The 1987 Detroit Grand Prix, otherwise known officially as the Detroit Grand Prix VI, was the fifth round of the 1987 FIA Formula One World Championship, staged on the 21 June 1987 at the Detroit Street Circuit. The race would see Ayrton Senna claim victory and the Championship lead for Lotus-Honda, as former leader Alain Prost finished third.
Nigel Mansell would claim pole position during qualifying, beating Senna with his Williams-Honda as teammate Nelson Piquet claimed third. Thierry Boutsen was best of the rest in fourth for Benetton-Ford Cosworth, with Championship leader Prost claiming fifth for McLaren-TAG Porsche.
Mansell would take the lead at the start of the race, leaving Senna to squabble for second with Piquet. The rest of the field piled in behind them, resulting in Stefan Johansson breaking his front wing on the back Derek Warwick, while Satoru Nakajima smacked into Ivan Capelli and Adrián Campos.
Senna quickly managed to escape Piquet's attentions, and duly tried to chase Mansell as the Brit broke away at the head of the field. Piquet, meanwhile, would fight hard to keep Eddie Cheever at bay, only to give himself a puncture when the two clashed wheels on lap seven.
Cheever's hopes were to come to an end shortly after, with a lunge from Teo Fabi leaving both the American and the Italian in the pits for repairs. Michele Alboreto therefore shuffled into third ahead of Boutsen and Prost, although Boutsen soon dropped back with a brake issue.
Once Alboreto dropped out with a gearbox failure the order would remain stable until the stops, where Mansell lost a bundle of time due to a sticking wheel nut. That allowed Senna to sneak through into the lead, while Piquet managed to catch up to the back of Prost.
Prost subsequently fell to Piquet in the closing stages, while Mansell's pace deteriorated late on as his legs began cramping. The Brit duly tumbled back behind Piquet, Prost and Gerhard Berger, as Senna swept across the line to claim victory.
That victory left Senna in the lead of the Championship, opening out a two point lead over former leader Prost. McLaren-TAG Porsche, meanwhile, would retain the lead in the Constructors' Championship, five ahead of Williams-Honda, while Lotus-Honda retained third.
Alain Prost had retained the lead in the Championship in Monaco, although Ayrton Senna's maiden triumph in the Principality had seen the Brazilian close to within three points of the Frenchman. Stefan Johansson, meanwhile, had slipped to third ahead of Nelson Piquet, while Nigel Mansell had tumbled to fifth, eight off the lead. Elsewhere, Jonathan Palmer and Ivan Capelli had added their names to board, meaning fifteen drivers had scored across the opening four races.
In the Constructors' Championship it had been a similar story in Monte Carlo, with McLaren-TAG Porsche retaining their lead despite failing to score. Instead, Williams-Honda and Lotus-Honda had closed the gap to the leaders, ending the Monaco weekend nine and thirteen off the lead respectively. Ferrari, meanwhile, had made significant ground in fourth after doubling their tally for the season, while Brabham-BMW completed the top five.
Philippe Streiff had continued to hold the lead in the Jim Clark Trophy after the Monaco Grand Prix, although his teammate Jonathan Palmer was just three points behind. Behind, Pascal Fabre had made ground in third ahead of Philippe Alliot, while Tyrrell-Ford Cosworth arrived in the US with the lead in the Colin Chapman Trophy.
The full entry list for the 1987 Detroit Grand Prix is outlined below:
- Entries with a white background denote eligibility for the Jim Clark Trophy and Colin Chapman Trophy.
The full qualifying results for the 1987 Detroit Grand Prix are outlined below:
|4||20||Thierry Boutsen||Benetton-Ford Cosworth||1:44.686||1:42.050||+2.786s|
|5||1||Alain Prost||McLaren-TAG Porsche||1:46.042||1:42.357||+3.093s|
|8||19||Teo Fabi||Benetton-Ford Cosworth||1:47.064||1:42.918||+3.654s|
|11||2||Stefan Johansson||McLaren-TAG Porsche||1:46.623||1:43.797||+4.533s|
|13||3||Jonathan Palmer||Tyrrell-Ford Cosworth||1:47.010||1:44.350||+5.086s|
|14||4||Philippe Streiff||Tyrrell-Ford Cosworth||1:47.963||1:45.037||+5.773s|
|17||8||Andrea de Cesaris||Brabham-BMW||1:47.670||1:46.046||+6.782s|
|18||24||Alessandro Nannini||Minardi-Motori Moderni||1:46.449||1:46.083||+6.819s|
|19||21||Alex Caffi||Osella-Alfa Romeo||1:55.787||1:46.124||+6.860s|
|20||30||Philippe Alliot||Lola-Ford Cosworth||1:47.470||1:46.194||+6.930s|
|22||16||Ivan Capelli||March-Ford Cosworth||1:49.969||1:46.269||+7.005s|
|25||23||Adrián Campos||Minardi-Motori Moderni||1:50.495||3:26.319||+11.231s|
|26||14||Pascal Fabre||AGS-Ford Cosworth||1:57.475||1:53.644||+14.380s|
- A white background indicates an entrant in the Jim Clark Trophy.
- 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.
|Andrea de Cesaris||18|
The full results for the 1987 Detroit Grand Prix are outlined below:
- A white background indicates an entrant in the Jim Clark Trophy with numbers in brackets indicating their finishing position in that class.
- T Indicates a driver used their test/spare car.
