1950 Formula One season
The 1950 Formula One season was the fourth season of the FIA's Formula One motor racing. It featured the inaugural FIA World Championship of Drivers which commenced on 13 May and ended on 3 September, as well as a number of non-championship races; the championship consisted of six Grand Prix races, each held in Europe and open to Formula One cars, plus the Indianapolis 500, run to AAA National Championship regulations. Giuseppe Farina won the championship from Juan Manuel Luigi Fagioli; the inaugural World Championship of Drivers saw Alfa Romeo dominate with their supercharged 158, a well-developed pre-war design which debuted in 1938. All of the Formula One regulated races in the championship were run in Europe; the Indianapolis 500 was run to American AAA regulations, not to FIA Formula One regulations and none of the regular drivers who competed in Europe competed in the 500, vice versa. Alfa Romeo drivers dominated the championship with Italian Giuseppe "Nino" Farina edging out Argentine teammate Juan Manuel Fangio by virtue of his fourth place in Belgium.
Although the Indianapolis 500, which ran to different regulations, was included in the World Championship each year from 1950 to 1960, it attracted little European participation and, conversely few American Indianapolis drivers entered any Grands Prix. Championship points were awarded to the top five finishers in each race on 6, 4, 3, 2 basis. 1 point was awarded for the fastest lap of each race. Points for shared drives were divided between the drivers, regardless of how many laps each driver completed during the race. Only the best four results from the seven races could be retained by each driver for World Championship classification; the Alfa Romeo team dominated the British Grand Prix at the fast Silverstone circuit in England, locking out the four-car front row of the grid. With King George VI in attendance, Giuseppe Farina won the race from pole position setting the fastest lap; the podium was completed by his teammates Luigi Fagioli and Reg Parnell, while the remaining Alfa driver, Juan Manuel Fangio, was forced to retire after experiencing problems with his engine.
The final points scorers were the works Talbot-Lagos of Yves Giraud-Cabantous and Louis Rosier, both two laps behind the leaders. Scuderia Ferrari made their World Championship debut around the streets of Monaco, their leading drivers, Luigi Villoresi and Alberto Ascari had to settle for the third row of the grid, while the Alfa Romeos of Fangio and Farina again started from the front row, alongside the privateer Maserati of José Froilán González. Polesitter Fangio took a comfortable victory setting the race's fastest lap, a whole lap ahead of Ascari, with the third-placed Louis Chiron a further lap back in the works Maserati. A first-lap accident, caused by the damp track, had eliminated nine of the nineteen starters—including Farina and Fagioli—while González, who had incurred damage in the pile-up, retired on the following lap. Villoresi, although delayed by the accident, had made his way through the field to second place, but was forced to retire with an axle problem. Fangio's win brought.
The Indianapolis 500, the third round of the inaugural World Championship of Drivers held at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway in Indianapolis, Indiana in the United States was won by the Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser of Johnnie Parsons, ahead of the Deidt-Offenhausers of Bill Holland and Mauri Rose. The race was stopped after 138 of the scheduled 200 laps due to rain. Alfa Romeo's dominance continued when the World Championship returned to Europe for the Swiss Grand Prix at the tree-lined Bremgarten circuit just outside Bern. Fangio and Fagioli locked out the front row of the grid for Alfa, while the Ferraris of Villoresi and Ascari started from the second row. Fangio was the initial leader, starting from pole position, but he was passed by Farina on lap seven. Ascari and Villoresi were both able to compete with the third Alfa of Fagioli in the early stages, although both had retired by the ten-lap mark. Farina took the win and the fastest lap, finishing just ahead of Fagioli, while Rosier, in third place as a result of Fangio's retirement, took Talbot-Lago's first podium.
