F1 On This Day: 28th March

The 2021 Bahrain Grand Prix will be the fourth Formula 1 race to take place on 28th March. It’s the day on which Ayrton Senna recorded his final home win, and the day Jenson Button won with McLaren for the first time.

28th March Races in Stats:

  • This will be the first time that a season-opening race has taken place on 28th March.
  • McLaren have been victorious in the last two races held on this date.
  • The 1976 United States Grand Prix West is the only race on this date to have been won from pole position.
  • In the last two races on 28th March, the polesitter has retired.
  • The last two races on this date have been held in wet conditions.
  • There have been at least three first lap retirements in every race held so far on this date.

?? 1976 United States Grand Prix West

Formula 1 headed to Long Beach for the first time on this day in 1976 for the United States Grand Prix West. It was the first new addition to the F1 calendar in three years. Clay Regazzoni recorded the only Grand Slam of his career, recording his final pole position – and Ferrari’s 80th – in the process. Meanwhile, with sixth place, Emerson Fittipaldi scored the first point for the Copersucar team. With the United States Grand Prix also being held at Watkins Glen later in the year, the United States became the first country to host two rounds of the championship in a year since 1960.

?? 1993 Brazilian Grand Prix

Ayrton Senna recorded his final home victory at the 1993 Brazilian Grand Prix. It would be the final time a Brazilian driver won at home until Felipe Massa’s victory at Interlagos in 2006. Senna’s win was the 100th Grand Prix victory for McLaren – the team becoming only the second to reach the milestone. Ferrari had reached 100 wins three years previously and McLaren were now just three wins away from equalling the Scuderia’s all time record – which they would do later in the season at Suzuka. Joining Senna on the podium was his future Williams team-mate Damon Hill, who recorded the first podium finish of his career. Hill became the first son of a World Champion to finish on the podium himself. The next new face on the podium would be Michael Andretti at the 1993 Italian Grand Prix, also the son of a World Champion. Finishing third, Michael Schumacher recorded Benetton’s 40th podium finish having set the team’s tenth Fastest Lap during the race.

?? 2010 Australian Grand Prix

On his second appearance with McLaren, Jenson Button took victory in the 2010 Australian Grand Prix – a race which was held in changeable conditions. Finishing behind Button, in his second race for Renault, was Robert Kubica. This was the Pole’s tenth top three result. With Felipe Massa joining Button and Kubica on the podium this race is the second most recent Grand Prix in which none of the top three are still competing in Formula 1 as of the start of the 2021 season. It was Massa’s 30th podium finish.

Births & Deaths

Italian racer Consalvo Sanesi was born on this day in 1911. He made five World Championship appearances with Alfa Romeo, recording a best result of fourth place in the 1951 Swiss Grand Prix.

Paul England was born on this day in 1929. The Australian made a single World Championship appearance, competing in F2 machinery at the 1957 German Grand Prix. Qualifying in 23rd position, he retired after four laps.

Four time German Grand Prix starter Hubert Hahne was born on this day in 1935. Hahne made five appearances in World Championship F1 races, all at the German Grand Prix – but two of those were in F2 cars. He finished ninth in F2 machinery in 1966, retired in 1967, finished tenth in 1968, withdrew following the death of his team-mate in 1969 and failed to qualify in a self-entered March in 1970. He retired from racing soon after.

Tony Brise, born on this day in 1952, made ten Grand Prix appearances, nine of which were with Graham Hill’s Embassy Racing team. He scored the only point of his career with a sixth place finish at the 1975 Swedish Grand Prix. He was killed, along with Hill, the team’s designer and three team mechanics, in a plane crash in November 1975. He was 23 years old.

George Connor, an American driver who made four appearances at the Indianapolis 500 during its stint as a round of the World Championship, died on this day in 2001, at the age of 94. His best Indianapolis 500 result was third place in 1949 – the year before the event joined the F1 calendar.

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