1972 Formula One season

1972 Formula One season
Drivers' Champion: Emerson Fittipaldi
Constructors' Champion: Lotus-Ford
Previous: 1971 Next: 1973

The 1972 Formula One season was the 26th season of the FIA's Formula One motor racing. It featured the 23rd World Championship of Drivers, the 15th International Cup for F1 Manufacturers[1] and numerous non-championship Formula One races. The World Championship season commenced on 23 January and ended on 8 October after twelve races.

For 1972 Team Lotus focused again on the type 72 chassis. Imperial Tobacco continued its sponsorship of the team under its new John Player Special brand. The cars, now often referred to as 'JPS', were fielded in a new black and gold livery. Lotus took the championship by surprise in 1972 with 25-year-old Brazilian driver Emerson Fittipaldi who became the youngest world champion at that point. Stewart came second in the championship.

This was the first year where all the races were run on circuits with safety features on them, and considerable progress had been made since 1968, the last year where all races were run on circuits with no safety features.

The British Racing Motors (BRM) team took its last victory when Jean-Pierre Beltoise won the rain-affected 1972 Monaco Grand Prix in a BRM P160.

The Dutch Grand Prix was cancelled this year because of safety arrangements that were not completed for the race. It was supposed to be held between the Belgian and French Grand Prix's at the usual location, Zandvoort. Also, a second American motor race called the United States Grand Prix West, originally supposed to be held in April at the Ontario Motor Speedway near Los Angeles, was cancelled. The Mexican Grand Prix was scheduled to be the last race of the season, but it was cancelled after local interest dissipated after the death of Pedro Rodríguez.[2]

Grands PrixEdit

Rnd Race Circuit Date Pole position Fastest lap Winning driver Constructor Tyre Report
1   Argentine Grand Prix Buenos Aires 23 January   Carlos Reutemann   Jackie Stewart   Jackie Stewart   Tyrrell-Ford G Report
2   South African Grand Prix Kyalami 4 March   Jackie Stewart   Mike Hailwood   Denny Hulme   McLaren-Ford G Report
3   Spanish Grand Prix Jarama 1 May   Jacky Ickx   Jacky Ickx   Emerson Fittipaldi   Lotus-Ford F Report
4   Monaco Grand Prix Monte Carlo 14 May   Emerson Fittipaldi   Jean-Pierre Beltoise   Jean-Pierre Beltoise   BRM F Report
5   Belgian Grand Prix Nivelles-Baulers 4 June   Emerson Fittipaldi   Chris Amon   Emerson Fittipaldi   Lotus-Ford F Report
6   French Grand Prix Charade Circuit 2 July   Chris Amon   Chris Amon   Jackie Stewart   Tyrrell-Ford G Report
7   British Grand Prix Brands Hatch 15 July   Jacky Ickx   Jackie Stewart   Emerson Fittipaldi   Lotus-Ford F Report
8   German Grand Prix Nürburgring 30 July   Jacky Ickx   Jacky Ickx   Jacky Ickx   Ferrari F Report
9   Austrian Grand Prix Österreichring 13 August   Emerson Fittipaldi   Denny Hulme   Emerson Fittipaldi   Lotus-Ford F Report
10   Italian Grand Prix Monza 10 September   Jacky Ickx   Jacky Ickx   Emerson Fittipaldi   Lotus-Ford F Report
11   Canadian Grand Prix Mosport Park 24 September   Peter Revson   Jackie Stewart   Jackie Stewart   Tyrrell-Ford G Report
12   United States Grand Prix Watkins Glen 8 October   Jackie Stewart   Jackie Stewart   Jackie Stewart   Tyrrell-Ford G Report