Farina's second win of the season put him six points clear of the consistent Fagioli, while Fangio was a further three points behind, having only scored points in one race. Alfa Romeo took their third front row lockout of the season at the Belgian Grand Prix at the fast 8.7 mile Spa-Francorchamps circuit, while the Ferrari of Villoresi shared the second row with the privateer Talbot-Lago of Raymond Sommer. The Alfas were once again untouchable at the start of the race, but when they stopped for fuel, Sommer emerged as an unlikely race leader, his lead, was short-lived and he was forced to retire when his engine blew up. Fangio took the victory, ahead of Fagioli, who again finished second. Rosier again made the podium in his Talbot-Lago, he had been able to pass the polesitter Farina when the Italian picked up transmission problems towards the end of the race. It was not all bad for Farina, however. Both Fagioli and Fangio closed the gap to Farina in the points standings—Fagioli was just four points adrift, while Fangio was a further point behind.
At Reims-Gueux, Alfa Romeo were unchallenged at the French Grand Prix at the fast Reims-Gueux circuit, due to the withdrawal of the works Ferraris of Ascari and Villoresi. The Alfas produced yet another lockout of the front row of the grid, with Fangio taking pole for the third time in six races; the powe
Auto racing is a motorsport involving the racing of automobiles for competition. Auto racing has existed since the invention of the automobile. Races of various sorts were organised, with the first recorded as early as 1867. Many of the earliest events were reliability trials, aimed at proving these new machines were a practical mode of transport, but soon became an important way for competing makers to demonstrate their machines. By the 1930s, specialist racing cars had developed. There are now each with different rules and regulations; the first prearranged match race of two self-powered road vehicles over a prescribed route occurred at 4:30 A. M. on August 30, 1867, between Ashton-under-Lyne and Old Trafford, a distance of eight miles. It was won by the carriage of Isaac Watt Boulton. Internal combustion auto racing events began soon after the construction of the first successful gasoline-fueled automobiles; the first organized contest was on April 28, 1887, by the chief editor of Paris publication Le Vélocipède, Monsieur Fossier.
It ran 2 kilometres from Neuilly Bridge to the Bois de Boulogne. On July 22, 1894, the Parisian magazine Le Petit Journal organized what is considered to be the world's first motoring competition, from Paris to Rouen. One hundred and two competitors paid a 10-franc entrance fee; the first American automobile race is held to be the Thanksgiving Day Chicago Times-Herald race of November 28, 1895. Press coverage of the event first aroused significant American interest in the automobile. With auto construction and racing dominated by France, the French automobile club ACF staged a number of major international races from or to Paris, connecting with another major city, in France or elsewhere in Europe. Brooklands, in Surrey, was the first purpose-built motor racing venue, opening in June 1907, it featured a 4.43 km concrete track with high-speed banked corners. One of the oldest existing purpose-built automobile racing circuits in the United States, still in use, is the 2.5-mile-long Indianapolis Motor Speedway in Speedway, Indiana.
It is the largest capacity sports venue of any variety worldwide, with a top capacity of some 257,000+ seated spectators. NASCAR was founded by Bill France, Sr. on February 21, 1948, with the help of several other drivers of the time. The first NASCAR "Strictly Stock" race was held on June 19, 1949, at Daytona Beach, Florida. From 1962, sports cars temporarily took a back seat to GT cars, with the FIA replacing the World Championship for Sports Cars with the International Championship for GT Manufacturers. From 1972 through 2003, NASCAR's premier series was called the Winston Cup Series, sponsored by R. J. Reynolds Tobacco Company cigarette brand Winston; the changes that resulted from RJR's involvement, as well as the reduction of the schedule from 48 to 31 races a year, established 1972 as the beginning of NASCAR's "modern era". The IMSA GT Series evolved into the American Le Mans Series, which ran its first season in 1999; the European races became the related Le Mans Series, both of which mix prototypes and GTs.
