Girish Mahajan

1975 South African Grand Prix

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Date  1 March 1975
Course length  4.104 km (2.550 mi)
1975 South African Grand Prix
Official name  XXI South African Grand Prix
Location  Kyalami Gauteng, South Africa
Course  Permanent racing facility
Distance  78 laps, 320.112 km (198.908 mi)

The 1975 South African Grand Prix was a Formula One motor race held at Kyalami on 1 March 1975. It was the 21st South African Grand Prix since the first Grand Prix was held in 1934 and the ninth to be held at Kyalami just outside Johannesburg. It was held over 78 laps of the four kilometre circuit for a race distance of 320 kilometres.

Contents

Jody Scheckter became the first South African driver to win the race. Driving a Tyrrell 007, he took over the lead of the race from Carlos Pace on lap three and took a three-second win over the Brabham BT44B of Carlos Reutemann. Scheckter's Tyrrell team mate Patrick Depailler finished third.

Race summary

Ferrari had used the free month of February profitably, producing the new 312T model with a new transverse gearbox. There was also a new face in the persona of female Italian racer Lella Lombardi.

In practice, Graham Hill's car spun on oil dropped from Ronnie Peterson's car and crashed, destroying his car. He opted to sit out the race. Once the debris had been cleared and holes in the catch fencing mended, there was a second accident as Niki Lauda spun on engine oil, hitting the wall at 120 mph. With further violent accidents to Jody Scheckter and Guy Tunmer, the drivers deemed the circuit not safe and refused to continue until fencing defects were remedied and the track improved, further helped by the support of mechanics who insisted no more practice be carried out.

When the racing got under way, Carlos Pace led from pole in a Brabham 1–2 but was soon passed by Jody Scheckter and Carlos Reutemann after experiencing braking problems, and Patrick Depailler soon climbed to third. James Hunt retired with a broken throttle linkage, Vittorio Brambilla with oil cooler problems and Ian Scheckter crashed. Emerson Fittipaldi was challenging Depailler for 4th place when he suffered a cracked plug lead. Jody Scheckter held on from Reutemann for his only home win.

Championship standings after the race

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

    1975 South African Grand Prix Wikipedia


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