superiority, with Jim Clark and Graham Hill finishing 1–2. It would be Clark's last win. On 7 April 1968 Clark, one of the most successful and popular drivers of all time, was killed at Hockenheim in a non-championship Formula Two event.

The season saw two significant innovations. The first was the arrival of unrestricted sponsorship, which the FIA decided to permit that year after the withdrawal of support from automobile related firms like BP, Shell and Firestone. In May the Lotus Formula One team appeared at Jarama in the Red, Gold and White colors of Imperial Tobacco's Gold Leaf brand. The second innovation was the introduction of wings as seen previously on various cars including the Chaparral 2F sports car. Colin Chapman introduced modest front wings and a spoiler on Graham Hill's Lotus 49B at Monaco. Brabham and Ferrari went one better at the Belgian Grand Prix with full width wings mounted on struts high above the driver. Lotus replied with a full width wing directly connected to the rear suspension that required a redesign of suspension wishbones and transmission shafts. Matra then produced a high mounted front wing connected to the front suspension. This last innovation was mostly used during practice as it required a lot of effort from the driver. By the end of the season most teams were using sophisticated wings.

Despite the death of Jim Clark, Lotus won both titles in 1968 with Graham Hill, but Stewart was a serious contender, winning several Grands Prix in the Tyrrell-run Matra MS10. Stewart's winning drive during the rain and fog of the 1968 German Grand Prix at the Nürburgring, where he won by a margin of four minutes, is considered as one of the finest ever, even though his rain tires were probably better than those of the competition. The car's most innovative feature was the use of aviation-inspired structural fuel tanks. These allowed the chassis to be around 15 kg lighter, while still being stronger than its competitors. The FIA considered the technology to be unsafe and decided to ban it for 1970, insisting on rubber bag-tanks (Which meant the effective end of spaceframe chassis in F1). Safety became a major issue in Formula One.

McLaren fielded a pair of Cosworth powered M7s for reigning Formula One World Champion Denny Hulme and team founder Bruce McLaren. McLaren won the non-championship Brands Hatch Race of Champions, then the Belgian Grand Prix was the scene of the team's first Championship win. In doing so, McLaren became only the third driver to win a race in a car manufactured by his own team - Jack Brabham having done it in 1966 and Dan Gurney in 1967 at Spa Francorchamps. Hulme won the Italian Grand Prix and Canadian Grand Prix later in the year.

Repco produced a more powerful version of their V8 to maintain competitiveness against Ford's new Cosworth DFV, but it proved very unreliable. The Brabhams were fast — Rindt set pole position twice during the season — but Brabham and Rindt finished only three races between them, and ended the year having scored just ten points.[1]

1968 turned out to be a turning point in the history of Formula One, in terms of technicalities and safety. Wings were used on Formula One cars and aerodynamics really played a part in terms of the cars' performance, and 5 Grand Prix drivers were killed in this year- including Jim Clark, Mike Spence, Jo Schlesser and Ludovico Scarfiotti- Clark at a Formula 2 race at Hockenheim in a Lotus in April, Spence during practice for the Indianapolis 500 in a Lotus in May, Scarfiotti during a hillclimb event in Germany driving a Porsche sportscar in June, and Schlesser during the French Grand Prix driving a Honda in July. It was the last year where all the races were run on tracks with almost no safety modifications. The rather dubious events of the season included Schlesser's almost recklessly caused fatal accident at Rouen Les Essarts and the German Grand Prix run in atrocious rain and thick fog at the dangerous and long Nürburgring, a race that was even questioned at the start to be run in the almost intolerable conditions.

