1991 Spanish Grand Prix
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1991 Spanish Grand Prix
1991 Spanish Grand Prix
Race 14 of 16 in the 1991 Formula One World Championship
Catalunya1994.png
Race details
Date 29 September 1991
Official name XXXIII Gran Premio Tío Pepe de España
Location Circuit de Catalunya
Barcelona, Spain
Course Permanent racing facility
Course length 4.747 km (2.950 mi)
Distance 65 laps, 308.555 km (191.727 mi)
Weather Warm and overcast, drying
Attendance 60,000
Pole position
Driver McLaren-Honda
Time 1:18.751
Fastest lap
Driver Italy Riccardo Patrese Williams-Renault
Time 1:22.837 on lap 63
Podium
First Williams-Renault
Second Ferrari
Third Williams-Renault

The 1991 Spanish Grand Prix (formally the XXXIII Gran Premio Tío Pepe de España) was a Formula One motor race held on 29 September 1991 at the Circuit de Catalunya. It was the fourteenth race of the 1991 FIA Formula One World Championship, and the first Spanish Grand Prix to be held at Catalunya.

The 65-lap race was won by Nigel Mansell, driving a Williams-Renault, after he started from second position. Alain Prost finished second in a Ferrari, with Mansell's teammate Riccardo Patrese third. Mansell's Drivers' Championship rival, Ayrton Senna, finished fifth in his McLaren-Honda, meaning that he led Mansell by 16 points with two races remaining.

Pre-race

There was a lot of action in the backrooms in the week separating the Portuguese and Spanish Grands Prix with the big news being that Max Mosley was elected president of the FISA, replacing Jean-Marie Balestre. There were also changes in the driver line-ups as Michael Bartels returned to Lotus replacing Johnny Herbert who had obligations in the Japanese Formula 3000. Jordan had replaced Roberto Moreno with young Italian rookie Alessandro Zanardi, and Fondmetal had sacked Olivier Grouillard and replaced him with Gabriele Tarquini of AGS, Grouillard promptly taking Tarquini's old seat. Championship challenger Nigel Mansell was limping all weekend, the Williams driver having injured his ankle in a football match.[]

Qualifying

Pre-qualifying report

The pre-qualifying pool in Spain was reduced to seven entrants when Coloni driver Pedro Chaves refused to drive the car, frustrated at the lack of testing and the non-payment of his retainer. The team were unable to find another driver to attempt to pre-qualify the C4, so it stayed in the garage.[1] Chaves had failed to pre-qualify on all 13 of his attempts this season, and did not drive for the team again.

Brabham secured their fifth consecutive 1-2 in the pre-qualifying session, with Martin Brundle a couple of tenths of a second faster than Mark Blundell. The third placed pre-qualifier, Michele Alboreto in the Footwork, was over two seconds behind Blundell. On his first outing for Fondmetal after the sacking of Olivier Grouillard, Gabriele Tarquini took the last pre-qualifying spot in the Fomet-1, 0.25 seconds behind Alboreto.

Alex Caffi missed out again in fifth place in the other Footwork, just 0.062 seconds slower than Tarquini. It was his fifth failure to pre-qualify in six attempts. Sixth was Fabrizio Barbazza in the AGS, just over half a second faster than his new team-mate Grouillard. It was to be their last appearances for the team as AGS withdrew from Formula One before the next event, having spent six seasons at the top level.[1]

Pre-qualifying classification

Pos No Driver Constructor Time Gap
1 7 United Kingdom Martin Brundle Brabham-Yamaha 1:21.504
2 8 United Kingdom Mark Blundell Brabham-Yamaha 1:21.727 +0.223
3 9 Italy Michele Alboreto Footwork-Ford 1:23.744 +2.240
4 14 Italy Gabriele Tarquini Fondmetal-Ford 1:23.994 +2.490
5 10 Italy Alex Caffi Footwork-Ford 1:24.056 +2.552
6 18 Italy Fabrizio Barbazza AGS-Ford 1:24.744 +3.240
7 17 France Olivier Grouillard AGS-Ford 1:25.305 +3.801

Qualifying report

In Qualifying Gerhard Berger did a favour to teammate Ayrton Senna by taking pole position from Mansell, Senna, Riccardo Patrese, Michael Schumacher, Alain Prost, Jean Alesi, Ivan Capelli, Emanuele Pirro and Nelson Piquet.

