18th July 2018

CAEN GRAND PRIX

EASY DAY FOR BEHRA

Release from their Maserati obligations for this non-championship race allowed Jean Behra and Harry Schell to take up the offer to drive for B.R.M. in the race at Caen. This was a toe in the water for the two drivers who were aware that the Maserati organization was unlikely to be able to field a full works team effort in 1958 so this was a chance for people to get to know one another. Four Maserati 250.Fs were entered, to be driven by Jo Bonnier, Bruce Halford, Horace Gould and Luigi Piotti.

Frenchman Marc Rozier appeared again in the Ferrari 500 that he drove at Pau and the remaining four cars were all Coopers. The T.43 is basically a Formula 2 car but without these four, the entry would have looked very thin indeed. Jack Brabham and Roy Salvadori were in the works cars while Tony Brooks appeared in a car owned by Rob Walker and another Frenchman, Jean Lucas turned up with another T.43.

Given that the Maseratis were all private entries and that the Coopers were F.2 cars, it was always going to be an easy race for the two B.R.M. drivers, and so it proved. Whether Behra and Schell would have cruised to a one-two finish had there been factory Ferraris or Vanwalls in attendance is debatable but as they weren't, the two type 25s ran around the outside of the horse race course for just over two hours and finished the race where they started it, in first and second places. Behra beating Schell by just over a quarter of a minute. A superb drive by Jack Brabham saw the Aussie holding off Bonnier's Maserati to take a splendid third place and both these two finished on the same lap as the two B.R.M.s, which probably says as much about the comfortable pace that the B.R.M.s were running at than the speed of the Cooper and the Maserati. However, it was a valiant effort nonetheless for that.

Salvadori and Halford finished one lap behind and Gould, Brooks and Rozier completed the finishers. The only retirements were Lucas and Piotti, neither of who was every likely to get amongst the front runners. The fastest lap in the race was set by Bonnier, underlining the fact that the two B.R.M. drivers never had to extend either themselves or their cars.

HERE IS THE RESULT OF THE THE 86 LAP RACE.

   1.
2
J. BEHRA B.R.M. Type 25
2.00.11'13
   2.
4
H. SCHELL B.R.M. Type 25
2.00.28'95
   3.
12
J. BRABHAM COOPER CLIMAX T.43
2.00.57'30
   4.
20
J. BONNIER MASERATI 250.F
2.01.12'26
   5.
10
R. SALVADORI COOPER CLIMAX T.43
85 laps
   6.
18
B. HALFORD MASERATI 250.F
85 laps
   4.
14
H. GOULD MASERATI 250.F
84 laps
   5.
8
T. BROOKS COOPER CLIMAX T.43
84 laps
   6.
28
M. ROZIER FERRARI 500
82 laps
Fastest lap:   J. BONNIER, MASERATI 250.F,   on lap 34,   1.20'17

Retired:
16
J. LUCAS COOPER CLIMAX T.43
67 laps
22
L. PIOTTI MASERATI 250.F
17 laps

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