Saturday, April 24, 2010

1968 Monaco Grand Prix

I saw this a year or two ago on Axis but ran into it on YouTube this morning. Cool video shot by an 8mm camera during the practice sessions prior to the 1968 Monaco Grand Prix. What's interesting is that its the crown jewel Monaco race and it shows a lot of the quirks of the 1968 season. You get to see Bruce McLaren - alive and walking with the slight limp he had due to one leg being longer than the other, the Gold Leaf Team Lotus - the first time a car had been fully adorned with a main sponsor - and Lotus was exclusively powered by the venerable Ford Cosworth DFV for the last time as the 1969 season opened it up as a customer engine.

This was also a post-Jim Clark era for Team Lotus as Clark was killed just a month earlier with Jo Siffert stepping in and the introduction of the a very small front wing on the Lotus - something that would be common place on the grid and similar to the wings that would land on the nose of the incredible Lotus 72 - only a few short years away. You can see a clear juxtaposition of the older, pre-aerodynamics cars versus the futuristic Lotus 49B. It's also great to see the McLarens in their original Papaya Orange livery and the pre-Tyrrell Racing group of the Matra-Fords.

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