Report and photos by Marcel Hundscheid
Around 21,500 spectators saw 218 participants divided into eleven different categories during the 2012 Bosch Hockenheim Historic – Jim Clark Revival, from April 13-15th on the Hockenheimring in Germany.
Changing but dry weather conditions over the weekend treated spectators and drivers to some interesting and challenging action. Unique was the “Race History on Track” presentation, featuring former single seaters from no less than six decades of race history. Besides the racing action on the track spectators found their way to special presentations about Jim Clark, Stefan Bellof as well as historic race car transporters.
Kamp der Zwerge (Battle of the Dwarfs)
The tiniest cars on track during the event were the different Autobianchi, Fiat, Mini’s en NSU’s gathered in the ‘Kampf der Zwerge”. The Abarth Coppa Mille, British Car Trophy and the NSU TT Trophy are three different historic categories combined into the Battle of the dwarfs. Fifty two historic dwarfs entered the first regularity race on Saturday won by the nr. 44 Autobianchi A-112 Abarth of Frenchman Oliver Leibel. German driver Peter Walter (Fiat Abarth 1000 TC) and fellow country man Patrick Hug (NSU TT) completed the winners podi-um on Saturday. On Sunday it was Briton Phil Harvey in a Austin Cooper who scored best in front of Olivier Leibel (Autobianchi A-112 Abarth) and German driver Thomas Bohlmann in a very tiny Steyr-Puch 700C.
FIA Historic Formula One Championship
Thirteen historic Formula 1 cars entered the qualifying session giving pole position to Spaniard Joaquin Folch in a former Nelson Piquet Brabham BT49C with a fastest lap time of 1:34.860. Three different constructors claimed the top three claimed by a victory of Joaquin Folch. Briton Steve Hartley finished second in his Arrows A4, fellow countrymen Richard Eyre drove his Williams FW08 to a third place. Just ten cars saw action on Sunday giving victory the Richard Eyre in the epic looking Williams FW08. Joaquin Folch could only try to follow the very quick Briton as he finished second with a gap of no less than one minute! Frenchman Patrick D’Aubreby drove his former Martin Brundle Tyrrell 012 to a third place.
Fastest and loudest cars of the weekend were the different single seaters of the BOSS GP series, Europe’s fastest single seater category featuring Formula 1, Champcar, GP2, Formu-la 3000 and World Series by Nissan and Renault cars from the nineties. Dutchman Klaas Zwart was without doubt a class of its own in his very quick 2004 Jaguar R5, formerly driven by Mark Webber. Zwart scored a unbeatable pole position with a lap time of 1:24.993. The only driver who tried to get as close as possible was Austrian Ingo Gerstl in a Dallara GP2 car, facing a gap of 3.740 seconds.
Seventeen agile looking single seaters entered the first race on Saturday afternoon. Remarkably Ingo Gerstl got the better start and took the lead in front of Zwart. During the first two laps spectators saw a great battle between the two of them, won by Zwart. A few laps later Zwart got off track as Gerstl regained the lead. Zwart started his interception regaining the lead, claimed by a overwhelming victory with a gap of almost forty-seven seconds in front of Gerstl. Dutchman Henk de Boer completed the podium in his Panoz DP01 Champcar. On Sunday it was once again Klaas Zwart who settled the score claiming his second victory of the weekend finished 1:08.659 earlier than Ingo Gerstl. Henk de Boer scored his second third spot of the the weekend.
Historic Formula 2 Championship
Spectators could relive the good old days of classic Formula 2 racing. The championship is managed by the Silverstone-based Historic Sports Car Club and open to cars built to period regulations for Formula 2, Formula Atlantic and Formula B, starting from 1967 and running right to the end of the 1978 season. The first race on Saturday was a true demonstration of keen driving performed by Martin Stretton. The Briton claimed pole position in his March 742 by setting a lap time almost four seconds quicker than Philip Harper. As expected, Stretton took victory in race one, finishing 12.2 seconds ahead of Philip Harper (Ralt RT1) and Hans Peter (Ralt RT1). The second race on Sunday was almost a copy of race 1 as Stretton demonstrated once more how to drive a classic Formula 2 car. The Briton claimed victory with a gap of 31 seconds in front of Philip Harper. Briton Philip Gladman finished third in a Chevron B34D.
