The 1985 Detroit Grand Prix, otherwise known as the Detroit Grand Prix IV was the sixth race of the 1985 FIA Formula One World Championship, held on the 23 June 1985 on the Detroit Street Circuit. The race was won by Keke Rosberg in a Williams-Honda, almost a minute ahead of the Ferrari duo of Stefan Johansson and Michele Alboreto.
Regardless, the entry would be the same as it had been a week earlier in Canada, and would see Lotus-Renault claim pole position for the fifth straight race. This time it was Ayrton Senna who topped the time sheets, with Nigel Mansell in the #5 Williams-Honda alongside.
Senna would subsequently ace his start to sprint into the lead on raceday, while an equally impressive getaway saw Rosberg leap from fifth to second before the first corner. The rest of the field would thunder into the first corner behind Mansell, while Championship leader Alboreto dropped out of the top six after a sluggish getaway.
The opening laps suggested that the race would be dictated by tyres, with Senna's early pace soon deteriorating. That allowed Rosberg to pass with little resistance on lap eight, prompting Senna to pit at the end of the lap for fresher, and harder, Goodyears.
That left the two Williams-Hondas running one-two, while Alboreto moved through to third with an aggressive recovery drive. Yet, a few laps after moving into the top three the Italian would begin to suffer from tyre grip and wear concerns, allowing Elio de Angelis to sneak through to third.
A spin for Mansell on lap twenty would promote Alboreto back onto the podium, while de Angelis tried to catch the now out-of-sight Rosberg. Mansell, meanwhile, would rejoin just ahead of Stefan Johansson, but soon fell behind the Swede as his tyres continued to struggle.
Indeed, Mansell only lasted a few laps more until his race was ended by a spin, following Alain Prost's exit a few laps earlier. Alboreto, meanwhile, would lose more and more pace with his wearing tyres and so slipped down the order, with Martin Brundle in the lowly Tyrrell-Ford Cosworth briefly running in third after de Angelis abandoned second for a new nose after contact with a backmarker.
Unfortunately for Brundle he would be unable to escape Alboreto's attentions when the Italian finally found some pace, with the Ferrari easing past the Tyrrell without much issue. Indeed, Brundle's glory run was to come to an end a few laps later when he smacked into Philippe Alliot, promoting teammate Stefan Bellof into fourth.
The race looked to be settled from the that point, although Rosberg almost lost the lead when he pitted on lap 50 to have his radiators cleared. Yet, he would manage to rejoin ahead of second placed Johansson and duly blasted clear, leaving the Swede in a relatively lonely second.
With that the race was largely done, barring a late accident for Senna as he tried to challenge Alboreto for third, only to put himself into the wall. Regardless, Rosberg swept home to claim a comfortable victory from Johansson and Alboreto, with Bellof, de Angelis and Nelson Piquet claiming the remaining points.
The Detroit Grand Prix of 1985 would be heralded by news of Ford agreeing to supply a new American entry with engines, namely the incoming Lola squad. This new engine was to be turbocharged, with Ford again commissioning Cosworth to develop the engine as a replacement for the now out-dated DFV. Indeed, while Ford had been heavily linked with the Zakspeed project, and had even reportedly supplied an L4 engine block, the American manufacturer were still reluctant to fully commit to an F1 project themselves, citing how expensive racing in F1 had become.
Into the Championship, and victory in Canada had propelled Michele Alboreto back into the lead, the Italian ace having moved five points clear of Alain Prost in second. Indeed, for the second weekend in succession the Frenchman had ended the afternoon level on points with the driver in third, Elio de Angelis, but was considered to be ahead having picked up two wins. A significant twelve point gap then separated them from fourth placed Patrick Tambay, while Ayrton Senna had remained in fifth.
In the Constructors Championship Ferrari had dethroned Lotus-Renault in Canada, with the Scuderia's one-two in Montreal leaving them on 37 points. The Norfolk based squad, meanwhile, had moved onto 31 points, keeping them six ahead of defending Champions McLaren-TAG Porsche in third. Elsewhere Renault had held station in fourth and Williams-Honda had moved into fifth, with eight of F1's sixteen registered teams on the score board.
The full entry list for the 1985 Detroit Grand Prix is outlined below:
The full qualifying results for the 1985 Detroit Grand Prix are outlined below:
|4||2||Alain Prost||McLaren-TAG Porsche||1:44.088||—||+2.037s|
|7||23||Eddie Cheever||Alfa Romeo||1:44.231||2:05.540||+2.180s|
|8||11||Elio de Angelis||Lotus-Renault||1:44.769||—||+2.718s|
|12||1||Niki Lauda||McLaren-TAG Porsche||1:46.266||—||+4.215s|
|14||22||Riccardo Patrese||Alfa Romeo||1:46.592||—||+4.541s|
|17||25||Andrea de Cesaris||Ligier-Renault||1:47.393||2:12.268||+5.342s|
|18||3||Martin Brundle||Tyrrell-Ford Cosworth||1:47.563||—||+5.512s|
|19||4||Stefan Bellof||Tyrrell-Ford Cosworth||1:47.911||—||+5.860s|
|22||24||Piercarlo Ghinzani||Osella-Alfa Romeo||1:48.546||2:11.268||+6.495s|
|25||29||Pierluigi Martini||Minardi-Motori Moderni||3:04.446||—||+1:22.395|
- T Indicates a driver used their test/spare car to set their best time in that session.
