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The 1981 Argentine Grand Prix was the third round of the 1981 Formula One Season. The race was won by Nelson Piquet ahead of Carlos Reutemann and Alain Prost. The race notably being the first podium for future four time world champion, Alain Prost.


BackgroundEdit

Following Brazil, there was tension in the Williams camp, neither Alan Jones or Carlos Reutemann were on speaking terms following Reutemann's disobedience in team orders in allowing Jones to take the race victory. The two Williams driver's were now one win apiece and were equal on points for the lead of the championship.

Lotus had once again brought its new Lotus 88 chassis to the grand prix and once again the race stewards rejected its legality. Lotus team manager Colin Chapman stormed from the circuit in disgust before the beginning of practice and failed to return for the remainder of the weekend.

Jean-Pierre Jabouille had now felt he had sufficiently recovered from his leg injuries sustained at the 1980 Canadian Grand Prix and returned to his Ligier seat for Argentina.


Entry ListEdit

The full entry list for the 1981 Argentine Grand Prix is displayed below:

No. Driver Entrant Constructor Chassis Engine Model Tyre
1 Australia Alan Jones United Kingdom Albilad Williams Racing Team Williams FW07C Ford Cosworth DFV V8 3.0 M
2 Argentina Carlos Reutemann United Kingdom Albilad Williams Racing Team Williams FW07C Ford Cosworth DFV V8 3.0 M
3 United States Eddie Cheever United Kingdom Tyrrell Racing Team Tyrrell 010 Ford Cosworth DFV V8 3.0 M
4 Argentina Ricardo Zunino United Kingdom Tyrrell Racing Team Tyrrell 010 Ford Cosworth DFV V8 3.0 M
5 Brazil Nelson Piquet United Kingdom Parmalat Racing Team Brabham BT49C Ford Cosworth DFV V8 3.0 M
6 Mexico Héctor Rebaque United Kingdom Parmalat Racing Team Brabham BT49C Ford Cosworth DFV V8 3.0 M
7 United Kingdom John Watson United Kingdom Marlboro McLaren International McLaren M29F Ford Cosworth DFV V8 3.0 M
8 Italy Andrea de Cesaris United Kingdom Marlboro McLaren International McLaren M29F Ford Cosworth DFV V8 3.0 M
9 Netherlands Jan Lammers West Germany Team ATS ATS D4 Ford Cosworth DFV V8 3.0 M
11 Italy Elio de Angelis United Kingdom Team Essex Lotus Lotus 81B Ford Cosworth DFV V8 3.0 M
12 United Kingdom Nigel Mansell United Kingdom Team Essex Lotus Lotus 81B Ford Cosworth DFV V8 3.0 M
14 Colombia Ricardo Londoñor United Kingdom Ensign Racing Ensign N180B Ford Cosworth DFV V8 3.0 M
15 France Alain Prost France Equipe Renault Elf Renault RE20B Renault EF1 V6t 1.5 M
16 France René Arnoux France Equipe Renault Elf Renault RE20B Renault EF1 V6t 1.5 M
17 Ireland Derek Daly United Kingdom March Grand Prix Team March 811 Ford Cosworth DFV V8 3.0 M
18 Chile Eliseo Salazar United Kingdom March Grand Prix Team March 811 Ford Cosworth DFV V8 3.0 M
20 Finland Keke Rosberg Brazil Fittipaldi Automotive Fittipaldi F8C Ford Cosworth DFV V8 3.0 M
21 Brazil Chico Serra Brazil Fittipaldi Automotive Fittipaldi F8C Ford Cosworth DFV V8 3.0 M
22 United States Mario Andretti Italy Marlboro Team Alfa Romeo Alfa Romeo 179C Alfa Romeo 1260 V12 3.0 M
23 Italy Bruno Giacomelli Italy Marlboro Team Alfa Romeo Alfa Romeo 179C Alfa Romeo 1260 V12 3.0 M
25 France Jean-Pierre Jabouille France Equipe Talbot Gitanes Ligier JS17 Matra MS81 V12 3.0 M
26 France Jacques Laffite France Equipe Talbot Gitanes Ligier JS17 Matra MS81 V12 3.0 M
27 Canada Gilles Villeneuve Italy Scuderia Ferrari SpA SEFAC Ferrari 126CK Ferrari 021 V6t 1.5 M
28 France Didier Pironi Italy Scuderia Ferrari SpA SEFAC Ferrari 126CK Ferrari 021 V6t 1.5 M
29 Italy Riccardo Patrese United Kingdom Ragno Arrows Beta Racing Team Arrows A3 Ford Cosworth DFV V8 3.0 M
30 Italy Siegfried Stohr United Kingdom Ragno Arrows Beta Racing Team Arrows A3 Ford Cosworth DFV V8 3.0 M
31 Argentina Miguel Ángel Guerra Italy Osella Squadra Course Osella FA1B Ford Cosworth DFV V8 3.0 M
32 Italy Beppe Gabbiani Italy Osella Squadra Course Osella FA1B Ford Cosworth DFV V8 3.0 M
33 France Patrick Tambay Hong Kong Theodore Racing Team Theodore TY01 Ford Cosworth DFV V8 3.0 M


Practice OverviewEdit

QualifyingEdit

Nelson Piquet's controversial Brabham BT49 with its hydro-pneumatic suspension took a convincing pole position at the Argentine circuit. As was typical on the fast circuits, the turbo charged Renault's were competitive with Alain Prost lining up in second with René Arnoux in fifth. Alan Jones qualified third whilst Williams teammate Carlos Reutemann started fourth for his home race. Completing the top ten was Gilles Villeneuve, Keke Rosberg, who had notably impressed again for Fittipaldi, Riccardo Patrese and Elio de Angelis.

Jean-Pierre Jabouille's comeback to grand prix racing was not successful, evidently still suffering from his leg injuries he failed to qualify his Ligier, missing the cut with the two Osella's and March's.

Qualifying ResultsEdit

Pos. No. Driver Constructor Time Gap
5 Brazil Nelson Piquet United Kingdom Brabham-Ford 1:42.665
2 15 France Alain Prost France Renault 1:42.981 + 0.316
3 1 Australia Alan Jones United Kingdom Williams-Ford 1:43.638 + 0.973
4 2 Argentina Carlos Reutemann United Kingdom Williams-Ford 1:43.935 + 1.270
5 16 France René Arnoux France Renault 1:43.977 + 1.312
6 6 Mexico Héctor Rebaque United Kingdom Brabham-Ford 1:44.100 + 1.435
7 27 Canada Gilles Villeneuve Italy Ferrari 1:44.132 + 1.467
8 20 Finland Keke Rosberg Brazil Fittipaldi-Ford 1:44.191 + 1.526
9 29 Italy Riccardo Patrese United Kingdom Arrows-Ford 1:45.008 + 2.343
10 11 Italy Elio de Angelis United Kingdom Lotus-Ford 1:45.065 + 2.400
11 7 United Kingdom John Watson United Kingdom McLaren-Ford 1:45.073 + 2.408
12 28 France Didier Pironi Italy Ferrari 1:45.108 + 2.443
13 3 United States Eddie Cheever United Kingdom Tyrrell-Ford 1:45.117 + 2.452
14 33 France Patrick Tambay Hong Kong Theodore-Ford 1:45.297 + 2.632
15 12 United Kingdom Nigel Mansell United Kingdom Lotus-Ford 1:45.369 + 2.704
16 14 Switzerland Marc Surer United Kingdom Ensign-Ford 1:45.734 + 3.069
17 22 United States Mario Andretti Italy Alfa Romeo 1:46.059 + 3.394
18 8 Italy Andrea de Cesaris United Kingdom McLaren-Ford 1:46.387 + 3.722
19 30 Italy Siegfried Stohr United Kingdom Arrows-Ford 1:46.444 + 3.779
20 21 Brazil Chico Serra Brazil Fittipaldi-Ford 1:46.706 + 4.041
21 26 France Jacques Laffite France Ligier-Matra 1:46.854 + 4.189
22 23 Italy Bruno Giacomelli Italy Alfa Romeo 1:46.918 + 4.253
23 9 Netherlands Jan Lammers Germany ATS-Ford 1:47.174 + 4.509
24 4 Argentina Ricardo Zunino United Kingdom Tyrrell-Ford 1:47.464 + 4.799
DNQ 31 Argentina Miguel Ángel Guerra Italy Osella-Ford 1:47.609 + 4.944
DNQ 32 Italy Beppe Gabbiani Italy Osella-Ford 1:48.121 + 2.456
DNQ 17 Ireland Derek Daly United Kingdom March-Ford 1:48.191 + 5.526
DNQ 25 France Jean-Pierre Jabouille France Ligier-Matra 1:49.581 + 6.916
DNQ 18 Chile Eliseo Salazar United Kingdom March-Ford 1:51.085 + 8.421

