Samiksha Jaiswal (Editor)

1966 French Grand Prix

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Date  3 July 1966
Course  Temporary road course
Location  Reims, France
Course length  8.348 km (5.187 mi)
1966 French Grand Prix
Official name  XXII Grand Prix de l'ACF
Distance  48 laps, 400.694 km (248.980 mi)

The 1966 French Grand Prix was a Formula One motor race held at Reims on 3 July 1966. It was the '60th Anniversary race' of Grand Prix racing, which had started with the GP of France in 1906. It was the third round of the 1966 World Championship. It was also the 16th and last time the French Grand Prix had been held on variations of French highways near Reims after a three-year absence from the region. The race was held over 48 laps of the eight kilometre circuit for a race distance of 400 kilometres.


The race was won by the 1959 and 1960 world champion, Australian driver Jack Brabham driving his Brabham BT19. It was Brabham's eighth Grand Prix victory, his first since the 1960 Portuguese Grand Prix, six years earlier. It was his first win since establishing his own team, Brabham Racing Organisation and the first win for the Australian developed Repco V8 engine. He became the first driver to win a World Championship grand prix in a car bearing his own name. Brabham took a nine-second victory over British driver Mike Parkes driving a Ferrari 312. New Zealand driver Denny Hulme backed up team leader Brabham with third place in his Brabham BT20.

Brabham now led the championship on 12 points, two ahead of Ferrari driver Lorenzo Bandini and three ahead of BRM's Jackie Stewart and Ferrari's John Surtees. The win was the first of four consecutive victories for Brabham as he began his march towards his third World Championship.

Race summary

Jim Clark was a non-starter, recovering from an accident after he was hit in the eye by a bird during practice. Qualifying was firmly in the hands of Ferrari and especially Lorenzo Bandini with a pole set at 2:07.8 in his 3-litre 312/66, averaging 146.112 mph (233.780 km/h). After the start, Bandini duly led, with Jack Brabham in what would later be nicknamed his 'Old Nail' BT19 – which had a bit less straightline speed – following in his slipstream for a while. Mike Parkes, who had taken over at Ferrari from John Surtees acquitted himself well, duelling with Graham Hill for third place, becoming second when Hill's camshaft broke. When the Italian had to retire due to a broken throttle linkage, Brabham took first place at the finish – his first win since the 1960 Portuguese Grand Prix and the first driver to win a championship Grand Prix in his own car. It was also the last race ever at Reims-Gueux, the original venue of the Formula One French Grand Prix.

1950 World Champion Nino Farina died in a car accident while on his way to spectate this race.

Championship standings after the race

  • Notes: Only the top five positions are included for both sets of standings.
  • References

    1966 French Grand Prix Wikipedia

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