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The 1983 South African Grand Prix was the final round of the 1983 Formula One World Championship, held at Kyalami in Gauteng, South Africa.[1] The race saw the championship decided in favour of Nelson Piquet, after a three way duel between himself, Alain Prost and René Arnoux.[2] Piquet actually finished the race in third, although the points awarded to him were enough to get him ahead of Prost in the final standings, after the Renault driver retired with a turbo failure.[2]

The seventeenth running of the South African Grand Prix saw Riccardo Patrese take his second career victory, although he was under pressure from Alfa Romeo's Andrea de Cesaris in the closing stages.[2] De Cesaris claimed second in the race, with Ferrari taking the Constructor's title despite failing to take a point in the race.[2]

BackgroundEdit

Theodore Racing pulled out of Formula One following the European Grand Prix three weeks earlier.[2] Otherwise, the field was unchanged, although Williams dropped (as planned) the third car they ran for Jonathan Palmer at Brands Hatch, while also debuting the FW09 for Keke Rosberg and Jacques Laffite.[2] The Williams-Honda partnership now meant that nine of the entrants in South Africa were using turbo charged engines. Spirit Racing were also absent, after Honda began questioning the feasibility of supplying two teams in the Championship in 1984.

The Championship battle was the centre of attention, however, as the F1 circus entered Kyalami, with the title battle down to three drivers. Alain Prost brought a two point lead with him in the fast, but unreliable Renault RE40, with Nelson Piquet in second in the BMW powered Brabham BT52B. The third man in the battle was René Arnoux, whom was in possession of the reliable Ferrari 126C3, although the gap of eight points to Prost meant Arnoux had to win, with his former team mate failing to score, and Piquet no higher than fifth.

Ferrari's reliability meant that they led the Constructor's Championship by eleven points, with only fifteen still available. Renault sat in second, really requiring the Scuderia to fail to score, with Prost and Eddie Cheever both on the podium (including either of them winning the race). Furtherdown, Brabham had already secured third, with a battle between, arguably, the two biggest British teams Williams and McLaren for fourth. Williams held a two point advantage, although their gamble on largely unproven Honda engines in the final round could cost them their two point advantage.

Entry ListEdit

The full entry list for the 1983 South African Grand Prix is shown below:

No. Driver Entrant Constructor Chassis Engine Model Tyre
1 Finland Keke Rosberg United Kingdom TAG Williams Racing Team Williams FW09 Honda RA163-E V6t 1.5 G
2 France Jacques Laffite United Kingdom TAG Williams Racing Team Williams FW09 Honda RA163-E V6t 1.5 G
3 Italy Michele Alboreto United Kingdom Benetton Tyrrell Team Tyrrell 012 Ford Cosworth DFV V8 3.0 G
4 United States Danny Sullivan United Kingdom Benetton Tyrrell Team Tyrrell 012 Ford Cosworth DFV V8 3.0 G
5 Brazil Nelson Piquet United Kingdom Fila Sport Brabham BT52B BMW M12/13 L4t 1.5 M
6 Italy Riccardo Patrese United Kingdom Fila Sport Brabham BT52B BMW M12/13 L4t 1.5 M
7 United Kingdom John Watson United Kingdom Marlboro McLaren International McLaren MP4/1E TAG TTE PO1 V6t 1.5 M
8 Austria Niki Lauda United Kingdom Marlboro McLaren International McLaren MP4/1E TAG TTE PO1 V6t 1.5 M
9 Germany Manfred Winkelhock Germany Team ATS ATS D6 BMW M12/13 L4t 1.5 G
11 Italy Elio de Angelis United Kingdom John Player Team Lotus Lotus 94T Renault EF1 V6t 1.5 P
12 United Kingdom Nigel Mansell United Kingdom John Player Team Lotus Lotus 94T Renault EF1 V6t 1.5 P
15 France Alain Prost France Equipe Renault Elf Renault RE40 Renault EF1 V6t 1.5 M
16 United States Eddie Cheever France Equipe Renault Elf Renault RE40 Renault EF1 V6t 1.5 M
17 United Kingdom Kenny Acheson United Kingdom RAM Racing Team March RAM 01 Ford Cosworth DFV V8 3.0 P
22 Italy Andrea de Cesaris Italy Marlboro Team Alfa Romeo Alfa Romeo 183T Alfa Romeo 890T V8t 1.5 M
23 Italy Mauro Baldi Italy Marlboro Team Alfa Romeo Alfa Romeo 183T Alfa Romeo 890T V8t 1.5 M
25 France Jean-Pierre Jarier France Equipe Ligier Gitanes Ligier JS21 Ford Cosworth DFV V8 3.0 M
26 Brazil Raul Boesel France Equipe Ligier Gitanes Ligier JS21 Ford Cosworth DFV V8 3.0 M
27 France Patrick Tambay Italy Scuderia Ferrari SpA SEFAC Ferrari 126C3 Ferrari 021 V6t 1.5 G
28 France René Arnoux Italy Scuderia Ferrari SpA SEFAC Ferrari 126C3 Ferrari 021 V6t 1.5 G
29 Switzerland Marc Surer United Kingdom Arrows Racing Team Arrows A6 Ford Cosworth DFV V8 3.0 G
30 Belgium Thierry Boutsen United Kingdom Arrows Racing Team Arrows A6 Ford Cosworth DFV V8 3.0 G
31 Italy Corrado Fabi Italy Osella Squadra Corse Osella FA1E Alfa Romeo 1260 V12 3.0 M
32 Italy Piercarlo Ghinzani Italy Osella Squadra Corse Osella FA1E Alfa Romeo 1260 V12 3.0 M
35 United Kingdom Derek Warwick United Kingdom Candy Toleman Motorsport Toleman TG183B Hart 415T L4t 1.5 P
36 Italy Bruno Giacomelli United Kingdom Candy Toleman Motorsport Toleman TG183B Hart 415T L4t 1.5 P

