Won Once


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Many drivers have been unfortunate enough to not win a Formula One race, as has everyone else in the general public. This thread is for those who've tasted the champagne. Once. And only once.

Luigi Fagioli (1951 French Grand Prix)
Fagioli was one of Alfa Romeo's famous 3 'F's, and as such spent most of 1950 on the podium behind either of his two more talented team-mates. He would only enter once in 1951, at Reims. Fangio retired from the Grand Prix and took Fagioli's car on lap 24, with the Argentine genius taking it to the win. Fagioli finished 11th, some 20 laps down, in a repaired car of Fangio's. He thus became the oldest man to win a Grand Prix, his last Championship race before his death in the 1952 Monaco Grand Prix, that year a sportscar race.

Piero Taruffi (1952 Swiss Grand Prix)
In 1952, Alberto Ascari missed the Swiss Grand Prix to attempt to win the Indy500. His Ferrari was no match for the American cars, but was dominant on the European scene. Thus Guiseppe Farina was 5 seconds clear of the first non-Ferrari in qualifying. Farina, however, was to retire on lap 16, giving his countryman Taruffi a lead he did not relinquish. Taruffi came 3rd in a Ferrari-dominated World Championship, in his best year.

Luigi Musso (1956 Argentine Grand Prix)
Like Fagioli five years previously, Musso's only win came as a result of jumping out of his car, in his case a Lancia Ferrari, and giving Juan Manuel Fangio a go. In a race with precious few finishers, Fangio drove 68 of the 90 laps to win his home Grand Prix, giving Musso his only win as a by-product. The Italian was third in the Championship in 1957 before his death at the 1958 French Grand Prix.

Jo Bonnier (1959 Dutch Grand Prix)
Jo Bonnier had a long and unsuccessful Formula One career supplemented with success in sportscars. In 119 Grand Prix he achieved one podium, at Zandvoort in 1959. Happily, he was on the top step. He was on pole in his BRM, and led much of the way. At times, he was headed by the three Coopers of Marsten Gregory, Jack Brabham and Stirling Moss, but when Moss retired from the lead, Bonnier brought the car home. He died in an accident in the 1972 24 heures du Mans.

Giancarlo Baghetti (1961 French Grand Prix)
Ferrari locked out the front row at Reims in 1961, with Phil Hill, Wolfgang Von Trips and Richie Ginther in their main cars. Baghetti was in 12th place on the grid, entered not by the Scuderia but by FISA (a coalition of Italian entrants). However, the three works Ferraris were to drop out, in addition to luminaries such as Stirling Moss and Jack Brabham. This left Baghetti up front in a slipstreaming battle with Dan Gurney in the Porsche, one which the Italian emerged triumphant. He would only score two more points positions before ATS and oblivion.

Innes Ireland (1961 US Grand Prix)
The death of Wolfgang Von Trips meant that Ferrari did not attend the US Grand Prix at Watkins Glen in 1961. Ireland qualified 8th for Team Lotus, with Jack Brabham on pole. By lap 8, Ireland was in 4th position. He got past Bruce McLaren's Cooper for 3rd and then won the race when Jack Brabham's Cooper and Stirling Moss's privateer Lotus retired, giving the works Lotus team their first win. It was Ireland's last podium, as Jim Clark took Lotus to new heights...

Lorenzo Bandini (1964 Austrian Grand Prix)
The Italian (who was born in Libya) started the 1964 Austrian Grand Prix in 7th position, but that was on the second row! He was in 3rd at the end of lap 1, and he took 2nd when his team-mate John Surtees retired from the lead, only to lose it again to Jim Clark. The World Champion's inevitable retirement came on lap 40, and leader Dan Gurney stopped on lap 47 to give Bandini the win. The Italian was 4th in the Championship that year, but was killed in a fireball in Monaco three years later.

Richie Ginther (1965 Mexican Grand Prix)
Jim Clark was unable to hold on to his pole position in Mexico City in 1965, falling back to 10th on the first lap and retiring a few laps later. Thus the lead went to Honda's American Richie Ginther, who had started in 3rd position. Against a stiff challenge from countryman Dan Gurney, Ginther lead every lap to win by the princely margin of 2.89 seconds. He would retire a year later.

