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The 1996 French Grand Prix, otherwise known as the LXXXII Grand Prix de France, was the ninth round of the 1996 FIA Formula One World Championship, staged on the 30 June 1996 at the Circuit de Nevers Magny-Cours in Magny-Cours, France.[1] The race would see Damon Hill and Jacques Villeneuve secure the fourth one-two of the season for Williams-Renault, after another dominant performance.[1]

Qualifying, however, had not gone Williams' way, for a mistake from Hill on his final lap opened the door for Michael Schumacher to claim pole position for Ferrari.[1] Hill therefore had to settle for second ahead of Jean Alesi, while Villeneuve would start from sixth after crashing mid-session.[1]

The warm-up would see Hill clash with Heinz-Harald Frentzen having been distracted by something in the cockpit, although he would receive no punishment.[1] Villeneuve, meanwhile, would end up fastest despite using his hastily built spare car, while several drivers, including Schumacher and David Coulthard had brake issues.[1]

Indeed, it was the start of a day to forget for Schumacher, whose engine expired midway around the formation lap.[1] The German was out and a long way from the pitlane, effectively handing Hill a perfect opportunity to grab the lead at the start.[1]

Hill duly aced the start and sprinted clear, leaving Alesi to fend off the attention's of Gerhard Berger to secure second.[1] Fortunately for him a hard charging Mika Häkkinen would elbow his way past the Austrian, a move which also opened the door for Villeneuve to barge past.[1]

Villeneuve subsequently found himself stuck behind Häkkinen during the early stages, allowing Alesi to secure second as Hill eased away out front.[1] Indeed, the Finn's resistance was such the Villeneuve only managed to jump the McLaren-Mercedes during the first pit-window, with a series of quick laps in clean air carrying him past Häkkinen.[1]

Once clear of the #7 McLaren Villeneuve would sweep onto the back of Alesi in second, before scything past the Benetton-Renault on the brakes for the Adelaide hairpin.[1] The Canadian duly went chasing off after Hill, setting a series of fastest laps in a vain bid to catch his teammate.[1]

Elsewhere, Berger would manage to get ahead of Häkkinen during the second pitstop phase, and duly hunted down teammate Alesi in the closing stages.[1] Elsewhere, Olivier Panis was delivering one of his best performances, setting the second fastest lap overall in a bid to catch sixth placed Coulthard, having lost a lot of time early on having been stuck in a long train of cars trailing Pedro Diniz.[1]

Out front, meanwhile, Hill was left to claim a comfortable victory ahead of Villeneuve, his sixth of the season and the fourth one-two for Williams.[1] Alesi completed the podium after fending off teammate Berger's late charge, while Häkkinen and Coulthard collected the remaining points for McLaren-Mercedes.[1]

BackgroundEdit

Damon Hill extended his Championship lead after his fifth win of the season, leaving Canada with a 21 point lead. Jacques Villeneuve left his home race as the main pretender to the Brit at the halfway point, having moved six clear of Michael Schumacher in third. The top five was then completed by Jean Alesi and David Coulthard, with sixteen drivers having scored in the first half of the season.

In the Constructors Championship it was Williams-Renault who headed into the second half of the season as favourites, having managed a stunning tally of 85 points across eight races. Ferrari were the closest thing to a challenger to the Anglo-French squad, although they headed into the second half of the season 50 points behind. The Scuderia were therefore expecting to fight with Benetton-Renault for second, with McLaren-Mercedes and Ligier-Mugen-Honda completing the top five.

