Grand Prix Gold: 1979 British GP

Grand Prix Gold: 1979 British GP

The British Grand Prix at Silverstone in 1979 provided the stage for Williams's first ever win, as Clay Regazzoni took the spoils after his team-mate Alan Jones had retired while dominating the race

In 1969, Frank Williams ran a car in the British Grand Prix for the first time. It was a Brabham BT26, driven by Piers Courage, and it finished fifth. The late and lamented Piers twice finished second for Frank that year, and no one could have guessed that 10 years would pass before one of his cars would triumph in a Grande Epreuve. But last Saturday the dream became reality when Clay Regazzoni's Saudia-backed Williams FW07 scored a conclusive victory. In the space of a fortnight, two teams have had their first Grand Prix win – and Clay's was the first for a British car since Monza last September.

The entire meeting was dominated by the white and green cars, with Alan Jones taking pole position very comfortably and leading with equal facility until his development Cosworth expired soon after half-distance. At the time of Alan's retirement, he had lapped all but the first six cars! With Jones gone, Regazzoni took over for the second half of the race, topping off the victory – his first since leaving Ferrari in 1976 – with a new lap record of almost 142mph.

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