The 1970 German Grand Prix was the inaugural race at the Hockenheimring. Championship leader Jochen Rindt was in front of Jack Brabham by nine points, the points equivalent of a full race victory. The Austrian driver had won four of the previous five races and established himself as the championship leader.
Jochen Rindt’s Last Victory En Route To His F1 Immortality
Rindt qualified his Lotus-Ford second for the German GP behind Belgian Jacky Ickx. In the race, Rindt and the Ferrari driver battled for victory, and the Austrian racer came on top by seven-tenths of a second. The 1970 German GP became an instant classic with F1 fans.
Although the racing was excellent in Hockenheim, Rindt’s tragic death at the Italian GP the following month made this race an iconic one.
Posthumous World Champion
At the end of the season, Ickx’s charge for the championship came up short. Rindt was crowned as the first (and so far only) driver to win the F1 championship posthumously.
Rindt scored all his points (45) in the 1970 championship as a result of his grid-leading five race wins. However, the Austrian legend took part in nine of the 13 races scheduled for the year. Rindt’s year was deserving of a title.
The Austrian led the entire grid in wins (5), tied with Ickx on podiums (5). The champion was just one Pole Position shy of Ickx’s and Jackie Stewart‘s tally of four apiece.
The 1970 German GP, took place on August 2nd, represented Rindt’s last Grand Prix success. Also, that race was the last time he stood on the podium and scored points.
His last-ever drive in a race was the 1970 Austrian GP. Rindt retired at his home race after 21 laps due to an engine problem. The Austrian was on pole for his home GP, which was the last Saturday effort of his life.
The Austrian champion died at 28 years old on September 5th, 1970, during the practice sessions before the Italian GP at Autodromo Nazionale Monza.
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