1955 Formula One season
The 1955 Formula One season was the ninth season of FIA Formula One motor racing. It featured the 1955 World Championship of Drivers, which commenced on 16 January 1955 and ended on September 11 after seven races. Juan Manuel Fangio won his second consecutive World Championship title in a season, curtailed by tragedies; the season included a number of non-championship Formula One races. Mercedes drivers again dominated the championship, with Fangio taking four races, his new teammate Stirling Moss the British Grand Prix. Ferrari won at Monaco after all of the Mercedes cars broke down and Lancia driver Alberto Ascari crashed into the harbour. Although Ascari was unscathed, the double World Champion crashed fatally at Monza while testing sportscars four days later; the disaster at the 24 Hours of Le Mans on 11 June which killed Pierre Levegh and over 80 spectators led to the cancellations of the French, German and Swiss Grands Prix. The French round, supposed to be held at Reims between the Dutch and British rounds, was cancelled first.
The German event at the Nürburgring, the Swiss round at Bremgarten and the Spanish round at Pedralbes followed suit. Pedralbes and Bremgarten were abandoned and never used again for racing; these cancellations handed the Drivers' title to Fangio after he finished 2nd to Moss at the British Grand Prix. 1955 would be the final season for Mercedes Benz as a constructor until the team's revival in 2010. It would mark the final win for Mercedes until the 2012 Chinese Grand Prix. Aside from Ascari's death this year, Italian Mario Alborghetti died at the non-championship Pau Grand Prix in France driving a Maserati. ^A The Indianapolis 500 was AAA-sanctioned and not run to Formula One regulations. It counted towards the 1955 AAA Championship; the following teams and drivers competed in the 1955 FIA World Championship. Italics indicate fastest lap Bold indicates pole position † = Car driven by more than one driver Championship points were awarded on an 8–6–4–3–2 basis for the first five places at each race.
One point was awarded for fastest race lap at each race. Only the best 5 results counted towards the Championship. Numbers without parentheses are Championship points. Other Formula One races held in 1955, which did not count towards the World Championship
Mercedes-Benz in Formula One
Mercedes-Benz, through its subsidiary Mercedes-Benz Grand Prix Limited, is involved in Formula One as a constructor under the name of Mercedes-AMG Petronas Motorsport. The team is based in Brackley, United Kingdom, using a German licence. Mercedes-Benz competed in the pre-war European Championship winning three titles and debuted in Formula One in 1954, running a team for two years; the team is known by their nickname, the "Silver Arrows". After winning their first race at the 1954 French Grand Prix, driver Juan Manuel Fangio won another three Grands Prix to win the 1954 Drivers' Championship and repeated this success in 1955. Despite winning two Drivers' Championships, Mercedes-Benz withdrew from motor racing in response to the 1955 Le Mans disaster and did not return to Formula One until rejoining as an engine supplier in association with Ilmor, a British independent high-performance autosport engineering company acquired by Mercedes, in 1994. In addition to its factory team, Mercedes supplies engines to Racing Point and Williams.
The manufacturer has collected more than 160 wins as engine supplier and is ranked fourth in Formula One history. Six Constructors' and ten Drivers' Championships have been won with Mercedes-Benz engines. Mercedes has become one of the most successful teams in recent Formula One history, having achieved consecutive Drivers' and Constructors' Championships from 2014 to 2018. In 2014, Mercedes managed 11 one-two finishes beating McLaren's 1988 record of 10; the record was extended the following year with 12 one-two finishes. Mercedes collected 16 victories in 2014 and 2015 apiece breaking McLaren and Ferrari's record of 15. In 2016, they extended this record with 19 wins. Mercedes-Benz competed in Grand Prix motor racing in the 1930s, when the Silver Arrows dominated the races alongside rivals Auto Union. Both teams were funded by the Nazi regime, winning all European Grand Prix Championships after 1934, of which Rudolf Caracciola won three for Mercedes-Benz. In 1954, Mercedes-Benz returned to what was now known as Formula One under the leadership of Alfred Neubauer, using the technologically advanced Mercedes-Benz W196.
