The first Formula 1 race took place 73 years ago.  But his winner also fled Czechoslovakia!

The first Formula 1 race took place 73 years ago. But his winner also fled Czechoslovakia!

Humans have always loved to drive fast. Long before the invention of internal combustion engines, there were horses (but also cows or dogs) sled races, horse races and many others. Therefore, it is not surprising that a few years after the appearance of cars, a new type of racing emerged. But for a long time there was no organization organizing this race officially. There were several attempts to establish such an organization, but all plans were disrupted first by World War I and then by World War II.

In 1946, the Fédération Internationale de l’Automobile (FIA) was founded, which later became the main body for motor sports, including Formula 1. The FIA ​​had plans to organize the Formula 1 World Championship in early 1949, but unfortunately unfortunately, due to lack of funds, these plans were not carried out.

First race, first injury, first winners

Finally, the first official Formula 1 World Championship took place on Saturday 13 May 1950 at the Silverstone Circuit in England. Riders and teams from different countries gathered here to compete for the title of world champion. The circuit has become one of the most famous and famous Grand Prix venues and has long been the home of British F1. In 1950, 21 pilots participated in the race. Among them were, for example, Juan Manuel Fangio, Giuseppe Farina and Stirling Moss. All these racers dreamed of getting the first victory in the history of Formula 1.

Photo: GettyImages

Giuseppe Farina, Formula 1 winner, 13 May 1950

The Silverstone Circuit was full of incredible twists and turns. Although all riders prepared well for the race, it was not without injuries. For example, British racing car designer Joe Fry crashed and was hospitalized with serious injuries. In addition, several competitors had to withdraw due to technical problems.

One of the interesting things about the first Formula 1 is that most of the racers at the time drove ordinary passenger cars, as special racing cars were not as common as they are today. For example, Italian racer Luigi Fagioli, who finished third, drove an Alfa Romeo 158, which was basically a rebuilt version of a regular passenger car.

The whole cycle for one tank

Today’s viewer will no doubt be surprised by the fact that refueling stations were not allowed in the first Formula 1 race. Drivers had to run the entire race on one tank, which meant that they had to plan their strategy and driving style very carefully in order to use fuel for efficiency as possible.

In addition, not all participants were professional drivers. For example, British racer Reg Parnell, who finished sixth, was working as a sales manager at Bentley Motors at the time. For him, racing was more than a hobby and a favorite recreational activity, but later he became a professional racer.

Pole position, i.e. the first place on the grid, was taken by Giuseppe “Nino” Farina, who also won the race and thus became the Formula 1 World Champion. His teammate Luigi Fagioli took second place (losing by only 2.6 seconds). . and Fangio finished third. Only Italians started in the first two rows, driving Alfa Romeo cars, which at that time had a strong position in motorsport.

The Italian file that could not handle the Brno corner

But did you know that the legend Giuseppe “Nino” Farina also raced in Czechoslovakia? It happened shortly before the first Formula 1 race. In 1949, “Nino” Farina took part in the Czechoslovak Grand Prix at the Masaryk Circuit in Brno, which at that time was on the normal roads of the Moravian capital.

Photo: GettyImages

Giuseppe “Nino” Farina

On the sharp side, the famous Italian lost control and drove his car into the crowd of spectators. He was soon followed by another racer, Reg Parnella (yes, the same one who was racing for fun at the time and worked as a Bentley salesman). During the fatal crowd accident, 14 people were injured and two of them died in the hospital. Later, this corner was named after the Italian athlete and is still known as Farina’s corner. A granite monument surrounded by white columns was erected in 2010 at the crash site to commemorate this tragic event.

However, both pilots quickly recovered from the accident and a year later both entered the first year of Formula 1. The race was very similar and the popularity of this sport took off. Although much has changed since then, including technological and safety measures, the Silverstone Circuit still remains an important milestone in the history of Formula 1. The race launched one of the most successful and popular motor races in the world, which is still huge. popular today. It is still one of the most prestigious motor competitions, attracting the best drivers, teams and fans from all over the world.