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Brazil Emerson Fittipaldi

Races: 149
Podiums: 35
Championships: 2
Career Points: 281

1970United Kingdom Gold Leaf Team Lotus Lotus 59 Ford Cosworth DFV 3.0 V8 49C
Lotus 72
1971United Kingdom Gold Leaf Team Lotus Lotus 21 Ford Cosworth DFV 3.0 V8 72D
Lotus 72
1971United Kingdom World Wide Racing Lotus   Ford Cosworth DFV 3.0 V8 56B 
1972United Kingdom John Player Team Lotus Lotus 61 Ford Cosworth DFV 3.0 V8 Lotus 72 
1973United Kingdom John Player Team Lotus Lotus 92 Ford Cosworth DFV 3.0 V8 72D
1974United Kingdom Marlboro Team Texaco McLaren   Ford Cosworth DFV 3.0 V8 McLaren M23
McLaren M23 
1975United Kingdom Marlboro McLaren McLaren 53 Ford Cosworth DFV 3.0 V8 McLaren M23 
1976Brazil Copersucar-Fittipaldi  11 Ford Cosworth DFV 3.0 V8 FD04 
1977Brazil Copersucar-Fittipaldi  11 Ford Cosworth DFV 3.0 V8 FD04
1978Brazil Fittipaldi Automotive  17 Ford Cosworth DFV 3.0 V8 Fittipaldi F5A 
1979Brazil Fittipaldi Automotive  12 Ford Cosworth DFV 3.0 V8 Fittipaldi F5A
1980Brazil Skol Fittipaldi Team  11 Ford Cosworth DFV 3.0 V8 F7

Emerson Fittipaldi: A Champion of Many Nations

By Jeremy McMullen
Page: 1
Emerson Fittipaldi's star would rise ever higher when, on the 30th of May in 1993, he would sneak by the then World Champion Nigel Mansell to come through and take what would be his second victory in the Indianapolis 500. The Brazilian's victory would be greeted with a chorus of cheers. His choice of drinking orange juice over the tradition milk would be the only negative that would draw some ire from the fans. Nevertheless, the victory and the reception only highlighted what a truly international champion Fittipaldi had truly become.

Fittipaldi's rise to international fame would start in Formula One. Fittipaldi would be thrust onto the public as much as he would be thrust into his role as the number one driver with Team Lotus. In fact, when Fittipaldi came through to win the United States Grand Prix in 1970, just his fifth race with the team, the victory would have many remarking 'Emerson who?!'

In reality, there would be much more to the story of Fittipaldi's first Formula One victory than what appeared on the surface. In many respects the moment would come to define Emerson's racing career—being in the right place at the right time.

Emerson Fittipaldi would be born in Sao Paulo, Brazil in December of 1946. His life's work was almost already laid before him when he was born to Jozefa 'Juzy' Wojciechowska and Wilson Fittipaldi Sr. Both of his parents would have careers racing production cars in the years immediately following the Second World War. But Wilson Fittipaldi Sr. would be a man of much depth as he would also become a motorsports commentator and race promoter. In fact, it would be Wilson's father that would be one of the instrumental figures in the creation of the Mil Milhas Brasileiras, an event inspired by the Mille Miglia. Being surrounded by such an incredible motorsports influence Emerson, who would be named for Ralph Waldo Emerson, would come to either love or hate the sport.

Not only would motorsports have an early influence on Emerson, but his ability to be adopted as an international champion was nearly as much a foregone conclusion. He may have been born in Sao Paulo, and his heart definitely resonates with the Brazilian people, but the blood coursing through his veins comes from about as varied a background as one could get. Fittipaldi's father was from an Italian family. His mother was of Russian descent. The two would immigrate to Brazil from Poland soon after being married. This interesting mixture could be cited as the source of his abilities behind the wheel of a racing car, but it could also be used to argue as to the reason why he would become so popular around the world.

But the world was not quite on Emerson's radar when he decided to become his brother's mechanic in karts in the local go-kart championship. At this time Emerson was just 14 years of age. The age of Formula One seemed far off into the distance. However, his talents behind the wheel, and other circumstances, would see to it that he would be racing in the pinnacle of motorsports just a handful of years later.