Turismo Carretera is a popular touring car racing series in Argentina, the oldest car racing series still active in the world. The first TC competition took place in 1937 with 12 races, each in a different province. Future Formula One star Juan Manuel Fangio won the 1940 and 1941 editions of the TC, it was during this time that the series' Chevrolet-Ford rivalry began, with Ford acquiring most of its historical victories. The two most popular varieties of open wheel road racing are the IndyCar Series. Formula One is a European-based series that runs only street race tracks; these cars are based around technology and their aerodynamics. With the highest speed record set in 2005 by Juan Pablo Montoya hitting 373 kph; some of the most prominent races are the Monaco Grand Prix, the Italian Grand Prix, the British Grand Prix. The season ends with the crowning of the World Championship for constructors. In single-seater, the wheels are not covered, the cars have aerofoil wings front and rear to produce downforce and enhance adhesion to the track.
In Europe and Asia, open-wheeled racing is referred to as'Formula', with appropriate hierarchical suffixes. In North America, the'Formula' terminology is not followed; the sport is arranged to follow an international format, a regional format, and/or a domestic, or country-specific, format. In the United States, the most popular series is the National Championship, more known as the IndyCar Series and known as CART; the cars have traditionally been similar though less technologically sophisticated than F1 cars, with more restrictions on technology aimed at controlling costs. While these cars are not as technologically advanced, they are faster because they compete on oval race tracks, being able to average a lap at 388 kph; the series' biggest race is the Indianapolis 500, referred to as "The Greatest Spectacle in Racing" due to being the longest continuously run race and having the largest crowd for a single-day sporting event. The other major international single-seater racing series is Formula 2.
Regional series include Formula Nippon and Formula V6 Asia, Formula Renault 3.5, Formula Three, For
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
Talbot or Clément-Talbot Limited was a London automobile manufacturer founded in 1903. Clément-Talbot's products were named just Talbot from shortly after introduction, but the business remained Clément-Talbot Limited until 1938 when it was renamed Sunbeam-Talbot Limited; the founders, Charles Chetwynd-Talbot, 20th Earl of Shrewsbury and Adolphe Clément-Bayard, reduced their financial interests in their Clément-Talbot business during the First World War. Soon after the end of the war, Clément-Talbot was brought into a combine named S T D Motors. Shortly afterward, S T D Motors' French products were renamed Talbot instead of Darracq. In the mid-1930s, with the collapse of S T D Motors, Rootes bought the London Talbot factory and Antonio Lago bought the Paris Talbot factory, Lago producing vehicles under the marques Talbot and Talbot-Lago. Rootes renamed Clément-Talbot Limited Sunbeam-Talbot Limited in 1938, stopped using the brand name Talbot in the mid-1950s; the Paris factory closed a few years later.
Ownership of the marque came by a series of takeovers to Peugeot S. A. which revived use of the Talbot name from 1978 until 1994. In December 1919 A Darracq and Company Limited of London with its factory in Suresnes, bought the entire capital of Clément-Talbot and bought Sunbeam and renamed itself S. T. D. Motors Limited; those initials referred to Sunbeam and Darracq. But in the depth of the Great Depression S T D Motors became unable to pay its debts, its subsidiaries managed to find buyers and in 1936 S T D Motors ceased to exist. Clément-Talbot continued to be famous for the design and quality of its products and it remained profitable during the depression. Clément-Talbot was bought by Rootes Group and renamed Sunbeam-Talbot. Sunbeam alone twenty years after that. In 1920 Suresnes products were branded Talbot-Darracq but the word Darracq was dropped in 1922. If exported to England Paris-made Talbots were rebadged Darracq or Talbot-Darracq Dragged down by the 1924 borrowing to pay for the Sunbeam racing programme S T D Motors and Automobiles Talbot France suffered a financial collapse in late 1934.
Following the financial collapse of its parent, S T D Motors, Clément-Talbot remained financially sound with marketable products. Clément-Talbot was bought by Rootes Securities and continued to manufacture the same catalogue of vehicles introducing components from Hillman and Humber cars; as the genuine Talbot parts bins ran dry a modified Hillman Aero Minx was introduced to the production line and given the Talbot brand name. In 1938 this Talbot Ten and its stable mates were badged Sunbeam-Talbot and owner, Clément-Talbot Limited's, name changed to fit. Following the financial collapse of S T D Motors and Paris's Automobiles Talbot Antonio Lago, the Suresnes' manager, arranged a management buyout of the French operation. Antonio Lago involved Talbot in sports car and Grand Prix racing as well as producing high quality luxury cars. In the postwar world of austerity and socialism the French government introduced punitive annual taxation on cars with engines larger than 2.6-litres and Talbot sales were restricted.