Drivers and constructorsEdit

Entrant Constructor Chassis Engine Tyre Driver Rounds
  Motor Racing Developments Brabham-Ford BT33
Ford Cosworth DFV 3.0 V8 G   Graham Hill All
  Carlos Reutemann 1–2, 5–12
  Wilson Fittipaldi 3–12
  Marlboro BRM BRM P160B
BRM P142 3.0 V12 F   Howden Ganley 1–6, 8–12
  Reine Wisell 1, 3–4, 6, 8, 10
  Peter Gethin 1–7, 9–12
  Alex Soler-Roig 1, 3
  Helmut Marko 1–2, 4–6
  Jean-Pierre Beltoise 2–12
  Vern Schuppan 5
  Jackie Oliver 7
  Bill Brack 11
  Brian Redman 12
  Scuderia Ferrari SpA SEFAC Ferrari 312B2 Ferrari 001/1 3.0 F12 F   Jacky Ickx All
  Clay Regazzoni 1–5, 8–12
  Mario Andretti 1–3, 10, 12
  Nanni Galli 6
  Arturo Merzario 7–8
  John Player Team Lotus
  World Wide Racing
Lotus-Ford 72D Ford Cosworth DFV 3.0 V8 F   Emerson Fittipaldi All
  David Walker 1–9, 12
  Reine Wisell 11–12
  STP March Racing Team March-Ford 721
Ford Cosworth DFV 3.0 V8 G   Ronnie Peterson All
  Niki Lauda All
  Equipe Matra Sports Matra MS120C
Matra MS72 3.0 V12 G   Chris Amon All
  Yardley Team McLaren McLaren-Ford M19A
Ford Cosworth DFV 3.0 V8 G   Denny Hulme All
  Peter Revson 1–3, 5, 7, 9–12
  Brian Redman 4, 6, 8
  Jody Scheckter 12
  Team Surtees
  Brooke Bond Oxo Team Surtees
  Ceramica Pagnossin Team Surtees
  Flame Out Team Surtees
Surtees-Ford TS9B
Ford Cosworth DFV 3.0 V8 F   Tim Schenken All
  Andrea de Adamich All
  Mike Hailwood 2–10, 12
  John Surtees 10, 12
  Elf Team Tyrrell Tyrrell-Ford 003
Ford Cosworth DFV 3.0 V8 G   Jackie Stewart 1–4, 6–12
  François Cevert All
  Patrick Depailler 6, 12
  Team Williams Motul March-Ford
Ford Cosworth DFV 3.0 V8 G   Henri Pescarolo All
  Carlos Pace 2–12
  Team Eifelland Caravans Eifelland-Ford 21 Ford Cosworth DFV 3.0 V8 G   Rolf Stommelen 2–9
  Scribante Lucky Strike Racing Lotus-Ford 72D Ford Cosworth DFV 3.0 V8 F   Dave Charlton 2, 6–8
  Team Gunston Surtees-Ford
Ford Cosworth DFV 3.0 V8 F   John Love 2
  William Ferguson 2
  Clarke-Mordaunt-Guthrie Racing March-Ford 721G Ford Cosworth DFV 3.0 V8 F   Mike Beuttler 3–12
  Martini Racing Tecno PA123/3 Tecno Series-P 3.0 F12 F   Nanni Galli 5, 7, 9–10
  Derek Bell 6, 8, 10–12
  Darnval Connew Racing Team Connew-Ford PC1 Ford Cosworth DFV 3.0 V8 F   François Migault 7, 9
  Gene Mason Racing March-Ford 711 Ford Cosworth DFV 3.0 V8 F   Skip Barber 11–12
  Champcarr Inc. Surtees-Ford TS9B Ford Cosworth DFV 3.0 V8 F   Sam Posey 12

Season reportEdit

Race 1: ArgentinaEdit

The Formula One circus returned to Argentina in January for the first time since 1960. The short No.9 arena configuration of the Buenos Aires city autodrome was used, and Argentine Carlos Reutemann, in his first ever F1 race took pole position in a Brabham-Ford/Cosworth. Reutemann however did not win – defending champion Jackie Stewart of the UK won in a Tyrrell-Ford/Cosworth.

Race 2: South AfricaEdit

The southern hemisphere tour continued in South Africa at the Kyalami circuit near Johannesburg in March. Denny Hulme won the race in a McLaren-Ford/Cosworth, which was McLaren's first F1 victory since 1969.

Race 3: SpainEdit

With the cancellation of the United States Grand Prix West at the Ontario Motor Speedway near Los Angeles, Formula One started its 4-month European tour in Spain at the Jarama circuit near Madrid. The Lotus 72, improved after suspension revisions to the chassis to make the car better suited to slick tires won in the hands of Brazilian Emerson Fittipaldi – winning his 2nd ever F1 race.

