The 1984 European Grand Prix, otherwise officially known as the XXXVI AvD-Großer Preis von Europa, was the fifteenth and penultimate round of the 1984 FIA Formula One World Championship, staged at the Nürburgring, Germany, on the 7 October 1984. The race, which was the first Grand Prix to be staged on the new Nürburgring GP-Strecke, would see Alain Prost claim victory as he closed the gap on teammate Niki Lauda at the head of the Championship.
A series of big announcements were made in the build-up to the race, with the biggest news originating from Michelin, who announced that they would withdraw from F1 at the end of the 1984 campaign. Elsewhere the Ford funded Zakspeed was unveiled ahead of its planned debut in 1985, while Carl Haas revealed plans to enter his own F1 team in 1986.
On track, meanwhile, it was Nelson Piquet who claimed pole position during qualifying, beating title pretender Prost by three tenths. Championship leader Niki Lauda, meanwhile, would qualify a distant fifteenth, with rain during Saturday preventing any improvements on Friday's efforts.
The start would see Piquet make an unusually sluggish getaway in the Brabham-BMW, allowing Prost and Patrick Tambay to sprint past to claim the lead. Lauda, meanwhile, would make a relatively good start, before a huge accident eliminated six drivers at the first corner.
The cause of said accident was Ayrton Senna, who misjudged his braking point and slammed straight into the back of Keke Rosberg. Seeing this, Marc Surer jumped on his brakes, resulting in Gerhard Berger slamming into the back of his Arrows-BMW, with the quartet of sliding cars also collecting Teo Fabi and Piercarlo Ghinzani en-route to the grass.
Five of the drivers were out on the spot, with the cars abandoned at the side of the circuit without the race being stopped. Fabi was the only one to rejoin, courtesy of an illegal push-start, although his race would be ended later on by a gearbox failure.
On track, meanwhile, Prost would establish a fair lead over Tambay and Piquet, while Lauda made an early charge through the field. Indeed, the Austrian ace would break into the points before the end of lap five, before chasing after the top five which had already broken clear.
Yet, there would be no further overtaking action at the head of the field, with the only changes coming when Tambay and Derek Warwick hit engine trouble. The former's retirement mid-race allowed Prost to cruise home to a sixth victory of the season, while Piquet lost second on the final lap after running out of fuel. He would, however, still claim third ahead of Lauda, René Arnoux and Riccardo Patrese.
The results of the race meant that Prost trailed teammate Lauda by 3.5 points heading into the season finale in Portugal, with McLaren-TAG already declared as the Constructors' Championship Champions.
In terms of the Championship Niki Lauda's fifth victory of the season last time out in Italy ensured that the Austrian would arrive at the Nürburgring with a 9.5 point lead at the head of the field, meaning he would take the title with victory. Indeed, teammate Alain Prost would have to finish ahead of Lauda if he was to keep his title challenge alive, with neither driver set to lose points as a result of the dropped score rule. Behind, Elio de Angelis arrived in Germany too far back to challenge having failed to score at Monza, leaving him at the head of the fight to finish third.
With McLaren-TAG already declared as Constructors Champions all of the focus in Italy had been on the fight for second, where Ferrari had moved back ahead of Lotus-Renault. Indeed, the Scuderia had moved 1.5 points ahead in their season-long game of leapfrog, having trailed the team from Ethel by 4.5 at the start of the Italian weekend. Those two also looked set to duel for the runner-up spot until the end of the season, although Renault and Brabham-BMW still had a mathematical chance of overtaking them upon arrival in Germany.
The full entry list for the 1984 European Grand Prix is outlined below:
The full qualifying results for the 1984 European Grand Prix are outlined below:
|9||22||Riccardo Patrese||Alfa Romeo||1:21.937||1:41.724||+3.066s|
|13||23||Eddie Cheever||Alfa Romeo||1:22.525||1:41.285||+3.654s|
|17||26||Andrea de Cesaris||Ligier-Renault||1:23.034||1:42.362||+4.163s|
|20||24||Piercarlo Ghinzani||Osella-Alfa Romeo||1:24.699||1:42.746||+5.828s|
|22||30||Jo Gartner||Osella-Alfa Romeo||1:26.156||1:48.214||+7.285s|
|23||11||Elio de Angelis||Lotus-Renault||1:26.161||1:39.762T||+7.290s|
- Bold indicates best/qualifying time.