Lago continued the Talbot business until 1958. The dormant Talbot marque was sold to Simca. Simca was bought by Chrysler Europe in 1970. PSA Peugeot Citroën acquired the still dormant Talbot marque when it bought Chrysler in 1978. PSA Peugeot Citroën began to use a Talbot badge on former Simca and Chrysler models Chrysler Europe had struggled to make a profit for much of its existence, had relied on government bailouts to ensure its survival. With mounting pressure on its core North American business, the decision was taken by Chrysler's CEO Lee Iacocca to offload the ailing European operations; the French Government persuaded both PSA Peugeot Citroën to bid for the company. In August 1978, PSA purchased Chrysler Europe for a nominal $1, resurrected the Talbot name — using it to re-badge the former Simca and Rootes models. Although PSA took responsibility for Chrysler Europe's considerable debts and liabilities, the move was a strategic one; the Peugeot takeover saw the end of the Rootes' Chrysler Hunter production, but the Simca-designed 1510, Horizon continued as Talbots.
All former Chrysler products registered in Britain after 1 August 1979 bore the Talbot badge. Talbot's UK branch manufactured the Alpine and Horizon at their aging Ryton plant in Coventry after the British developed cars had all been retired – excepting the UK arm's largest revenue source, building CKD kits of the Hillman Hunter to be sent to Iran where they were assembled as the Peykan; the last remaining car produced by the Rootes group, the Chrysler Avenger, remained in production as a Talbot until the end of 1981. The entry-level model in the Talbot range from 1982 onwards would be the Talbot Samba, a three-door hatchback based on the Peugeot 104. In 1981, Peugeot began producing the Talbot Tagora, a boxy four-door saloon marketed as a Ford Granada or Vauxhall Carlton/Opel Rekord rival, but it was not popular in either Britain or France and production ceased in 1983. At the end of 1984, the Alpine hatchback and its related Solara saloon were rebadged Minx and Rapier depending upon specification rather than body shape.
The new names were inherited
1950 British Grand Prix
The 1950 British Grand Prix, formally known as The Royal Automobile Club Grand Prix d'Europe Incorporating The British Grand Prix, was a Formula One motor race held on 13 May 1950 at the Silverstone Circuit in Silverstone, England. It was the first World Championship Formula One race, as well as the fifth British Grand Prix, the third to be held at Silverstone after motor racing resumed after World War II, it was the first race of seven in the 1950 World Championship of Drivers. The 70-lap race was won by Giuseppe Farina for the Alfa Romeo team, after starting from pole position, with a race time of 2:13:23.6 and an average speed of 146.378 km/h. Luigi Fagioli finished second in another Alfa Romeo, Reg Parnell third in a third Alfa Romeo; the race followed the non-championship Pau Grand Prix and San Remo Grand Prix, the Richmond Trophy and the Paris Grand Prix. Held on 13 May at Silverstone Circuit, designated as the Grand Prix of Europe for 1950, this first World Championship round was attended by George VI, Queen Elizabeth, Princess Margaret, the Earl & Countess Mountbatten of Burma.
In all, there were 22 competing, 21 qualified for the race, 11 classified. Numbers 7 and 13 were not assigned; the Alfa Romeo factory team arrived at the circuit with four 158s for Fangio, Fagioli & domestic driver Reg Parnell. Ferrari decided not to take part but there were a handful of Maseratis, one of them a factory car for Monegasque driver Louis Chiron. Scuderia Ambrosiana prepared two cars for David Hampshire and David Murray, Enrico Platé entered two drivers of aristocratic origin, Prince Bira of Siam and Baron Toulo de Graffenried. Joe Fry entered a private Maserati and Scuderia Milano entered Felice Bonetto, but he did not arrive; these cars were raced in Italian Rosso Corsa livery. Talbot-Lago sent over two factory cars in the traditional French pale blue colour to be driven by Yves Giraud-Cabantous and Eugène Martin. Other private Talbots were entered by Louis Rosier, Philippe Etancelin and Belgian Johnny Claes, in a yellow car; the rest of the field was made up of local machinery, which included four E.