The car was run in both the conventional open-wheeled configuration and a streamlined form, which featured covered wheels and wider bodywork. Juan Manuel Fangio, the 1951 champion, transferred mid-season from Maserati to Mercedes-Benz for their debut at the French Grand Prix on 4 July 1954; the team had immediate success and recorded a 1–2 victory with Fangio and Karl Kling, as well as the fastest lap. Fangio went on winning the championship; the success continued into the 1955 season, with Mercedes-Benz developing the W196 throughout the year. Mercedes-Benz again dominated the season, with Fangio taking four races, his new teammate Stirling Moss winning the British Grand Prix. Fangio and Moss finished second in that year's championship; the 1955 disaster at the 24 Hours of Le Mans on 11 June, which killed Mercedes-Benz sportscar driver Pierre Levegh and more than 80 spectators led to the cancellations of the French, German and Swiss Grands Prix. At the end of the season, the team withdrew including Formula One.
The Mercedes name returned to Formula One for the 2010 season after their owners, Daimler AG, bought a minority stake in the Brawn GP team with Aabar Investments purchasing 30% on 16 November 2009, with Ross Brawn continuing his duties as team principal and the team retaining its base and workforce in Brackley, close to the Mercedes-Benz Formula One engine plant in Brixworth. Following the purchase of the team, as well as a sponsorship deal with Petronas, the team was rebranded as Mercedes GP Petronas Formula One Team; the team has a complex history. BAR, who had formed a partnership with Honda became Honda Racing F1 Team in 2006 when BAT withdrew from the sport, it again changed hands in 2008, when Honda withdrew, was purchased by the team's management, naming it Brawn GP after team principal Ross Brawn. Brawn used engines from Mercedes-Benz High Performance Engines, despite running on a low budget, Jenson Button won six of the first seven races and the 2009 Drivers' Championship, while Brawn won the Constructors' Championship.
It was the first time in the sport's sixty-year history that a team won both titles in its maiden season. The team hired German drivers Nico Rosberg, seven-time world champion Michael Schumacher, who returned to Formula One after a three-year absence, Nick Heidfeld as the test and reserve driver. Of Brawn's 2009 drivers, Jenson Button signed for McLaren, whilst Rubens Barrichello moved to Rosberg's former seat with Williams team for 2010. With the acquisition of Brawn, the team ended its involvement with McLaren, parent company Daimler AG sold back the 40% shareholding in the McLaren Group, while continuing to supply engines to the team; the team's performance during 2010 was not so competitive as under Brawn, with the team behind the leading three teams of Ferrari, McLaren, Red Bull. Their best results came from Rosberg finishing on the podium three times, scoring third places at Sepang and Silverstone. Rosberg finished in seventh place, but Schumacher had a disappointing return, being beaten by his teammate and finishing the season without a single race win, pole position, or fastest lap for the first time since his début season in 1991.
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Paul Frère was a racing driver and journalist from Belgium. He participated in eleven World Championship Formula One Grands Prix debuting on 22 June 1952 and achieving one podium finish with a total of eleven championship points, he drove in several non-Championship Formula One races. He won the 1960 24 Hours of Le Mans, driving for Ferrari with fellow Belgian teammate Olivier Gendebien. Frère was born at Le Havre in 1917, he drove with Peter Collins. After retiring from active racing in 1960, he worked as an automotive journalist based in Europe, he had numerous acquaintances amongst vehicle design engineers in Japan at Honda and Mazda and worked as a consultant to automobile manufacturers. He had the opportunity to test numerous road and racing cars as a journalist, one of the highlights being the Audi R8 which he tested and demonstrated during a break in the proceedings of the Test Day of the 2003 24 Hours of Le Mans. At the time he was 86 years old, making him the oldest racing driver to drive a then-current sportscar.