RaceEdit

ReportEdit

Jones got a flyer of a start from third on the grid to take the initial lead of the race. However it was soon apparent that Jones's Williams was suffering for pace and before the end of the lap he had dropped behind Piquet and on lap two he fell behind teammate Reutemann. Jones who was down 500 horsepower on his Ford-Cosworth DFV was soon passed by Alain Prost and Héctor Rebaque as well.

Buenos Aires, a circuit with long sweeping straights held a reputation as being an engine breaker and on lap three both Didier Pironi and Nigel Mansell toured into the pits with engine troubles. Keke Rosberg could not replicate his strong qualifying performance and came into the pits to retire with fuel feed problems the following lap. Marc Surer would not repeat his Brazilian success and retired with engine problems on lap 14.

The competitiveness of the Brabham team was evident in Argentina, Nelson Piquet streaked away in the lead whilst his teammate Héctor Rebaque had overtaken Prost's Renault for third on lap 11. A few laps later on lap 15 Rebaque had overtaken Reutemann for second making it a Brabham 1-2. Rebaque who had never performed so well in his career had his Formula One dream cut short on lap 32 when he retired from the race with a broken distributor arm.

From there the race was fairly processional, Piquet took a convincing win in his controversial Brabham chassis whilst behind him Reutemann finished second on home turf whilst Alain Prost took his first podium finish in Formula One. Taking the minor points was Alan Jones in fourth who had survived engine problems throughout the race with René Arnoux in the second Renault fifth whilst Elio de Angelis managed to gain a solitary point for Lotus.

After the race Ricardo Zunino was penalized one minute for shortcutting the track after a spin, dropping him from 11th to 13th in the final results.