Ludovicio Scarfiotti (1966 Italian Grand Prix)
Ferrari entered more cars for the Italian Grand Prix back in the day. Scarfiotti was the third Ferrari at Italy. His previous race in Germany had lead to a retirement. He was second on the grid to team-mate Mike Parkes, but fell back early on as the lead constantly changed hands. Scarfiotti hit the lead on lap 13 and lead all but one of the remaining laps, setting fastest lap to boot. He was to enjoy limited success before his death in a hill climb in a Porsche in 1968.

Peter Gethin (1971 Italian Grand Prix)
The ultimate slipstreaming race saw 5 cars separated by less than a second at the end. Gethin started 11th in the third of four BRMs alongside team-mate Helmut Marko. (Yes, that one!) Retirements and Chris Amon's luck led to him taking 5th place with 7 laps left. Four laps later he was in the lead. Peterson lead the penultimate lap, but Gethin hit the line first at the appropriate point to take his only victory. He thus scored 9 of his 11 career World Championship points.

Francois Cevert (1971 US Grand Prix)
Its not easy being the team-mate of Jackie Stewart. While the Scotsman won about half of the races in 1971, Cevert scarcely finished. Fortuanately, Tyrell had produced a humdinger of a car. Thus it was that Tyrell were unsurprisingly running one-two when Stewart retired, and Cevert comfortably won his only Grand Prix by 40 seconds. Cevert was a consistent driver of great talent, 3rd in the 1971 Championship, and it is sad that his death in 1973 ensured that we never saw what he would do outside the great man's shadow.

Jean-Pierre Beltoise (1972 Monaco Grand Prix)
Since the days of Graham Hill, BRM went well in Monaco. Beltoise went from 4th to lead on lap 1, and never relinquished the lead. Jacky Ickx was 38 seconds down on the Frenchman, Emerson Fittipaldi was a lap down. Stewart was two laps down, and the rest had been lapped three times or more! Beltoise' best days were behind him by that point, but a consistent points scorer had his reward.

Carlos Pace (1975 Brazilian Grand Prix)
Pace qualified 6th for the 1975 Brazilian Grand Prix in Sao Paulo. He was third by the first lap, and took 2nd on lap 14 as Brabham team-mate Carlos Reutemann started to go backwards. The leader was Shadow's Jean Pierre Jarier, but the Shadow curse of 1975 was in operation as FB's favourite driver was out with a fuel problem. Pace took the chequered flag. Two years later he died in a plane crash, the circuit where he took his win is now named after him.

Jochen Mass (1975 Spanish Grand Prix)
The Fittipaldi brothers withdrew from the 1975 Spanish Grand Prix over Safety Concerns. After 23 laps there were only 10 cars left there were so many accidents. Four future World Champions had crashed (Lauda, Jones, Hunt & Andretti). Sadly, Rolf Stommellen's crash from the lead killed 5 spectators, and the race was off due to safety concerns. The lead was inherited by Jochen Mass, who beat Jacky Ickx home by less than 2 seconds. The German driver would appear on various podiums for McLaren, but this would be sadly his only win.

Vittorio Brambilla (1975 Austrian Grand Prix)
Something was in the air in 1975. Brambilla was the fourth first-time winner after Pace, Mass and Hunt. Lauda originally led, but fell back due to a dry set-up. Brambilla had come from 6th on the grid to pass Lauda for 2nd, then a few laps later Hunt for 1st, with the Englishman held up attempting to lap team-mate Brett Lunger. The race was stopped with a chequered flag on lap 29, meaning that Brambilla was the winner, as the race could not hence be restarted. He promptly crashed his March on the in-lap. He was already 37 but carried on for 5 more years.

Gunnar Nilsson (1977 Belgian Grand Prix)
Mario Andretti hit John Watson on the first lap of the 1977 Belgian Grand Prix, thus giving the lead to Jody Scheckter as Gunner Nilsson swerved to avoid him. A sticky wheelnut relegated the Swede to as low as 9th, but he passed cars right up to taking the lead from Niki Lauda on lap 50. Nilsson was able to win the race. His short career was however curtailed at the end of 1977 by cancer, which claimed his life in October 1978 as in two months, Sweden lost both its Grand Prix racers.

