1980

F1 Racing - - INSIDER -

“I just seemed to have an afnity with the FW07. I could wring its neck and Pa­trick Head and I were able to tune it to pretty well match ev­ery cir­cuit. It tted me like a nice suit. I used to drive at-out all the time, even in testing on a cold Tues­day af­ter­noon at Don­ing­ton Park.

“I’ve got to say, Frank and Pa­trick were the two best guys I drove for, bar none. At one race I said I thought an en­gine was down on power and of course they didn’t have the teleme­try then that they do to­day. Frank said: ‘You’re the driver and if you think it’s down on power we’ll change it.’ That was the sort of bloke he was to drive for. That in­spired condence and hope­fully I de­liv­ered for him. It was a two-way street.”

“In 1980, we ran an up­graded FW07B in prac­tice at the rst race in Ar­gentina, but we had aero­dy­namic prob­lems and con­verted the car back to FW07 spec for the race. Af­ter a com­plete re­jig, the true FW07B raced at Zolder.

“The main op­po­si­tion was Nel­son Pi­quet. Brab­ham were very much a sin­gle-car team, em­ploy­ing a pay­ing driver in the sec­ond car, so they weren’t in con­tention for the con­struc­tors’ cham­pi­onship. A num­ber of wins were squan­dered be­cause of un­re­li­a­bil­ity and driver er­rors. The penul­ti­mate race in Canada was a show­down be­tween Jones and Pi­quet, but it went Jones’s way fol­low­ing a fail­ure of Pi­quet’s en­gine.”

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