Jody Scheckter won a thrilling Monaco Grand Prix in Monte Carlo on Sunday (27 May) to take a clear lead in this year's World Championship competition.
Jody Scheckter won a thrilling Monaco Grand Prix in Monte Carlo on Sunday (27 May) to take a clear lead in this year's World Championship competition. In a close finish Scheckter driving a Ferrari finished scarcely a car's length ahead of veteran Clay Regazzoni's Saudia Williams. The Argentine driver Carlos Reutermann finished third in a Lotus, nine seconds behind Scheckter, with Marlboro-Mclaren's John Watson in fourth place.
SYNOPSIS: The Monaco Grand Prix, with its twisting tortuous course,usually proves to be tough on cars and drivers. This year's was to be no exception.
Of the 20 cars that started, only four managed to cross the finishing line after an incident-packed 76-laps. There were several accidents, but most of those who failed to finish were forced out with mechanical failures.
Careful mechanical preparation is vital for the gruelling circuit. And because there are few places to overtake those who take the lead early usually win. Scheckter--in car number eleven --started from pole position on the grid, and stayed in front.
Ligier's top driver Jacques Laffite has been Ferrari's main challenger this year. But with Schecktera and team mate Gilles Villeneuve leading for 54 laps, Ferrari looked well set for a one-two victory.
But on lap 54 Villeneuve was forced to pull out with a broken transmission, and Scheckter remained as Ferrari's main hope. Swiss driver Clay Regazzoni then began his challenge. He had started back on the 8th row of the grid and moved up from 15th place to come close to snatching what would have been a sensational victory.
Scheckter repeated his 1977 Monaco win. The victory--his second in succession this year--puts him six points clear in the championship.