Season review

Rnd Race Circuit Date Pole position Fastest lap Winning driver Constructor Tyre Report
1 23x15px South African Grand Prix Kyalami 1 January 23x15px Jim Clark 23x15px Jim Clark 23x15px Jim Clark 23x15px Lotus-Ford F Report
2 23x15px Spanish Grand Prix Jarama 12 May 23x15px Chris Amon 23x15px Jean-Pierre Beltoise 23x15px Graham Hill 23x15px Lotus-Ford F Report
3 23x15px Monaco Grand Prix Monaco 26 May 23x15px Graham Hill 23x15px Richard Attwood 23x15px Graham Hill 23x15px Lotus-Ford F Report
4 23x15px Belgian Grand Prix Spa-Francorchamps 9 June 23x15px Chris Amon 23x15px John Surtees 23x15px Bruce McLaren 23x15px McLaren-Ford G Report
5 23x15px Dutch Grand Prix Zandvoort 23 June 23x15px Chris Amon 23x15px Jean-Pierre Beltoise 23x15px Jackie Stewart 23x15px Matra-Ford D Report
6 23x15px French Grand Prix Rouen-Les-Essarts 7 July 23x15px Jochen Rindt 23x15px Pedro Rodríguez 23x15px Jacky Ickx 23x15px Ferrari F Report
7 23x15px British Grand Prix Brands Hatch 20 July 23x15px Graham Hill 23x16px Jo Siffert 23x16px Jo Siffert 23x15px Lotus-Ford F Report
8 23x15px German Grand Prix Nürburgring 4 August 23x15px Jacky Ickx 23x15px Jackie Stewart 23x15px Jackie Stewart 23x15px Matra-Ford D Report
9 23x15px Italian Grand Prix Monza 8 September 23x15px John Surtees 23x15px Jackie Oliver 23x15px Denny Hulme 23x15px McLaren-Ford G Report
10 23x15px Canadian Grand Prix Mont-Tremblant 22 September 23x15px Jochen Rindt 23x16px Jo Siffert 23x15px Denny Hulme 23x15px McLaren-Ford G Report
11 23x15px United States Grand Prix Watkins Glen 6 October 23x15px Mario Andretti 23x15px Jackie Stewart 23x15px Jackie Stewart 23x15px Matra-Ford D Report
12 23x15px Mexican Grand Prix Magdalena Mixhuca 3 November 23x16px Jo Siffert 23x16px Jo Siffert 23x15px Graham Hill 23x15px Lotus-Ford F Report

Teams and drivers

The following teams and drivers competed in the 1968 FIA World Championship.

