The 2021 British Grand Prix will witness a singular second in System 1 historical past, with the debut on Saturday of F1 Dash, a pit stop-less 100km romp across the iconic Silverstone circuit, with the drivers’ ending positions dictating the grid for Sunday’s British Grand Prix. Sadly, nonetheless, F1 Dash’s arrival got here too late for these seven legends of F1, laborious chargers who we reckon would have cherished the flat-out format…
1. Gilles Villeneuve
Assume flat-out F1 racing and it doesn’t take lengthy earlier than you image Gilles Villeneuve, head cocked to at least one aspect, pulling these obscene shapes as he wrung ridiculous performances out of his numerous Ferraris. Generally with lower than 4 wheels on the automotive.
Villeneuve discovered his racecraft in short-format oval snowmobile racing in his native Canada – and boy did it present when he received to System 1, with Villeneuve well-known for going as laborious and quick as doable, wherever doable, the extra sideways the higher.
“I’ll drive flat-out on a regular basis,” Villeneuve as soon as mentioned. “I really like racing.” Yep, the French-Canadian would have had a whale of a time in F1 Dash – though somebody might have wanted to remind him that he’d need to race the automotive the subsequent day too…
Gilles Villeneuve: Canadian hero, racing icon
2. Keke Rosberg
Keke Rosberg would have particularly cherished F1 Dash’s debut at Silverstone, provided that the moustachioed Finn has gone down in legend for setting what was, on the time, the quickest ever System 1 lap across the previous airbase.
That was in qualifying for the 1985 British Grand Prix, the place Rosberg lapped his Williams FW10 across the monitor in simply 65.591s, at an obscene common velocity of 160.007mph. “He appeared identical to he was low-flying,” remembered Silverstone announcer Keith Douglas.
“The automotive appeared like an airplane, twitching because it cornered – fairly unimaginable. It was nearly as if the automotive was off the bottom. It lives in my reminiscence as some of the excellent sights I’ve seen but.”
Rosberg’s no-nonsense, aggressive and acrobatic strategy to racing would have been a fantastic match for F1 Dash, we reckon.
USA Traditional Moments – Villeneuve vs Rosberg
3. Nigel Mansell
In the meantime, if we’re speaking about affinity with Silverstone, look no additional than Rosberg’s 1985 staff mate at Williams, Nigel Mansell.
‘Our Nige’, as his British followers dubbed him, scored considered one of his most memorable wins with a relentless cost by way of the sphere on the 1987 British Grand Prix, constantly steamrolling the lap file earlier than promoting staff mate Nelson Piquet F1’s most well-known dummy at Stowe and passing for the lead and win.
Mansell was considered one of F1’s most well-known hustlers of a automotive, and any variety of these astounding moments of Mansell Magic – the cross across the exterior of Gerhard Berger within the 1990 Mexican Grand Prix, say, or utilizing Stefan Johansson’s Onyx to field in Ayrton Senna on the 1989 Hungarian Grand Prix – would simply qualify him for F1 Dash glory.
High 10: Moments of Nigel Mansell Brilliance
4. Juan Pablo Montoya
It took 17 years for Keke Rosberg’s quickest F1 lap file at Silverstone to be overwhelmed – and Juan Pablo Montoya was the driving force who did it, lapping Monza in 2002 at a median velocity of 162.9mph.
However Montoya was additionally considered one of System 1’s most fearless and most uncompromising racers, the kind of driver who would fancy himself going toe-to-toe with any driver, on any day – together with his on-the-edge battles with the good Michael Schumacher specifically having enshrined him in F1 folklore.
100 kilometres of Silverstone is equal to simply 17 laps of the monitor – and we reckon that these 17 laps would have been like a pink rag to this charging Columbian bull. Simply take a look at his 10 moments of brilliance beneath to see what we imply…
High 10: Moments of Juan Pablo Montoya brilliance
5. Jean Alesi
Jean Alesi was famously lambasted on the satirical French puppet present Les Guignols for at all times desirous to go all over the place ‘a fond, a fond, a fond’ – ‘flat-out, flat-out, flat-out’.
The depiction might have gotten up Alesi’s nostril – however a little bit of ‘a fond, a fond, a fond’ could be simply the ticket for Alesi to triumph in F1 Dash.
The Frenchman continues to be much-loved by F1 followers at present for his hard-charging type behind the wheel (his racing idol was Gilles Villeneuve, so ‘nuff mentioned) with drives like his staggering restoration from P15 to P2 on the moist 1995 Japanese Grand Prix (earlier than retiring with transmission issues, having at instances lapped 5 seconds per lap sooner than his rivals) typical of the person.
6. Ayrton Senna
The 1988 Japanese Grand Prix. Together with his first world title on the road, polesitter Ayrton Senna does the unthinkable – he stalls on the grid. What adopted was some of the beautiful restoration drives ever witnessed in System 1.
Fourteenth by the point he lastly received going, he’d handed eight vehicles by the top of the primary lap, whereas he was later capable of cross McLaren staff mate Alain Prost for the lead and safe that first championship.
All that’s to say nothing of his Donington ’93 wunder-lap, nor the cost to P2 within the pouring rain at Monaco in 1984. Fairly merely, Senna would have thrived in F1 Dash.
Senna’s unimaginable opening lap at Europe 1993
7. Niki Lauda
Shocked to see Niki Lauda – a person who, due to his ‘enjoying the numbers recreation’ strategy to F1, was mockingly known as ‘Lauda the Laptop’ – on the record? Allow us to clarify.
Lauda’s closing World Championship got here in 1984, a 12 months that noticed him paired at McLaren alongside Alain Prost. Throughout the season, the common qualifying hole between the 2 drivers was a full 1.2s in Prost’s favour. However as soon as the Lauda pc had processed that he wasn’t going to beat the Frenchman in qualifying, the Austrian determined to focus all his vitality on race day.
South Africa – Lauda begins P8 and wins. France – Lauda begins ninth and wins. Amazingly, with out beginning any larger than third all 12 months, Lauda was nonetheless capable of declare the title by half some extent from Prost, due to his means to carve by way of the sphere on Sundays.
The proper skillset, then, for F1 Dash.
F1 Dash will debut on Saturday July 17 of the British Grand Prix weekend, kicking off at 1630 native time. Click on here to seek out out extra.