The circuit of Brands Hatch. Photo: brandshatch.co.uk
they don’t make circuits like Brands Hatch, not the fruit of the computer, but the adaptation to the environment. The circuit located in the county of Kent, southeast of London, a real roller coaster of multiple ups and downs, it hosted the british Grand Prix on twelve occasions between 1963 and 1986, alternating with Silverstone. In addition, it hosted the European Grand Prix in 1983 and 1985.
On that last occasion, Nigel Mansell achieved his first victory, at the wheel of the Williams-Honda FW10, the first car of the team of Sir Frank with carbon fiber chassis. His successor, the FW11, was even better, and before the appointment of british Nigel had already won in Belgium, Canada and France. In spite of this, arrived at Brands Hatch a point behind Alain Prost.
Nelson Piquet took pole position nearly half a second ahead of Mansell. In the output, Thierry Boutsen (Arrows-BMW) lost control of his car and killed his teammate Christian Danner and the Osella of Piercarlo Ghinzani and Allen Berg. But worse off was Jacques Laffite. The veteran French, 42-year-old, collided head-on against the guardrail with his Ligier-Renault and broke his two legs. It was the final point of a career that had begun in 1974 and in which he had scored six victories, all of them with the French team. In addition, the accident prevented him from breaking the record of grand prix competitions, that until then he shared with Graham Hill, with 176.
After the second exit, the race was a particular issue between the pilots of Williams that was resolved in favour of Mansell. Prost, third, to be lapped; Arnoux, with the second Ligier, two laps, and the Tyrrell-Renault of Martin Brundle and Philippe Streiff, to three. Mansell took him the taste to win in his native land: again in Silverstone in 1987 (in a new infighting with Piquet), 1991 and 1992, the year they finally won the World.