The 1958 Moroccan Grand Prix, formally the VII Grand Prix International Automobile du Maroc, was a Formula One motor race held at Ain-Diab Circuit, Casablanca on 19 October 1958, after a six-week break following the Italian Grand Prix. It was race 11 of 11 in the 1958 World Championship of Drivers and race 10 of 10 in the 1958 International Cup for Formula One Manufacturers. It is the only time Morocco has hosted a World Championship Grand Prix.
|1958 Moroccan Grand Prix|
|Date||19 October 1958|
|Official name||VII Grand Prix International Automobile du Maroc|
|Course||Road-based with permanent infrastructure|
|Course length||7.618 km (4.734 miles)|
|Distance||53 laps, 403.754 km (250.902 miles)|
|Weather||Warm, dry, sunny|
|Time||2:22.5 on lap 21|
Mike Hawthorn (Ferrari) started from pole position, but Stirling Moss won the race driving for Vanwall. Hawthorn finished second which secured him the World Drivers' Championship. Phil Hill was third, also for Ferrari. Vanwall made sure of the World Constructors' Championship and both this and Hawthorn's drivers' title were firsts for British teams or drivers.
The race saw an accident involving Stuart Lewis-Evans, who died six days later from the burns he sustained.
Both Mike Hawthorn and Stirling Moss came into the race with a chance of becoming World Drivers' Champion. Moss, on 32 points, needed to win the race and set fastest lap, with Hawthorn (40 pts) finishing no higher than third or to win without fastest lap with Hawthorn again finishing third or lower but also without fastest lap.
Practice and qualifyingEdit
There was an entry of 25 cars, of which 19 were to Formula One (F1) specification. Ferrari and Vanwall entered three cars each, BRM four and Lotus and Cooper two each. There were a further five non-works F1 entries. Six Formula Two Coopers brought the total entry to 25.
In Friday practice, Jean Behra (BRM) set fastest time at 2:25.2. Tony Brooks (Vanwall) and Hawthorn (Ferrari) were second and third, four and five tenths behind respectively. Moss did not better 2:26, despite a late attempt, having been hampered by other cars during some of his fast lap attempts.
On the Saturday, Hawthorn set fastest time with 2:23.1 which was one-tenth ahead of Moss who was content with his position in the middle of the front row on the three-then-two grid. Stuart Lewis-Evans was on his outside, a further half-a-second behind. The second row was made up of Phil Hill (Ferrari) and Behra.
Moss and Lewis-Evans led away, with Phil Hill also making a good start from the second row. At the end of the first lap, Moss led from Hill and Hawthorn was third followed by Jo Bonnier, Brooks, Lewis-Evans and Behra. On lap three, Hill tried to out-brake Moss, but failed, and left the track without damaging the car, allowing Hawthorn and Bonnier to pass. Moss, now unhampered, began to draw away from Hawthorn who was being caught by Hill who had passed Bonnier after recovering from the earlier incident. By lap eight, Hill had passed Hawthorn but had little hope of catching Moss, who was already lapping the Formula Two cars at the rear of the field. Moss's teammate, Brooks, chased down Bonnier for fourth place and subsequently passed Hawthorn for third on lap 17. On lap 18 Moss was involved in a minor collision with the Maserati of Wolfgang Seidel which forced the latter to retire and Moss to be wary of engine temperature thereafter.
At 25 laps, Moss led Hill by 20s with Brooks a further 42s behind. Hawthorn was fourth followed by Bonnier and Olivier Gendebien with Lewis-Evans, Behra, Masten Gregory and Harry Schell completing the first ten runners. Hawthorn re-passed Brooks shortly afterwards and on lap 30 Brooks's engine blew and he retired. This left Hawthorn in third place, but some distance behind Hill, who was 27s behind Moss and steadily losing ground on the leader.
At this point, Gendebien, Tom Bridger and François Picard all retired through accidents, with only the latter sustaining more than minor injuries. Hill had little hope of catching Moss and the Ferrari team signalled to him to allow Hawthorn to catch up and take the second position needed to claim the Drivers' Championship. Hill's lead over Hawthorn was such that it took till lap 39 for the change to occur. Shortly afterwards, Moss lapped Schell, who then attempted to stay close to the Vanwall hampering Moss's progress. On lap 41, Lewis-Evans's engine broke in a corner, sending him off the road where the car caught fire. The driver was able to extricate himself but was badly burned.
At 48 laps, Moss slowed to allow Schell to move back ahead and thus avoid the possibility of further interference with his own race. Such was the lead that Moss had at this stage that he was still able to finish nearly 1.5 minutes ahead of the Ferraris of Hawthorn and Hill. Moss had also set fastest lap, but Hawthorn's second place was enough to secure him the World Drivers' Championship.
Lewis-Evans was airlifted back to Britain by Vanwall team owner Tony Vandervell but died as a result of his burns six days later. Vandervell, already in failing health himself, ended his involvement with the Vanwall team partly as a result of the accident. Lewis-Evans was also a close friend of Bernie Ecclestone, who was at the race. Following his death Ecclestone sold his Connaught team and cars and ceased involvement with the sport till 1965.
It was also the last race for Hawthorn who retired as a driver shortly after the season ended. He was killed in a road accident in Surrey on 22 January 1959.
Picard ultimately recovered from his injuries after six months of incapacity, but did not race again.
- A yellow background denotes a Formula Two entry:
|23||58||Robert La Caze||Cooper-Climax||2:43.1|
|6||22||Masten Gregory||Maserati||52||+1 lap||13|
|7||30||Roy Salvadori||Cooper-Climax||51||+2 laps||14|
|8||32||Jack Fairman||Cooper-Climax||50||+3 laps||11|
|9||24||Hans Herrmann||Maserati||50||+3 laps||18|
|10||34||Cliff Allison||Lotus-Climax||49||+4 laps||16|
|11||50||Jack Brabham||Cooper-Climax||49||+4 laps||19|
|12||28||Gerino Gerini||Maserati||48||+5 laps||17|
|13||52||Bruce McLaren||Cooper-Climax||48||+5 laps||21|
|14||58||Robert La Caze||Cooper-Climax||48||+5 laps||23|
|15||60||André Guelfi||Cooper-Climax||48||+5 laps||25|
|16||36||Graham Hill||Lotus-Climax||45||+8 laps||12|
|Ret||12||Stuart Lewis-Evans||Vanwall||41||Fatal accident||3|
- ^1 – Includes 1 point for fastest lap
- ^2 – MotorSport magazine lists Picard with 28 laps, and indirectly supports this lower lap count with the article's narrative
Championship standings after the raceEdit
- Notes: Only the top five positions are included for both sets of standings. Only the best 6 results counted towards each Championship. Numbers without parentheses are Championship points; numbers in parentheses are total points scored.
- ^ "The story of Formula 1's only Moroccan Grand Prix". Racingnews365.com. 18 February 2021. Retrieved 13 August 2022.
- ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p Jenkinson, Denis (November 1958). "Grand Prix Du Maroc: Moss (Vanwall) is perfection - but it is not enough". Motor Sport magazine archive. p. 14. Retrieved 21 October 2015.
- ^ a b c Williamson, Martin. "Hawthorn's title on another day of tragedy". e..espn.co.uk. Retrieved 5 November 2015.
- ^ Small, Steve (1994). The Guinness Complete Grand Prix Who's Who. Guinness. p. 229. ISBN 0851127029.
- ^ Bower, Tom (2011). No Angel: The Secret Life of Bernie Ecclestone. Faber and Faber. p. 48/chapter 2 (Gambling) (Kobo edition). ISBN 9780571269372.
- ^ Bower, Tom (2011). No Angel: The Secret Life of Bernie Ecclestone. Faber and Faber. p. 1/chapter 3 (Embryo) (Kobo edition). ISBN 9780571269372.
- ^ Small, Steve. The Guinness Complete Grand Prix Who's Who. Guinness. p. 179. ISBN 0851127029.
- ^ Small, Steve (1994). The Guinness Complete Grand Prix Who's Who. Guinness. p. 290. ISBN 0851127029.
- ^ a b "Germany 1957 – Race entrants". StatsF1.com. Retrieved 2022-02-16.
- ^ "1958 Moroccan Grand Prix". Formula1.com (new version). Archived from the original on 2021-04-16. Retrieved 2022-02-07.
- ^ "1958 Moroccan Grand Prix". Formula1.com (old version). Archived from the original on 3 June 2014. Retrieved 16 August 2015.
- ^ a b "Morocco 1958 - Championship • STATS F1". www.statsf1.com. Retrieved 19 March 2019.