Tuesday, February 2, 2016

F1 Country Guide - New Zealand

New Zealand is a country with a proud history of Grand Prix racing and famous F1 racing names ... McLaren, Hulme, Amon.  This blog will explore New Zealand's Grand Prix racing past and also what it offers F1 fans today.

The Past


In total, 8 New Zealand drivers have contested the Formula One World Championship.  Let's look at some ...

McLaren of course is the mega successful F1 team was started by New Zealander Bruce McLaren.  Bruce himself won 4 Formula 1 Grand Prix, his first win in 1959 made him the youngest ever driver to win a championship Grand Prix at the time.  Bruce and was also very successful in other forms of motorsport, particularly Can-Am. 

Denny Hulme was the most successful New Zealand F1 driver ever with 8 wins and also winning the F1 World Championship in 1967.

Chris Amon; at 19 years old was the youngest ever driver to start in a championship Grand Prix at the time.  Chris he is often quoted as the most talented driver never to win an F1 championship race.  He won non-championship races, drove for Ferrari and was also an F1 team owner. 

Mike Thackwell; at 19 years old qualified on pole for the 1980 Canadian Grand Prix.  The youngest qualifier ever, a record that would stand for 29 years.

The New Zealand Grand Prix

The New Zealand Grand Prix began in 1950 and was held mainly at Pukekohe Park Raceway and the Ardmore Circuit.  It had many famous winners such as Sir Stirling Moss 3 times (1956, 1959, 1962), Sir Jack Brabham 3 times (1958, 1960, 1961), Graham Hill twice (1965 and 1966), Chris Amon twice (1968 and 1969), Bruce McLaren, John Surtees and Sir Jackie Stewart. 

Of course the New Zealand Grand Prix was also part of the Tasman Series which ran between 1964 and 1975.  So there were other Tasman races held in New Zealand at this time at circuits in Levin, Wigram and Teretonga.


Activities for F1 fans

If you are visiting New Zealand, these are the options for F1 fans:
  • Various motorsport circuits, events and experiences (see below).
  • Take a ride in the Orange Arrows F1 3 seater car.
  • The Bruce McLaren Trust and Museum (located at the site of the old McLaren Service Station).
  • Visit Bruce McLaren's childhood home; 8 Upland Road Remeura.  His grave is at Waikumete Cemetery, Glen Eden, Auckland.
  • The National Motorsport Museum, Otago which has 2 F1 cars on display.
  • Maybe buy a supercar (?): The Hulme Supercar.
  • Several go-karting locations.
  • Sim racing (see below).

  • Various motoring bookstores (see below).

Thanks for reading.  Please leave your comments.

Pep, F1 Podcast


New Zealand Grand Prix:  https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/New_Zealand_Grand_Prix
Tasman Series:  http://tasmanrevival.com/history-of-the-tasman-series/
New Zealand F1 drivers:  https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Formula_One_drivers_from_New_Zealand


Pukekohe Park Raceway (Pukekohe):  http:/ /www.countiesracing.co.nz/motor-racing/
Highlands Motorsport Park (Otago):  http://www.highlands.co.nz/
Bruce McLaren Motorsport Park (Taupo):  http://www.brucemclarenmotorsportpark.com/
Hampton Downs (Waikato):  http://www.hamptondowns.com/
Ruapuna (Christchurch):  http://www.canterburycarclub.co.nz/ 
Teretonga (Invercargill):  http://www.teretonga.org.nz/

F1 3 seater ride:  http://formula1ridesnz.co.nz/
Bruce McLaren Trust and Museum (Remuera, Auckland):  http://www.bruce-mclaren.com
Bruce McLaren grave:  http://www.findagrave.com/cgi-bin/fg.cgi?page=gr&GRid=12763417
National Motorsport Museum:  http://www.highlands.co.nz/museum/
Hulme Supercars:  http://www.hulmesupercars.com/

SIM racing:

Virtual Racing Centre (Auckland): http://www.vrracing.co.nz/
Hyper Simulator (Auckland and Wellington):  http://www.hyperstimulator.co.nz/

Motorsport books:

DML Motorbooks (South Canterbuy):  http://www.manuals.co.nz/
Pace Publications (Auckland):  http://www.pace.net.nz/
FAZAZZ (Christchurch):  http://www.fazazz.co.nz/
Octane Books (Auckland):  http://octanebooks.co.nz/


No comments: