Vittorio Brambilla. Photo: Wikimedia Commons
The Great Prize of Austria of 1975 was the twelfth and penultimate round of the World 1975. Niki Lauda (Ferrari) arrived at Österreichring in a position to secure the title in front of their only two contenders, Carlos Alberto Reutemann (Brabham) and Emerson Fittipalidi (McLaren). It was a weekend of contrasts: the american Mark Donohue lost his life after crashing in the first corner with its March-Penske in the final session of free practice, a crash that claimed the life of a commissioner of track. In the race, the drama gave way to the comedy: under a heavy rain, the veteran Vittorio Brambilla won his first and only victory… for nothing more to see the checkered flag and crashing into the guardrail.
Lauda appeared to lay the groundwork for his first title with his seventh pole of the year. Just before the exit, it appeared the rain and the cars returned to the garage to mount wet tyres. With almost an hour delay, it gave the output. The austrian was in the lead, but after little more than a dozen laps it became evident that his Ferrari was not well-regulated for the condition of the asphalt. James Hunt (Hesketh) ahead, but the joy was short-lived. A triggered Brambilla (at 37, the pilot is a veteran of the time) snatched the first place.
Given that the conditions are not improved, rather the opposite, it was decided to terminate the race on lap 29. Brambilla, elated after crossing the finish line, he lost control of his March and hit the guardrail. The nicknamed the “gorilla of Monza,” he completed the lap of honour with the right front of his car severely damaged.
Hunt and Tom Pryce (Shadow) completed the podium. By regulation, only be awarded half of the points. There was No problem for Lauda. Given that Reutemann and Fittipaldi finished outside of the top six positions, his sixth place meant that he had only scoring in the Grand Prix of Italy to become champion. As was the.