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The 1952 German Grand Prix was the sixth race of the 1952 Formula One Season, set to take place at the Nürburgring, Nürburg, Germany over the weekend of August 3rd, 1951.

This race was won by Alberto Ascari of Ferrari.


Background Edit

As a consequence for the Second World War, Germany had been banned from competing in international motorsport. In 1951, the FIA agreed to lift the ban on Germany's involvement in international motorsport.The previous year it had already secured its return to the international grand prix calendar and by 1952, manufacturers like AFM, Veritas and BMW were now beginning to bring their new cars into the international Formula Two scene. Mercedes, who had dominated the grand prix scene in the 1930's was already planning a return to grand prix upon the return to Formula One regulations in 1954. Mercedes had already met immediate success in 1952 with their W194 sportscar. With most of the British contingent remaining at home after Silverstone to participate in the Daily Mail Trophy, the grid was freed up to allow for a greater presence of the German local entries, all looking to finally make their mark on the international racing scene.

  • Ferrari: Alberto Ascari had dominated the season, with the exception of the Indianapolis 500, he had won all the world championship races he had entered. Ascari's form had meant that he had a decent chance of securing the world championship in Germany. Ascari simply needed to win and secure the extra point for fastest lap to take the championship. The only ones now able to stop Ascari, were his two Ferrari teammates, Giuseppe Farina and Piero Taruffi. both drivers needing to win in Germany to keep their championship hopes alive. Ecurie Espadon would also enter their modern Ferrari 500 for Rudolf Fischer, joining him in the team for his first race was Rudolf Schoeller, racing the team's Ferrari sportscar in place of an unavailable Peter Hirt. Ecurie Francorchamps returned to the grid with their Ferrari 500, now being driven in the hands of Roger Laurent. Piero Carini would also enter his outdated Ferrari 166 model. 
  • Gordini: Injuries at a non-championship race had kept Jean Behra from competing at Silverstone, however he returned to the team fully fit for Germany. Now joining Behra and Robert Manzon as lead drivers, Maurice Trintignant took Prince Bira's position in the team, Bira having left the team after a disappointing season.
  • Maserati: After a season of Ferrari domination, Maserati's new A6GCM chassis was expected to be the only car capable of challenging the Ferrari 500. The private team of Escuderia Bandeirantes had already run the chassis for their drivers Gino Bianco and Eitel Cantoni, however the Maserati works team who had been out of action since the end of 1950 had yet to make their debut with the car. The Bandeirantes pair would return in Germany whilst the works squad would make their return at the Nurburgring. Juan Manuel Fangio, the team's lead driver was still injured whilst second driver, José Froilán González, was in England racing for BRM at the Daily Mail Trophy. Felice Bonetto was therefore hired to substitute for the team's lead drivers.
  • HWM: HWM interestingly sought to compete in Germany, despite the majority of the British presence remaining at home for the Daily Mail Trophy. Peter Collins, racing at the Nurburgring for the first time was the only regular HWM driver, he was joined by Paul Frère and Johnny Claes, both of whom had previously acted as HWM guest drivers. The Australian Tony Gaze would also participate in his privately entered HWM.
  • Aston Butterworth: Aside from HWM, Bill Aston competing in his own Aston Butterworth chassis would also take part in Germany. Aston hoping for a better result than Silverstone where he failed to start due to reliability issues.
  • Veritas: Veritas had been one of the newer manufacturers to be born out of post-war West Germany. The Meteor chassis had already been present in the previous year's edition of the race and would return again in 1952. There was also a number of the local contigent racing the BMW powered RS Veritas chassis in the race. Racing in the Meteor was the experienced Paul Pietsch, Toni Ulmen, making his second appearance in the Meteor this season and Hans Klenk, a German World War Two flying ace. One of Germany's most experienced racers, Adolf Brudes, entered the Veritas-BMW RS, being joined by some of Germany's younger talent of Fritz Riess, Theo Helfrich and Joseph Peters.
  • BMW: The old BMW 328 was one of the more successful voiturette cars of the 1930's, however by 1952 had become severely outdated. Nonetheless, drivers had continued to modify the old BMW chassis and a number of German drivers were entering the old BMW's for their home event. The experienced Rudolf Krause was one, whilst Ernst Klodwig would enter the unique 328 'Heck' model, one of the first rear engined grand prix cars. Younger German talent of Günther Bechem and Harry Merkel also entered BMW's whilst France's Marcel Balsa was also seen in one.
  • AFM: The AFM manufactuer was mainly comprised of the same design team who had created the BMW 328 in the 1930's. The team had since reformed under the AFM banner following the conclusion of the Second World War. The AFM was effictevely, the modern version of the BMW enabling it to be more competitive in the modern Formula Two. Younger German drivers of Willi Heeks, Helmut Niedermayr, Willi Krakau and Ludwig Fischer were all entrants using the AFM chassis.

