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1961 Brussels Grand Prix

Grand Prix de Bruxelles

Sunday, April 9, 1961
Race winner:
Fastest Lap:
Surtees, 2m02.6
1961 season:

A Ridiculous Event

BRUXELLES, April 9th

ONCE again the R.A.C. of Belgium and the newspaper Les Sports organised a Grand Prix on the Heysel circuit just to the north of the city near the Atomium. Last year's race was for F.2 cars and this year it was upgraded to F.1, though with the new Grand Prix Formula starting this year it meant the cars were still 1 1/2-litres, and many of the entry were the same as last year. In general layout the circuit was unchanged though one could not guarantee some of the corners to be identical as they were marked by straw bales and there might have been a slight deviation a foot or so either way. A full description of the circuit was given in the 1960 report in the May MOTOR SPORT so there is no point in repeating it. Although in status the race was only a run-of-the-mill Grand Prix, it attracted an entry list almost worthy of a Grande Epreuve, only notable absentees being Ferrari and B.R.M. and as the entry was limited to 19 there was little room for private owners. The Equipe National Belge entered Gendebien, Bianchi and Mairesse on Emerysons, Brabham entered his own 1961 Cooper, McLaren was entered on C. T. Atkins' 1961 Cooper and Surtees and Salvadori with the 1961 Coopers of Yeoman Credit. Allison and Henry Taylor had the U.D.T.-Laystall team Lotuses while Ireland and Clark had the Team Lotus works cars from Pau. Moss was driving a Rob Walker Lotus and Pilette was in Tim Parnell's Lotus. Camoradi entered Masten Gregory but at the last minute changed it to Burgess with a Lotus and Seidel entered himself and Trintignant on his two white Lotus cars. Factory Porsches were entered for Bonnier and Gurney and Marsh completed the entry with his Lotus-Special. As reserves Schlesser, Campbell-Jones, Shane Summers and Lewis were encouraged to practise but no matter how fast they were they were only promised an entry if one of the 19 dropped out.