Practice OverviewEdit

Ferrari were the team to beat in practice, with Patrick Tambay (in his last race for the tifosi) fastest from Arnoux, although it was not a trouble free session for the championship outsider.[2] After breaking down during the session, Arnoux was run over by his own car as the marshalls removed it from the track, meaning he would have to hobble his way around the circuit.[2]

QualifyingEdit

It would be advantage Piquet after qualifying, with the Brabham backed Brazilian taking second on his time from practice.[1] Arnoux improved, but his injured foot meant he couldn't push as hard as he could, slipping to fourth behind Piquet's team mate Riccardo Patrese.[1] Prost, meanwhile, would have to start from fifth, having been unable to improve on his practice time, meaning he would have to battle his way to Piquet to take the title.[1]

Keke Rosberg was in a visibly happier position in the new Williams-Honda in sixth, with team mate Jacques Laffite ending his recent poor qualifying run in tenth.[1] WIth the departure of Theodore reducing the entry list to twenty six cars, all of the drivers would start the race, with the Osellas of Carrado Fabi and Piercarlo Ghinzani sharing the thirteenth and final row.[1]

Qualifying ResultsEdit

Pos. No. Driver Constructor Time[1]
Q1 Q2
1 27 France Patrick Tambay Ferrari 1:06.554 1:07.029
2 5 Brazil Nelson Piquet Brabham-BMW 1:06.792 1:06.821
3 6 Italy Riccardo Patrese Brabham-BMW 1:08.181 1:07.001
4 28 France René Arnoux Ferrari 1:07.222 1:07.105
5 15 France Alain Prost Renault 1:07.186 1:08.136
6 1 Finland Keke Rosberg Williams-Honda 1:07.256 1:07.344
7 12 United Kingdom Nigel Mansell Lotus-Renault 1:09.443 1:07.643
8 9 Germany Manfred Winkelhock ATS-BMW 1:07.726 1:07.682
9 22 Italy Andrea de Cesaris Alfa Romeo 1:08.970 1:07.759
10 2 France Jacques Laffite Williams-Honda 1:07.931 1:08.652
11 11 Italy Elio de Angelis Lotus-Renault 1:07.937 1:07.980
12 8 Austria Niki Lauda McLaren-TAG 1:07.974 1:08.587
13 35 United Kingdom Derek Warwick Toleman-Hart 1:08.061 1:08.301
14 16 United States Eddie Cheever Renault 1:08.069 1:08.360
15 7 United Kingdom John Watson McLaren-TAG 1:08.328 1:10.635
16 36 Italy Bruno Giacomelli Toleman-Hart 1:08.350 1:08.439
17 23 Italy Mauro Baldi Alfa Romeo 1:09..364 1:08.628
18 3 Italy Michele Alboreto Tyrrell-Ford Cosworth 1:11.096 1:11.284
19 4 United States Danny Sullivan Tyrrell-Ford Cosworth 1:11.750 1:11.382
20 30 Belgium Thierry Boutsen Arrows-Ford Cosworth 1:11.988 1:11.658
21 25 France Jean-Pierre Jarier Ligier-Ford Cosworth 1:12.017 1:12.538
22 29 Switzerland Marc Surer Arrows-Ford Cosworth 1:12.309 1:12.049
23 26 Brazil Raul Boesel Ligier-Ford Cosworth 1:12.745 1:13.330
24 17 United Kingdom Kenny Acheson RAM-Ford Cosworth 1:13.352 No Time
25 31 Italy Corrado Fabi Osella-Alfa Romeo 1:14.483 1:13.656
26 32 Italy Piercarlo Ghinzani Osella-Alfa Romeo 1:14.903 1:15.503


