Our new database page will launch shortly.

1972 Italian Grand Prix

Gran Premio d'Italia

Sunday, September 10, 1972
Dry and overcast
Pole position:
Fastest Lap:
Ickx, 1m36.3
1972 season:

From the Motor Sport Archive

Deadly dull for Monza

Monza, Italy, September 10th.

As reported last month in Continental Notes the Monza circuit was slowed down by the introduction of two chicanes so that when the teams began testing and practising for the 43rd Italian Grand Prix there was quite a lot to learn. The wide track in front of the pits was divided in two by a line of rubber cones which kept the cars in the right-hand lane, close to the pits, and this led them towards the entrance to the banked speed track, as they used to run when the combined road and track circuit was used. At the end of the Trade pits they had to brake really hard in a straight line, from about 150 m.p.h. and change down to 2nd gear and do an ess to the left through an opening in an Armco barrier wall that was wide enough for only one car. This took them over to the left side of the wide pits straight just where it divided between road circuit and banked track, and the cars then accelerated up through the gears and into fifth gear as they rounded the Curva Grande. The central Armco wall was built onto two concrete plinths, with bevelled edges to form curbs through the chicane, and if anyone overshot on braking he went straight on towards the beginning of the banking until he stopped and was then let out through a gate by a marshal, when the course was clear, to join the road circuit after the chicane. If a car suffered complete brake failure it would hit a wall of straw bales across the banked track and if it burst through them it could coast round the banking until it came to rest. The result of this layout meant that the drivers could brake to the maximum from quite high speed, and if they overdid it there was plenty of escape room.