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Biography

Carlos Alberto Reutemann, born in Santa Fe (Argentina) on April 12, 1942, was a Formula 1 driver from 1972 to 1982.
He was a great driver, Nicknamed "Lole", was cerebral, fast, and a knight of the tracks.
In his career at the highest level won 12 races, 2 without points and 6 pole positions in 144 races, despite being second driver team several times. Any successful if it looks through today´s eyes.

It is possible that Reutemann has not met the expectations of some who lived through the wins of Juan Manuel Fangio, the reference insurmountable respect to whom there is always measured his career. However, many Argentines get up early to see his talent behind the wheel, and its correction as a driver. In 1978, he won the Great Britain grand prix after overcome an extraordinary maneuver to pass Niki Lauda. In 1981, having passed the first pilot of the team Williams, Alan Jones, finished second in the Drivers championship with a difference of only one point behind the champion, Nelson Piquet.
In that season, it is very likely to have been the victim of an obscure boycott by the team, as a reprisal for not obeying instructions to leave the first driver to win the Brazilian Grand Prix (The mythical cartel "Jones-Reutemann "), who brilliantly Reutemann won in 1981, unforgettable career in the rain on the circuit of Jacarépagua in Barra de Tijuca, Rio de Janeiro.
He started racing on May 30, 1965, in a Turismo Mejorado race in the town of La Cumbre (Córdoba) aboard a Fiat 1500, in which he did not finished. However, his first victory soon arrive on July 11 of that year, on board the same car, in the same category, developed in Villa Carlos Paz (Córdoba).
After crowned champion of Turismo Nacional for several seasons, went on to compete in Sport Prototypes, Mecanica Argentina Formula 1, participating in the international series reserved for Formula 2 cars developed in November-December 1968 in Argentina.
Since 1970 he traveled to Europe to be part of the team Automobile Club Argentino, coordinated by Hector Staffa, to participate in the European Formula 2 championship, earning the runners-up behind Ronnie Peterson in 1971. It is worth an invitation to participate in the race of Brands Hatch at the end of that year (Where Joseph Siffert crashed fatally) without points for the championship, and the recruitment for the year 1972 as a second pilot of the Brabham team alongside Graham Hill.His debut could not be better, in the GP of Argentina 1972 gets the pole position ahead of champion Jackie Stewart, finishing seventh in the competition.

 

His first victory in F-1 would be held shortly in Brazil (race without points) and later he had a serious accident testing in the Thruxton circuit, which kept away from the tracks for several months.Brabham returns to rely on its services the following year (until 1976 inclusive), getting his first victory in 1974 in Kyalami (South Africa), followed by Austria and the United States with model BT44. In 1975 he obtained a resounding victory in the difficult Nurburgring (Germany), and in 1976 the low reliability of the Alfa Romeo engine does not allow him to get good performances. Disappointed, Reutemann left Brabham after the German Grand Prix in 1976, where defending champion Austrian Niki Lauda crashed severely.

Knowing of his departure from Brabham and doubts about the full restoration of the Austrian driver, Ferrari decided to hire Reutemann to complete the season. But Lauda recovered so amazing and returned to the team for the Italian Grand Prix in Monza. Reutemann must content themselves with drive an unofficial car and then wait for the start of next season.In 1977 Ferrari confirms Lauda and Reutemann as it official drivers, resulting in the removal of Swiss driver Clay Regazzoni. That year Reutemann get an outstanding victory at Interlagos (Brazil) and finished fourth in the championship, which was awarded again his teammate. In 1978 Lauda turned away from Ferrari and Reutemann was confirmed as the first driver of the team, with the Canadian Gilles Villeneuve as a partner. That year Reutemann get a victory in Brazil with the old model T2 and three more (Long Beach, Brands Hatch and Watkins Glen) with the new model T3. Despite these victories could do little to challenge the technically superior Lotus of Mario Andretti, champion that year, and Ronnie Peterson.After a year of disagreements with the technique staff of Ferrari, Reutemann decided to accept an offer to join Lotus, the absolute winners of the previous year, and replace the Swedish Peterson, who died in a crash at Monza last year.