- * Ghinzani was still classified despite retiring as he had completed 90% of the race distance.
- Eddie Cheever entered his 100th Grand Prix.
- Sixth career victory for Ayrton Senna.
- Lotus secured their 79th victory as a constructor.
- Senna recorded the twentieth fastest lap for a Honda engine.
Victory in Detroit ensured that Ayrton Senna left the US in the lead of the Championship, albeit with a slim, two point lead. Alain Prost, former leader, would drop to second as he looked for a third straight crown, while Nelson Piquet climbed above Stefan Johansson for third. Behind, Nigel Mansell retained fifth ahead of Gerhard Berger, with no new names added to the scorers' list.
In the Constructors' Championship it had been a relatively neutral day, although the gaps at the top of the title hunt had come down. Indeed, while McLaren-TAG Porsche had retained their lead, their advantage over Williams-Honda had been reduced to five points, while Lotus-Honda had closed to within seven of the Anglo-German alliance. Behind, Ferrari were an increasingly distant but solid fourth, while Arrows-Megatron moved level with Brabham-BMW in fifth.
Only point scoring drivers and constructors are shown.
Jim Clark/Colin Chapman Trophy
Jonathan Palmer returned to the top of the Jim Clark Trophy in Detroit, opening out a five point gap to Pascal Fabre. The Frenchman himself had overhauled Palmer's teammate Philippe Streiff in Detroit, leaving a point clear of his compatriot, before a six point gap back to Philippe Alliot. Tyrrell-Ford Cosworth, meanwhile, continued to dominate the Colin Chapman Trophy, largely due to the fact that they were the only effort fielding two cars.
Only point scoring drivers and constructors are shown.
Images and Videos:
- 'United States GP, 1987', grandprix.com, (Inside F1 Inc., 2015), http://www.grandprix.com/gpe/rr441.html, (Accessed 02/04/2019)
- 'Detroit 1987: Entrants', statsf1.com, (Stats F1, 2015), https://www.statsf1.com/en/1987/etats-unis/engages.aspx, (Accessed 02/04/2019)
- '1987 USA Grand Prix - QUALIFYING 1', formula1.com, (Formula One World Championship Ltd., 2019), https://www.formula1.com/en/results.html/1987/races/515/detroit/qualifying-1.html, (Accessed 02/04/2019)
- '1987 USA Grand Prix - QUALIFYING 2', formula1.com, (Formula One World Championship Ltd., 2019), https://www.formula1.com/en/results.html/1987/races/515/detroit/qualifying-2.html, (Accessed 02/04/2019)
- 'USA 1987: Qualifications', statsf1.com, (Stats F1, 2016), https://www.statsf1.com/en/1987/etats-unis/qualification.aspx, (Accessed 02/04/2019)
- 'USA 1987: Result', statsf1.com, (Stats F1, 2016), https://www.statsf1.com/en/1987/etats-unis/classement.aspx, (Accessed 02/04/2019)
- '1987 Detroit GP', chicanef1.com, (Chicane F1, 2015), http://www.chicanef1.com/racetit.pl?year=1987&gp=Detroit%20GP&r=1, (Accessed 02/04/2019)
- '5. USA 1987', statsf1.com, (Stats F1, 2014), https://www.statsf1.com/en/1987/etats-unis.aspx, (Accessed 02/04/2019)
|V T E||1987 Formula One Season|
|Teams||McLaren • Tyrrell • Williams • Brabham • Zakspeed • Lotus • AGS • March • Arrows • Benetton • Osella • Minardi • Ligier • Ferrari • Lola • Coloni|
|Engines||Alfa Romeo • BMW • Ferrari • Ford • Honda • Megatron • Motori Moderni • TAG • Zakspeed|
|Drivers||1 Prost • 2 Johansson • 3 Palmer • 4 Streiff • 5 Mansell • 5 Patrese • 6 Piquet • 7 Patrese • 7 Modena • 8 De Cesaris • 9 Brundle • 10 Danner • 11 Nakajima • 12 Senna • 14 Fabre • 14 Moreno • 16 Capelli • 17 Warwick • 18 Cheever • 19 Fabi • 20 Boutsen • 21 Caffi • 22 Tarquini • 22 Forini • 23 Campos • 24 Nannini • 25 Arnoux • 26 Ghinzani • 27 Alboreto • 28 Berger • 29 Dalmas • 30 Alliot • 32 Larini|
|Other Drivers||Dumfries • Hoshino • Schlesser|
|Cars||Williams FW11B • McLaren MP4/3 • Lotus 99T • Ferrari F1/87 • Benetton B187 • Tyrrell DG016 • Arrows A10 • Brabham BT56 • Lola LC87 • Zakspeed 861 • Zakspeed 871 • Ligier JS29 • AGS JH22 • March 87P • March 871 • Minardi M187 • Osella FA1I • Coloni FC187|
|Races||Brazil • San Marino • Belgium • Monaco • Detroit • France • Britain • Germany • Hungary • Austria • Italy • Portugal • Spain • Mexico • Japan • Australia|
|See also||1986 Formula One Season • 1988 Formula One Season • Category|
|V T E||Detroit Grand Prix|
|Formula One Races||1982 • 1983 • 1984 • 1985 • 1986 • 1987 • 1988|
|See also||United States Grand Prix • United States Grand Prix West • Indianapolis 500 • Caesars Palace Grand Prix • Dallas Grand Prix • Questor Grand Prix|
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