R. A.s and two Altas, in British racing green. Farina was fastest in qualifying and the other three Alfas were alongside him on the front row; the second row consisted of "B. Bira" in a Maserati and the two factory Talbots. In accordance with the standard at the time, the rest of the grid consisted of rows of four and three alternating, up to the sixth row. Felice Bonetto was the only driver who did not take part in qualifying and would not take part in the race. On 13 May, 21 drivers from 9 countries were represented at the old Silverstone airport, 4 from France, 2 from Italy, 1 each from Belgium, Monaco, Argentina and Switzerland; the UK was represented by 9 drivers. The race drew 200,000 spectators. At the start of the race, Farina took the lead with Fangio in pursuit. In the early laps they switched around between themselves several times to keep everyone amused. Fangio retired with engine troubles and so Farina led Fagioli home by 2.5 seconds with Parnell a distant third despite hitting a hare during the race.
The nearest challenger was Giraud-Cabantous two laps down. Crossley and Murray duelled at the back before retiring, de Graffenried had done so on lap 34, while Chiron was demoted to the role of viewer 10 laps earlier. Giuseppe Farina led for 63 laps. Luigi Fagioli led for 6 laps. Juan Manuel Fangio led for 1 lap. Joe Fry drove car #10 for the first 45 laps Brian Shawe-Taylor took over for 19 laps for a total 64 laps, distance 297.536 km. Peter Walker drove car #9 for 2 laps Tony Rolt drove for and additional 3 laps, totaling 5 laps, a distance of 23.245 km. ^1 — Luigi Fagioli qualified and drove all 70 laps of the race in the #3 Alfa Romeo. Gianbattista Guidotti, named substitute driver for the car, was not used at the Grand Prix. ^2 — Peter Walker qualified and drove 2 laps of the race in the #9 ERA. Tony Rolt took over the car for 3 laps of the race. ^3 — Joe Fry qualified and drove 45 laps of the race in the #10 Maserati. Brian Shawe-Taylor took over the car for 19 laps of the race. ^4 — Entry cancelled prior to event.
Notes^1 – Includes 1 point for fastest lap Drivers' Championship standingsNote: Only the top five positions are listed. Only the best 4 results counted towards the Championship
Formula One is the highest class of single-seater auto racing sanctioned by the Fédération Internationale de l'Automobile and owned by the Formula One Group. The FIA Formula One World Championship has been one of the premier forms of racing around the world since its inaugural season in 1950; the word "formula" in the name refers to the set of rules to which all participants' cars must conform. A Formula One season consists of a series of races, known as Grands Prix, which take place worldwide on purpose-built circuits and on public roads; the results of each race are evaluated using a points system to determine two annual World Championships: one for drivers, the other for constructors. Drivers must hold valid Super Licences, the highest class of racing licence issued by the FIA; the races must run on tracks graded "1", the highest grade-rating issued by the FIA. Most events occur in rural locations on purpose-built tracks, but several events take place on city streets. Formula One cars are the fastest regulated road-course racing cars in the world, owing to high cornering speeds achieved through the generation of large amounts of aerodynamic downforce.
The cars underwent major changes in 2017, allowing wider front and rear wings, wider tyres, resulting in cornering forces closing in on 6.5g and top speeds of up to 375 km/h. As of 2019 the hybrid engines are limited in performance to a maximum of 15,000 rpm and the cars are dependent on electronics—although traction control and other driving aids have been banned since 2008—and on aerodynamics and tyres. While Europe is the sport's traditional base, the championship operates globally, with 11 of the 21 races in the 2018 season taking place outside Europe. With the annual cost of running a mid-tier team—designing and maintaining cars, transport—being US$120 million, Formula One has a significant economic and job-creation effect, its financial and political battles are reported, its high profile and popularity have created a major merchandising environment, which has resulted in large investments from sponsors and budgets. On 8 September 2016 Bloomberg reported that Liberty Media had agreed to buy Delta Topco, the company that controls Formula One, from private-equity firm CVC Capital Partners for $4.4 billion in cash and convertible debt.