Frère, along with Piero Taruffi and Denis Jenkinson, was one of the first writers to treat motor racing as a skill that could be analyzed and taught. His 1963 book, Sports Car and Competition Driving is still a standard reference in the field, it influenced the development of competition driving schools, such as those founded by Jim Russell, Bob Bondurant and many others. Frère was an expert on Porsche cars, in particular the Porsche 911, writing the definitive book on this series, The Porsche 911 Story, he maintained a close relationship with Porsche over the years. He was considered an advisor and expert on the 911 by Alois Ruf, a respected Porsche tuner and manufacturer as head of Ruf Automobile, who consulted Frère during the development of Ruf's RGT8 Model. In 1967, Frère had a cameo appearance in The Departure, a Belgian film about a car-obsessed young man trying to get possession of a Porsche 911 for a race. Only weeks before his 90th birthday in January 2007, he was badly injured in an accident near the Nürburgring and was hospitalized for 14 days in intensive care.
Frère died on 23 February 2008 in Saint-Paul-de-Vence. Turn 15 at the Circuit de Spa-Francorchamps the first part of the Stavelot corner, has been renamed in his honour. Frère was a successful rower winning three Belgian championships. In 1946 and 1947 he won the national title in a coxless four. In 1946, he won it with the coxed four
Germany the Federal Republic of Germany, is a country in Central and Western Europe, lying between the Baltic and North Seas to the north, the Alps to the south. It borders Denmark to the north and the Czech Republic to the east and Switzerland to the south, France to the southwest, Luxembourg and the Netherlands to the west. Germany includes 16 constituent states, covers an area of 357,386 square kilometres, has a temperate seasonal climate. With 83 million inhabitants, it is the second most populous state of Europe after Russia, the most populous state lying in Europe, as well as the most populous member state of the European Union. Germany is a decentralized country, its capital and largest metropolis is Berlin, while Frankfurt serves as its financial capital and has the country's busiest airport. Germany's largest urban area is the Ruhr, with its main centres of Essen; the country's other major cities are Hamburg, Cologne, Stuttgart, Düsseldorf, Dresden, Bremen and Nuremberg. Various Germanic tribes have inhabited the northern parts of modern Germany since classical antiquity.
A region named Germania was documented before 100 AD. During the Migration Period, the Germanic tribes expanded southward. Beginning in the 10th century, German territories formed a central part of the Holy Roman Empire. During the 16th century, northern German regions became the centre of the Protestant Reformation. After the collapse of the Holy Roman Empire, the German Confederation was formed in 1815; the German revolutions of 1848–49 resulted in the Frankfurt Parliament establishing major democratic rights. In 1871, Germany became a nation state when most of the German states unified into the Prussian-dominated German Empire. After World War I and the revolution of 1918–19, the Empire was replaced by the parliamentary Weimar Republic; the Nazi seizure of power in 1933 led to the establishment of a dictatorship, the annexation of Austria, World War II, the Holocaust. After the end of World War II in Europe and a period of Allied occupation, Austria was re-established as an independent country and two new German states were founded: West Germany, formed from the American and French occupation zones, East Germany, formed from the Soviet occupation zone.
Following the Revolutions of 1989 that ended communist rule in Central and Eastern Europe, the country was reunified on 3 October 1990. Today, the sovereign state of Germany is a federal parliamentary republic led by a chancellor, it is a great power with a strong economy. As a global leader in several industrial and technological sectors, it is both the world's third-largest exporter and importer of goods; as a developed country with a high standard of living, it upholds a social security and universal health care system, environmental protection, a tuition-free university education. The Federal Republic of Germany was a founding member of the European Economic Community in 1957 and the European Union in 1993, it is part of the Schengen Area and became a co-founder of the Eurozone in 1999. Germany is a member of the United Nations, NATO, the G7, the G20, the OECD. Known for its rich cultural history, Germany has been continuously the home of influential and successful artists, musicians, film people, entrepreneurs, scientists and inventors.