Entry listEdit

The full entry list for the 1952 German Grand Prix is outlined below:

No. Driver Entrant Constructor Chassis Engine Model Tyre
101 Italy Alberto Ascari Italy Scuderia Ferrari Ferrari 500 Ferrari 500 2.0 L4 E
102 Italy Giuseppe Farina Italy Scuderia Ferrari Ferrari 500 Ferrari 500 2.0 L4 E
103 Italy Piero Taruffi Italy Scuderia Ferrari Ferrari 500 Ferrari 500 2.0 L4 E
104 Italy Piero Carini Italy Scuderia Marzotto Ferrari 166 F2 Ferrari 125 1.5 V12 P
105 Italy Felice Bonetto Italy Officine Alfieri Maserati Maserati A6GCM Maserati A6 2.0 L6 P
107 France Robert Manzon France Equipe Gordini Gordini T16 Gordini 20 2.0 L6 E
108 France Jean Behra France Equipe Gordini Gordini T16 Gordini 20 2.0 L6 E
109 France Maurice Trintignant France Equipe Gordini Gordini T16 Gordini 20 2.0 L6 E
110 France Marcel Balsa France Privateer Balsa Special BMW 328 2.0 L6 E
111 United Kingdom Peter Collins United Kingdom HW Motors HWM 52 Alta F2 2.0 L4 D
112 Belgium Paul Frère United Kingdom HW Motors HWM 52 Alta F2 2.0 L4 D
113 Belgium Johnny Claes United Kingdom HW Motors HWM 52 Alta F2 2.0 L4 D
114 United Kingdom Bill Aston United Kingdom W.S. Aston Aston NB41 Butterworth 2.0 F4 D
115 Brazil Gino Bianco Brazil Escuderia Bandeirantes Maserati A6GCM Maserati A6 2.0 L6 P
116 Uruguay Eitel Cantoni Brazil Escuderia Bandeirantes Maserati A6GCM Maserati A6 2.0 L6 P
117 Switzerland Rudi Fischer Switzerland Ecurie Espadon Ferrari 500 Ferrari 500 2.0 L4 P
118 Switzerland Rudolf Schoeller Switzerland Ecurie Espadon Ferrari 212 Ferrari 125 1.5 V12 P
119 Belgium Roger Laurent Belgium Ecurie Francorchamps Ferrari 500 Ferrari 500 2.0 L4 E
120 Australia Tony Gaze Australia Privateer HWM 52 Alta F2 2.0 L4 D
121 West Germany Fritz Riess West Germany Privateer Veritas RS Veritas 2.0 L6
122 West Germany Theo Helfrich West Germany Privateer Veritas RS Veritas 2.0 L6
123 West Germany Willi Heeks West Germany Privateer AFM 6 BMW 328 2.0 L6
124 West Germany Helmut Niedermayr West Germany Privateer AFM 6 BMW 328 2.0 L6
125 West Germany Toni Ulmen West Germany Privateer Veritas Meteor Veritas 2.0 L6
126 West Germany Adolf Brudes West Germany Privateer Veritas RS Veritas 2.0 L6
127 West Germany Paul Pietsch West Germany Motor-Presse-Verlag Veritas Meteor Veritas 2.0 L6
128 West Germany Hans Klenk West Germany Privateer Veritas Meteor Veritas 2.0 L6
129 West Germany Josef Peters West Germany Privateer Veritas RS Veritas 2.0 L6
130 West Germany Günther Bechem West Germany Bernhard Nacke Nacke Eigenbau BMW 328 2.0 L6
131 West Germany Ludwig Fischer West Germany Privateer AFM 6 BMW 328 2.0 L6
133 West Germany Willi Krakau West Germany Willi Krakau AFM 6 BMW 328 2.0 L6
134 West Germany Harry Merkel West Germany Willi Krakau Krakau Eigenbau BMW 328 2.0 L6
135 East Germany Ernst Klodwig East Germany Privateer Heck Eigenbau BMW 328 2.0 L6
136 East Germany Rudolf Krause East Germany Privateer Reif Eigenbau BMW 328 2.0 L6

