Wednesday, 13 May 2015

Special Feature - Celebrating 65 years of Formula One - Happy Birthday

(Mercedes AMG PETRONAS F1 Team)

Saturday 13th May 1950 saw the dawn of Formula One as we know it today. The first race of the new championship took place at Silverstone and was known as the Grand Prix D’Europe as well as the British Grand Prix.

The race was first event to take place outside of Germany and Italy. Alfa Romeo’s Guiseppe ‘Nino’ Farina won the race while Sir Stirling Moss finished in second place in the support race prior to the main event. The British Grand Prix was attended by members of the Royal Family including Queen Elizabeth.

The only team who have been on the Formula One grid consistently since the sports inception is Ferrari. The Maranello based team are the most successful outfit in Formula One history with Enzo Ferrari, the founder of the company at the helm of the team from 1950 right up until his death in 1988.

The Prancing Horse made their Formula One debut at the 1950 Monaco Grand Prix with Luigi Villoresi and Alberto Ascari. In 1950, two of motor racing’s centre pieces were part of the Formula One calendar with the Monaco Grand Prix and the Indianapolis 500 at the Indianapolis Motorsport Speedway taking place one after the other.

The Indianapolis 500 is now part of the IndyCar Series in America and this year the race takes place on the same weekend as the Monaco Grand Prix.

In 1950, the Formula One season was primarily European based with six of the seven Grand Prix were held in Europe with just the Indianapolis 500 outside of Europe, how times have changed. In 2015, the Formula One calendar has swelled to 19 Grand Prix worldwide with just eight races in Europe. 


© Ben Johnston 2015

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