Carlos Pace
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Carlos Pace
José Carlos Pace
Carlos Pace 74 (cropped).jpg
Born(1944-10-06)6 October 1944
São Paulo, Brazil
Died18 March 1977(1977-03-18) (aged 32)
Mairiporã, Brazil
Formula One World Championship career
Nationality Brazilian
Active years1972 - 1977
TeamsWilliams, Surtees, Brabham
Entries73 (72 starts)
Career points58
Pole positions1
Fastest laps5
First entry1972 South African Grand Prix
First win1975 Brazilian Grand Prix
Last win1975 Brazilian Grand Prix
Last entry1977 South African Grand Prix

José Carlos Pace (October 6, 1944 - March 18, 1977) was a racing driver from Brazil. He participated in 73 Formula One World Championship Grands Prix, debuting at the 1972 South African Grand Prix. He won one race, achieved six podiums, and scored a total of 58 championship points. He also secured one pole position.


Pace driving a Ferrari 312PB at the Nürburgring in 1973.

Pace was a contemporary of the Fittipaldi brothers, Wilson and Emerson, and began racing in Brazil in the late 1960s. He travelled to Europe in 1970 and competed in British Formula 3, winning the Forward Trust championship in a Lotus car. In 1971 he moved up to Formula Two with Frank Williams, but did not score any points from six races. Nevertheless, he moved up to Formula One in 1972, competing with a Williams-entered March. He scored points on two occasions and finished eighteenth in the Drivers' Championship. His best result came at the non-championship Victory Race, in which he finished in second position. He also competed in some further F2 and Can-Am races.

For 1973, Pace moved to the Surtees team and improved to eleventh place in the championship after scoring a fourth place in Germany and his first championship podium finish with third in Austria. He also set the fastest lap in both of these events. He also competed in three F2 races for Surtees, but his main racing activities outside F1 were in the World Sportscar Championship, in which he drove for the works Ferrari team. Sharing a 312PB with Arturo Merzario, the duo finished second at the Nürburgring and at Le Mans (after starting in pole position for the latter event), and third at Watkins Glen.

He remained with Surtees for 1974 and scored a fourth-place finish in Brazil, but parted company with the outfit mid-season after falling out with the founder, John Surtees. He drove a privately entered Brabham for Goldie Hexagon Racing at the French Grand Prix but failed to qualify, before moving to the works team alongside namesake Carlos Reutemann for the next race. After initially struggling with the new machinery, he finished fifth and set the fastest lap at Monza, and repeated the feat on his way to second, behind Reutemann, at Watkins Glen, securing a one-two finish for Brabham.

Pace at the Nürburgring in 1973.

The Brabham team's BT44B chassis were competitive throughout the 1975 season, allowing Pace and Reutemann to feature at the front of the grid. Pace duly took his first and only Formula One victory in front of his home crowd at the Brazilian Grand Prix, took his first pole position at the following race in South Africa, and also finished on the podium at Monaco and Silverstone, ending the season sixth overall in the Drivers' Championship and helping Brabham to second in the Constructors' Championship, behind Ferrari.

He remained with Brabham for 1976, but the car was much less competitive due to a change of engine, from Ford-Cosworth to Alfa Romeo. The Italian flat 12 units were larger, heavier, less reliable and less economical than their V8 predecessors, restricting Pace to fourteenth place in the championship, whilst Reutemann left the team before the end of the season.

By the start of the 1977 season, the competitiveness and durability of the Alfa engines had been much improved for Pace and his new teammate, John Watson. He demonstrated this fact by taking second position at the season opener in Argentina, and running strongly in the next two Grands Prix before suffering from mechanical trouble, but he was unable to capitalise on the improved performance for the rest of the season due to his sudden death.

Death and honours

Pace was killed in a private light aircraft accident near São Paulo, Brazil[1] on 18 March 1977, 13 days after fellow F1 driver Tom Pryce and marshal Jansen Van Vuuren lost their lives during the 1977 South African Grand Prix.[2] The Interlagos track, the scene of his only F1 win in 1975, was renamed Autódromo José Carlos Pace in his honour. Pace is buried in Cemitério do Araçá, São Paulo.

In the 1977 motorsport film Bobby Deerfield, the eponymous title character is represented by Pace in the racing scenes.

Racing record

Career summary

Season Series Team Races Wins Poles F/Laps Podiums Points Position
1970 BRSCC Lombank British Formula Three Jim Russell Racing Driver School 13 1 2 4 7 43 3rd
BRSCC Motorsport/Shell British Formula Three 11 1 0 1 2 22 5th
BARC Forward Trust British Formula Three 11 2 1 2 4 41 1st
1971 European Formula Two Frank Williams Motul March 6 0 0 0 0 0 NC
1972 Formula One Team Williams Motul 11 0 0 0 0 3 18th
European Formula Two Pygmée Racing Team 4 0 1 1 1 6 15th
Can-Am Advanced Vehicle Systems 3 0 0 0 0 10 15th
1973 Formula One Brooke Bond Oxo Team Surtees 14 0 0 2 1 7 11th
World Sportscar Championship Ferrari SEFAC SpA 9 0 0 0 4 0 NC
European Formula Two Surtees Racing 3 0 0 0 0 0 NC
24 Hours of Le Mans Ferrari SEFAC SpA 1 0 0 0 1 N/A 2nd
1974 Formula One Motor Racing Developments 6 0 0 2 1 11 12th
Bang & Olufsen Team Surtees 5 0 0 0 0
Team Surtees 2 0 0 0 0
1975 Formula One Martini Racing 14 1 1 1 3 24 6th
1976 Formula One Martini Racing 16 0 0 0 0 7 14th
1977 Formula One Martini Racing 3 0 0 0 1 6 15th

Complete Formula One World Championship results

(key) (Races in bold indicate pole position / Races in italics indicate fastest lap)

Complete Formula One Non-Championship results

(key) (Races in bold indicate pole position / Races in italics indicate fastest lap)

Complete 24 Hours of Le Mans results

Year Team Co-Drivers Car Class Laps Pos. Class
1973 Italy Ferrari SEFAC SpA Italy Arturo Merzario Ferrari 312PB
Ferrari 312 F12 2991cc
S3.0 349 2nd 2nd


  1. ^ "This Charming Man: Carlos Pace". 5 November 2010. Retrieved 2014.
  2. ^ Henry (1985) pp. 164, 167
  3. ^ Small, Steve (1994). The Guinness Complete Grand Prix Who's Who. Guinness. pp. 274-5. ISBN 0851127029.


External links

Sporting positions
Preceded by
Roy Pike
British Formula 3 Championship
BARC Series Champion

Succeeded by

  This article uses material from the Wikipedia page available here. It is released under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share-Alike License 3.0.



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