QualifyingEdit

ReportEdit

Alberto Ascari took his fourth pole position in a row,his best time was only 2.4 seconds clear of Giuseppe Farina's second fastest time. The long twisty nature of the Nurburgring had allowed the performance gap to narrow between Ferrari and their rivals. Gordini were quick in practice, Trintignant in third was only three seconds slower than Ascari. Manzon in fourth was only a further four seconds adrift, the two drivers pleased to beat Piero Taruffi's works Ferrari.

Fischer in the private Ferrari was sixth, whilst Paul Pietsch was the fastest of the German contingent to move into seventh in his Veritas. Hans Klenk also performed well to take eighth on the grid in his own Veritas whilst Willi Heeks was the fastest AFM in ninth. Maserati's hopes of challenging Ferrari were dashed, Felice Bonetto could only manage tenth on the grid. Behra still recovering from his Chimay injuries was only eleventh on the grid, ahead of Riess and the HWM's of Frere and Gaze.

The HWM's were having trouble, both Collins and Claes had crankshaft failures and were unable to participate in practice. Ludwig Fischer's AFM was having similar issues and he likewise failed to make it out on track in practice. Harry Merkel's BMW failed to even make it to the circuit. Collins would frustratingly be unable to start the race, unlike Claes and Fischer he had never had any experience on the track and was not permitted to race with so little experience.

Qualifying ResultsEdit

The full qualifying results for the 1952 German Grand Prix are outlined below:

Pos. No. Driver Constructor Time Gap Ave. Speed
1 101 Italy Alberto Ascari Italy Ferrari 10:04.4 135.864 km/h
2 102 Italy Giuseppe Farina Italy Ferrari 10:07.3 +2.9s 135.215 km/h
3 109 France Maurice Trintignant France Gordini 10:19.1 +14.7s 132.638 km/h
4 107 France Robert Manzon France Gordini 10:25.3 +20.9s 131.323 km/h
5 103 Italy Piero Taruffi Italy Ferrari 10:26.3 +21.9s 131.113 km/h
6 117 Switzerland Rudi Fischer Switzerland Ferrari 10:41.9 +37.5s 127.926 km/h
7 127 West Germany Paul Pietsch West Germany Veritas 10:56.3 +51.9s 125.120 km/h
8 128 West Germany Hans Klenk West Germany Veritas
9 123 West Germany Willi Heeks West Germany AFM-BMW
10 105 Italy Felice Bonetto Italy Maserati
11 108 France Jean Behra France Gordini
12 121 West Germany Fritz Riess West Germany Veritas
13 112 Belgium Paul Frère United Kingdom HWM-Alta
14 120 Australia Tony Gaze Australia HWM-Alta
15 125 West Germany Toni Ulmen West Germany Veritas
16 115 Brazil Gino Bianco Brazil Maserati
17 119 Belgium Roger Laurent Belgium Ferrari
18 122 West Germany Theo Helfrich West Germany Veritas
19 126 West Germany Adolf Brudes West Germany Veritas
20 129 West Germany Josef Peters West Germany Veritas
21 114 United Kingdom Bill Aston United Kingdom Aston Butterworth
22 124 West Germany Helmut Niedermayr West Germany AFM-BMW
23 136 East Germany Rudolf Krause East Germany Reif-BMW
24 118 Switzerland Rudolf Schoeller Switzerland Ferrari
25 110 France Marcel Balsa France Balsa-BMW
26 116 Uruguay Eitel Cantoni Brazil Maserati
27 104 Italy Piero Carini Italy Ferrari
28* 133 West Germany Willi Krakau West Germany AFM-BMW
29 135 East Germany Ernst Klodwig East Germany Heck-BMW
30 130 West Germany Günther Bechem West Germany Nacke-BMW
31* 131 West Germany Ludwig Fischer West Germany AFM-BMW
32 113 Belgium Johnny Claes United Kingdom HWM-Alta
33* 111 United Kingdom Peter Collins United Kingdom HWM-Alta
34* 134 West Germany Harry Merkel West Germany Krakau-BMW
  • * Indicates a driver who did not take the start of the race.

