ATLAS F1   Volume 6, Issue 27

  The F1 FAQ

  by Mark Alan Jones, Australia

Have a question about Formula One statistics or history? Well you're not the only one, and it's about time someone came up with the answers to Formula One's most Frequently Asked Questions. Send us your questions, to - we may not know everything, but we will sure make the effort to find out

I spoke to an Italian-Australian acquaintance for a definitive translation of Scuderia. Definitive translations are hard to come by though. Sometimes languages don't directly translate one word to another. Scuderia is one such word, and so it doesn't have a directly comparable English word. It can mean 'stable', though not as in a stall where horses are kept, but as in the group term for a collection of horses or cars. It can also mean 'chassis' when referring to motorsport. Thanks muchly to Paul Marinelli from the NRC International Formula Holden racing team for the assistance.

"I just read your response regarding why there is no car number 13. It begs the question: when was the last time a car wore number 13 in an F1 event? Thanks, J. R."

This has been discussed over at The Nostalgia Forum on AtlasF1's Bulletin Board. Twice the #13 has graced the racetracks of the world in World Championship Grands Prix. Moises Solana raced a BRM P57 at the 1963 Mexican Grand Prix for Scuderia Centro Sud. After qualifying 11th the car finished, well, was classified 11th, and last. The car had had an engine failure after completing 57 of 65 laps, but it was enough to be classified.

The other occasion was at the British Grand Prix of 1976 when Divina Galica attempted and failed to qualify in a Surtees TS16 Cosworth, which she had been running in a British Formula Libre series, which in time became the Aurora AFX Formula One series. She qualified 28th of 30 cars, however there were only 26 starters.

Thanks to Mattijs Diepraam and Marcel Schot who dug out the original material for the BB discussion.

"Why did Hillīs Williams have the number 00? Thanks, Vidar"

Another number based question. Car number 1 is always awarded to the reigning World Champion. But what happens if that driver leaves Formula One after they win the world championship? It happenned two years in a row, when Nigel Mansell, the 1992 World Championship left F1 to go to CART, and a year later, the 1993 World Champion Alain Prost retired from Formula 1 after winning the title.

Williams would normally have been awarded the numbers 1 and 2, except there was no world champion to wear the number. So rather than give number 1 to someone who hadn't earned the number 1, or renumber the whole formula one grid starting at number 2, the Williams team wore the numbers 0 and 2 in 1993 and 1994.

"I would know that if there is identical qualify timing make by different drivers, how will be the starting grid be decided? and I know that there were some examples, could you tell me about that? Simon L."

In the 1997 at the European Grand Prix in Jerez, Spain, Heinz-Harald Frentzen, Michael Schumacher and Jacques Villeneuve all recorded a lap time of 1:21.072 during qualifying. Villeneuve was awarded pole position because he recorded the lap first, Michael Schumacher second position as he was next to set the time, and Heinz-Harald Frentzen as he was the last driver to set the time.

"Hi, I am Bharath. My question is why Drivers championship is more important than the Constructor's championship for the teams? Last year even though Ferrari won the constructor championship , it was Mclaren's who were celebrating?"

Well, if my driver just won the World Drivers' Championship, I'd be celebrating too! The team were happy that their driver had won the Driver's Championship, which is what most people who watch Formula 1 are interested in. So the team are happy that their driver has won the championship that the public are interested in, not mentioning the one most of the media are interested in.

The teams do like to win the Constructors' Championship though, as it reflects better which team was the best. While Drivers' Championships are obviously important, they are won by Driver X winning the championship with the help of Chassis Y using Engine Z. With a Constructors' Championship, it's a trophy for the whole team, not just one driver.

"Why do some drivers weave during the formation lap of a race while others don't? And what are the advantages of this or not doing this? Anand"

The cars will weave back and forth in order to create friction, which help to warm the tyres for the start of the race, thus providing tyres with as much heat as possible for the start to provide better grip.

"I seem to remember Ukyo Katayama being hit by an ambulance after emerging from his car unhurt from one of his many crashes. In which race did this happen? While thinking about this I began to wonder how many other drivers have been injured at a race meeting in non-racing related accidents. Could you find out? Thanks Eytan L"

It was actually Taki Inoue who was struck by a course incident vehicle at the Hungaroring in 1995. Inoue's Arrows-Hart FA16 had developed a small engine fire which he was attempting to put out, when the incident vehicle arrived on the scene too quickly and struck poor Taki. The February 2000 issue of F1 Racing had a story on Taki and his bizarre 1995 season, which included being struck by the incident car, and having French Rally Champion Jean Ragnotti run over his car in the course car at Monaco, while the car was being towed back to the pits with Taki still in it!

Editorial Remark:

  • Some of the questions we receive have already been replied to in previous F1 FAQ columns. Therefore, before sending in a question, we suggest you have a look at the back issues, by searching the FAQ database. Not that we mind getting so much mail, just that we feel bad for those who feel they are left unanswered...

  • We receive quite a few questions from you all, and it is absolutely impossible for us to research and respond to each of you, be it here or privately. Please, don't feel discouraged if your question was not replied to; it might come up in the next column. And don't forget - you can always look for answers at the Atlas F1 Bulletin Board.

Mark Alan Jones© 2000 Kaizar.Com, Incorporated.
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