- Bold indicates a driver's best/qualifying time.
- * Berg's entry was withdrawn after an issue with his registration.
|______________||Elio de Angelis|
|Andrea de Cesaris||18|
The full results for the 1985 Detroit Grand Prix are outlined below:
|2||28||Stefan Johansson||Ferrari||63||+ 57.549s||9||6|
|3||27||Michele Alboreto||Ferrari||63||+ 1:03.170||3||4|
|4||4||Stefan Bellof||Tyrrell-Ford Cosworth||63||+ 1:06.225||19||3|
|5||11||Elio de Angelis||Lotus-Renault||63||+ 1:26.966||8||2|
|6||7||Nelson Piquet||Brabham-BMW||62||+ 1 Lap||10||1|
|7||18||Thierry Boutsen||Arrows-BMW||62||+ 1 Lap||21|
|8||8||Marc Surer||Brabham-BMW||62||+ 1 Lap||11|
|9||23||Eddie Cheever||Alfa Romeo||61||+ 2 Laps||7|
|10||25||Andrea de Cesaris||Ligier-Renault||61||+ 2 Laps||17|
|11||17||Gerhard Berger||Arrows-BMW||60||+ 3 Laps||24|
|12||26||Jacques Laffite||Ligier-Renault||58||+ 5 Laps||16|
|Ret||3||Martin Brundle||Tyrrell-Ford Cosworth||30||Collision||18|
|Ret||2||Alain Prost||McLaren-TAG Porsche||19||Brakes||4|
|Ret||22||Riccardo Patrese||Alfa Romeo||19||Electrical||14|
|Ret||29||Pierluigi Martini||Minardi-Motori Moderni||11||Engine||25|
|Ret||1||Niki Lauda||McLaren-TAG Porsche||10||Brakes||12|
|Ret||24||Piercarlo Ghinzani||Osella-Alfa Romeo||0||Accident||22|
- T Indicates a driver used their test/spare car.
- Alfa Romeo made their 100th Grand Prix start as a constructor.
- Nelson Piquet made his 100th start.
- Hart competed at their 50th Grand Prix.
- 200th race entry for Castrol as a lubricant supplier.
- Fourth career victory for Keke Rosberg.
- Williams secured their nineteenth victory.
- Elio de Angelis set a new record for most career fifth place finishes - 13.
Michele Alboreto retained the lead in the Championship as a result of the Detroit Grand Prix, and even managed to grow his advantage to seven points. Elio de Angelis, meanwhile, had moved into a clear second ahead of Alain Prost, while Stefan Johansson moved into fourth after his second second place in two races. Keke Rosberg, meanwhile, would leap into the top five after claiming victory, while double World Champion Nelson Piquet was finally on the board, albeit down in sixteenth.
In the Constructors' Championship it was still Ferrari who led the charge, ending the weekend on 47 points. Indeed, the Scuderia had managed to extend their lead over Lotus-Renault with a double podium finish, opening a fourteen point gap between themselves and their Norfolk based challengers. Behind, McLaren-TAG Porsche had retained third ahead of Williams-Honda, while Brabham-BMW appeared at the foot of the scorers' list in ninth.
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 1.18 1.19 1.20 1.21 'United States GP, 1985', grandprix.com, (Inside F1 Inc., 2015), http://www.grandprix.com/gpe/rr410.html, (Accessed 24/03/2019)
- ↑ 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 2.4 2.5 2.6 '6. USA 1985', statsf1.com, (Stats F1, 2014), https://www.statsf1.com/en/1985/etats-unis.aspx, (Accessed 24/03/2019)
- ↑ 'USA 1985: Entrants', statsf1.com, (Stats F1, 2015), https://www.statsf1.com/en/1985/etats-unis/engages.aspx, (Accessed 24/03/2019)
- ↑ '1985 Detroit Grand Prix IV - QUALIFYING 1', formula1.com, (Formula One World Championship Ltd., 2019), https://www.formula1.com/en/results.html/1985/races/487/detroit/qualifying-1.html, (Accessed 24/03/2019)
- ↑ '1985 Detroit Grand Prix IV - QUALIFYING 2', formula1.com, (Formula One World Championship Ltd., 2019), https://www.formula1.com/en/results.html/1985/races/487/detroit/qualifying-2.html, (Accessed 24/03/2019)
- ↑ 'USA 1985: Qualifications', statsf1.com, (Stats F1, 2016), https://www.statsf1.com/en/1985/etats-unis/qualification.aspx, (Accessed 24/03/2019)
- ↑ 7.0 7.1 'USA 1985: Result', statsf1.com, (Stats F1, 2016), https://www.statsf1.com/en/1985/etats-unis/classement.aspx, (Accessed 24/03/2019)
- ↑ 8.0 8.1 '1985 Detroit GP', chicanef1.com, (Chicane F1, 2015), http://www.chicanef1.com/racetit.pl?year=1985&gp=Detroit%20GP&r=1, (Accessed 24/03/2019)
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