THE SCAN SPORT – On the occasion of the 1000th F1 race on Sunday in China, the encrypted channel tells the story of the discipline through nine anniversary races.
May 13, 1950-14 April 2019. If it will take another year to celebrate the 70th anniversary of Formula 1, the biggest motor sport competition will reach, this weekend in China, the symbolic bar of the 1000 races contested. "Nobody expected to make 1000, not even 100," notes Bernie Ecclestone. Actor of the discipline for six decades, the former "big moneymaker" of the F1 serves as a witness and thread for the documentary of Canal + tracing the evolution of the king of sports car broadcast Sunday morning (10:45), just after the GP from China (departure at 8:10).
100, 200, 300 … The director Etienne Pidoux has chosen to return to nine events that have marked the history of F1 such as round-trip kiosks. The documentary begins with the 100th race, the 1961 German Grand Prix won by Stirling Moss on an endless Nürburgring circuit (22.8 km against 5.1 today) where the best of 15 laps to complete was completed. in 8 minutes 57. Trees and embankments still surrounded the track. Another era.
Stewart star of Monaco
The 200th is played ten years later in Monaco where the triumph of Jackie Stewart, future triple world champion, is immortalized by Roman Polanski in a documentary Weekend of a Champion. "Journalists and photographers were lying on the sidewalk of the Avenue d'Ostende with their hair ten centimeters away from the wheels, it did not shock anyone," recalls Michel Ferry, vice president of the automobile club of Monaco.
Hero of a 300th breath-taking rendezvous in South Africa (1978), where the first chiped the victory in the second in the last kilometer, Ronnie Peterson and Patrick Depailler will then perish in track, in Monza six months later to the Swede and Hockenheim in 1980 for French. "When you're out of the race and you think cold, you think: Is it worth it to put your life on the line? And the answer is always yes, it's worth it, "says 41 years later Jean-Pierre Jarier, 134 grand prizes (and 3 podiums) on the clock.
The 400th and 500th races, Austria 1984 and Australia 1990, are painful memories for Alain Prost, victim of a fatal slip on the Österreichring which will cost him the world title for half a point in favor of his teammate Niki Lauda. In Adelaide six years later, the Professor, now at Ferrari, lives badly the triumph of Ayrton Senna who harpooned it two weeks earlier in Japan to secure a second world crown. "The urge to put my fist in my face crossed my mind but I did not even want to, it disgusts me deeply. As I said after Japan, I'm thinking of retiring. I do not want my 9-year-old son to think I'm a bad guy, "says a Prost tired of his electric duel with the Brazilian but who will still look for a fourth world title three years later at Williams.
The 600th race, held in Argentina in 1997, is an opportunity to return to the duel between Jacques Villeneuve and Michael Schumacher, "the first driver who had no respect for others. He started this modern era of straight-line and zig-zag wheelbeats with dangerous driving, "according to the Canadian, still as cash 22 years later. Winner in Buenos Aires, the son of Gilles Villeneuve will win this year his first and only world title. Not without a last attempt of "Schumi" to force him to abandon at Jerez to maintain his point of advance at the last Grand Prix of the season.
Giancarlo Fisichella's first career win in Brazil in 2003 in a deluge and confirmed only five days later by the FIA, the incredible scandal of the "crash gate" of Singapore (2008) that led to his loss Flavio Briatore and tarnished the image of Renault and the exceptional mano a mano between Lewis Hamilton and his future ex-friend Nico Rosberg in Bahrain in 2014, constitute the 700th, 800th and 900th meeting of a discipline as always exciting.