They don’t let the crowd stand this close to the grid today. Everyone is perched right at the edge of the track, and just on the exit of the 140 mph Woodcote Corner. If two cars had come together leaving the grid…
But this was at Silverstone for the start of the British Grand Prix on July 10, 1965. Closest to the camera is Jackie Stewart with his BRM 61/2. Then going across the front row, next is Richie Ginther with the Honda RA272, Graham Hill in the other BRM and, on pole, the great Jim Clark with a Lotus 33. Visible in the second row is John Surtees in a Ferrari 158/63 but now with a V12 1.5 liter motor.
Clark’s pole time of 1’30.8 was the first time anyone had lapped under 1’31, indeed the first three rows were under the prior lap record! In the race, Ginther made a great start to lead Clark into Copse and out onto Hangar Straight before the Lotus took over the lead and began to pull away. After Ginther slowed with ignition problems on lap 2 to finally retire, Graham Hill took over the chase with Surtees following in third. Clark’s engine began to misfire and lose oil, such that he had to coast around Silverstone’s long high speed bends to avoid losing oil pressure. Hill, well advised by his pit of Clark’s problems, came inexorably closer, taking fastest lap in the process, but was still 3.2 seconds adrift at the finish. Clark thus won his fourth British GP in a row. 1965 was perhaps his greatest year: taking his second World Championship in F1 and winning the Indy 500, plus many other races.
Photo by Colin Waldeck ©The Klemantaski collection – http://www.klemcoll.com