Entrant Constructor Chassis Engine Tyre Driver Rounds
23x15px Bruce McLaren Motor Racing McLaren-BRM M5A BRM P142 3.0 V12 G 23x15px Denny Hulme 1
McLaren-Ford M7A Ford Cosworth DFV 3.0 V8 2-12
23x15px Bruce McLaren 2-12
23x15px Brabham Racing Organisation Brabham-Repco BT24
BT26
Repco 740 3.0 V8
Repco 860 3.0 V8
G 23x15px Jack Brabham All
23x15px Jochen Rindt All
23x15px Dan Gurney 5
23x15px Team Lotus
23x15px Gold Leaf Team Lotus
Lotus-Ford 49
49B
Ford Cosworth DFV 3.0 V8 F 23x15px Jim Clark 1
23x15px Graham Hill All
23x15px Jackie Oliver 3-12
23x15px Mario Andretti 9, 11
23x15px Bill Brack 10
23x15px Moisés Solana 12
23x15px Anglo American Racers Eagle-Weslake T1G Weslake 58 3.0 V12 G 23x15px Dan Gurney 1, 3, 7-9
McLaren-Ford M7A Ford Cosworth DFV 3.0 V8 10-12
Template:Country data JPN Honda Racing Honda RA300
RA301
RA302
Honda RA273E 3.0 V12
Honda RA301E 3.0 V12
Honda RA302E 3.0 V8
F 23x15px John Surtees All
23x15px Jo Schlesser 6
23x15px David Hobbs 9
23x15px Scuderia Ferrari SpA SEFAC Ferrari 312 Ferrari 242 3.0 V12
Ferrari 242C 3.0 V12
F 23x15px Chris Amon 1-2, 4-12
23x15px Jacky Ickx 1-2, 4-10, 12
23x15px Andrea de Adamich 1
23x15px Derek Bell 9, 11
23x15px Owen Racing Organisation BRM P126
P115
P133
P138
BRM P142 3.0 V12
BRM P75 3.0 H16
G 23x15px Pedro Rodríguez All
23x15px Mike Spence 1
23x15px Richard Attwood 3-8
23x15px Bobby Unser 9, 11
23x15px Cooper Car Company Cooper-Maserati T81B
T86
Maserati 10/F1 3.0 V12 F
G
23x15px Brian Redman 1
23x15px Ludovico Scarfiotti 1
Cooper-BRM T86B
T86
BRM P142 3.0 V12 23x15px Brian Redman 2, 4
23x15px Ludovico Scarfiotti 2-3
23x15px Lucien Bianchi 3-5, 8, 10-12
23x15px Vic Elford 6-12
23x15px Johnny Servoz-Gavin 6
23x15px Robin Widdows 7
23x15px Matra International Matra-Ford MS9
MS10
Ford Cosworth DFV 3.0 V8 D 23x15px Jackie Stewart 1, 4-12
23x15px Johnny Servoz-Gavin 3, 9-10, 12
23x15px Jean-Pierre Beltoise 2
23x15px Matra Sports MS7 Ford Cosworth FVA 1.6 L4 1
Matra MS11 Matra MS9 3.0 V12 3-12
23x15px Henri Pescarolo 10-12
23x15px Team Gunston Brabham-Repco BT20 Repco 620 3.0 V8 F 23x15px John Love 1
LDS-Repco Mk 3 23x15px Sam Tingle 1
23x15px Rob Walker/Jack Durlacher Racing Team Cooper-Maserati T81 Maserati 9/F1 3.0 V12 F 23x16px Jo Siffert 1
Lotus-Ford 49
49B
Ford Cosworth DFV 3.0 V8 2-12
23x15px Joakim Bonnier Racing Team Cooper-Maserati T81 Maserati 9/F1 3.0 V12 G 23x15px Joakim Bonnier 1
McLaren-BRM M5A BRM P142 3.0 V12 3-5, 7, 9-11
Honda RA301 Honda RA301E 3.0 V12 12
23x15px Scuderia Scribante Brabham-Repco BT11 Repco 620 3.0 V8 F 23x15px Dave Charlton 1
23x15px Team Pretoria Brabham-Climax BT11 Climax FPF 2.8 L4 F 23x15px Jackie Pretorius 1
23x15px John Love Cooper-Climax T79 Climax FPF 2.8 L4 F 23x15px Basil van Rooyen 1
23x15px Reg Parnell Racing BRM P126 BRM P142 3.0 V12 G 23x15px Piers Courage 2-12
23x16px Charles Vögele Racing Brabham-Repco BT20 Repco 620 3.0 V8 G 23x16px Silvio Moser 3, 5, 7-9
23x15px Caltex Racing Team Brabham-Repco BT24 Repco 740 3.0 V8 D 23x15px Kurt Ahrens, Jr. 8
23x15px Bayerische Motoren Werke AG Lola-BMW T100 BMW M12/1 1.6 L4 D 23x15px Hubert Hahne 8
23x15px Bernard White Racing BRM P261 BRM P142 3.0 V12 G 23x15px Frank Gardner 9
23x15px Castrol Oils Ltd Eagle-Climax T1F Climax FPF 2.8 L4 G 23x15px Al Pease 10

1968 Drivers Championship final standings

Championship points were awarded on a 9-6-4-3-2-1 basis to the top six placegetters in each race. Only the best five results from the first six races and the best five results from the remaining six races were counted towards a driver's total.[2]