GridEdit

Pos Pos Pos Pos
Driver Driver Driver Driver
______________
______________ 1
______________ 2 Alberto Ascari
______________ 3 Giuseppe Farina
4 Maurice Trintignant
Robert Manzon
______________
______________ 5
______________ 6 Piero Taruffi
7 Rudi Fischer
Paul Pietsch
______________
______________ 8
______________ 9 Hans Klenk
______________ 10 Willi Heeks
11 Felice Bonetto
Jean Behra
______________
______________ 12
______________ 13 Fritz Riess
14 Paul Frère
Tony Gaze
______________
______________ 15
______________ 16 Toni Ulmen
______________ 17 Gino Bianco
18 Roger Laurent
Theo Helfrich
______________
______________ 19
______________ 20 Adolf Brudes
21 Josef Peters
Bill Aston
______________
______________ 22
______________ 23 Helmut Niedermayr
______________ 24 Rudolf Krause
25 Rudolf Schoeller
Marcel Balsa
______________
______________ 26
______________ 27 Eitel Cantoni
28 Piero Carini
Willi Krakau*
______________
______________ 29
______________ 30 Ernst Klodwig
______________ 31 Günther Bechem
32 Ludwig Fischer*
Johnny Claes
  • * Krakau and Fischer could not take the start of the race.

RaceEdit

Report Edit

The Grand Prix was to be the final spectacle in what had been a large celebration of the 25th anniversary of the Nurburgring circuit with the circuit designer, Gustav Eichler held as the guest of honour. Support races had been held throughout the day, most notably, the Mercedes cars of Karl Kling and Hans Herrmann dominating the sportscar race. The Mercedes sportscars setting times faster than the third best time on the grand prix grid. It had been an impressive note of return for Germany to motorsport.

Ascari shot away from the start to take a somewhat expected lead of the race, behind him came Farina, Manzon and Taruffi. Bonetto had got an excellent start in his Maserati and had climbed to fifth. However after only half a lap, he suffered a puncture which sent him spinning into a ditch. After gaining assistance for the marshalls in pushing him out of the ditch, he limped around at the back of the field for another half a lap, only to return to the pits to be disqualified for receiving outside assistance. Bianco in the private Maserati would also retire his new A6GCM with engine failure. Trintignant was also having problems, he had dropped back at the start and then on the second lap he ran wide and damaged his suspension, forcing his retirement.

There was an extremely high rate of attrition at the Nurburgring, after only two laps, Carini, Peters, Helfrich, Frère and Pietsch had all joined Bonetto, Trintignant and Bianco in retirement. Aston, Schoeller and Krause were the next to retire on lap three. Cantoni in the final Maserati was out on lap four whilst lap five saw the retirements of Bechem, Balsa and Brudes. Gaze retired on lap six whilst Heeks was out on lap seven.