Germany has a large number of World Heritage sites and is among the top tourism destinations in the world. The English word Germany derives from the Latin Germania, which came into use after Julius Caesar adopted it for the peoples east of the Rhine; the German term Deutschland diutisciu land is derived from deutsch, descended from Old High German diutisc "popular" used to distinguish the language of the common people from Latin and its Romance descendants. This in turn descends from Proto-Germanic *þiudiskaz "popular", derived from *þeudō, descended from Proto-Indo-European *tewtéh₂- "people", from which the word Teutons originates; the discovery of the Mauer 1 mandible shows that ancient humans were present in Germany at least 600,000 years ago. The oldest complete hunting weapons found anywhere in the world were discovered in a coal mine in Schöningen between 1994 and 1998 where eight 380,000-year-old wooden javelins of 1.82 to 2.25 m length were unearthed. The Neander Valley was the location where the first non-modern human fossil was discovered.
The Neanderthal 1 fossils are known to be 40,000 years old. Evidence of modern humans dated, has been found in caves in the Swabian Jura near Ulm; the finds included 42,000-year-old bird bone and mammoth ivory flutes which are the oldest musical instruments found, the 40,000-year-old Ice Age Lion Man, the oldest uncontested figurative art discovered, the 35,000-year-old Venus of Hohle Fels, the oldest uncontested human figurative art discovered. The Nebra sky disk is a bronze artefact created during the European Bronze Age attributed to a site near Nebra, Saxony-Anhalt, it is part of UNESCO's Memory of the World Programme. The Germanic tribes are thought to date from the Pre-Roman Iron Age. From southern Scandinavia and north Germany, they expanded south and west from the 1st century BC, coming into contact with the Celtic tribes of Gaul as well
Vanwall was a motor racing team and racing car constructor, active in Formula One during the 1950s. Founded by Tony Vandervell, the Vanwall name was derived by combining the name of the team owner with that of his Thinwall bearings produced at the Vandervell Products factory at Acton, London. Entering modified Ferraris in non-championship races, Vanwall constructed their first cars to race in the 1954 Formula One season; the team achieved their first race win in the 1957 British Grand Prix, with Stirling Moss and Tony Brooks sharing a VW 5, earning the team the distinction of constructing the first British-built car to win a World Championship race. Vanwall won the inaugural Constructors' Championship in Formula One in 1958, in the process allowing Moss and Brooks to finish second and third in the Drivers' Championship standings, winning three races each. Vandervell's failing health meant. Tony Vandervell was one of the original backers of British Racing Motors. In the early 1950s he entered a series of modified Ferraris in Formula Libre races under the name "Thinwall Special".
The first actual Vanwalls were known as Vanwall Specials and were built for the new Formula 1 regulations in 1954 at Cox Green, Maidenhead. The chassis was built by the Cooper Car Company; the 2.0 L engine was designed by Norton engineer Leo Kuzmicki, was four Manx single-cylinder 498 cc engines with a common waterjacket, cylinder head and valvetrain, with induction by four AMAL motorcycle carburetors. This combination was fitted to a Rolls-Royce "B"-engine crankcase, copied in aluminium. Designed for Formula Two, supplanted before it appeared, the car debuted in a Grande Epreuve in the 1954 British Grand Prix. Against 2½ litre Formula One competition, it was at a decided disadvantage; the Goodyear disc brakes proved successful, but the front suspension and fuel and cooling systems were troublesome. Development continued with a switch to Bosch fuel injection, while retaining the AMAL throttle bodies. Vanwall increased the capacity of the engines, first to 2,237 cc for Peter Collins at Monaco 1955, a full 2,489 cc. Vanwalls ran for a season in F1 without much in the way of success.