- T Indicates driving a test/spare car in qualifying sessions.
- * Fabre's entry was withdrawn as the Frenchman lacked a Super Licence.
|18||Andrea de Cesaris|
|24||Elio de Angelis|
The full results for the 1984 European Grand Prix are outlined below:
|6||22||Riccardo Patrese||Alfa Romeo||66||+1 lap||9||1|
|7||26||Andrea de Cesaris||Ligier-Renault||65||+2 laps||17|
|8||21||Mauro Baldi||Spirit-Hart||65||+2 laps||24|
|9*||18||Thierry Boutsen||Arrows-BMW||64||Out of fuel||11|
|10||25||François Hesnault||Ligier-Renault||64||+3 laps||19|
|12*||30||Jo Gartner||Osella-Alfa Romeo||60||Out of fuel||22|
|Ret||15||Patrick Tambay||Renault||47||Fuel injection||3|
|Ret||23||Eddie Cheever||Alfa Romeo||37||Fuel pump||13|
|Ret||11||Elio de Angelis||Lotus-Renault||25||Turbo||23|
|Ret||24||Piercarlo Ghinzani||Osella-Alfa Romeo||0||Accident||20|
- * Boutsen, Warwick, and Gartner were classified despite retiring as they had completed 90% of the race distance.
- First race at the Nürburgring GP-Strecke.
- 25th entry for Thierry Boutsen.
- Castrol earned their tenth pole position as a lubricant manufacturer.
- Fifteenth victory for Alain Prost.
- McLaren claimed their 41st victory as a constructor.
- Nelson Piquet claimed the 41st and final fastest lap recorded by a Brabham chassis.
Victory ensured that Alain Prost kept his title hopes alive heading into the season finale in Portugal, with the Frenchman just 3.5 points behind teammate Niki Lauda. Indeed, the Austrian would win his third World Championship if he finished second at Estoril, regardless of what Prost did, with the Frenchman having to finish third or higher just to overhaul Lauda's tally. The battle for third would also have to be concluded at the final race, with Elio de Angelis, the man in third, through to Derek Warwick in seventh, all having a mathematical chance to finish best of the rest.
In the Constructors' Championship McLaren-TAG continued to show their dominance, with the Anglo-German effort ending the European Grand Prix with 128.5 points to their name. Ferrari had remained their closest "challengers", albeit with less than half the number of points, and had opened a 9.5 point advantage over third placed Lotus-Renault. Indeed, with one race the fight for second seemed to be over, although the Ethel based squad still had a mathematical chance of overhauling the Scuderia in Portugal.
Only point scoring drivers and constructors are shown.
Images and Videos:
- ↑ 1.00 1.01 1.02 1.03 1.04 1.05 1.06 1.07 1.08 1.09 1.10 1.11 1.12 1.13 1.14 1.15 1.16 1.17 'European GP, 1984', grandprix.com, (Inside F1 Inc., 2015), http://www.grandprix.com/gpe/rr403.html, (Accessed 21/03/2019)
- ↑ 'Europe 1984: Entrants', statsf1.com, (Stats F1, 2015), https://www.statsf1.com/en/1984/europe/engages.aspx, (Accessed 21/03/2019)
- ↑ Cite error: Invalid
<ref>tag; no text was provided for refs named
- ↑ 'Europe 1984: Qualifications', statsf1.com, (Stats F1, 2016), https://www.statsf1.com/en/1984/europe/engages.aspx, (Accessed 21/03/2019)
- ↑ 5.0 5.1 5.2 'Europe 1984: Result', statsf1.com, (Stats F1, 2016), https://www.statsf1.com/en/1984/europe/classement.aspx, (Accessed 21/03/2019)
- ↑ 6.0 6.1 6.2 '1984 European GP', chicanef1.com, (Chicane F1, 2015), http://www.chicanef1.com/racetit.pl?year=1984&gp=European%20GP&r=1, (Accessed 21/03/2019)
- ↑ 7.0 7.1 7.2 7.3 '15. Europe 1984', statsf1.com, (Stats F1, 2014), https://www.statsf1.com/en/1984/europe.aspx, (Accessed 21/03/2019)
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