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Remembering the 1973 SWEDEN F1 GP

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From SRC, as you well know, we like to remember the history of motorsport, the epic moments that make us feel the emotion of the great prizes and the most famous races in the world.

Emotions that are a source of inspiration for the design and construction of our slot cars.

Denny Hulme McLaren Ford M23 GP SWEDEN 1973 Denny Hulme.

Next, we related you what happened there back in 1973 …

read 10 min 

For the first time in its history, the Formula 1 World Championship came to Sweden. The reason for organizing this Grand Prize was the growing popularity of the national championRonnie Peterson

The circuit

The event took place on the Anderstorp circuit, named Scandinavian Circuit

Built in 1968, it was known for a very long main straight, commonly used as an airstrip for the small Anderstorp airport.

It was considered a slow and boring circuit due to its countless curves, making any overtaking difficult. Located in the middle of a beautiful forest 100 km from Gothenburg and 400 km from Stockholm.

On the starting line

On the starting line there were fewer teams than usual. On the one hand, many had not managed to recover from the previous Monaco GP, and on the other, others had no budget for this trip.

Thus, Ferrari had a car for Jacky Ickx. Techno was missing from Chris Amon, the private Brabham from Andrea from Adamich and the two private March from James Hunt and David Purley.

Unmotivated by the poor results, Nanni Galli left Frank Williams’ team announcing his retirement. Instead, Williams quickly looked for a substitute, Danish driver Tom Belsø.

Without team since late 1972, Swede Reine Wisell returns on a March from Pierre Robert’s French team. Taking advantage of the occasion, the car is decorated in yellow honoring the Swedish national flag.

Qualifying session

All Swedish fans await the victory of national hero Ronnie Peterson, better known as “Super Swede”. This does not disappoint, as he achieves a tight pole position ahead of Cevert for less than a tenth of a second.

The big favorites to the title, Stewart and Fittipaldi share the second row. Reutemann demonstrates the progress of the Brabham BT42 by taking fifth place. Behind are the McLaren of Hulme and Revson.

Ickx, Beltoise and Hailwood follow them. Wisell takes a good fourteenth place with his yellow March.

Ranked 22nd and final, Belsø did not start because his car was handed over to Ganley. In fact, his sponsor did not pay Frank Williams the bill and therefore the Dane has no reason to compete in the race.

The start 

The race begins! Local hero Peterson retains his first place while Fittipaldi slips in between the two Tyrrell.

The Brazilian slips into his teammate overtaking him at the end of the straight, placing second in the first braking ahead of Cevert, Stewart, Reutemann, Ickx and Hulme.

Hill is forced to stop on the first corner due to electrical problems. Despite this, he managed to get to the pits.

The first lap

Peterson remains a leader ahead of E. Fittipaldi, Cevert, Stewart, Reutemann, Hulme, Ickx, Revson, Hailwood and Beltoise.

La race…

2nd: Wilson Fittipaldi loses control of his Brabham in the Opel corner, dangerously hitting the protection barriers.

3rd: The Lotus escape and are five seconds ahead of Cevert and Stewart. Reutemann must cede fifth place to Hulme. Hill returns to the track.

5th: The positions are maintained at the head of the race. Peterson and Fittipaldi fight wheel to wheel and precede Cevert, Stewart and Hulme by a few hundred meters.

7th: Hulme achieves the fastest lap of the race with a time of 1’26”146 ” ‘. In the back of the pack, Jarier battles the Shadow of Oliver and Follmer.

8th: Regazzoni crawls in the back of the peloton, victim of a very slow BRM engine and very poor driving.

10th: Peterson gains a one-and-a-half second advantage over Fittipaldi. Cevert is third to four seconds ahead of Stewart and Hulme. Reutemann is sixth to fifteen seconds ahead of Ickx, Revson, Hailwood, and Beltoise.

12th: Cevert fell strong and approaches the two Lotus JPS.

14th: Peterson and Fittipaldi are caught by Cevert, who has taken a small margin over Stewart.

16th: Beltoise stops at BRM to stop an oil leak. Leave the tenth place to Pace.

18th: Beltoise returns to the race in last place.

19th: Hill finally retires due to his problems with the electric pump. Your private Shadow cannot be trusted.

20th: Peterson leads against Fittipaldi (0.5s.), Cevert (1s.), Stewart (3s.), Hulme (4s.) And Reutemann (14s.). Next up are Ickx, Revson, Hailwood, and Pace.

22nd: Peterson, Fittipaldi and Cevert follow each other in a few meters, while Stewart and Hulme lie in wait. The podium will be disputed between these five pilots.

27th: Stewart begins to approach the leading trio appreciably.

32nd: Stewart manages to catch up with Cevert.

33rd: Stewart overtakes Cevert, placing third.

35th: As the race approaches, the time between Peterson, Fittipaldi, Stewart, Cevert and Hulme is less than five seconds. Reutemann is in sixth place, twenty seconds behind the leaders. Ickx remains in seventh place with an unstable Ferrari.