Lotus was supposed to extend its technical mastery with the Lotus 80, a car revolutionary design intended to replace the already successful Lotus 79.However, the new vehicle showed serious flaws from the start that delayed his debut until after the middle of the championship and, even then, their performance was hardly discreet. Reutemann added 6 points in the first seven races but in the remaining eight did not obtain a single point.Deeply disappointed with Lotus, Reutemann accepted an offer to join the promising team Williams, whose rise in the category was based on the generous financial support from Arab oil. The role of Reutemann was to support the candidacy of his teammate, Australian Alan Jones. However he achieved a great victory in the Monaco Grand Prix, giving an extraordinary lesson in handling in the rain. Having Jones won the 1980 championship, Reutemann assumed that he would have equal chance to fight for the title in 1981 within the team. His assumption, however, would be wrong. In the first race, held in Long Beach, gave the top spot to Jones after had a failed maneuver.
But his team were indicating from the boxes that he had to leave pass to his teammate to do it with the victory. The second race was held in Brazil, under a heavy rain. Reutemann took the lead followed several seconds away by Jones.

From boxes the team told him again that he should give the lead to the Australian, but this time Reutemann didn´t hear the order of the team and led the competition until the end. The absence of Jones and all the team mechanics in the celebrations of the race marked the breakdown of the relationship.While Reutemann won the Belgian Grand Prix, his chances were compromised by the lack of support from the team.Added to this is the spectacular rise of Brazilian Nelson Piquet aboard a Brabham, whose active suspension system was suspected of being illegal.Reutemann was also hurt by the decision of the F.I.A. to nullify the results of the South African Grand Prix, which had been awarded Reutemann in great form, in order to overcome a dispute between the federation and some Formula 1 teams and Ferrari, who refused to take the race.
Their problems continued with the controversial decision of Williams to replace Michelin tires with Goodyear.It was known that Reutemann, unlike Jones, felt more comfortable with the French tires, softer and performing than the American tires. Then Reutemann, who had earned 37 points in the first seven races of the championship compared to 24 of Jones and 22 of Piquet, had only 12 units in the 7 following races, as compared with 26 of Piquet and 13 of Jones. The championship was defined in the United States Grand Prix, raced in an intricate and absurd circuit built in the parking of Caesar's Palace hotel in Las Vegas.Reutemann had arrived with a point advantage over the Brazilian Piquet and had set the pole position for the race. But the two Williams cars had suffered mechanical problems which forced the change of engine in both units.Reutemann wanted the most powerful new engine but Frank Williams, the team leader, refused, claiming that this engine was to Alan Jones, who no longer had to fight for the championship chances. After the start, Reutemann took the lead but immediately began experiencing mechanical problems, being relegated to the fifth position. Piquet went behind him. The Brazilian had fever and could hardly concentrate on the handling of his car but, even so, managed to overcome the Argentine to the championship by a single point. Years later was asked whether Reutemann never considered the possibility of collision with Piquet when he made the maneuver to succeed, as they and other drivers would, knowing that doing so has been devoted champion. The nobleness and chivalry sports of Reutemann became apparent when he replied: "I would not have endured win a championship that way. Reutemann and Williams managed to rebuild their relationship for 1982 in order to challenge a new championship. Jones had been withdrawn and Reutemann was confirmed as first driver, accompanied by Finn Keijo Rosberg. However, nearly 40 years old, Reutemann cautioned that had already lost its final opportunity to devote champion.

Their motivation decreased rapidly as they realized that their Williams, equipped with a Cosworth engine could do nothing to challenge the powerful engine turbo of Ferrari and Renault.After a second place finish at the South African Grand Prix and a collision with the French Rene Arnoux in the Brazilian Grand Prix, announced his retirement.Ironically, if continued until the end of this championship, Reutemann might well have been awarded the title despite the mechanical inferiority of Williams. Renault experienced engine problems that affected his performance in the decisive second half of the tournament and Ferrari has been caught up in a deep crisis prompted by the tragic death of Gilles Villeneuve and another serious accident that interrupted definitively the career of the other pilot, the Frenchman Didier Pironi. The irregular championship 1982 was finally in the hands of Keijo Rosberg, who unusually was crowned champion after winning a single competition. Accessed on whether sorry for that decision, Reutemann replied: "When I think about it I remember that when I was a child, had to go to school on horseback ... and from there became a pilot Formula 1. That no pleasure I will remove anyone. "

 

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