Fittipaldi's rise through the ranks could not be describe in any better term than meteoric, especially after he took the Formula Vee championship in Brazil in 1967. But while he would enjoy success in Formula Vee, there would be very little in the way of success in his father's race, the Mil Hilhaus. Both he and his brother would take part in the race with very little success. Still, the success in Formula Vee would encourage Emerson to make the jump across the Atlantic to England in 1969 even though he didn't have a drive and couldn't speak the language.
1980F8Ford Cosworth DFV 3.0 V8
1980F7Ford Cosworth DFV 3.0 V8
1979Fittipaldi F5AFord Cosworth DFV 3.0 V8
1979F6AFord Cosworth DFV 3.0 V8
1979F6Ford Cosworth DFV 3.0 V8
1978Fittipaldi F5AFord Cosworth DFV 3.0 V8
1977FD5Ford Cosworth DFV 3.0 V8
1977FD04Ford Cosworth DFV 3.0 V8
1976FD04Ford Cosworth DFV 3.0 V8
1975McLaren M23Ford Cosworth DFV 3.0 V8
1974McLaren M23Ford Cosworth DFV 3.0 V8
1974McLaren M23Ford Cosworth DFV 3.0 V8
197372DFord Cosworth DFV 3.0 V8
197372EFord Cosworth DFV 3.0 V8
1972Lotus 72Ford Cosworth DFV 3.0 V8
197156BFord Cosworth DFV 3.0 V8
197156BFord Cosworth DFV 3.0 V8
1971Lotus 72Ford Cosworth DFV 3.0 V8
197172DFord Cosworth DFV 3.0 V8
197049CFord Cosworth DFV 3.0 V8
197072BFord Cosworth DFV 3.0 V8
197072AFord Cosworth DFV 3.0 V8

Emerson would find work as a mechanic and would sacrifice so that he could buy his own Formula Ford. Funding his own racing career, Fittipaldi would rely on his talents to make up the difference. And the difference he would make up as he would go on to win three races before the end of the season. This led to a drive in Formula Three. And, even though he would not come into the series until halfway through, he would still manage to win the championship.

Such performances would certainly attract the attention of team owners. Colin Chapman would be one of those that took notice of Emerson, and, because Lotus was one of the best cars up and down the paddock, Fittipaldi would sign a contract with the famous Chapman. Initially, the contract was for a Formula One test. Emerson would impress in the test and the contract would quickly turn into a drive with the Formula One team in 1970. So in just a little more than a year Emerson had gone from freshly arriving in England to landing a seat with arguably one of the best Formula One teams of that period.

Fittipaldi would get to drive the third car, but he would not see this as anything but an opportunity to impress, and he would do just that. His first Formula One race would come at the British Grand Prix. He would finish a solid 8th place. This would seem like a rather unassuming result considering he was driving a Lotus 49C at the time. However, the result, and his abilities, would be put into perspective when the fact he started the race 21st becomes apparent. This already impressive debut would be followed up by a far more impressive performance. Emerson would start the German Grand Prix from 13th on the grid. However, by the time the race would come to an end Fittipaldi would be in 4th place earning his first-ever World Championship points.

After a subdued 15th place in the Austrian Grand Prix, Emerson's place as the third driver within Team Lotus seemed secure. However, the next race of the season would be the Italian Grand Prix at Monza. Fittipaldi was just settling into the notion of being a Formula One driver as he took to the circuit for practice for the Italian Grand Prix. Jochen Rindt and John Miles had taken to the circuit in the fast but unstable-feeling Lotus 72. Neither Rindt nor Miles felt comfortable behind the wheel of the car but Chapman would not hear any of it. But then, just prior to the Parabolica, Rindt's Lotus would go spinning off the end of the circuit. Rindt would be practically strangled to death; Chapman's team would die right along with the Austrian.

Rindt's death would strike Lotus hard. Miles would be hit hard by the death and the frustration concerning the car believed to have taken the life of Jochen. As a result, Miles would leave the team. Suddenly, the already-gutted team was without a clear number one driver. But then there was Emerson.

Emerson had competed in just three Formula One races when he would be approached by Chapman to help lead the team out of the abyss it was currently experiencing. This was a difficult and monumental task for the inexperienced driver, but he would shoulder it like a steely-eyed veteran.

F5A  F5A  F5A  F5A  M23  M23  M23  M23  M23  M23  72  72  72  72  
Team Lotus' first race after Rindt's death would come in the United States at Watkins Glen. It would be difficult for any team to come back after a death of such a driver as what Rindt had been in the sport, but Fittipaldi would revel in this challenge. Suddenly, the new number one driver would start from the second row of the grid.