On 23 January 2017 Liberty Media confirmed the completion of the acquisition for $8 billion. The Formula One series originated with the European Grand Prix Motor Racing of the 1930s; the formula is a set of rules. Formula One was a new formula agreed upon after World War II during 1946, with the first non-championship races being held that year. A number of Grand Prix racing organisations had laid out rules for a world championship before the war, but due to the suspension of racing during the conflict, the World Drivers' Championship was not formalised until 1947; the first world championship race was held at Silverstone, United Kingdom in 1950. A championship for constructors followed in 1958. National championships existed in the UK in the 1960s and 1970s. Non-championship Formula One events were held for many years, but due to the increasing cost of competition, the last of these occurred in 1983. On 26 November 2017, Formula One unveiled its new logo, following the 2017 season finale in Abu Dhabi during the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix at Yas Marina Circuit.
The new logo replaced F1's iconic'flying one', the sport's trademark since 1993. After a hiatus in European motor racing brought about by the outbreak of World War II in 1939, the first World Championship for Drivers was won by Italian Giuseppe Farina in his Alfa Romeo in 1950, narrowly defeating his Argentine teammate Juan Manuel Fangio. However, Fangio won the title in 1951, 1954, 1955, 1956, 1957, his streak interrupted by two-time champion Alberto Ascari of Ferrari. Although the UK's Stirling Moss was able to compete he was never able to win the world championship, is now considered to be the greatest driver never to have won the title. Fangio, however, is remembered for dominating Formula One's first decade and has long been considered the "Grand Master" of Formula One; this period featured teams managed by road car manufacturers Alfa Romeo, Mercedes-Benz, Maserati. The first seasons were run using pre-war cars like Alfa's 158, they were front-engined, with narrow tyres and 1.5-litre supercharged or 4.5-litre aspirated engines.
The 1952 and 1953 World Championships were run to Formula Two regulations, for smaller, less powerful cars, due to concerns over the paucity of Formula One cars available. When a new Formula One, for engines limited to 2.5 litres, was reinstated to the world championship for 1954, Mercedes-Benz introduced the advanced W196, which featured innovations such as desmodromic valves and fuel injection as well as enclosed streamlined bodywork. Mercedes drivers won the championship for two years, before the team withdrew from all motorsport in the wake of the 1955 Le Mans disaster. An era of British dominance was ushered in by Mike Hawthorn and Vanwall's championship wins in 1958, although Stirling Moss had been at the forefront of the sport without securing the world title. Between Hawthorn, Jim Clark, Jackie Stewart, John Surtees and Graham Hill, British drivers won nine Drivers' Championships and British teams won fourteen Constructors' Championsh
La Rochelle is a city in western France and a seaport on the Bay of Biscay, a part of the Atlantic Ocean. It is the capital of the Charente-Maritime department; the city is connected to the Île de Ré by a 2.9-kilometre bridge completed on 19 May 1988. Its harbour opens into the Pertuis d'Antioche; the area of La Rochelle was occupied in antiquity by the Gallic tribe of the Santones, who gave their name to the nearby region of Saintonge and the city of Saintes. The Romans subsequently occupied the area, where they developed salt production along the coast as well as wine production, re-exported throughout the Empire. Roman villas have been found at Saint-Éloi and at Les Minimes, as well as salt evaporation ponds dating from the same period. La Rochelle became an important harbour in the 12th century; the establishment of La Rochelle as a harbour was a consequence of the victory of Duke Guillaume X of Aquitaine over Isambert de Châtelaillon in 1130 and the subsequent destruction of his harbour of Châtelaillon.
