Monza, Italian Grand Prix 1970 – when F1 and the world lost a motorsport legend by the name of Jochen Rindt. He was barely 28 on that fateful day but had already made his mark on the sport through his light-hearted approach the racing during what was is often referred to as the ‘wild era’ of grand prix. (if you want to see some photos of these cars, check our gallery of GP Masters)
To commemorate the 40th Anniversary of his death, this month’s Red Bulletin features a great piece on Rindt and his life with quotes from others who raced with and alongside him. You can pick up the Red Bulletin in the Sunday Telegraph (out today – September 5th) and every other first Sunday of the month or if you can’t bring yourself to change your Sunday reading materials, get the whole magazine online at RedBulletin.com – well worth a read.
Here are quote snippets from the piece and a short video for your enjoyment…
It was very traumatic. Helen (Stewart) went to the hospital with Nina (Rindt) and that’s never a nice thing for a wife to do, to look after another wife. After the accident I’d been to Jochen and come back to Nina, who had totally disappeared with Helen. When I went out later to qualify I was in tears. But when I had the visor down that was when I did my qualifying time, which was the best lap I had ever done at Monza. I didn’t have a death wish, but as I came back in, my best friend John Lindsay, handed me a Coca-Cola, I took a drink and I was so angry I smashed it against the concrete wall that separated the pits from the track. That was my emotion.
Sir Jackie SteWart
Jochen had a tremendous urgency about the way he conducted his life and he was very quick to judge.
The Lotus 72 [the title-winning car on which Miles helped the development] was such a troublesome child – every time I got into it something broke. Jochen kind of didn’t want to drive for Lotus in one sense because he knew the cars were liable to let him down, but there was engineering rashness with the 72. If we hadn’t been doing stupid experiments like taking the wings off with zero aerodynamic data to base it on and if the mechanics
hadn’t pulled an all-nighter to do this stuff, then maybe Jochen would still be alive.
GB, Lotus (team-mate)
By the time of Monza I was the third driver at Lotus, behind Jochen and John Miles. Over breakfast before practice, we were talking about my 1971 contract. Then came the disaster. It was awful for me. I was only 22 and he was a guy I had looked up to as an idol. He was always very good to me when I arrived in Europe from Brazil and his death was a big shock. Although Jochen could sometimes seem quite cold if you didn’t know him, he was a really warm guy underneath. He was an extreme talent and a fantastic guy.
BR, Rob Walker Lotus (team-mate)