1955 Monaco Grand Prix

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Template:Coord Template:Infobox Grand Prix race report The 1955 Monaco Grand Prix was a Formula One motor race held at Monaco on May 22, 1955. It was the second round of the 1955 World Drivers' Championship and was given an honorary name, Grand Prix d'Europe.

Race report

Stirling Moss had been signed by Mercedes for the new season and Maserati had replaced him with Jean Behra. The Silver Arrows of Fangio and Moss dominated, running 1-2 until half distance, trailed by Ascari and Castellotti. At the halfway mark, Fangio retired with transmission trouble,<ref name="Kettlewell">Kettlewell, p.1383.</ref> giving the lead to Moss. Almost a lap ahead, a seemingly sure win for Moss was ended on Lap 80 when his Benz's engine blew.<ref name="Kettlewell" /> The new leader Ascari got it all wrong at the chicane coming out of the tunnel, his Lancia crashing through the barriers into the harbour and having to swim to safety. Maurice Trintignant, in a Ferrari 625 thought to be uncompetitive, inherited the lead and scored his first Formula One victory.<ref name="Kettlewell" />

Mercedes driver Hans Herrmann injured himself in practice and was replaced by André Simon.

This race marked the Grand Prix debut for Cesare Perdisa. It was the only Grand Prix appearance for Ted Whiteaway. This was the last Grand Prix appearance for Alberto Ascari; he was killed four days later testing a Ferrari sports car at Monza.

It was the first win for Maurice Trintignant and Englebert tyres. It was also the first podium and points for Eugenio Castellotti and Cesare Perdisa,Template:Citation needed and the first win for a French driver.<ref name="ESPNMT">Template:Cite web</ref>

Classification

Pos No Driver Constructor Laps Time/Retired Grid Points
1 44 Template:Flagicon Maurice Trintignant Ferrari 100 2:58:09.8 9 8
2 30 Template:Flagicon Eugenio Castellotti Lancia 100 +20.2 secs 4 6
3 34 Template:Flagicon Jean Behra
Template:Flagicon Cesare Perdisa
Maserati 99 +1 lap 5 2
2
4 42 Template:Flagicon Nino Farina Ferrari 99 +1 lap 14 3
5 28 Template:Flagicon Luigi Villoresi Lancia 99 +1 lap 7 2
6 32 Template:Flagicon Louis Chiron Lancia 95 +5 Laps 19
7 10 Template:Flagicon Jacques Pollet Gordini 91 +9 laps 20
8 48 Template:Flagicon Piero Taruffi
Template:Flagicon Paul Frère
Ferrari 86 +14 laps 15
9 6 Template:Flagicon Stirling Moss Mercedes 81 +19 laps 3
Ret 40 Template:Flagicon Cesare Perdisa
Template:Flagicon Jean Behra
Maserati 86 Spun off 11
Ret 26 Template:Flagicon Alberto Ascari Lancia 80 Accident 2
Ret 46 Template:Flagicon Harry Schell Ferrari 68 Engine 18
Ret 36 Template:Flagicon Roberto Mieres Maserati 64 Transmission 6
Ret 12 Template:Flagicon Élie Bayol Gordini 63 Transmission 16
Ret 2 Template:Flagicon Juan Manuel Fangio Mercedes 49 Transmission 1 1
Ret 8 Template:Flagicon Robert Manzon Gordini 38 Gearbox 13
Ret 4 Template:Flagicon André Simon Mercedes 24 Engine 10
Ret 18 Template:Flagicon Mike Hawthorn Vanwall 22 Throttle 12
Ret 14 Template:Flagicon Louis Rosier Maserati 8 Fuel leak 17
Ret 38 Template:Flagicon Luigi Musso Maserati 7 Transmission 8
DNQ 22 Template:Flagicon Lance Macklin Maserati
DNQ 24 Template:Flagicon Ted Whiteaway HWM-Alta
DNQ 4 Template:Flagicon Hans Herrmann Mercedes Driver injured

Lap leaders

Juan Manuel Fangio (49 laps), Stirling Moss (31 laps), and Maurice Trintignant (20 laps).

Shared drives

    • Car #34: Jean Behra (42 laps) and Cesare Perdisa (57 laps). They shared the 4 points for third place.
    • Car #48: Piero Taruffi (50 laps) and Paul Frère (36 laps).
    • Car #40: Cesare Perdisa (40 laps) and Jean Behra (46 laps).

Summary

  • Formula 1 debut for Cesare Perdisa, who shared third place drive with Jean Behra, and Ted Whiteaway, who failed to quality
  • Juan Manuel Fangio broke the track record that had stood since 1937, when Rudolf Caracciola turned a lap in 1:46.5 in a 5.6-litre Mercedes W125, running the circuit in 1:41.1 on the first day of practice in his Mercedes W196.
  • Alberto Ascari matched Fangio's time in his Lancia D50 during the Saturday practice, though the order had been set on the first day of practice in a singular exception to the policy of the time of all practice laps counting towards grid position.
  • In practice, Mercedes youngster Hans Herrmann crashed into a harbour wall and suffered injuries that took him out for the rest of the season.
  • Ascari was driving the number 26 car, the same number that had been on the P2 Alfa Romeo his father, Antonio Ascari, had been driving when killed in the July 26, 1925 French Grand Prix. The superstitious Ascari was between Mercedes drivers Fangio and Stirling Moss in the numbers 2 and 6 respectively.
  • Andre Simon had the first Mercedes to leave contention in the race, when engine failure took him out of the race. Of the Mercedes, Fangio left the race next with transmission problems on lap 50, leaving Stirling Moss in first and Ascari in second. Lap 80 saw Moss taken out by a minor problem in his car's sophisticated valve train, leaving Ascari in first. He never made it past the pits to see that, however: his Lancia didn't make the chicane (possibly losing traction on oil from Moss's engine failure) and he flipped over the barrier and in to the harbor. His Lancia was craned out of 25 feet of water while he spent the night in the hospital.
  • Later events indicate that he probably should have kept his superstitions up and taken this as an omen, but his motivation wouldn't quit and four days later he was back in the cockpit at Monza, where he was killed in a bizarre accident while testing a Ferrari. On the 26th of the month. There are no definite explanations for either of Ascari's accidents, but the Monza incident was, apart from possible undetected brain injuries after the crash, probably caused by an improperly-sized tire – 7.00x16 rather than 6.50x16 – combined with an imperfect track surface.
  • Mercedes also had not seen the last of their troubles – after all three cars left contention with mechanical problems at Monaco, the worst accident in racing history involved a Mercedes.
  • Louis Chiron's start made him the oldest driver to start a grand prix (55 years, 292 days).

Drivers' Championship standings after the race

Pos Driver Points
10px 1 1 Template:Flagicon Maurice Trintignant 11 Template:Frac
10px 1 2 Template:Flagicon Juan Manuel Fangio 10
10px 1 3 Template:Flagicon Nino Farina 6 Template:Frac
10px 10 4 Template:Flagicon Eugenio Castellotti 6
10px 1 5 Template:Flagicon José Froilán González 2
  • Note: Only the top five positions are included.

References

Template:Reflist

Sources

  • Kettlewell, Mike. "Monaco: Road Racing on the Riviera", in Northey, Tom, editor. World of Automobiles, Volume 12, pp. 1381–4. London: Orbis, 1974.

Template:F1 race report Template:F1GP 50-59