|Dates 14 May 1961 – 8 Oct 1961|
|Similar 1963 Formula One seas, 1960 Formula One seas, 1958 Formula One seas, 1965 Formula One seas, 1966 Formula One seas|
The 1961 Formula One season was the 12th season of FIA Formula One motor racing. It featured the 1961 World Championship of Drivers and the 1961 International Cup for F1 Manufacturers, which were contested concurrently from 14 May to 8 October over an eight race series. The season also included numerous non-championship races for Formula One cars.
- Season summary
- Season review
- Teams and drivers
- 1961 World Championship of Drivers – final standings
- 1961 International Cup for F1 Manufacturers – final standings
- Non Championship races review
Phil Hill of Ferrari won his only Drivers' Championship after his teammate and rival Wolfgang von Trips was killed at the Italian Grand Prix, the penultimate race of the season. Ferrari won its first F1 manufacturers' title.
The first year of the 1.5-litre formula was dominated by a well-prepared Ferrari team. Only Stirling Moss, in an outdated Lotus, was able to beat the Ferraris on two tracks where his skills offset the Ferrari power advantage. Giancarlo Baghetti in a privately entered Ferrari won the French Grand Prix on his championship debut, the only driver to have done so other than Nino Farina, winner of the first F1 World Championship race. Baghetti had also won his only two previous Formula One races, the non-championship events at Syracuse and Naples, but the French race was his only win in the World Championship. The contest for the championship between Ferrari's leading drivers, Phil Hill and Wolfgang von Trips, ended in tragedy when von Trips collided with Jim Clark at Monza, killing the Ferrari driver and 14 spectators. Hill went on to win the championship, the first American to do so. With the change of formula and the introduction of the United States Grand Prix, the Indianapolis 500 was dropped from the championship.
The number of points awarded to a race winner was increased to nine for the World Championship of Drivers.
Besides von Trips, two other drivers died during this season: Briton Shane Summers during the non-championship Silver City Trophy event at Brands Hatch, and Italian Giulio Cabianca during a test at the Modena Autodrome.
The following eight races counted towards the World Championship of Drivers and the International Cup for F1 Manufacturers.
The Moroccan Grand Prix, originally supposed to be run on 29 October as the last race of the year, was cancelled for the third year in a row for monetary reasons.
Teams and drivers
The following teams and drivers competed in the 1961 FIA World Championship.
1961 World Championship of Drivers – final standings
Points were awarded on a 9–6–4–3–2–1 basis to the first six finishers at each race. However, only the best five results from the eight races were retained.
1961 International Cup for F1 Manufacturers – final standings
Points were awarded on an 8–6–4–3–2–1 basis to the first six finishers at each race. However, a manufacturer only received points for its highest placed car and only the best five results from the eight races were retained.
Non-Championship races review
Other Formula One races also held in 1961, which did not count towards the World Championship.