Entry listEdit

The full entry list for the 1996 French Grand Prix is outlined below:

No. Driver Entrant Constructor Chassis Engine Model Tyre
1 Germany Michael Schumacher Italy Scuderia Ferrari Ferrari F310 Ferrari 046 3.0 V10 G
2 United Kingdom Eddie Irvine Italy Scuderia Ferrari Ferrari F310 Ferrari 046 3.0 V10 G
3 France Jean Alesi Italy Mild Seven Benetton Renault Benetton B196 Renault RS8 3.0 V10 G
4 Austria Gerhard Berger Italy Mild Seven Benetton Renault Benetton B196 Renault RS8 3.0 V10 G
5 United Kingdom Damon Hill United Kingdom Rothmans Williams Renault Williams FW18 Renault RS8 3.0 V10 G
6 Canada Jacques Villeneuve United Kingdom Rothmans Williams Renault Williams FW18 Renault RS8 3.0 V10 G
7 Finland Mika Häkkinen United Kingdom Marlboro McLaren Mercedes McLaren MP4/11 Mercedes FO 110D 3.0 V10 G
8 United Kingdom David Coulthard United Kingdom Marlboro McLaren Mercedes McLaren MP4/11 Mercedes FO 110D 3.0 V10 G
9 France Olivier Panis France Equipe Ligier Gauloises Blondes Ligier JS43 Mugen-Honda MF301HA 3.0 V10 G
10 Brazil Pedro Diniz France Equipe Ligier Gauloises Blondes Ligier JS43 Mugen-Honda MF301HA 3.0 V10 G
11 Brazil Rubens Barrichello Ireland B&H Total Jordan Peugeot Jordan 196 Peugeot A12 3.0 V10 G
12 United Kingdom Martin Brundle Ireland B&H Total Jordan Peugeot Jordan 196 Peugeot A12 3.0 V10 G
14 United Kingdom Johnny Herbert Switzerland Red Bull Sauber Ford Sauber C15 Ford Cosworth JD Zetec-R 3.0 V8 G
15 Germany Heinz-Harald Frentzen Switzerland Red Bull Sauber Ford Sauber C15 Ford Cosworth JD Zetec-R 3.0 V8 G
16 Brazil Ricardo Rosset United Kingdom Footwork Hart Footwork FA17 Hart 830 3.0 V8 G
17 Netherlands Jos Verstappen United Kingdom Footwork Hart Footwork FA17 Hart 830 3.0 V8 G
18 Japan Ukyo Katayama United Kingdom Tyrrell Yamaha Tyrrell 024 Yamaha OX11A 3.0 V10 G
19 Finland Mika Salo United Kingdom Tyrrell Yamaha Tyrrell 024 Yamaha OX11A 3.0 V10 G
20 Portugal Pedro Lamy Italy Minardi F1 Team Minardi M195B Ford Cosworth EDM 3.0 V8 G
21 Italy Giancarlo Fisichella Italy Minardi F1 Team Minardi M195B Ford Cosworth EDM 3.0 V8 G
22 Italy Luca Badoer Italy Forti Corse Forti FG03 Ford Cosworth EDD 3.0 V8 G
23 Italy Andrea Montermini Italy Forti Corse Forti FG03 Ford Cosworth EDD 3.0 V8 G
Source:[2]

Practice OverviewEdit

QualifyingEdit

ReportEdit

Qualifying ResultsEdit

The full qualifying results for the 1996 French Grand Prix are outlined below:

