The last time Formula 1 ignored the signs

The last time Formula 1 ignored the signs

Bahrain wasn't the first time Formula 1 found itself out of step with international politics. Dieter Rencken looks back to the 1985 South African Grand Prix

In 1979, at the peak of South Africa's political, technological, sporting and economic isolation, Jody Scheckter, born within three years of the 'apartheid' government assuming power, captured the world title in the world's most expensive and technological sport.

Significantly, Scheckter, who was teamed with French-Canadian Gilles Villeneuve and sponsored by the Brooklyn chewing-gum company, drove an Italian Ferrari running on French Michelin tyres and suspended on Dutch Koni dampers to the title. It was a remarkable achievement, particularly given that his home country was then ostracised by other world sports over its social-engineering policies.

To continue reading this feature...

You must have an AUTOSPORT+ subscription. Prices start from just $1.50 per week and give you full unrestriced access to all news and features. View package options? Magazine subscriber?


from just $1.50 per week

  • Get unlimited access to AUTOSPORT with news and views from the paddock
  • Enjoy AUTOSPORT+: subscriber-only analysis, comment and top-quality pictures
  • Explore every F1 stat in the world’s best motorsport database

Pay as you go

Read this feature right now for just