It is time to race, in Italy, at the Autodromo Enzo E Dino Ferrari. The race around this three mile track will encompass a distance of 199 laps. Lancia is at another home race. They realize they have to step up to the plate and perform, here, in the latter portion of the 1984 campaign. Only one factory Rothmans Porsche 956 is racing here at Imola. It will be piloted by Jacky Ickx and John Watson, and is using an experimental twin clutch gearbox system. Ickx and Watson will have a short race. It will be game over for them both on lap one, as the new device on the car, packs up and lets them down.
We are going to see a battle between the privateer Porsche’s and the factory Martini Lancia’s in this race. Jochen Mass and Stefan Bellof, have taken up driving duties, in the absence of the Rothmans team, with Joest and Brun, respectively. Green flag, and away we go! FYI, for next year, in 1985, Hans Stuck will be the new co-driver for Derek Bell in the Rothmans Porsche. Stay tuned, for a recap of the 1985 season, coming soon.
Meanwhile back to the racing. Ricardo Patrese leads the motor race in the #4 Lancia LC2 with Jonathan Palmer in the Canon Porsche, car #14, in second place. Stefan Bellof runs third as the rest of the field of 30+ cars weaves their way through the chicanes here at Imola. Once again, it’s game over for Jacky Ickx. That experimental transmission is not serving him well, so he has no choice but to gracefully park the 956 Porsche on the grass. Johnny Palmer leads Stefan Bellof, and in third, Thierry Boutsen, who slices past the Lancia and says “thank you very much I’ll take some of that.” Riccardo Patrese was the bloke that Boutsen went around. Meanwhile, back to the lead battle.
Jan Lammers is sharing the Canon Porsche with Johnny Palmer, while the Jagermeister liveried car they are chasing is that of Hans Stuck and Stefan Bellof. Oh dear. Smoke emenates from the rear of the #33 Skoal Bandit Porsche. It’s nearly game over for the Hobbs/Boutsen duo. There’s a great plume of very expensive smoke coming out of that Porsche. Jurgen Lassig has a momentary off course excursion in the #18 Porsche. He is having trouble, driving against the flow of traffic, the wrong way around the circuit trying to point the car in the right direction. Be careful, Jurgen. The lead battle is afoot. It’s Brun Porsche vs. Canon Porsche.
Again, the driving teams here are Stuck and Bellof vs. Lammers and Palmer. These two teams are swapping the lead back and forth as this motor race continues. It’s a thrilling, seesaw battle. In the meantime, Lancia’s home race, in Italy, is not going well. They either crashed out of the race at the same place *gasp*, or, they retired when the engines went ka-blammo. As for the lead battle, you haven’t missed anything. It remains Canon Porsche vs. Jagermeister Porsche. Palmer/Lammers vs. Stuck/Bellof. Lammers leads, with Stuck and Bellof closing fast. Serenely in third, was the #8 Joest Racing Porsche 956, the Blaupunkt car audio liveried car with the trio of either Hans Heyer, Jochen Mass, or Henri Pescarolo, at the wheel of it.
The battle for the race lead has become so hot that Jagermeister nearly takes out Canon! It was fortunate that the two cars didn’t collide, and so, Stuck and Bellof continue to lead over Palmer and Lammers. Not much more to write about, from here at Imola. Stefan Bellof and Hans Stuck, score the win! No more than 34 seconds in it at the finish line. So, let’s h’ve a look at the results.
- #19 Bellof/Stuck Porsche 956 Brun Motorsport
- #14 Palmer/Lammers Porsche 956 Canon Porsche
- #8 Mass/Pescarolo/Heyer Porsche 956 Joest Racing
- #10 Brun/Fouche/von Bayern Porsche 956 B Porsche Kremer Racing
- #9 Larrauri/Sigala Porsche 956 Brun Motorsport
- #18 Grohs/Regout/Lassig Porsche 956 Obermaier Racing
It’s another victory in the Group C2 class for Gordon Spice, Neal Crang, and Ray Bellm.
#70 Spice/Bellm/Crang Tiga GC84 Ford Spice Tiga Racing
In the driver’s championship, Jochen Mass leads with 101 points, only two points clear of Stefan Bellof with 99 points. That’s all that really needs to be said about the 1984 points championship, because these two blokes are the only ones who have a shot at the 1984 Group C drivers’ championship. For the next event, we move away from Europe, heading for Fuji, Japan, and Fuji Speedway.