At the end of the 1955 season, it was plain that the engine was sound, but that the Ferrari-derived chassis needed improvement. It was suggested to Vandervell that he should hire the services of a young up-and-coming designer to improve their cars; the designer was Colin Chapman. The new 1956 cars designed by Chapman were of space frame construction, the De Dion rear axle's unsprung weight reduced and front torsion bar added. Furthermore, a fifth gear and Porsche synchromesh were added to the transmission; the driving seat was placed above this and could not be reduced below 13 in above the road, making the height problematic, the handling was suspect despite Chapman's best efforts. The solution which today is obvious, mounting the engine behind the driver, would take two more years to be accepted. Costin made the most of it, produced a car "much faster in a straight line than any of its rivals"; the new car showed early promise in 1956 by winning the non-championship F1 race at Silverstone against strong opposition.
It set the lap record at Syracuse Stirling Moss drove the car to victory in what was his only drive for Vanwall that year, as he was still contracted to drive for Maserati in F1. Talented drivers Harry Schell and Maurice Trintignant were the full-timers for the season. However, neither of them had much success. With the car developing and becoming more competitive, Moss decided to drive for the team in 1957, he was joined by Tony Brooks and Stuart Lewis-Evans. As the 1957 season unfolded, the cars became more reliable. Moss and Brooks duly shared Vanwall's first Grand Prix victory in Britain at Aintree, Moss went on to win both the Italian and Pescara Grands Prix. At the end of 1957, alcohol fuels were banned and replaced by a compulsory 130-octane aviation gasoline; this caused problems for Vanwall and BRM with their large bore engines that required methanol for engine cooling. As a result, the Vanwall's power dropped from 290 bhp at 7,500 rpm to 278 bhp on the test bed. During the race, where revs were reduced, only 255–262 bhp at 7,200–7,400 rpm was available.
This put them at a disadvantage to the new Dino Ferrari V6 cars with a claimed 290 PS at 8,300 rpm. The Vanwall's superior road holding, streamlining, 5-speed gearbox, disc brakes helped to offset this. All three drivers stayed with the team in 1958, Moss and Brooks each won three champ
France the French Republic, is a country whose territory consists of metropolitan France in Western Europe and several overseas regions and territories. The metropolitan area of France extends from the Mediterranean Sea to the English Channel and the North Sea, from the Rhine to the Atlantic Ocean, it is bordered by Belgium and Germany to the northeast and Italy to the east, Andorra and Spain to the south. The overseas territories include French Guiana in South America and several islands in the Atlantic and Indian oceans; the country's 18 integral regions span a combined area of 643,801 square kilometres and a total population of 67.3 million. France, a sovereign state, is a unitary semi-presidential republic with its capital in Paris, the country's largest city and main cultural and commercial centre. Other major urban areas include Lyon, Toulouse, Bordeaux and Nice. During the Iron Age, what is now metropolitan France was inhabited by a Celtic people. Rome annexed the area in 51 BC, holding it until the arrival of Germanic Franks in 476, who formed the Kingdom of Francia.
The Treaty of Verdun of 843 partitioned Francia into Middle Francia and West Francia. West Francia which became the Kingdom of France in 987 emerged as a major European power in the Late Middle Ages following its victory in the Hundred Years' War. During the Renaissance, French culture flourished and a global colonial empire was established, which by the 20th century would become the second largest in the world; the 16th century was dominated by religious civil wars between Protestants. France became Europe's dominant cultural and military power in the 17th century under Louis XIV. In the late 18th century, the French Revolution overthrew the absolute monarchy, established one of modern history's earliest republics, saw the drafting of the Declaration of the Rights of Man and of the Citizen, which expresses the nation's ideals to this day. In the 19th century, Napoleon established the First French Empire, his subsequent Napoleonic Wars shaped the course of continental Europe. Following the collapse of the Empire, France endured a tumultuous succession of governments culminating with the establishment of the French Third Republic in 1870.
France was a major participant in World War I, from which it emerged victorious, was one of the Allies in World War II, but came under occupation by the Axis powers in 1940. Following liberation in 1944, a Fourth Republic was established and dissolved in the course of the Algerian War; the Fifth Republic, led by Charles de Gaulle, remains today. Algeria and nearly all the other colonies became independent in the 1960s and retained close economic and military connections with France. France has long been a global centre of art and philosophy, it hosts the world's fourth-largest number of UNESCO World Heritage Sites and is the leading tourist destination, receiving around 83 million foreign visitors annually. France is a developed country with the world's sixth-largest economy by nominal GDP, tenth-largest by purchasing power parity. In terms of aggregate household wealth, it ranks fourth in the world. France performs well in international rankings of education, health care, life expectancy, human development.
