Biggest fall from glory

marksawatsky

Podium Finisher
Contributor
The other thread on Red Bulls slide from glory got me wondering what Team or Driver had the biggest fall from glory. Is there a team or driver that won everything then went nowhere the next season? What is the worst case of this?
 

siffert_fan

Too old to watch the Asian races live.
Contributor
The two drivers I can mainly suggest would be Emerson Fittipaldi and Jacques Villeneuve, both of whom totally screwed up their careers by changing teams--Emmo to his brother's Copersucar and JV to BAR which was truly terrible.
 

Dash Racing

Points Scorer
The two drivers I can mainly suggest would be Emerson Fittipaldi and Jacques Villeneuve, both of whom totally screwed up their careers by changing teams--Emmo to his brother's Copersucar and JV to BAR which was truly terrible.
I want to not like that post so badly. I was a Villeneuve fan. :givemestrength:
 

siffert_fan

Too old to watch the Asian races live.
Contributor
Normally the decline of a team takes considerably longer than that of a driver. Two of the most precipitous declines from a team that I can recall belong to Cooper and BRM.

It is, at least nowadays, difficult to actually determine the "end date" of a team, since they more commonly are sold off rather than simply cease to exist.
 

Dartman

Podium Finisher
Never actually thought JV was any good, did well in a Damon Hill sorted car, that went to his head and his mate made up a team for him. Everyone thought it was the car that let him down, then along came Button who walked all over him. OK it wasn't a brilliant car, just not as bad as JV drove it.
 

siffert_fan

Too old to watch the Asian races live.
Contributor
Damon wasn't even in the team the year JV won his title, so I don't see how that could have been "Damon Hill sorted", and I am a big fan of Damon.
 

FB

Not my cup of cake
Valued Member
Ferrari 1980. From championship winning team in '79 to struggling to qualify in 1980. In fact I think Jody might have failed to qualify in at least one race.
 

cider_and_toast

Exulted Lord High Moderator of the Apex
Staff Member
Premium Contributor
I think you can't look beyond that as being the greatest fall from grace. I think one of the main criteria should be the reason. In most cases it's due to a change of regs, a change of driver or engine, or using a car far beyond it's useful life. In the case of Ferrari in 1980 none of those really hold true. The car was simply crap.
 
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siffert_fan

Too old to watch the Asian races live.
Contributor
That rather mirrored the Lotus decline from the glory in 1978 with the model 79, to the debacle of the model 80. The ironic thing in that is that Andretti says that the 80 was really a good car, but it produced so much downforce that the chassis wasn't stiff enough to handle it, and Chapman, ever averse to adding weight, refused to do anything to stiffen it.
 

cider_and_toast

Exulted Lord High Moderator of the Apex
Staff Member
Premium Contributor
It's why Williams gained a jump on them. Patrick Head looked at the 79 and quickly realised it needed stiffening. They reckon the 80 was so weak it would pop its rivets on a lap.
 

siffert_fan

Too old to watch the Asian races live.
Contributor
In fact, according to Mario, after he convinced Chapman to put the stiffening "collar" around the cockpit as they had done on the 79, the 80 did, indeed, start popping the rivets on the spring perches.
 
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Bill Boddy

Professional layabout
Contributor
I would have thought Mercedes walking away from F1 after sweeping all before them with Fangio and Moss.

The F1 website from 2014 to 2015. I simply cannot find anything earlier than 2014, is 1984 at work again?
 
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