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1914 French Grand Prix

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Covid-19
Date  4 July 1914
Course  Public roads
Location  Lyon, France
Course length  37.629 km (23.380 mi)
1914 French Grand Prix
Official name  Grand Prix de l'Automobile Club de France
Distance  20 laps, 752.58 km (467.600 mi)

The 1914 French Grand Prix was a Grand Prix motor race held at Lyon on 4 July 1914.

The Race

The restriction on Grand Prix cars for 1914 included an 1,100 kg (2,425 lb) maximum weight and a 4500cc maximum engine capacity.

Christian Lautenschlager won at an average speed of 65.665 mph (105.677 km/h). The fastest lap was set by Max Sailer, at an average speed of 69.780 mph (112.325 km/h).

The Grand Prix was a contest between the French Peugeots and the German Mercedes. This was the last Grand Prix before the First World War, and took place less than a week after the assassination of Archduke Franz Ferdinand. An estimated crowd of over 300,000 watched thirty-seven cars start in pairs with a thirty-second gap between each pair. Sailer led by 18 seconds at the end of the first lap, and by lap five had built a lead of almost three minutes. Sailer retired with a blown engine on lap six. Georges Boillot took over the lead and retained it for the next twelve laps. At one point he led by over four minutes.

The Mercedes drivers each made one stop during the race for new Continental tyres, regardless of the tyre wear. This contrasted with the poor wear of the Dunlop tyres used by Peugeot and Boillot's eight stops for tyres. Boillot's many stops allowed Lautenschlager to pass Boillot on lap 18. By the end of that lap, Lautenschlager had opened up a lead of over 30 seconds. Boillot dropped out during the final lap.

Ferenc Szisz, the winner of the first French Grand Prix in 1906, had to retire from the race through injury. On the 11th lap Szisz was forced to stop to change a wheel. During the wheel change, he was hit by another car and suffered a broken arm. His mechanic was also injured. This was the last Grand Prix before World War I started, and racing did not resume until 1919.

References

1914 French Grand Prix Wikipedia


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