Pos. No. Driver Constructor Time Gap Ave. Speed
1 1 Germany Michael Schumacher Italy Ferrari 1:15.989 201.345 km/h
2 5 United Kingdom Damon Hill United Kingdom Williams-Renault 1:16.058 +0.069s 201.162 km/h
3 3 France Jean Alesi Italy Benetton-Renault 1:16.310 +0.321s 200.498 km/h
4 4 Austria Gerhard Berger Italy Benetton-Renault 1:16.592 +0.603s 199.760 km/h
5 7 Finland Mika Häkkinen United Kingdom McLaren-Mercedes 1:16.634 +0.645s 199.650 km/h
6 6 Canada Jacques Villeneuve United Kingdom Williams-Renault 1:16.905 +0.916s 198.947 km/h
7 8 United Kingdom David Coulthard United Kingdom McLaren-Mercedes 1:17.007 +1.018s 198.683 km/h
8 12 United Kingdom Martin Brundle Ireland Jordan-Peugeot 1:17.187 +1.198s 198.220 km/h
9 9 France Olivier Panis France Ligier-Mugen-Honda 1:17.390 +1.401s 197.700 km/h
10 11 Brazil Rubens Barrichello Ireland Jordan-Peugeot 1:17.665 +1.676s 197.000 km/h
11 10 Brazil Pedro Diniz France Ligier-Mugen-Honda 1:17.676 +1.687s 196.972 km/h
12 15 Germany Heinz-Harald Frentzen Switzerland Sauber-Ford Cosworth 1:17.739 +1.750s 196.812 km/h
13 19 Finland Mika Salo United Kingdom Tyrrell-Yamaha 1:18.021 +2.032s 196.101 km/h
14 18 Japan Ukyo Katayama United Kingdom Tyrrell-Yamaha 1:18.242 +2.253s 195.547 km/h
15 17 Netherlands Jos Verstappen United Kingdom Footwork-Hart 1:18.324 +2.335s 195.342 km/h
16 14 United Kingdom Johnny Herbert Switzerland Sauber-Ford Cosworth 1:18.556 +2.567s 194.766 km/h
17 21 Italy Giancarlo Fisichella Italy Minardi-Ford Cosworth 1:18.604 +2.615s 194.647 km/h
18 20 Portugal Pedro Lamy Italy Minardi-Ford Cosworth 1:19.210 +3.221s 193.157 km/h
19 16 Brazil Ricardo Rosset United Kingdom Footwork-Hart 1:19.242 +3.253s 193.079 km/h
20 22 Italy Luca Badoer Italy Forti-Ford Cosworth 1:20.562 +4.573s 189.916 km/h
21 23 Italy Andrea Montermini Italy Forti-Ford Cosworth 1:20.647 +4.658s 189.716 km/h
107% Time: 1:21.308[3]
EXC* 2 United Kingdom Eddie Irvine Italy Ferrari
Source:[4][3]
  • 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.
  • * Irvine had his times deleted for using illegal bodywork but was allowed to start at the stewards' discretion.[3]

GridEdit

Pos Pos
Driver Driver
______________
Row 1 1 ______________
Michael Schumacher* 2
______________ Damon Hill
Row 2 3 ______________
Jean Alesi 4
______________ Gerhard Berger
Row 3 5 ______________
Mika Häkkinen 6
______________ Jacques Villeneuve
Row 4 7 ______________
David Coulthard 8
______________ Martin Brundle
Row 5 9 ______________
Olivier Panis 10
______________ Rubens Barrichello
Row 6 11 ______________
Pedro Diniz 12
______________ Heinz-Harald Frentzen
Row 7 13 ______________
Mika Salo 14
______________ Ukyo Katayama
Row 8 15 ______________
Jos Verstappen 16
______________ Johnny Herbert
Row 9 17 ______________
Giancarlo Fisichella 18
______________ Pedro Lamy
Row 10 19 ______________
Ricardo Rosset 20
______________ Luca Badoer
Row 11 21 ______________
Andrea Montermini 22
______________ Eddie Irvine
  • * Schumacher was unable to start the race due to an engine failure on the formation lap.[3]

RaceEdit

ReportEdit

ResultsEdit

The full results for the 1996 French Grand Prix are outlined below:

Pos. No. Driver Constructor Laps Time/Retired Grid Points
1 5 United Kingdom Damon Hill United Kingdom Williams-Renault 72 1:36:28.795 2 10
2 6 Canada Jacques Villeneuve United Kingdom Williams-Renault 72 +8.127s 6 6
3 3 France Jean Alesi Italy Benetton-Renault 72 +46.442s 3 4
4 4 Austria Gerhard Berger Italy Benetton-Renault 72 +46.859s 4 3
5 7 Finland Mika Häkkinen United Kingdom McLaren-Mercedes 72 +1:02.774 5 2
6 8 United Kingdom David Coulthard United Kingdom McLaren-Mercedes 71 +1 Lap 7 1
7 9 France Olivier Panis France Ligier-Mugen-Honda 71 +1 Lap 9
8 12 United Kingdom Martin Brundle Ireland Jordan-Peugeot 71 +1 Lap 8
9 11 Brazil Rubens Barrichello Ireland Jordan-Peugeot 71 +1 Lap 10
10 19 Finland Mika Salo United Kingdom Tyrrell-Yamaha 70 +2 Laps 13
11 16 Brazil Ricardo Rosset United Kingdom Footwork-Hart 69 +3 Laps 19
12 20 Portugal Pedro Lamy Italy Minardi-Ford Cosworth 69 +3 Laps 18
DSQ* 14 Brazil Johnny Herbert Switzerland Sauber-Ford Cosworth 70 Disqualified 16
Ret 15 Germany Heinz-Harald Frentzen Switzerland Sauber-Ford Cosworth 56 Throttle 12
Ret 18 Japan Ukyo Katayama United Kingdom Tyrrell-Yamaha 33 Engine 14
Ret 22 Italy Luca Badoer Italy Forti-Ford Cosworth 29 Fuel system 20
Ret 10 Brazil Pedro Diniz France Ligier-Mugen-Honda 28 Engine 11
Ret 17 Netherlands Jos Verstappen United Kingdom Footwork-Hart 10 Steering 15
Ret 2 United Kingdom Eddie Irvine Italy Ferrari 5 Gearbox 22
Ret 21 Italy Giancarlo Fisichella Italy Minardi-Ford Cosworth 2 Fuel pump 17
Ret 23 Italy Andrea Montermini Italy Forti-Ford Cosworth 2 Electrical 21
DNS 1 Germany Michael Schumacher Italy Ferrari
Source:[5]
  • T Indicates a driver used their test/spare car.
  • * Herbert was disqualified from the results of the race for using an illegal wing.[5]
  • Schumacher was unable to start the race due to an engine failure.[5]

MilestonesEdit

StandingsEdit

A sixth victory in nine races left Damon Hill in complete command of the Championship, ending the weekend on 63 points. That equated to a 25 point advantage over Jacques Villeneuve in second, with the Canadian racer likely to be the only pretender to the Brit for the rest of the season. Indeed, Michael Schumacher had slipped 37 points behind after his pre-race engine failure, with Jean Alesi just a point behind the German racer in fourth.

In the Constructors Championship it was Williams-Renault who once again ended a Grand Prix weekend as the best team, leaving France with 101 points. A huge 66 point gap followed before Ferrari appeared in second, level on points with defending Champions Benetton-Renault in third, separated by Ferrari's lone victory. McLaren-Mercedes were nine points behind in fourth, with Ligier-Mugen-Honda in fifth.

World Championship for Drivers
Pos. Driver Pts. +/-
1 United Kingdom Damon Hill 63
2 Canada Jacques Villeneuve 38
3 Germany Michael Schumacher 26
4 France Jean Alesi 25
5 United Kingdom David Coulthard 14
6 Finland Mika Häkkinen 12 ▲1
7 France Olivier Panis 11 ▼1
8 Austria Gerhard Berger 10 ▲1
9 United Kingdom Eddie Irvine 9 ▼1
10 Brazil Rubens Barrichello 7
11 Germany Heinz-Harald Frentzen 6
12 Finland Mika Salo 5
13 United Kingdom Johnny Herbert 4
14 United Kingdom Martin Brundle 2
15 Brazil Pedro Diniz 1
16 Netherlands Jos Verstappen 1
World Championship for Constructors
Pos. Team Pts. +/-
1 United Kingdom Williams-Renault 101
2 Italy Ferrari 35
3 Italy Benetton-Renault 35
4 United Kingdom McLaren-Mercedes 26
5 France Ligier-Mugen-Honda 12
6 Switzerland Sauber-Ford Cosworth 10
7 Ireland Jordan-Peugeot 9
8 United Kingdom Tyrrell-Yamaha 5
9 United Kingdom Footwork-Hart 1

Only point scoring drivers and constructors are shown.