In the early laps, Taruffi had managed to make his way past the Gordini of Manzon to take third place. The Ferrari's once again seemingly unchallenged in their positions of 1-2-3 in the race. Ascari having set the fastest lap of the race on lap five and continuing to dominate the race, seemed likely to take the world title so long as nothing happened to his race lead. Manzon meanwhile was doing his best to keep pace with the Ferrari's, however on lap eight a wheel detached from his car, Manzon luckily managing to maintain control of his three wheeled Gordini to park his car in the grass.

The Ferrari's came in for a pit-stop during the mid-race, the three cars leaving the pits without drama. It seemed a relatively straightfoward 1-2-3 for Ascari, Farina and Taruffi, however drama began to unfold on the second last lap. Ascari who had opened up a massive lead to Farina in second decided to come in for a second pit stop. Ascari wanted his oil topped up, however the move had caught his mechanics unawares. The team in their desperation to serve Ascari quickly had let Farina take the lead of the race. More drama began to unfold when Taruffi began to suffer from a damaged suspension, causing him to fall into the clutches of Rudolf Fischer's private Ferrari.

Farina was left in the lead with a comfortable nine seconds to Ascari in second position. However Ascari returned to the track, determined to push on to take the victory and his first world title. Mid-way through the final lap, Ascari had caught his teammate and had pushed his way past to take the lead from Farina. Taruffi, meanwhile had lost third to Fischer who was now set for his first world championship podium. Taruffi being forced to be content with the three points for fourth, Behra in fifth place being too distant to challenge him.

After two seasons of close racing, 1952 had been dominated by a lone individual so far, that of Alberto Ascari. The man who allowed Ferrari to achieve their first championship success had thoroughly controlled the season. With Fangio still injured and Farina beginning to show his age, Ascari had ascended to the top of grand prix racing.

ResultsEdit

The full results for the 1952 German Grand Prix are outlined below:

Pos. No. Driver Constructor Laps Time/Retired Grid Points
1 101 Italy Alberto Ascari Italy Ferrari 18 3:06:13.3 1 9
2 102 Italy Giuseppe Farina Italy Ferrari 18 +14.1s 2 6
3 117 Switzerland Rudi Fischer Switzerland Ferrari 18 +7:10.1 6 4
4 103 Italy Piero Taruffi Italy Ferrari 17 +1 lap 5 3
5 108 France Jean Behra France Gordini 17 +1 lap 11 2
6 119 Belgium Roger Laurent Belgium Ferrari 16 +2 laps 17
7 121 West Germany Fritz Riess West Germany Veritas 16 +2 laps 12
8 125 West Germany Toni Ulmen West Germany Veritas 16 +2 laps 15
9 124 West Germany Helmut Niedermayr West Germany AFM-BMW 15 +3 laps 22
10 113 Belgium Johnny Claes United Kingdom HWM-Alta 15 +3 laps 32
11 128 West Germany Hans Klenk West Germany Veritas 14 +4 laps 8
12 135 East Germany Ernst Klodwig East Germany Heck-BMW 14 +4 laps 29
Ret 107 France Robert Manzon France Gordini 8 Wheel 4
Ret 123 West Germany Willi Heeks West Germany AFM-BMW 7 Engine 9
Ret 120 Australia Tony Gaze Australia HWM-Alta 6 Gearbox 14
Ret 110 France Marcel Balsa France Balsa-BMW 5 Engine 25
Ret 126 West Germany Adolf Brudes West Germany Veritas 5 Engine 19
Ret 130 West Germany Günther Bechem West Germany Nacke-BMW 5 Spark plug 30
Ret 116 Uruguay Eitel Cantoni Brazil Maserati 4 Transmission 26
Ret 136 East Germany Rudolf Krause East Germany Reif-BMW 3 Engine 23
Ret 118 Switzerland Rudolf Schoeller Switzerland Ferrari 3 Suspension 24
Ret 114 United Kingdom Bill Aston United Kingdom Aston Butterworth 2 Oil pressure 21
Ret 104 Italy Piero Carini Italy Ferrari 1 Brakes 27
Ret 127 West Germany Paul Pietsch West Germany Veritas 1 Gearbox 7
Ret 122 West Germany Theo Helfrich West Germany Veritas 1 Engine 18
Ret 112 Belgium Paul Frère United Kingdom HWM-Alta 1 Gearbox 13
Ret 129 West Germany Josef Peters West Germany Veritas 1 Gearbox 20
Ret 109 France Maurice Trintignant France Gordini 1 Accident 3
DSQ* 105 Italy Felice Bonetto Italy Maserati 1 Disqualified 10
Ret 115 Brazil Gino Bianco Brazil Maserati 0 Engine 16
DNS 133 West Germany Willi Krakau West Germany AFM-BMW
DNS 131 West Germany Ludwig Fischer West Germany AFM-BMW
DNS 111 United Kingdom Peter Collins United Kingdom HWM-Alta
DNS 134 West Germany Harry Merkel West Germany Krakau-BMW
Source:[1]
  • * Bonetto was disqualified for a push start.