Pos Pos
Driver Driver
______________
Row 1 ______________ 1
2 Patrick Tambay
Nelson Piquet ______________
Row 2 ______________ 3
4 Riccardo Patrese
René Arnoux ______________
Row 3 ______________ 5
6 Alain Prost
Keke Rosberg ______________
Row 4 ______________ 7
8 Nigel Mansell
Manfred Winkelhock ______________
Row 5 ______________ 9
10 Andrea de Cesaris
Jacques Laffite ______________
Row 6 ______________ 11
12 Elio de Angelis
Niki Lauda ______________
Row 7 ______________ 13
14 Derek Warwick
Eddie Cheever ______________
Row 8 ______________ 15
16 John Watson
Bruno Giacomelli ______________
Row 9 ______________ 17
18 Mauro Baldi
Michele Alboreto ______________
Row 10 ______________ 19
20 Danny Sullivan
Thierry Boutsen ______________
Row 11 ______________ 21
22 Jean-Pierre Jarier
Marc Surer ______________
Row 12 ______________ 23
24 Raul Boesel
Kenny Acheson ______________
Row 13 ______________ 25
26 Corrado Fabi
Piercarlo Ghinzani ______________

RaceEdit

With no changes to the grid order before the race, the entire focus of the grid was on the title battle, with Nelson Piquet best placed on the grid. Alain Prost had to stay within a position of Piquet or get in front to win the Championship, while René Arnoux had to win outright, and see Prost and Piquet (idealy) fail to score at all. Ferrari, meanwhile, were almost guaranteed the Constructor's title, with Renault needing both of their cars on the podium, and the tifosi to fail to score.

ReportEdit

A poor start for Patrick Tambay on pole allowed Piquet and rear gunner Riccardo Patrese into first and second off the line, with Piquet immediately building a lead.[2] Tambay ran in third, with a remarkable start for Andrea de Cesaris putting the Alfa Romeo up to fourth.[2] Prost beat Arnoux off the line to hold on to fifth, with the McLaren-TAGs taking on the Williams-Hondas further down.[2]

Over the first few laps, Piquet built a significant lead, as Tambay came under pressure from both de Cesaris and Prost, ultimately falling to both of them in the space of a couple of laps.[2] De Cesaris then fended off Prost, while Niki Lauda climbed through the field to take Tambay and sit on the back of Prost.[2] Furtherdown, Arnoux's championship hopes were ended on lap ten after an engine failure, leaving the title fight between Piquet and Prost.[1] back at the front, Prost and Lauda both forced their way past de Cesaris, before, on lap 18, the Austrian slipped into third, beating Prost along the main straight.[2]

The pitstop window opened on lap 28, when Piquet stopped and rejoined without losing the lead, a low fuel start amost certainly the reason why he had built that lead as much as he had.[2] A few laps later, however, there was a potentially decisive development in the title battle, when Prost stopped on lap 35 in the pits.[2] The Frenchman climbed out of his car after a turbo failure, meaning Piquet had only to finish fifth in order to claim the title.[2] Ferrari, meanwhile, were now Constructor's Champions for the second year in a row, meaning that they could relax for the rest of the race.

The second half of the race saw Piquet adopt a conservative style after Prost's failure, meaning that he was gradually caught by the rest of the field.[2] Patrese was the first to come across him, and was allowed to pass rather unchallenged to take the lead on lap 60.[2] Lauda was next, having established himself in third, taking second on lap 69, although his day was then ruined by an electrical failure five laps from the end.[2] De Cesaris was next to come across the champion-elect, taking second on lap 75.[2]

Patrese won the race from de Cesaris, while Piquet remained unchallenged for third over the final two laps, meaning he took the World Championship by two points from Prost.[2] Derek Warwick had a trouble free run to take three final points for Toleman in fourth, while Keke Rosberg took his first points since the Canadian Grand Prix in fifth.[2] A disappointed Eddie Cheever completed the points paying positions, as Ferrari and Piquet emerged as the Champions of 1983.[2]

