|Date 30 August 1981||Course length 4.252 km (2.642 mi)|
|Official name XXVII Grote Prijs van Nederland|
Location Circuit Zandvoort, Zandvoort, Netherlands
Course Permanent racing facility
Distance 72 laps, 306.144 km (190.229 mi)
The 1981 Dutch Grand Prix was a Formula One motor race held at Circuit Zandvoort on 30 August 1981. The race was won by Alain Prost, who led the race for all but one of the 72 laps, in his 25th career start. The race also marked Fittipaldi's return to the F1 circus, having sat out the previous race; although neither Fittipaldi managed to qualify.
At the start, Prost led the field into Tarzan, with teammate René Arnoux following closely behind. Further back in the midfield, Gilles Villeneuve crashed into the back of Bruno Giacomelli's Alfa Romeo, vaulting over the Alfa before spinning out of the race.
As the field wound toward the second corner, Mario Andretti and Carlos Reutemann collided, leaving Andretti's car with a broken nose. Before the end of the first lap, another incident occurred when Patrick Tambay and Didier Pironi came together. It resulted in instant retirement for Tambay, whilst the second Ferrari carried on for three more laps before also pulling out of the race.
At the front of the field, Arnoux was unable to keep up with the pace and dropped four places, behind Alan Jones, Nelson Piquet, Jacques Laffite and Reutemann. With Arnoux out of the way, Jones hunted down Prost and challenged for the lead until his tires wore out and Jones had to slow down. Reutemann and Laffite, in the meantime, battled fiercely for fourth, ending with both cars crashing out of the race on the 18th lap.
Toward the end of the race, a slowing Jones was overtaken by Piquet. This would prove to be crucial in the World Championship standings, for if Jones had kept second, Piquet would have missed out on the title at the final race of the season.