Results Edit

Pos. No. Driver Constructor Laps Time/Retired Grid Points
1 5 Brazil Nelson Piquet United Kingdom Brabham-Ford 53 1:34:32.74 1 9
2 2 Argentina Carlos Reutemann United Kingdom Williams-Ford 53 +26.61s 4 6
3 15 France Alain Prost France Renault 53 +49.98s 2 4
4 1 Australia Alan Jones United Kingdom Williams-Ford 53 + 1:07.88s 3 3
5 16 France René Arnoux France Renault 53 + 1:31.85s 16 2
6 11 Italy Elio de Angelis United Kingdom Lotus-Ford 52 + 1 lap 10 1
7 29 Italy Riccardo Patrese United Kingdom Arrows-Ford 52 + 1 lap 9
8 22 United States Mario Andretti Italy Alfa Romeo 52 + 1 lap 17
9 30 Italy Siegfried Stohr United Kingdom Arrows-Ford 52 + 1 lap 19
10 23 Italy Bruno Giacomelli Italy Alfa Romeo 51 Out of fuel 22
11 8 Italy Andrea de Cesaris United Kingdom McLaren-Ford 51 + 2 laps 18
12 9 Netherlands Jan Lammers Germany ATS-Ford 51 + 2 laps 23
13 4 Argentina Ricardo Zunino United Kingdom Tyrrell-Ford 51 + 1 minute penalty 24
Ret 27 Canada Gilles Villeneuve Italy Ferrari 40 Driveshaft 7
Ret 33 France Patrick Tambay Hong Kong Theodore-Ford 36 Oil loss / Engine 14
Ret 7 United Kingdom John Watson United Kingdom McLaren-Ford 36 Crown wheel & pinion 11
Ret 6 Mexico Héctor Rebaque United Kingdom Brabham-Ford 32 Distributor rotor arm 6
Ret 21 Brazil Chico Serra Brazil Fittipaldi-Ford 28 Gearbox 20
Ret 26 France Jacques Laffite France Ligier-Matra 19 Vibration / Handling 21
Ret 14 Switzerland Marc Surer United Kingdom Ensign-Ford 14 Engine 16
Ret 20 Finland Keke Rosberg Brazil Fittipaldi-Ford 4 Fuel pump belt 8
Ret 12 United Kingdom Nigel Mansell United Kingdom Lotus-Ford 3 Engine 15
Ret 28 France Didier Pironi Italy Ferrari 3 Engine 12
Ret 3 United States Eddie Cheever United Kingdom Tyrrell-Ford 1 Clutch 13
DNQ 31 Argentina Miguel Ángel Guerra Italy Osella-Ford
DNQ 32 Italy Beppe Gabbiani Italy Osella-Ford
DNQ 17 Ireland Derek Daly United Kingdom March-Ford
DNQ 25 France Jean-Pierre Jabouille France Ligier-Matra
DNQ 18 Chile Eliseo Salazar United Kingdom March-Ford

MilestonesEdit

Standings after raceEdit

NotesEdit

V T E Argentina Argentine Grand Prix
Circuits Buenos Aires (1953 - 1958, 1960, 1971 - 1975, 1977 - 1981, 1995 - 1998)
Buenos Aires
Races 1953 • 1954 • 1955 • 1956 • 1957 • 1958 • 1959 • 1960 • 1961–1970 • 1971 • 1972 • 1973 • 1974 • 1975 • 1977 • 1978 • 1979 • 1980 • 1981 • 1982–1994 • 1995 • 1996 • 1997 • 1998
V T E 1981 Formula One Season
Teams Alfa Romeo • Arrows • ATS • Brabham • Ensign • Ferrari • Fittipaldi • Ligier • Lotus • March • McLaren • Osella • Renault • Theodore • Toleman • Tyrrell • Williams
Engines Alfa Romeo • Ferrari • Ford Cosworth • Hart • Matra • Renault
Drivers Alboreto • Andretti • de Angelis • Arnoux • Borgudd • de Cesaris • Cheever • Cogan • Daly • Francia • Gabbiani • Giacomelli • Ghinzani • Guerra • Henton • Jabouille • Jarier • Jones • Laffite • Lammers • Londoño • Mansell • Patrese • Piquet • Pironi • Prost • Rebaque • Reutemann • Rosberg • Salazar • Serra • Stohr • Surer • Tambay • G. Villeneuve • J. Villeneuve, Sr. • Warwick • Watson • Zunino
Cars Alfa Romeo 179 • Arrows A3 • ATS D4 • ATS HGS1 • Brabham BT49 • Ensign N180 • Ferrari 126CK • Fittipaldi F8 • Ligier JS17 • Lotus 81 • Lotus 87 • Lotus 88 • March 811 • McLaren M29 • McLaren MP4/1 • Osella FA1 • Renault RE20 • Renault RE30 • Theodore TY01 • Toleman TG181 • Tyrrell 010 • Tyrrell 011 • Williams FW07
Tyres Avon • Goodyear • Michelin • Pirelli
Races United States West • Brazil • Argentina • San Marino • Belgium • Monaco • Spain • France • Britain • Germany • Austria • Netherlands • Italy • Canada • Caesars Palace
See also 1980 Formula One Season • 1982 Formula One Season • Category
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