File:HillGraham1969Aug.jpg
Graham Hill (pictured in 1969) won his 2nd and last driver's championship, driving for Lotus
Pos. Driver RSA
23x15px
ESP
23x15px
MON
23x15px
BEL
23x15px
NED
23x15px
FRA
23x15px
GBR
23x15px
GER
23x15px
ITA
23x15px
CAN
23x15px
USA
23x15px
MEX
23x15px
Pts.
1 23x15px Graham Hill 2 1 1 Ret 9 Ret Ret 2 Ret 4 2 1 48
2 23x15px Jackie Stewart Ret 4 1 3 6 1 Ret 6 1 7 36
3 23x15px Denny Hulme 5 2 5 Ret Ret 5 4 7 1 1 Ret Ret 33
4 23x15px Jacky Ickx Ret Ret 3 4 1 3 4 3 DNS Ret 27
5 23x15px Bruce McLaren Ret Ret 1 Ret 8 7 13 Ret 2 6 2 22
6 23x15px Pedro Rodríguez Ret Ret Ret 2 3 NC Ret 6 Ret 3 Ret 4 18
7 23x16px Jo Siffert 7 Ret Ret 7 Ret 11 1 Ret Ret Ret 5 6 12
8 23x15px John Surtees 8 Ret Ret Ret Ret 2 5 Ret Ret Ret 3 Ret 12
9 23x15px Jean-Pierre Beltoise 6 5 Ret 8 2 9 Ret Ret 5 Ret Ret Ret 11
10 23x15px Chris Amon 4 Ret Ret 6 10 2 Ret Ret Ret Ret Ret 10
11 23x15px Jim Clark 1 9
12 23x15px Jochen Rindt 3 Ret Ret Ret Ret Ret Ret 3 Ret Ret Ret Ret 8
13 23x15px Richard Attwood 2 Ret 7 7 Ret 14 6
14 23x15px Johnny Servoz-Gavin Ret Ret 2 Ret Ret 6
15 23x15px Jackie Oliver Ret 5 NC Ret 11 Ret Ret DNS 3 6
16 23x15px Ludovico Scarfiotti Ret 4 4 6
17 23x15px Lucien Bianchi 3 6 Ret Ret NC Ret Ret 5
18 23x15px Vic Elford 4 Ret Ret Ret 5 Ret 8 5
19 23x15px Brian Redman Ret 3 Ret 4
20 23x15px Piers Courage Ret Ret Ret Ret 6 8 8 4 Ret Ret Ret 4
21 23x15px Dan Gurney Ret Ret Ret Ret 9 Ret Ret 4 Ret 3
22 23x15px Jo Bonnier Ret DNQ Ret 8 Ret 6 Ret NC 5 3
23 23x15px Jack Brabham Ret DNS Ret Ret Ret Ret Ret 5 Ret Ret Ret 10 2
24 23x16px Silvio Moser DNQ 5 NC DNQ 2
23x15px Henri Pescarolo Ret DNS 9 0
23x15px John Love 9 0
23x15px Hubert Hahne 10 0
23x15px Kurt Ahrens, Jr. 12 0
23x15px Jackie Pretorius NC 0
23x15px Derek Bell Ret Ret 0
23x15px Mario Andretti DNS Ret 0
23x15px Bobby Unser DNS Ret 0
23x15px Andrea de Adamich Ret 0
23x15px Dave Charlton Ret 0
23x15px Mike Spence Ret 0
23x15px Basil van Rooyen Ret 0
23x15px Sam Tingle Ret 0
23x15px Jo Schlesser Ret 0
23x15px Robin Widdows Ret 0
23x15px David Hobbs Ret 0
23x15px Bill Brack Ret 0
23x15px Moisés Solana Ret 0
23x15px Al Pease DNS 0
23x15px Frank Gardner DNQ 0
Pos. Driver RSA
23x15px
ESP
23x15px
MON
23x15px
BEL
23x15px
NED
23x15px
FRA
23x15px
GBR
23x15px
GER
23x15px
ITA
23x15px
CAN
23x15px
USA
23x15px
MEX
23x15px
Pts.
Key
Colour Result
Gold Winner
Silver 2nd place
Bronze 3rd place
Green Points finish
Blue Non-points finish
Non-classified finish (NC)
Purple Did not finish (Ret)
Red Did not qualify (DNQ)
Did not pre-qualify (DNPQ)
Black Disqualified (DSQ)
White Did not start (DNS)
Race cancelled (C)
Light blue Practiced only (PO)
Friday test driver (TD)
(from 2003 onwards)
Blank Did not practice (DNP)
Excluded (EX)
Did not arrive (DNA)

