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First F1 race | All you need to know about the first-ever Formula 1 race

The First ever F1 race in history was organized on 13th May, 1950 at the Silverstone circuit. Formula One has come a long way since its beginnings in the 70 years of history. Here is all you need to know about the first ever F1 race.

Abhranil Roy
Last updated: 16.12.2020
First-ever F1 race | Source: Reddit

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70 years of history, over a thousand races, millions of dollars invested– Formula One has come a long way since its beginnings on the 13th of May, 1950 at the Silverstone circuit. The race had two names - Grand Prix d’Europe, which was its official name but it was also titled as the British Grand Prix.  Over 120,000 spectators came to watch the spectacle, which also included His Royal Highness King George VI, who attended the race with Queen Elizabeth, Princess Margaret and guests Lord and Lady Mountbatten.

In the article, we enlist 3 little-known but fascinating facts about the first-ever Grand Prix in history:


  1. Alfa Romeo won the first-ever F1 Grand Prix, and made a clean sweep:


It took 70 laps and nearly 2 and a half hours of racing, but Alfa Romeo made a clean sweep of the podium on the day. The 1.5-litre supercharged engine was the machine to beat before the race, and as it turned out they were too good for the competition.


Guiseppe “Nino” Farina triumphed at the first British Grand Prix, With Luigi Fagioli coming second and Britisher Reg Parnell coming third on the day. The iconic Juan Fangio, who later went on to win 4 F1 titles raced for Alfa Romeo that day, but could not complete the race as he had to suffer a broken oil pipe.



2. The Silverstone track was set up differently than it is now:


For 59 long years, Woodcote was the final turn in the Silverstone Grand Prix. But in 1950, it was the first corner on the menu – and this the first turn in the history of the sport.


From there the drivers would take on six other turns – Copse, Maggots, Becketts, Chapel, Stowe and Club – before arriving at the final corner, Abbey. The pit lane and starting grid were situated between Abbey and Woodcote, with the cars lining up for the start in 4-3-4 formation.



3. The average age of the field was significantly older than it is today:


For the very first world championship race the average age was 39 as three of the 21-driver field at Silverstone were in their fifties (aces Luigi Fagioli, 51, Louis Chiron, 50, and Philippe Etancelin, 53), while five more were forty or over, including race winner Giuseppe Farina (43).

The youngest was British racer Geoffrey Crossley, who, at 29, was just 12 years older than Max Verstappen was on his world championship debut.

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