When I began to follow Formula 1 racing really closely, and attended my first Grand Prix races, 1.5-litre Formula 1 was at the top of the pile. Old hands who had lived through the preceding 2.5-litre Formula, with its big front-engined Mercedes, Maserati 250F, Lancia-Ferrari, Vanwall and BRM cars as front runners, derided the replacement class – launched in 1961 – for being a bunch of gutless, overweight kiddy cars. Tony Brooks was one totally world-class driver who was so unimpressed by the new cars’ lack of power that his interest evaporated to the point of premature retirement at the close of the ’61 season. OK, he had family reasons too – but he was quite vocally dismissive of the new Formula.
Doug Nye: Ferrari 1512 – driven by Surtees, Rodriguez, Bandini... and me
Doug Nye began writing about racing cars at ‘Motor Racing’ magazine in 1963-64. Today he is a multiple award-winning motor sports journalist and author of over 50 years’ experience, with some 70 books to his name. He is Goodwood Motorsport’s founding Historian and consultant and fulfils similar roles for Bonhams Auctioneers and the Collier Collection/Revs Institute in Naples, FL, USA. He is a member of the National Motor Museum Advisory Council at Beaulieu, Hants, and is a regular columnist for ‘Motor Sport’ magazine, while contributing to many other specialist periodicals worldwide.