Qualifying classification

Pos No Driver Constructor Q1 Q2 Gap
1 2 Austria Gerhard Berger McLaren-Honda 1:18.751 1:21.208
2 5 United Kingdom Nigel Mansell Williams-Renault 1:18.970 1:19.971 +0.219
3 1 Brazil Ayrton Senna McLaren-Honda 1:19.474 1:19.064 +0.313
4 6 Italy Riccardo Patrese Williams-Renault 1:19.643 1:20.392 +0.892
5 19 Germany Michael Schumacher Benetton-Ford 1:19.733 1:20.779 +0.982
6 27 France Alain Prost Ferrari 1:20.245 1:19.936 +1.185
7 28 France Jean Alesi Ferrari 1:20.197 1:20.690 +1.446
8 16 Italy Ivan Capelli Leyton House-Ilmor 1:21.682 1:20.584 +1.833
9 21 Italy Emanuele Pirro Dallara-Judd 1:21.250 1:20.651 +1.900
10 20 Brazil Nelson Piquet Benetton-Ford 1:20.853 1:20.676 +1.925
11 7 United Kingdom Martin Brundle Brabham-Yamaha 1:21.415 1:20.677 +1.926
12 8 United Kingdom Mark Blundell Brabham-Yamaha 1:21.021 1:20.724 +1.973
13 15 Brazil Maurício Gugelmin Leyton House-Ilmor 1:21.319 1:20.743 +1.992
14 4 Italy Stefano Modena Tyrrell-Honda 1:20.788 1:21.576 +2.037
15 22 Finland JJ Lehto Dallara-Judd 1:22.249 1:20.967 +2.216
16 24 Italy Gianni Morbidelli Minardi-Ferrari 1:21.801 1:22.523 +3.050
17 33 Italy Andrea de Cesaris Jordan-Ford 1:21.865 1:22.992 +3.114
18 3 Japan Satoru Nakajima Tyrrell-Honda 1:22.480 1:22.114 +3.363
19 23 Italy Pierluigi Martini Minardi-Ferrari 1:22.575 1:22.510 +3.759
20 32 Italy Alessandro Zanardi Jordan-Ford 1:22.580 1:23.448 +3.829
21 11 Finland Mika Häkkinen Lotus-Judd 1:22.646 1:23.407 +3.895
22 14 Italy Gabriele Tarquini Fondmetal-Ford 1:22.837 1:26.214 +4.086
23 29 France Éric Bernard Lola-Ford 1:22.944 1:23.883 +4.193
24 9 Italy Michele Alboreto Footwork-Ford 1:23.145 1:23.868 +4.394
25 26 France Érik Comas Ligier-Lamborghini 1:23.359 1:23.755 +4.608
26 25 Belgium Thierry Boutsen Ligier-Lamborghini 1:23.553 1:23.623 +4.802
27 30 Japan Aguri Suzuki Lola-Ford 1:24.211 1:26.346 +5.460
28 34 Italy Nicola Larini Lambo-Lamborghini 1:25.330 1:26.109 +6.579
29 12 Germany Michael Bartels Lotus-Judd 1:25.640 1:25.392 +6.641
30 35 Belgium Eric van de Poele Lambo-Lamborghini 1:27.501 1:27.566 +8.750

Race

Race report

On race morning it was raining, but by start time it had stopped, although the track was still wet. At the start Senna got away well and challenged Berger, while Mansell was right on his tail. Toward the end of lap one Schumacher surprised Mansell to take third place. At the back Éric Bernard and Érik Comas collided, both men being out on the spot. The track was incredibly slippery and there was a lot of action at the front with Senna, Schumacher, Mansell, and Alesi all fighting over third place, while Berger started to scamper away in the lead. Mansell tried to chase the leader and forced his way past Schumacher before setting off after Senna. Eventually he pounced on the main straight, the two great rivals going wheel to wheel, just millimetres apart, with Mansell taking the position and setting off after Berger. Prost was the first front-runner to stop for dry tyres, followed shortly by leader Berger, who had a very bad stop. Mansell and Senna both stopped on the same lap and it was the McLaren team who won the confrontation, getting Senna out ahead and into the lead from Berger, Mansell, and Schumacher.