Race 4: MonacoEdit

The Monaco Grand Prix in 1972 was run in atrocious conditions – it poured down all throughout race day. The circuit had been changed to move the pits away from the start-finish line, which proved to be too narrow to fit a wide-enough start-finish line and wide-enough pits. The pits for the first and only time were moved next to the harbor straight after where the chicane is, and the chicane was moved further forward towards Tabac. Frenchman Jean-Pierre Beltoise won his only championship F1 race after producing a stirring drive in his BRM.

Race 5: BelgiumEdit

There was some controversy when the F1 troupe arrived at the Nivelles circuit just outside Brussels. A lot of people were unhappy with the replacement of the Spa-Francorchamps circuit, which Formula One stopped racing at because of safety issues with the circuit. But the racing continued, and Fittipaldi won again in his John Player Lotus 72D.

Race 6: FranceEdit

There was a 4-week break between Grand Prix's as the Dutch Grand Prix was cancelled due to safety issues with the Zandvoort circuit. So the next Grand Prix was in France at the dauntingly challenging 5.1 mile Charade circuit – which was made of closed-off public roads located in hills surrounding an extinct volcano above the large central French town of Clermont-Ferrand. The circuit's twisty, undulating and sometimes fast nature provided a considerable challenge, and the circuit had been lined with more Armco and had a few more safety features. New Zealander Chris Amon took pole with his new Matra MS120D, eight-tenths faster than the next fastest driver, Amon's countryman Denny Hulme in a McLaren. Amon, Hulme, Jackie Stewart and Belgian Jacky Ickx in a Ferrari went away from the field. But then Ickx and Hulme fell back, and Amon found himself being chased by Stewart. Then, Amon's perennial bad luck in Formula One hit him yet again: as was often the case at the Charade circuit, the circuit was littered with rocks, and Amon's car punctured a tire and had to pit – and then, Stewart and Fittipaldi passed him. Amon charged through the field, but only was able to secure 3rd place, behind Stewart and Fittipaldi – the former returning from illness after missing the previous race in Belgium. In other news, Austrian Helmut Marko – who later went on to work for Red Bull Racing – was hit in the eye by a rock thrown from Fittipaldi's Lotus, and he never raced again. And the Charade circuit was never used again for F1 – although they were supposed to go back for the 1974 and 1975 seasons, the safety improvements with the circuit were not good enough.

Race 7: Great BritainEdit

The British Grand Prix was at Brands Hatch in 1972, and Jacky Ickx in a Ferrari took pole ahead of Fittipaldi and Stewart. The race proved to be exciting as the Briton and Brazilian battled for top honors – and it was the Brazilian Fittipaldi who came out on top 4.1 seconds ahead of Stewart.

Race 8: West GermanyEdit

The German Grand Prix was held at the historic 14.2 mile (22.8 km) Nürburgring Nordschleife – the longest, most demanding and most difficult circuit of the year for Formula One. The race distance was extended from 12 to 14 laps, and Jacky Ickx took pole with a record-breaking time of 7 minutes and 7 seconds flat, ahead of Stewart, Fittipaldi, Swede Ronnie Peterson in a March and Stewart's teammate Francois Cevert in a Tyrrell-Ford/Cosworth. Ickx went on to dominate the race – he set fastest lap and led from start to finish. Fittipaldi retired with a seized gearbox in his unusually reliable Lotus, and Stewart and Clay Regazzoni in a Ferrari battled for a long time – until the two tangled on the 14th and last lap at the Hatzenbach, where Stewart went off and crashed, and Regazzoni was able to finish behind his teammate Ickx to make it a Ferrari 1–2. Ickx, known as a master of the Nürburgring, celebrated his 2nd German Grand Prix victory and what was to be his last ever Formula One win.

Race 9: AustriaEdit

The Austrian Grand Prix was held at the fastest circuit of the year – the spectacular Österreichring in the Styrian mountains. Stewart and Fittipaldi battled all throughout – but Stewart, with a new model Tyrrell-Ford/Cosworth 005, eventually fell back and finished 7th – while Fittipaldi won ahead of Denny Hulme and American Peter Revson.

Race 10: ItalyEdit

The European season concluded 4 weeks after Austria at the historic Italian Grand Prix at Monza. The Monza autodrome – already notorious for being very fast – had chicanes fitted just after the pit straight and at what was the flat-out Vialone left hander, where Alberto Ascari crashed fatally testing Ferrari sports cars in 1955. Fittipaldi win in Austria and Stewart's failure to score points meant that Fittipaldi could become World Champion at the historic Italian venue. And he did just that – after Stewart retired right at the start with gearbox failure, Fittipaldi was never bothered, and won the race and his first Drivers' Championship at the age of 25 – a record that was not to be beaten for some 3 decades.

Race 11: CanadaEdit

The Formula One season traditionally concluded in North America, and the first of 2 North American rounds was in Canada, at the challenging Mosport Park circuit near Toronto. The race was originally supposed to be held at the Mont-Tremblant circuit in northern Quebec, but a dispute with the local authorities at the St. Jovite circuit meant that the race was moved back to Mosport, which had received safety upgrades after a fatal accident during a Formula Ford race during last year's event. Jackie Stewart won the race from McLaren drivers Revson and Hulme.

Race 12: United StatesEdit

Two weeks after Canada, the 12th and last race of the 1972 Formula One season was at another challenging North American venue – Watkins Glen in New York State, only 4 hours from New York City and 5 hours from Toronto. Stewart won again ahead of his teammate Cevert, in a race that had 31 cars and drivers start the race.

Results and standingsEdit

World Drivers' Championship final standingsEdit

Points for the 1972 World Championship of Drivers were awarded on a 9–6–4–3–2–1 basis to the top six finishers in each race. For classification, only the best five results from the first half of the season and the best five results from the second half of the season could be retained.

Emerson Fittipaldi (pictured in 2008) won the Drivers' Championship, driving for Lotus
Pos Driver ARG
1   Emerson Fittipaldi Ret 2 1 3 1 2 1 Ret 1 1 11 Ret 61
2   Jackie Stewart 1 Ret Ret 4 1 2 11 7 Ret 1 1 45
3   Denny Hulme 2 1 Ret 15 3 7 5 Ret 2 3 3 3 39
4   Jacky Ickx 3 8 2 2 Ret 11 Ret 1 Ret Ret 12 5 27
5   Peter Revson Ret 3 5 7 3 3 4 2 18 23
6   François Cevert Ret 9 Ret NC 2 4 Ret 10 9 Ret Ret 2 15
7   Clay Regazzoni 4 12 3 Ret Ret 2 Ret Ret 5 8 15
8   Mike Hailwood Ret Ret Ret 4 6 Ret Ret 4 2 17 13
9   Ronnie Peterson 6 5 Ret 11 9 5 7 3 12 9 DSQ 4 12
10   Chris Amon DNS 15 Ret 6 6 3 4 15 5 Ret 6 15 12
11   Jean-Pierre Beltoise Ret Ret 1 Ret 15 11 9 8 8 Ret Ret 9
12   Mario Andretti Ret 4 Ret 7 6 4
13   Howden Ganley 9 NC Ret Ret 8 DNS 4 6 11 10 Ret 4
14   Brian Redman 5 9 5 Ret 4
15   Graham Hill Ret 6 10 12 Ret 10 Ret 6 Ret 5 8 11 4
16   Carlos Reutemann 7 Ret 13 12 8 Ret Ret Ret 4 Ret 3
17   Andrea de Adamich Ret NC 4 7 Ret 14 Ret 13 14 Ret Ret Ret 3
18   Carlos Pace 17 6 17 5 Ret Ret NC NC Ret 9 Ret 3
19   Tim Schenken 5 Ret 8 Ret Ret 17 Ret 14 11 Ret 7 Ret 2
20   Arturo Merzario 6 12 1
21   Peter Gethin Ret NC Ret Ret Ret DNS Ret 13 6 Ret Ret 1
  Wilson Fittipaldi 7 9 Ret 8 12 7 Ret Ret Ret Ret 0
  Niki Lauda 11 7 Ret 16 12 Ret 9 Ret 10 13 DSQ NC 0
  Patrick Depailler NC 7 0
  Helmut Marko 10 14 8 10 Ret 0
  Mike Beuttler DNQ 13 Ret 19 13 8 Ret 10 NC 13 0
  Henri Pescarolo 8 11 11 Ret NC DNS Ret Ret DNS DNQ 13 14 0
  David Walker DSQ 10 9 14 14 18 Ret Ret Ret Ret 0
  Jody Scheckter 9 0
  Rolf Stommelen 13 Ret 10 11 16 10 Ret 15 0
  Reine Wisell Ret Ret Ret Ret Ret 12 Ret 10 0
  Sam Posey 12 0
  Nanni Galli Ret 13 Ret NC Ret 0
  Skip Barber NC 16 0
  John Love 16 0
  Dave Charlton Ret DNQ Ret Ret 0
  Derek Bell DNS Ret DNQ DNS Ret 0
  Alex Soler-Roig Ret Ret 0
  Jackie Oliver Ret 0
  François Migault DNS Ret 0
  John Surtees Ret DNS 0
  Bill Brack Ret 0
  William Ferguson DNS 0
  Vern Schuppan DNS 0
Pos Driver ARG
Colour Result
Gold Winner
Silver 2nd place
Bronze 3rd place
Green Other points position
Blue Other classified position
Not classified, finished (NC)
Purple Not classified, retired (Ret)
Red Did not qualify (DNQ)
Did not pre-qualify (DNPQ)
Black Disqualified (DSQ)
White Did not start (DNS)
Race cancelled (C)
Blank Did not practice (DNP)
Excluded (EX)
Did not arrive (DNA)
Withdrawn (WD)
Text formatting Meaning
Bold Pole position
Italics Fastest lap