In 1137, Guillaume X to all intents and purposes made La Rochelle a free port and gave it the right to establish itself as a commune. Fifty years Eleanor of Aquitaine upheld the communal charter promulgated by her father, for the first time in France, a city mayor was appointed for La Rochelle, Guillaume de Montmirail. Guillaume was assisted in his responsibilities by 24 municipal magistrates, 75 notables who had jurisdiction over the inhabitants. Under the communal charter, the city obtained many privileges, such as the right to mint its own coins, to operate some businesses free of royal taxes, factors which would favour the development of the entrepreneurial middle-class. Eleanor married Henry Plantagenet in 1152, who became king of England as Henry II in 1154, thus putting La Rochelle under Plantagenet rule, until Louis VIII captured it in the 1224 Siege of La Rochelle. During the Plantagenet control of the city in 1185, Henry II had the Vauclair castle built, remains of which are still visible in the Place de Verdun.
The main activities of the city were in the areas of maritime commerce and trade with England, the Netherlands and Spain. In 1196, wealthy bourgeois Alexandre Auffredi sent a fleet of seven ships to Africa seeking wealth, he went bankrupt awaiting the return of his ships. The Knights Templar had a strong presence in La Rochelle since before the time of Eleanor of Aquitaine, who exempted them from duties and gave them mills in her 1139 Charter. La Rochelle was for the Templars their largest base on the Atlantic Ocean, where they stationed their main fleet. From La Rochelle, they were able to act as intermediaries in trade between England and the Mediterranean. A popular thread of conspiracy theory originating with Holy Blood, Holy Grail has it that the Templars used a fleet of 18 ships which had brought Jacques de Molay from Cyprus to La Rochelle to escape arrest in France; the fleet left laden with knights and treasures just before the issue of the warrant for the arrest of the Order in October 1307.
During the Hundred Years' War in 1360, following the Treaty of Bretigny La Rochelle again came under the rule of the English monarch. La Rochelle however expelled the English in June 1372, following the naval Battle of La Rochelle, between Castilian-French and English fleets; the French and Spanish decisively defeated the English, securing French control of the Channel for the first time since the Battle of Sluys in 1340. The naval battle of La Rochelle was one of the first cases of the use of handguns on warships, which were deployed by the French and Spanish against the English. Having recovered freedom, La Rochelle refused entry to Du Guesclin, until Charles V recognized the privileges of the city in November 1372. In 1402, the French adventurer Jean de Béthencourt left La Rochelle and sailed along the coast of Morocco to conquer the Canary islands; until the 15th century, La Rochelle was to be the largest French harbour on the Atlantic coast, dealing in wine and cheese. During the Renaissance, La Rochelle adopted Protestant ideas.
Calvinism started to be propagated in the region of La Rochelle, resulting in its suppression through the establishment of Cours présidiaux tribunals by Henry II. An early result of this was the burning at the stake of two "heretics" in La Rochelle in 1552. Conversions to Calvinism however continued, due to a change of religious beliefs, but to a desire for political independence on the part of the local elite, a popular opposition to royal expenses and requisitions in the building projects to fortify the coast against England. On the initiative of Gaspard de Coligny, the Calvinists attempted to colonize the New World to find a new home for their religion, with the likes of Pierre Richier and Jean de Léry. After the short-lived attempt of France Antarctique, they failed to establish a colony in Brazil, resolved to make a stand in La Rochelle itself. Pierre Richier became "Ministre de l'église de la Rochelle" when he returned from Brazil in 1558, was able to increase the Huguenot presence in La Rochelle, from a small base of about 50 souls, secretly educated in the Lutheran faith by Charles de Clermont the previous year.
He has been described, by Lancelot Voisin de La Popelinière, as "le père de l'église de La Rochelle". La Rochelle was the first French city, with Rouen, to experience iconoclastic riots in 1560, at the time of the suppression of the Amboise conspiracy, before the riots spread to many other cities. Further cases of Reformation iconoclasm were recorded in L