Alan Jones’ springboard

09. Jul 2024 
by Ziv Knoll

Since his victory at the 1977 Austrian Grand Prix in a Shadow, we knew Alan Jones was a solid competitor. In 1979, making excellent use of the FW07 designed by Patrick Head and Frank Dernie, he became even better and was crucial in establishing Williams as a top team.

After winning four races in the span of five events near the end of the season, Jones finished third in the championship that year, a perfect springboard to an excellent 1980 campaign. Jones’s best years in Formula One had just begun, in the middle of the ground-effect era.

The Australian won seven races in 1980, although the Spanish Grand Prix was later removed from the championship and the Australian Grand Prix was a non-championship race, so only five counted towards the drivers’ standings.

Throughout the season, he was outstanding, making the best use of a car which consistently made the podium, and he achieved ten during the year. At the end of the season, he had beaten Nelson Piquet (Brabham) by 13 points, becoming Australia’s first World Champion since Jack Brabham.

Pictures by Rainer W. Schlegelmilch: Alan Jones, Williams FW07, Hockenheim 1980. Pole position, finished third.


Source: Rainer W Schlegelmilch

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