ResultsEdit

Pos. No. Driver Constructor Laps Time/Retired Grid Pts
1 6 Italy Riccardo Patrese Brabham-BMW 77 1:33:25.708 3 9
2 22 Italy Andrea de Cesaris Alfa Romeo 77 +9.319 9 6
3 5 Brazil Nelson Piquet Brabham-BMW 77 +21.969 2 4
4 35 United Kingdom Derek Warwick Toleman-Hart 76 +1 lap 13 3
5 1 Finland Keke Rosberg Williams-Honda 76 +1 lap 6 2
6 16 United States Eddie Cheever Renault 76 +1 lap 14 1
7 4 United States Danny Sullivan Tyrrell-Ford Cosworth 75 +2 laps 19
8 29 Switzerland Marc Surer Arrows-Ford Cosworth 75 +2 laps 22
9 30 Belgium Thierry Boutsen Arrows-Ford Cosworth 74 +3 laps 20
10 25 France Jean-Pierre Jarier Ligier-Ford Cosworth 73 +4 laps 21
11* 8 Austria Niki Lauda McLaren-TAG 71 Electrical 12
12 17 United Kingdom Kenny Acheson RAM-Ford Cosworth 71 +6 laps 24
NC 12 United Kingdom Nigel Mansell Lotus-Renault 68 +9 laps 7
NC 26 Brazil Raul Boesel Ligier-Ford Cosworth 66 +11 laps 23
Ret 3 Italy Michele Alboreto Tyrrell-Ford Cosworth 60 Engine 18
Ret 27 France Patrick Tambay Ferrari 56 Turbo 1
Ret 36 Italy Bruno Giacomelli Toleman-Hart 56 Turbo 16
Ret 15 France Alain Prost Renault 35 Turbo 5
Ret 31 Italy Corrado Fabi Osella-Alfa Romeo 28 Engine 25
Ret 11 Italy Elio de Angelis Lotus-Renault 20 Engine 11
DSQ 7 United Kingdom John Watson McLaren-TAG 18 Disqualified 15
Ret 28 France René Arnoux Ferrari 9 Engine 4
Ret 23 Italy Mauro Baldi Alfa Romeo 5 Engine 17
Ret 9 Germany Manfred Winkelhock ATS-BMW 1 Engine 8
Ret 2 France Jacques Laffite Williams-Honda 1 Spin 10
Ret 32 Italy Piercarlo Ghinzani Osella-Alfa Romeo 1 Engine 26
  • * Lauda was still classified as he had completed 90% of the race distance.
  • Watson was disqualified on lap 19 after being found to have overtaken on the parade lap.

MilestonesEdit

Standings after raceEdit

ReferencesEdit

v·d·e Nominate this page for Featured Article
V T E 1983 Formula One Season
Teams Williams • Tyrrell • Brabham • McLaren • ATS • Lotus • Renault • RAM • Alfa Romeo • Ligier • Ferrari • Arrows • Osella • Theodore • Toleman • Spirit
Engines Alfa Romeo • BMW • Ferrari • Ford • Hart • Honda • Renault • TAG
Drivers Rosberg • 2 Laffite • 42 Palmer • 3 Alboreto • 4 Sullivan • 5 Piquet • 6 Patrese • 7 Watson • 8 Lauda • 9 Winkelhock • 11 De Angelis • 12 Mansell • 15 Prost • 16 Cheever • 17 Salazar • 17 Villeneuve • 17 Acheson • 18 Schlesser • 22 De Cesaris • 23 Baldi • 25 Jarier • 26 Boesel • 27 Tambay • 28 Arnoux • 29 Surer • 30 Serra • 30 Jones • 30 Boutsen • 31 Fabi • 32 Ghinzani • 33 Guerrero • 34 Cecotto • 35 Warwick • 36 Giacomelli • 40 Johansson
Cars Ferrari 126C2B • Ferrari 126C3 • Renault RE30B • Renault RE30C • Renault RE40 • Brabham BT52 • Williams FW08C • Williams FW09 • McLaren MP4/1C • McLaren MP4/1E • Alfa Romeo 183T • Tyrrell 011B • Tyrrell 012 • Lotus 92 • Lotus 93T • Lotus 94T • Toleman TG183B • Arrows A6 • Theodore N183 • Ligier JS21 • Spirit 201 • ATS D6 • Osella FA1D • Osella FA1E • RAM 01
Tyres Goodyear • Michelin • Pirelli
Races Brazil • U.S. West • France • San Marino • Monaco • Belgium • Detroit • Canada • Britain • Germany • Austria • Netherlands • Italy • Europe • South Africa
See also 1982 Formula One Season • 1984 Formula One Season • Category
V T E South Africa South Africa South African Grand Prix
Circuits Prince George Circuit (1934–1963), Kyalami Circuit (1965-1993)
Rsa 1066372-k5
Championship Races 1963 • 1964 • 1965 • 1967 • 1968 • 1969 • 1970 • 1971 • 1972 • 1973 • 1974 • 1975 • 1976 • 1977 • 1978 • 1979 • 1980 • 1982 • 1983 • 1984 • 1985 • 1986–1991 • 1992 • 1993
Non-championship races 1934 • 1936 • 1937 • 1938 • 1939 • 1960 • 1960 • 1961 • 1966 • 1981

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