5 March 2016 | davidl-16
It could have been a contender
As a vintage racing buff, I am drawn to the movie with the vintage cars (more on that) and the views of the classic tracks in their original configurations. This film using the cars and footage from 1968.
The story of an American breaking in to the European scene is not too far-fetched. In real life there were Americans in F1 in the 1960's:Phil Hill, Dan Gurney, Ritchie Ginther, Ronnie Bucknum, Bob Bondurant and Masten Gregory. Like the Fabian character,most of these guys came out of California; but were sports car drivers,not NASCAR.
The story is interesting as the main character is very shallow, not likable and destructive. But I am drawn to the people around him.
About the cars. While they refer to the races a Grands Prix, these are not F1 cars but Formula 2 cars. At that time F2 were very similar to F1, the displacement was 1.6 liters (F1 was 3 liters), narrower tires, and no wings. In 1968, F1 cars had high mounted wings in front and back. Good footage of the cars' internal bits, notably the Cosworth FVA 4 cylinder engine. In the 60's, F1 drivers would often race with the up and comers in F2. Stewart drove Ken Tyrrell's Matras, Rindt drove the Winklemann Racing Brabham, Jack Brabham would field a team of Brabham Hondas to name a few. The cars of the protagonist are the Winklemann Racing Brabham BT-18's with the Cosworth motor.
The race footage was from the actual F2 series at the appropriate tracks.
Today's racing is too corporate and sterile to make a decent film...