Alessandro Nannini (1989 Japanese Grand Prix)
Yet another Italian for the list. Nannini qualified 6th for the Japanese Grand Prix in 1989, behind both Ferraris and Riccardo Patrese's Williams. He took 3rd position on lap 34, which turned into 2nd when Senna and Prost started playing silly beggars. Nannini passed Senna when the Brazilian pitted to repair his car, and then was caught and passed by the McLaren. However, Senna had been push-started and Nannini took the win when Senna was disqualified. Nannini crashed his new helicopter in 1990 before defending his Japanese crown, and never returned to Formula One.

Jean Alesi (1995 Canadian Grand Prix)
The perfect storyline. The last win of Ferrari #27, at the Circuit Gilles Villeneuve and on Jean Alesi's 31st birthday. Alesi qualified 5th, but David Coulthard was soon out of the race as Alesi cleared team-mate Berger and Damon Hill. Thus Schumacher was ahead of him. But a long stop for the German put Alesi through to take the win from the Jordans of future Ferrari #2s Rubens Barrichello and Eddie Irvine. Alesi would appear on 32 podiums in his time in 201 Grand Prix starts, but there would, surprisingly, remain only one victory for a talented driver.

Olivier Panis (1996 Monaco Grand Prix)
Emotionally, it had to be Damon. He led for 40 laps (save for the pit stop window) of his father's favourite Grand Prix in 1996. Schumacher was out, Villeneuve was nowhere. Bang went the Renault, out got Hill and it was up for grabs. The next twenty laps were lead by Jean Alesi, but suspension failure cruelly robbed the Frenchman of a second victory. There were to be only three finishers. Johnny Herbert of Sauber, David Coulthard of McLaren, who was closing up on Ligier's first winner since the eighties, Olivier Panis. Panis' start to 1997 for the newly renamed Prost team was excellent but he was injured in Montreal and never regained the form to challenge again.

Jarno Trulli (2004 Monaco Grand Prix)
Dominant teams often struggle in Monaco. Michael Schumacher's 2004 Ferrari was the most dominant of them all. So it was that Jarno Trulli, Fernando Alonso and Renault were the best in the principality. Trulli led (save from pit phases) until the second pitstop. His young Spanish team-mate had crashed attempting to lap Ralf Schumacher in the tunnel, then under the Safety Car the other Schumacher brake-tested in the tunnel and was ploughed into by the other Williams of Montoya. Trulli held off a hard charging Jenson Button to take what is almost certain to remain his only win.

Robert Kubica (2008 Canadian Grand Prix)
Like Alesi, I can hardly believe I'm typing this name. Kubica's start to the 2008 season left him close to the lead of the Championship for BMW. When Lewis Hamilton eliminated Kimi Raikkonen in an act of bizarre foolishness at the end of the pitlane, Kubica (net) led, two of the other title contenders were out and Ferrari had needlessly compromised Felipe Massa's stop. It took a while for the various one-stoppers to pit, but Kubica assumed the lead from his team-mate Nick Heidfeld and won the race to lead the Championship. BMW stopped developing 2008's car to concentrate on producing a dog for 2009. After a season where he did everything but win for Renault in 2010, Kubica was severely injured in a rally in Italy and we can only hope I can one day withdraw him from this list.

Heikki Kovalainen (2008 Hungarian Grand Prix)
The 2008 season developed into a battle between Lewis Hamilton and Felipe Massa. The Brazilian jumped both McLarens to the start to roll down the race in the predictable Hungaroring fashion. But Hamilton had a puncture and was dropped down the field, Kovalainen into second place. And then heartbreak for Massa at the circuit of his nightmares, on the last lap. Kovalainen took the win somewhat by default. The highlight of a disappointing two years at McLaren, Kovalainen may yet rebuild his career to the stage where he can win again.
A couple of interesting items:

Baghetti was competing in his very first Formula 1 race.

Beltoise had one hand that was semi useless, having been badly damaged in an accident.

Had they not been killed I think that Cevert, Nannini and Pace had great things in front of them.

Also, as I recall, Nilsson died of pneumonia which he contracted while attending Peterson's funeral, which was held in the rain. Considering his on-going battle with cancer, attending the service was a very courageous thing to do, and took strength I think few of us possess.
Had they not been killed I think that Cevert, Nannini and Pace had great things in front of them.