International Cup for F1 Manufacturers - final standingsEdit

Lotus-Ford won the International Cup for F1 Manufacturers

Points for the 1972 International Cup for F1 Manufacturers were awarded on a 9–6–4–3–2–1 basis to the top six finishers in each race. Only the best placed car from each manufacturer was eligible to score points. For classification, only the best five results from the first half of the season and the best five results from the second half of the season could be retained.

Pos. Manufacturer ARG
1   Lotus-Ford Ret 2 1 3 1 2 1 Ret 1 1 11 10 61
2   Tyrrell-Ford 1 9 Ret 4 2 1 2 10 7 Ret 1 1 51
3   McLaren-Ford 2 1 5 5 3 7 3 (5) 2 3 2 3 47 (49)
4   Ferrari 3 4 2 2 Ret 11 6 1 Ret 7 5 5 33
5   Surtees-Ford 5 16 4 7 4 6 Ret 13 4 2 7 12 18
6   March-Ford 6 5 6 11 5 5 7 3 10 9 9 4 15
7   BRM 9 14 Ret 1 8 15 11 4 6 6 10 Ret 14
8   Matra DNS 15 Ret 6 6 3 4 15 5 Ret 6 15 12
9   Brabham-Ford 7 6 7 9 13 8 8 6 Ret 5 4 11 7
  Eifelland-Ford 13 Ret 10 11 16 10 Ret 15 0
  Tecno Ret DNS Ret Ret NC Ret DNS Ret 0
  Politoys-Ford Ret 0
  Connew-Ford DNS Ret 0
Pos. Manufacturer ARG
  • Bold results counted to championship totals.

Non-Championship races resultsEdit

Other Formula One races were also held in 1972, which did not count towards the World Championship.

Race Name Circuit Date Winning driver Constructor Report
  VII Race of Champions Brands Hatch 19 March   Emerson Fittipaldi   Lotus-Cosworth Report
  I Brazilian Grand Prix Interlagos 30 March   Carlos Reutemann   Brabham-Cosworth Report
  XXIV BRDC International Trophy Silverstone 23 April   Emerson Fittipaldi   Lotus-Cosworth Report
  XIX International Gold Cup Oulton Park 29 May   Denny Hulme   McLaren-Cosworth Report
  I Italian Republic Grand Prix Vallelunga 18 June   Emerson Fittipaldi   Lotus-Cosworth Report
  II World Championship Victory Race Brands Hatch 22 October   Jean-Pierre Beltoise   BRM Report

Notes and referencesEdit

  1. ^ FIA Yearbook, 1974, pages 119 & 121
  2. ^ "Grand Prix Cancelled". Autosport. Retrieved 23 January 2016.
  3. ^ Only the best 5 results from the first 6 rounds and the best 5 results from the last 6 rounds counted towards the Championship. Numbers without parentheses are Championship points; numbers in parentheses are total points scored.

External linksEdit