On the following lap Senna let Berger through as Mansell was closing in. The rain returned and Senna had a dramatic spin at the last corner, dropping from second to fifth while Schumacher passed Prost for third. Mansell closed on Berger, and on lap 20 he made his way up the inside to take the lead and proceeded to pull away, while Berger came under pressure from the charging Schumacher. A close battle ended when Schumacher spun while trying to pass, he would stay in the race, but down in sixth place, which would become fifth when Berger retired with yet another electronic failure. The action continued for the major placings as Patrese passed Senna for third then Alesi blew past Senna for fourth after Schumacher pitted. Mansell duly took victory from Prost, Patrese, Alesi, Senna, and Schumacher, while the Minardi drivers ended the race red faced due to a last lap collision between Gianni Morbidelli and Pierluigi Martini. Mansell's win with Senna fifth meant that the title race was back on, but Senna still led by sixteen points as the teams headed on to Japan.

Race classification

Pos No Driver Constructor Laps Time/Retired Grid Points
1 5 United Kingdom Nigel Mansell Williams-Renault 65 1:38:41.541 2 10
2 27 France Alain Prost Ferrari 65 + 11.331 6 6
3 6 Italy Riccardo Patrese Williams-Renault 65 + 15.909 4 4
4 28 France Jean Alesi Ferrari 65 + 22.772 7 3
5 1 Brazil Ayrton Senna McLaren-Honda 65 + 1:02.402 3 2
6 19 Germany Michael Schumacher Benetton-Ford 65 + 1:19.468 5 1
7 15 Brazil Maurício Gugelmin Leyton House-Ilmor 64 + 1 lap 13
8 22 Finland JJ Lehto Dallara-Judd 64 + 1 lap 15
9 32 Italy Alessandro Zanardi Jordan-Ford 64 + 1 lap 20
10 7 United Kingdom Martin Brundle Brabham-Yamaha 63 + 2 laps 11
11 20 Brazil Nelson Piquet Benetton-Ford 63 + 2 laps 10
12 14 Italy Gabriele Tarquini Fondmetal-Ford 63 + 2 laps 22
13 23 Italy Pierluigi Martini Minardi-Ferrari 63 + 2 laps 19
14 24 Italy Gianni Morbidelli Minardi-Ferrari 62 Collision 16
15 21 Italy Emanuele Pirro Dallara-Judd 62 + 3 laps 9
16 4 Italy Stefano Modena Tyrrell-Honda 62 + 3 laps 14
17 3 Japan Satoru Nakajima Tyrrell-Honda 62 + 3 laps 18
Ret 8 United Kingdom Mark Blundell Brabham-Yamaha 49 Engine 12
Ret 26 France Érik Comas Ligier-Lamborghini 36 Electrical 25
Ret 2 Austria Gerhard Berger McLaren-Honda 33 Electrical 1
Ret 9 Italy Michele Alboreto Footwork-Ford 23 Engine 24
Ret 33 Italy Andrea de Cesaris Jordan-Ford 22 Electrical 17
Ret 11 Finland Mika Häkkinen Lotus-Judd 5 Spun off 21
Ret 16 Italy Ivan Capelli Leyton House-Ilmor 1 Collision 8
Ret 29 France Éric Bernard Lola-Ford 0 Collision 23
Ret 25 Belgium Thierry Boutsen Ligier-Lamborghini 0 Collision 26
DNQ 30 Japan Aguri Suzuki Lola-Ford
DNQ 34 Italy Nicola Larini Lambo-Lamborghini
DNQ 12 Germany Michael Bartels Lotus-Judd
DNQ 35 Belgium Eric van de Poele Lambo-Lamborghini
DNPQ 10 Italy Alex Caffi Footwork-Ford
DNPQ 18 Italy Fabrizio Barbazza AGS-Ford
DNPQ 17 France Olivier Grouillard AGS-Ford
Source:[2]

Championship standings after the race

  • Note: Only the top five positions are included for both sets of standings.

References

  1. ^ a b Walker, Murray (1991). Murray Walker's Grand Prix Year. Hazleton Publishing. p. 117-124. ISBN 0 905138 90 2.
  2. ^ "1991 Spanish Grand Prix". formula1.com. Archived from the original on 3 November 2014. Retrieved 2015.
  3. ^ a b "Spain 1991 - Championship o STATS F1". www.statsf1.com. Retrieved 2019.



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