- July 24 down the years
British aristocrat Dick Seaman salutes HitlerWhat happened on this day in Formula One history?
A young British aristocrat racer named Dick Seaman won the German Grand Prix at the Nurburgring driving a Mercedes-Benz and watched by Adolf Hitler. The young Brit, who was given a country estate for his 20th birthday, was the first Englishman to win a major grand prix since Major Henry Segrave in 1923. On the podium he gave a Nazi salute but said afterwards: "I only wish it had been a British car." A year later, Seaman was killed when pushing too hard at Spa. Hitler sent an enormous wreath and Mercedes still tends to his grave to this day.
Jack Brabham won the Dutch Grand Prix at Zandvoort to extend his lead in the drivers' championship over Graham Hill. There had been much newspaper speculation that the 40-year-old was too old to be a serious challenger for the world championship and Brabham limped to his car with the aid of a stick whilst sporting a false beard, much to the amusement of the paddock. But Jack had the last laugh as he won the race en route to the championship.
Fernando Alonso won the German Grand Prix from Juan Pablo Montoya and Jenson Button to extend his championship lead to 36 points over Kimi Raikkonen. Raikkonen had looked certain to win the race until a hydraulics problem forced his retirement on lap 35, leaving Alonso to coast to victory and, almost certainly, the drivers' title.
Ayrton Senna won the German Grand Prix from team-mate Alain Prost as McLaren continued its dominant March towards the championship. Victory marked the team's eighth successive victory in a season where they would only fail to win one race, in Italy. The race also marked Nelson Piquet's 150th grand prix start.