37th: Jarier abandons, throttle blocked.

38th: The Lotus take a small margin over their three pursuers.

40th: Peterson is the first ahead of E. Fittipaldi (0.5s.), Stewart (4.5s.), Cevert (5s.), Hulme (5.5s.) And Reutemann (21s.).

42nd: Hailwood surrenders, vibrations generated by Firestone tires on his Surtees make the car undriveable

45th: The quintet continues its ballet, to the delight of the Swedish public, but we are looking forward to it.

48th: Peterson leads ahead of Fittipaldi (1.2s.), Stewart (3s.), Cevert (4.5s.) And Hulme (5.5s.). Reutemann is still about twenty seconds from the leader. However, Ickx and Revson are far behind, more than fifty seconds from Peterson.

50th: Peterson is a few tenths of a second ahead of Fittipaldi, already looking at the Tyrrells in his rear-view mirrors. Nothing seems to move as long as no car breaks down.

51st: Oliver is the victim of a broken front right suspension and must stand on the grass.

53rd: At the moment, the two Lotus appear to be safe from an attack by the Tyrrells. Hulme takes off in the big corners to surprise Cevert, but is unsuccessful.

55th: Hulme is putting more and more pressure behind Stewart and Cevert.

58th: Beltoise’s engine explodes and the French, unable to control his BRM, goes off track and hits the guards. He is unharmed, but the accident spills oil on the track, forcing him to draw yellow and red flags.

60th: Peterson is now a second and a half ahead of Fittipaldi. He negotiated better than the Brazilian to overtake certain doubles.

61st: Cevert is hampered by double Revson, Hulme takes the opportunity to overtake him. McLaren team tactics?

65th: Fittipaldi begins to have problems in the gearbox. It is Stewart’s opportunity to harass the Brazilian.

66th: Peterson, Fittipaldi and Stewart are wheel to wheel, fighting for victory. Hulme is three seconds away from this trio, but making up time quickly. Cevert is planted. His car is not very fast and he wastes a lot of time with the first four.

68th: Hulme is only a second and a half from the top three.

70th: Fittipaldi continues with his problems he can only engage 4th gear. The world champion continues to fight despite everything, but he sees Cevert approaching him very quickly.

71st: Peterson, Stewart and Hulme are in two seconds. The winner is among these three men.

72nd: Cevert occupies the fourth place of Fittipaldi, his gearbox can no longer hold.

73rd: Stewart cannot find a way to get past Peterson, while Hulme watches the situation. Fittipaldi is now under threat from Reutemann.

74th: Reutemann beats Fittipaldi. Ickx also catches up with the Brazilian rider who can now only idle.

76th: Stewart lifts his foot and lets Hulme pass. The Scotsman immediately loses contact with the two leaders. A Tyrrell brake disc is overheating and the rider must slow down if he wants to finish the race.

77th: Hulme is now Peterson’s only opponent and is on his escapes. Fittipaldi must stop on the grass after definitely breaking the gearbox. It is his first abandonment of the year.

78th: Things look bad for Peterson, the Lotus is beginning to be unstable. Hulme is about to catch up. Stewart slows down and Cevert passes him.

79th: Peterson suffers a “slow flat tire” in a rear tire. He no longer has the means to resist Hulme, who is the new leader. The Swede is resigned to taking precautions to keep second place. Stewart is no better as he has to let Reutemann pass.

80th and final lap: Denny Hulme earns his seventh F1 career victory, the first of the season for McLaren and the first of the M23.

A victory fought and deserved for its perseverance. Peterson manages to finish second not being able to hide the frustration in front of his public.

Cevert is third and precedes Reutemann, who scored his first points of the year. Stewart was unlucky, but can still be happy to take fifth place. Sixth Ickx, scored the first point of the Ferrari 312B3. Revson finishes seventh and precedes Beuttler, Regazzoni, Pace, Ganley, E. Fittipaldi, Lauda and Follmer.

After the race

The GP was long (1h 56 minutes) and complicated. Due to the heat the mechanics suffered a lot of wear, particularly those of Lotus and Tyrrell.

In this endurance game, Hulme “The bear” this time acted as “old fox” and was the one who took the win.

He wasn’t the most talented driver on the grid, but he had a consistent and stubborn character. Endowed with great physical strength, it allowed him to endure the pressure until the end.

This victory was a triumph for Teddy Mayer and Gordon Coppock as the McLaren M23 was competitive against the Tyrrell and Lotus, now being the third team in the championship.

On the podium, Hulme and Cevert tried to comfort Peterson, disappointed in his failure. Bad luck haunts the Swede chasing his first victory.

The Podium

Hulme Denis
Denny Hulme (The Bear)
Pos No Pilot Team Laps ScoringStarting LinePoints
Denny HulmeMcLarenFord80 1:56:46.0 9 
Ronnie PetersonLotusFord80 + 4.039 6 
François Cevert TyrrellFord80 + 14.667 4 


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