FIA Lurani Throphy
The FIA Lurani Throphy was the first FIA championship to be permitted to be run by its own group in 1995 and is open to Formula Junior cars such as the Lotus 22 or 27, Alexis, Lola Mk.2 and Elva. Pierre Tonetti was the quickest in qualifying in his Brabham BT6 claiming pole position. Race 1 on Saturday saw an exciting battle between Tonetti and Urs Eberhardt (Lotus 27) won by the Italian. Race 2 on Sunday saw a fierce battle between the brothers Checco and Pierre Tonetti along with Briton Jonathan Hughes. In the end however it was Checco Tonetti crossing the finish line first, only 0.3 second quicker than his brother Pierre. Hughes had to settle for a third place on the podium.
Youngtimer Touring Car Challenge
No less than 44 historic touring cars, GT’s and a handful sports cars filled the grid for the Dutch Youngtimer Touring Car Challenge, open for cars before 1990. Frenchman Nicolas Maurel was quickest during qualifying putting his March 73S on pole position. He claimed victory on Saturday during the first race of the weekend in front of German Daniel Schrey in a 1977 Porsche 911 RSR and Frenchman Franck Metzger in a Cesca Grac. The second race on Sunday saw almost the same results as scored during Saturdays race. Maurel was once again quickest and his second victory of the weekend in front of Daniel Schrey. Third place went to Dutchman Johan Beekman in a Porsche 964 RS.
The Dutch historic championship for touring cars & GT‘s was established in 1997 and had been growing in popularity ever since. The championship is open to touring cars and GT‘s built between 1947 and 1965 and provides one of the biggest fields of cars seen in Europe. Fastest car on the track was the Chevrolet Corvette Grand Sport of Matthijs Baker, claiming pole position. Victory on Saturday went to a similar car but in the hands of Michiel Campagne. He finished fifteen seconds quicker than German Georg Stummeyer in a Ford GT40. Bert Du Toy van Hees drove his Lotus Elan to the final spot on the podium. Campagne scored his second consecutive victory of the weekend on Sunday, three seconds ahead of the Porsche 911 driven by Thijs van Gammeren.
STT HR Cup
The STT (Spezial Tourenwagen Trophy) HR Cup is a championship originally established in 1986 and open for Gran Turismos and touring cars from 1968. However, taking a closer look on the entry list showed much more cars from the modern era than from the late sixties, seventies etc. Nevertheless the two races over the weekend showed some fierce battles giving victory on Saturday to the Ford GT of Finnisch driver Pertti Kuismanen. With a gap of only 2.1 seconds, Ulrich Becker scored a second place in a splendid looking Porsche 997 GT3 RS. Rüdiger Klos finished his flame-throwing Oreca Viper GTS-R in third. On Sunday Kuismanen and Becker battled it out once again. The Finnish driver claimed his second victory of the weekend in front of Ulrich Becker. Sven Fisch drove his VW Passat silhouet V8 STAR to a third place on the podium.
Fans of former Can-Am and two-litre prototypes could eat their hearts out with the combined fields of the Can-Am Challenge Cup, Martini Trophy and the Super Sports Cup. During race 1 Italian Matteo Tulio made the best start in his March 707 but sadly he didn’t made it to the finish line. Timo Scheibner scored a victory in his Lola T222, just 5.7 seconds ahead of the two litre March 76S of Silvio Kalb. The podium was completed by Peter Schleifer’s Lola T310. Just 9 out of the 22 cars started for the second race on Sunday. This time the battle for the top three was fought between the tinier two liter sports cars. Scottish driver Martin O’Connell scored a victory in his Chevron B19, with a gap of no less than thirty-eight seconds in front of Kent Abrahamsson from Sweden, also in a Chevron B19. Swiss driver Beat Eggimann finished third in his Daren Mk.3.
Race History on Track
One of the highlights over the weekend were the more than thirty historic single seaters presenting over 60 years of racing history in just one starting field. It presented cars like the 1948 Maserati 4CL, several Formula 2 and Formula 5000 cars, but also a former Clay Regazzoni Ferrari 312T as well as a 2004 Toyota TF 104 Formula 1 car.
Over the three days lots of exciting cars and racing could be seen from the golden years of motorsport. The Bosch Hockenheim Historic – Jim Clark Revival is truly an event not to be missed. The organisation of this great event will be ready to host the 2013 edition.
Hockenheim Historic 2012 – Photo Gallery (click image for larger picture and description)
[Source: Marcel Hundscheid]