ReferencesEdit

Images and Videos:

References:

  1. 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 'French GP, 1996', grandprix.com, (Inside F1 Inc., 2014), https://www.grandprix.com/gpe/rr590.html, (Accessed 15/08/2019)
  2. 'France 1996: Entrants', statsf1.com, (Stats F1, 2015), https://www.statsf1.com/en/1996/france/engages.aspx, (Accessed 15/08/2019)
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 3.3 'France 1996: Qualifications', statsf1.com, (Stats F1, 2014), https://www.statsf1.com/en/1996/france/qualification.aspx, (Accessed 15/08/2019)
  4. 'Grand Prix de France - QUALIFYING', formula1.com, (Formula One World Championship Ltd., 2019), https://www.formula1.com/en/results.html/1996/races/646/france/qualifying-0.html, (Accessed 15/08/2019)
  5. 5.0 5.1 5.2 'France 1996: Result', statsf1.com, (Stats F1, 2016), https://www.statsf1.com/en/1996/france/classement.aspx, (Accessed 12/08/2019)
  6. 6.0 6.1 '1996 French GP', chicanef1.com, (Inside F1 Inc., 2014), http://www.chicanef1.com/racetit.pl?year=1996&gp=French%20GP&r=1, (Accessed 15/08/2019)
  7. 7.0 7.1 7.2 '9. France 1996', statsf1.com, (Stats F1, 2014), https://www.statsf1.com/en/1996/france.aspx, (Accessed 15/08/2019)
V T E France French Grand Prix
Circuits Reims (1950–1951, 1953–1954, 1956, 1958–1961, 1963, 1966)
Rouen-Les-Essarts (1952, 1957, 1962, 1964, 1968)
Charade Circuit (1965, 1969–1970, 1972)
Bugatti Circuit (1967)
Circuit Paul Ricard (1971, 1973, 1975–1976, 1978, 1980, 1982–1983, 1985–1990, 2018-present)
Dijon-Prenois (1974, 1977, 1979, 1981, 1984)
Circuit de Nevers Magny-Cours (1991–2008)
PR Screen Shot 2017-03-23 at 12.15.31 AM
F1 Races 195019511952195319541955195619571958195919601961196219631964196519661967196819691970197119721973197419751976197719781979198019811982198319841985198619871988198919901991199219931994199519961997199819992000200120022003200420052006200720082009-201720182019
European Championship Races 1931193219381939
Non-Championship Races 190619071908191219131914192119221923192419251926192719281929193019331934193519361937194719481949
V T E 1996 Formula One Season
Teams Ferrari • Benetton • Williams • McLaren • Ligier • Jordan • Sauber • Footwork • Tyrrell • Minardi • Forti
Engines Ferrari • Ford • Hart • Mercedes • Mugen-Honda • Peugeot • Renault • Yamaha
Drivers M. Schumacher • 2 Irvine • 3 Alesi • 4 Berger • 5 Hill • 6 Villeneuve • 7 Häkkinen • 8 Coulthard • 9 Panis • 10 Diniz • 11 Barrichello • 12 Brundle • 14 Herbert • 15 Frentzen • 16 Rosset • 17 Verstappen • 18 Katayama • 19 Salo • 20 Lamy • 21 Fisichella • 21 Marques • 21 Lavaggi • 22 Badoer • 23 Montermini
Other Drivers Magnussen • Mansell • McNish • Prost • R. Schumacher • Tuero
Cars Ferrari F310 • Benetton B196 • Williams FW18 • McLaren MP4/11 • Ligier JS43 • Jordan 196 • Sauber C15 • Footwork FA17 • Tyrrell 024 • Minardi 195B • Forti FG01B • Forti FG03
Tyres Goodyear
Races Australia • Brazil • Argentina • Europe • San Marino • Monaco • Spain • Canada • France • Britain • Germany • Hungary • Belgium • Italy • Portugal • Japan
See also 1995 Formula One Season • 1997 Formula One Season • Category
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