Motor racing -- and at the Kyalami circuit just outside Johannesburg there was intense competition for the South African Grand Prix on Saturday (3 March), which ended with a victory for Canadian Ferrari driver Gilles Villeneuve.
GTV Start of race
GV Cars rounding bend and down straight
GV Cars 11 Jody Scheckter, Ferrari and 12, Gilles Villeneuve, Ferrari, leading around bend with spray coming off track
Marshal waving red flag to stop race
SV Villeneuve leaving pits after having tyres changed (2 shots)
TV Race starts for second time
SV Cars rounding bend and racing down straight
AERIAL VIEW Villeneuve overtaking car number two, Carlos Reutemann (Lotus), followed by Scheckter
SV Villeneuve rounding bend and down straight
SV Car No. 17 Jan Lammers (Samson Shadow) crashing into barrier. Lammers gets out unhurt
TV Villeneuve receiving chequered flag, followed by Scheckter in second place
SV First and second cars driving into pits
SV Villeneuve having injured ankle attended to
SV Villeneuve and Scheckter on rostrum waving to crowd with "lion" in attendance
Third behind Scheckter was Jean-Pierre Jarier of France in a Tyrrell. World Champion Mario Andretti of the United States was fourth in a Lotus. Argentine Carlos Reutemann, also in a Lotus, was fifth -- with Austria's Niki Lauda sixth in a Brabham.
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Background: Motor racing -- and at the Kyalami circuit just outside Johannesburg there was intense competition for the South African Grand Prix on Saturday (3 March), which ended with a victory for Canadian Ferrari driver Gilles Villeneuve. Local hero, Jody Scheckter, was second, also in a Ferrari.
SYNOPSIS: The start of the race -- with Frenchman Jean-Pierre Jabouille in pole position on the grid after a sensational practice lap time of one minute 11.80 seconds.
But Scheckter and Villeneuve dominated from the start, with the positions behind them changing constantly. A sudden heavy rainstorm took everyone by surprise, and eventually the race was halted -- but re-started an hour later.
At this point, the teams faced the vital decision whether to race on tyres suited to wet or dry conditions
As the race re-started, most settled for wet-weather tyres, only to regret it a few laps later when the sun broke through. Scheckter made the right choice, and when his team-mate Villeneuve went in for a tyre change, he took the lead. But not for long. Scheckter's tyres had taken a beating. He, too, was forced into the pits, and Villeneuve forged ahead again.
Villeneuve set a track record of one minute, 14.412 seconds on the twenty-third lap, but, towards the end, was around three seconds slower. And the amazing Renaults? They had a bad day, with Jabouille out with engine trouble, and Rene Arnoux retiring because of tyre problems.
The young Dutchman Jam Lammers crashed his Shadow into a fence, but escaped unhurt.
The Ferraris romped home first and second to break the domination of the French Ligier team this year. They also had a disastrous day -- both drivers, Lafitte and Depailler, spun off and failed to finish.
Villeneuve received medical attention before joining Scheckter on the winner's rostrum. The lion is called Simba -- the trademark of the firm who sponsored the race.