??????? Nannini is very much alive.
I agree news of Nannini's death has been greatly exaggerated.

Awesome thread TBY. Pretty conclusive.

Having started watching F1 in 1990 Alesi is the big shocker on that list for me. How different it might have been if he'd moved to Williams in 91 instead of Ferrari! Hindsight is a wonderful thing though.

How about a thread of drivers who have been highly thought of but have never won a Grand Prix? that would be interesting. I'm not sure my historical knowledge would be good enoough to write it.
Baghetti was competing in his very first Formula 1 race.

I can't believe I didn't mention that!

Having started watching F1 in 1990 Alesi is the big shocker on that list for me. How different it might have been if he'd moved to Williams in 91 instead of Ferrari! Hindsight is a wonderful thing though.

Indeed, there are a few names that don't fit but Jean is the one who didn't have a career prematurely ended by injury.
Indded, I mistakenly put Nannini when I meant Bandini.

Nannini had injuries, ( a nearly severed arm) very much akin to Kubica. I wonder if medical science has progressed enough that RK will be able to return to F1, when Nannini couldn't.
Baghetti won his first three races! But as Stirling Moss says, only Grande Epruves count. Two non-championships and then slipping past Gurney in the last 100 metres at Riems. Two retirements then he won again. His fall afterwards is a big mystery, ATS didn't help, but he never did well in F1 again.
A lot of drivers on that list who had big accidents, it occurs to me. Musso would have won more races without doubt.
I think Panis was never the same driver after his accident and would have probably got a win the way he was going in that 97 season.

Lets hope Kubica name is not added to the list of one winners due to injury.

*edit* just realised I missed the word not out yesterday and look like the most callioius man in the world!
Panis was a driver with great potential. With his in 96 people tend to call it a fluke because hill was so far ahead and there was so little finishers but some people tend to forget that earlier on in the race Panis, although if i recall correctly a country mile back, was 2-3 seconds faster then evrybody else including runaway leader Hill in a rather pathetic ligier.
One thing I will say is that even though there were three finishers, the Ligier of Panis was not better than the McLaren of Coulthard, and DC was hardly to prove shabby in Monaco in later years.
Without wishing to introduce my friend Mr Cat to a large group of feline hating pidgeons, I firmly believe that Rosberg the Junior should be on that list for winning the Singapore GP.

Poor old Innes Ireland took the first works victory for Lotus and got the shove by way of saying thankyou. Innes has been air brushed out of Lotus history and you will do well to find anything with his face on it if you visit the Classic Team Lotus website run by Colin's son Clive Chapman. The story goes that Chapman didn't like Innes playboy lifestyle and that he thought he wasn't dedicated enough to racing however I have heard several rumours over the years that Innes may have tried to woo Mrs Chapman (and got nowhere) which is why he was given his marching orders.
1975 was a strange year, wasn't it? It seemed to be the year where only Lauda was world-class, (but others would be later on). I seem to recall that there were a lot of wet races that year, and a lot of accidents and red flags, so it really was a crazy year - these one-time winners really seized the opportunity.
Without wishing to introduce my friend Mr Cat to a large group of feline hating pidgeons, I firmly believe that Rosberg the Junior should be on that list for winning the Singapore GP.

And me......everytime the BBC lot say he hasn't won a GP....I shout at the TV...oh yes he has!
I did feel sorry for Felipe that day though.:oops:
Whats interesting about this list is that the decade of the 80's only produced 1 one time winner where as the 70's 7!

Was that merely down to more injuries in the 70's or was the field more open?
Whats interesting about this list is that the decade of the 80's only produced 1 one time winner where as the 70's 7!

Was that merely down to more injuries in the 70's or was the field more open?

More deaths, unfortunately. Although Mass and Brambilla both won races stopped at half distance (or there abouts)
Hmm unfortunately I don't see Kubica ever getting off this list although without his accident I have no doubt he would have done. Kovalainen too looks unlikely to ever win again as the competition for a seat in a top team is too high for him, perhaps if he moves to Renault or something similar and they produce a good car he might fluke another one. Need I say anything about Trulli?
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