France is considered a great power in global affairs, being one of the five permanent members of the United Nations Security Council with the power to veto and an official nuclear-weapon state. It is a leading member state of the European Union and the Eurozone, a member of the Group of 7, North Atlantic Treaty Organization, Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development, the World Trade Organization, La Francophonie. Applied to the whole Frankish Empire, the name "France" comes from the Latin "Francia", or "country of the Franks". Modern France is still named today "Francia" in Italian and Spanish, "Frankreich" in German and "Frankrijk" in Dutch, all of which have more or less the same historical meaning. There are various theories as to the origin of the name Frank. Following the precedents of Edward Gibbon and Jacob Grimm, the name of the Franks has been linked with the word frank in English, it has been suggested that the meaning of "free" was adopted because, after the conquest of Gaul, only Franks were free of taxation.
Another theory is that it is derived from the Proto-Germanic word frankon, which translates as javelin or lance as the throwing axe of the Franks was known as a francisca. However, it has been determined that these weapons were named because of their use by the Franks, not the other way around; the oldest traces of human life in what is now France date from 1.8 million years ago. Over the ensuing millennia, Humans were confronted by a harsh and variable climate, marked by several glacial eras. Early hominids led a nomadic hunter-gatherer life. France has a large number of decorated caves from the upper Palaeolithic era, including one of the most famous and best preserved, Lascaux. At the end of the last glacial period, the climate became milder. After strong demographic and agricultural development between the 4th and 3rd millennia, metallurgy appeared at the end of the 3rd millennium working gold and bronze, iron. France has numerous megalithic sites from the Neolithic period, including the exceptiona
Karl Kling was a motor racing driver and manager from Germany. He participated in 11 Formula One Grands Prix, debuting on 4 July 1954, he achieved 2 podiums, scored a total of 17 championship points. It is said, that he was born too early. Too late to be in the successful Mercedes team of the 1930s and too early to have a real chance in 1954 and 1955. Unusually, Kling found his way into motorsport via his first job as a reception clerk at Daimler-Benz in the mid-1930s, competing in hillclimb and trials events in production machinery in his spare time. During the Second World War he gained mechanical experience servicing Luftwaffe aircraft, after the cessation of hostilities he resumed his motorsport involvement in a BMW 328. Kling was instrumental in developing Mercedes' return to international competition in the early 1950s, his win in the 1952 Carrera Panamericana road race, driving the then-experimental Mercedes-Benz 300SL was a defining point in assuring the Daimler-Benz management that motorsport had a place in Mercedes' future.
Called up to the revived Mercedes Grand Prix squad in 1954 he finished less than one second behind the legendary Juan Manuel Fangio on his Formula One debut, taking second place in the 1954 French Grand Prix at the fast Reims-Gueux circuit. This promising start was not to last, with the arrival of Stirling Moss at Mercedes in 1955 Kling was demoted to third driver. However, away from the World Championship, Kling took impressive victories in both the Berlin Grand Prix and the Swedish Grand Prix, he left the Formula One team at the end of the season, to succeed Alfred Neubauer as head of Mercedes motorsport. He was in this post during their successful rallying campaigns of the 1960s taking the wheel himself. On one such occasion he drove a Mercedes-Benz 220SE to victory in the mighty 1961 Algiers-Cape Town trans-African rally, he died in 2003 at the age of 92. * Shared drive with Stirling Moss and Hans Herrmann. "DRIVERS: KARL KLING". GrandPrix.com. Retrieved 2007-04-11. "Mercedes Racing Driver Karl Kling Dies".
Automobile. Retrieved 2007-04-11. Karl Kling, G. Molter, Pursuit of Victory