MilestonesEdit

Standings after raceEdit

ReferencesEdit

External LinksEdit

V T E Germany German Grand Prix
Circuits Nürburgring (1951–1954, 1956–1958, 1960–1969, 1971–1976, 1985, 2007–2013*), AVUS (1959), Hockenheimring (1970, 1977–1984, 1986–2006, 2007–2014*, 2016, 2018–2019)
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* Nürburgring and Hockenheimring alternated between each other during these years.
V T E 1952 Formula One Season
Constructors AFM • Alta • Aston Butterworth • BMW • Cisitalia • Connaught • Cooper • ERA • Ferrari • Frazer Nash • Gordini • HWM • Maserati • OSCA • Veritas
Engines Alta • BMW • BPM • Bristol • Butterworth • Ferrari • Gordini • Küchen • Lea Francis • Maserati • OSCA • Veritas
Drivers Abecassis • Ascari • Aston • Balsa • Bayol • Bechem • Behra • Bianco • Bira • Bonetto • Brandon • Brown • Brudes • Cantoni • Carini • Claes • Collins • Comotti • Crespo • Crook • Downing • Dusio • Étancelin • Farina • L. Fischer • R. Fischer • Frère • Flinterman • Gaze • Giraud-Cabantous • J. F. González • de Graffenried • Hamilton • Hawthorn • Heeks • Hirt • Klenk • Klodwig • Krakau • Krause • Landi • Laurent • Legat • Lof • Macklin • Manzon • McAlpine • Merkel • Montgomerie-Charrington • S. Moss • Murray • Niedermayr • O'Brien • Parnell • Peters • Pietsch • Poore • Rol • Rosier • Salvadori • Schell • Schoeller • Simon • Stuck • Taruffi • de Terra • Thompson • de Tornaco • Trintignant • Ulmen • Villoresi • Wharton • G. Whitehead • P. Whitehead
Cars AFM 4 • AFM 6 • AFM 8 • Alta F2 • Aston Butterworth NB41 • Aston Butterworth NB42 • BMW 328 • Cisitalia D46 • Connaught A • Cooper T20 • ERA G • Ferrari 125/F2 • Ferrari 166/F2 • Ferrari 212 • Ferrari 375S • Ferrari 500 • Frazer Nash 421 • Frazer Nash FN48 • OSCA 20 • Simca-Gordini T11 • Simca-Gordini T15 • Gordini T16 • Gordini T16S • HWM 51/52 • HWM 52 • Maserati 4CLT/48 • Maserati A6GCM • Veritas Meteor • Veritas RS
Tyres Dunlop • Englebert • Pirelli
Races Switzerland • Indianapolis • Belgium • France • Britain • Germany • Netherlands • Italy
See also 1951 Formula One Season • 1953 Formula One Season • Category
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