1984 British Grand Prix
The 1984 British Grand Prix (formally the XXXVII John Player British Grand Prix) was a Formula One motor race held on 22 July 1984 at Brands Hatch near Swanley, Kent, England. It was the tenth round of the 1984 Formula One season. The race, contested over 71 laps, was won by Niki Lauda for the McLaren team, after starting from third position. Derek Warwick finished second in a Renault, with Ayrton Senna third for the Toleman team.
The Grand Prix was contested by fourteen teams, each of two drivers. The teams, also known as constructors, were Brabham, McLaren, Lotus, Williams, Renault, Ferrari, ATS, Arrows, Alfa Romeo, Ligier, Osella, RAM, Spirit and Tyrrell.
Going to the race, McLaren driver Alain Prost led the Drivers' Championship with 34.5 points, ahead of team-mate Niki Lauda on 24 points and Elio de Angelis on 23.5. Rene Arnoux was fourth with 22.5 points while Keke Rosberg was fifth on 20 points. In the Constructors' Championship, McLaren were leading with 58.5 points, Ferrari and Lotus were second and third with 31.5 and 29.5 points respectively, while Williams with 24 and Brabham on 21 points contended for fourth place.
Prior to the event, the Fédération Internationale de l'Automobile (FIA) announced that Tyrrell would be disqualified from the World Championship for the illegal use of fuel and ballast on their cars. The ruiling resulted in all points scored by Tyrrell throughout the season would be removed. Tyrrell owner Ken Tyrrell was granted an High Court order to allow their cars to compete in the Friday Qualifying session.
Johnny Cecotto broke both legs after a heavy crash during qualifying. He would never race in Formula One again. Nelson Piquet claimed pole position. Niki Lauda's win for McLaren saw him become the highest point scorer in Formula One history, passing Jackie Stewart's 390.
Renault driver Derek Warwick gave the British fans something to cheer when he finished 42 seconds behind Lauda in second place, while Cecotto's Toleman team mate Ayrton Senna finished 21 seconds behind Warwick in third. Lotus-Renault driver Elio de Angelis kept his championship hopes alive finishing a lap down in fourth place. He was followed by the two Ferraris of Michele Alboreto and René Arnoux in the final points positions.
Lauda's win saw him move to 33 points and cut team mate Alain Prost's championship lead to just 1.5 points. With 67.5 points, McLaren had scored almost double the amount of Constructors' points than second placed Ferrari who were on 34.5 points.
Eddie Cheever (Alfa Romeo), Philippe Alliot (RAM) and Jo Gartner (Osella) were all outed in a first lap crash which started when Riccardo Patrese lost his Alfa going into Graham Hill Bend. The race was stopped 11 laps in order to clear Jonathan Palmer's RAM, a move which many felt had more to do with the McLaren's having past pole sitter Nelson Piquet (who was headed to the pits to change tyres). Due to the rules, when the cars formed on the grid for the restart, Piquet's Brabham-BMW, complete with a change of tyres, was back on the pole, though it didn't do any good as he was soon passed by the superior handling McLarens.
Standings after the race
- Note: Only the top five positions are included for both sets of standings. Points accurate at final declaration of results. Tyrrell's points were subsequently reallocated.
- "Tyrrell are banned for rest of season". The Glasgow Herald. 19 July 1984. p. 16.
- "Tyrrell wins ruiling, to be in British Grand Prix". The Tuscaloosa News. 20 July 1984. p. 15.
Unless otherwise indicated, all race results are taken from "The Official Formula 1 website". Retrieved 2007-06-17.
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