1968 Constructors Championship final standings

Points were awarded on a 9-6-4-3-2-1 basis to the first six finishers at each round, however only the best placed car from each manufacturer was eligible to score points. The best five results from the first six rounds and the best five results from the last six rounds were retained.

Pos. Manufacturer RSA
23x15px
ESP
23x15px
MON
23x15px
BEL
23x15px
NED
23x15px
FRA
23x15px
GBR
23x15px
GER
23x15px
ITA
23x15px
CAN
23x15px
USA
23x15px
MEX
23x15px
Pts.[3]
1 23x15px Lotus-Ford 1 1 1 5 9 11 1 2 Ret 4 2 1 62
2 23x15px McLaren-Ford 2 5 1 Ret 5 4 7 1 1 4 2 49
3 23x15px Matra-Ford 6 5 Ret 4 1 3 6 1 2 6 1 7 45
4 23x15px Ferrari 4 Ret 3 4 1 2 4 3 Ret Ret Ret 32
5 23x15px BRM Ret Ret 2 2 3 6 8 6 4 3 Ret 4 28
6 Template:Country data JPN Honda 8 Ret Ret Ret Ret 2 5 Ret Ret Ret 3 5 14
7 23x15px Cooper-BRM Ret 3 3 6 Ret 4 Ret Ret Ret 5 NC 8 14
8 23x15px Brabham-Repco 3 Ret Ret Ret 5 Ret Ret 3 Ret Ret Ret 10 10
9 23x15px Matra Ret 8 2 9 Ret Ret 5 Ret Ret 9 8
10 23x15px McLaren-BRM 5 DNQ Ret 8 Ret 6 Ret NC 3
23x15px Cooper-Maserati 7 0
23x15px Eagle-Weslake Ret Ret Ret 9 Ret 0
23x15px Lola-BMW 10 0
23x15px Brabham-Climax NC 0
23x15px LDS-Repco Ret 0
23x15px Cooper-Climax Ret 0
Pos. Manufacturer RSA
23x15px
ESP
23x15px
MON
23x15px
BEL
23x15px
NED
23x15px
FRA
23x15px
GBR
23x15px
GER
23x15px
ITA
23x15px
CAN
23x15px
USA
23x15px
MEX
23x15px
Pts.
  • Bold results counted to championship totals.

Non-Championship race results

Other Formula One races held in 1968, which did not count towards the World Championship.

Race Name Circuit Date Winning driver Constructor Report
23x15px III Race of Champions Brands Hatch 17 March 23x15px Bruce McLaren 23x15px McLaren-Cosworth Report
23x15px XX BRDC International Trophy Silverstone 25 April 23x15px Denny Hulme 23x15px McLaren-Cosworth Report
23x15px XV International Gold Cup Oulton Park 17 August 23x15px Jackie Stewart 23x15px Matra-Cosworth Report

References

  1. ^ Fearnley (May 2006) p. 41
  2. ^ Mike Kettlewell, The Champion Book of World Championship Facts and Figures, 1982, Page 25
  3. ^ Only the best 5 results from the first 6 rounds and the best 5 results from the last 6 rounds counted towards the Championship. Numbers without parentheses are Championship points; numbers in parentheses are total points scored.

External links