After a poor start, he would recover and would hang around the top five nearly all afternoon as Jackie Stewart dominated the proceedings. However, an oil leak would drop Stewart out of the race and would promote Pedro Rodriguez to the lead. By this point in time Fittipaldi was lurking in 2nd place. It was just his fourth race in Formula One, no one expected the Brazilian to come through and take the lead. But with just under 10 laps remaining in the race that is exactly what he would do. Many had left the circuit when Stewart was still in the lead believing the Scot would take an easy victory. Others would leave when Rodriguez took over the lead because there was no way the inexperienced man from Sao Paulo would come through and snatch victory. Yet, much to the surprise of many, that is exactly what would happen. Many that would tune in on the radio to catch up on the final results would pause and exclaim 'Emerson who?!' However, there would be plenty more opportunities for the world to become acquainted with the Lotus driver.

After a mildly successful 1971 campaign, Fittipaldi would seem to be finally set to launch his assault on the World Championship. Armed with the Lotus 72D, Emerson would storm through the 1972 season. Driving the black and gold John Player Lotus, he would go on to score a total of five victories and would earn his first World Championship at the age of 25. This would make him the youngest-ever World Champion, a record that would stand for over thirty years.

Brazil Drivers  F1 Drivers From Brazil 
Rubens Gonçalves 'Rubinho' Barrichello
Enrique Bernoldi
Luigi Emilio Rodolfo Bertetti Bianco
Raul de Mesquita Boesel
Luiz Pereira Bueno
Luciano Pucci Burti
Cristiano Monteiro da Matta
Lucas Tucci di Grassi
Pedro Paulo Diniz
Frederico J C Themudo 'Fritz' d'Orey
Christian Fittipaldi
Emerson Fittipaldi
Wilson Fittipaldi Júnior
Maurício Gugelmin
Ingo Hoffmann
Francisco Sacco 'Chico' Landi
Tarso Anibal Santanna Marques
Felipe Massa
Roberto Pupo Moreno
Luiz Felipe de Oliveira 'Felipe Nasr' Nasr
José Carlos Pace
Nelson Souto Maior Piquet
Nelson Piquet, Jr.
Antonio Reginaldo Pizzonia Jr.
Hernando João da Silva Ramos
Luiz Razia
Alex Dias Ribeiro
Ricardo Rosset
Ayrton Senna
Bruno Senna
Francisco 'Chico' Serra
Ricardo Luiz Zonta
The beginning of the 1973 season seemed to suggest Fittipaldi could secure back-to-back championships. However, the introduction of the 72E partway through the season and an ever-improving Ronnier Peterson would push Fittipaldi into making uncharacteristic errors. And, after a strong start to the season, Fittipaldi would end up finishing in 2nd place behind Jackie Stewart by the end.

Sensing a shift of favoritism toward Peterson, Fittipaldi would leave Lotus for McLaren in 1974. The move would prove to be the correct one as he would be coming into the team right when they were on the rise. Three victories and four other podium finishes would result in Emerson collecting his second World Championship. Unfortunately, it would be his last.

Page: 1

'Legend', ( Retrieved 5 December 2013.

'Seasons: 1970', ( StatsF1. Retrieved 5 December 2013.

'Drivers: Emerson Fittipaldi', ( ESPN F1. Retrieved 5 December 2013.

Benson, Andrew. 'Formula 1's Greatest Drivers. Number 17: Emerson Fittipaldi', ( BBC Sport Formula 1. Retrieved 5 December 2013.

'1970 World Drivers Championship', ( 1970 World Drivers Championship. Retrieved 5 December 2013.

Wikipedia contributors, 'Mil Milhas Brasil', Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia, 8 July 2013, 05:02 UTC, accessed 5 December 2013

Wikipedia contributors, 'Emerson Fittipaldi', Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia, 29 November 2013, 00:20 UTC, accessed 5 December 2013

Wikipedia contributors, 'Fittipaldi Automotive', Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia, 7 September 2013, 04:24 UTC, accessed 5 December 2013
Formula One World Drivers' Champions
1950 G. Farina
1951 J. Fangio
1952 A. Ascari
1953 A. Ascari
1954 J. Fangio
1955 J. Fangio
1956 J. Fangio
1957 J. Fangio
1958 M. Hawthorn
1959 S. Brabham
1960 S. Brabham
1961 P. Hill, Jr
1962 N. Hill
1963 J. Clark, Jr.
1964 J. Surtees
1965 J. Clark, Jr.
1966 S. Brabham
1967 D. Hulme
1968 N. Hill
1969 S. Stewart
1970 K. Rindt
1971 S. Stewart
1972 E. Fittipaldi
1973 S. Stewart
1974 E. Fittipaldi
1975 A. Lauda
1976 J. Hunt
1977 A. Lauda
1978 M. Andretti
1979 J. Scheckter
1980 A. Jones
1981 N. Piquet
1982 K. Rosberg
1983 N. Piquet
1984 A. Lauda
1985 A. Prost
1986 A. Prost
1987 N. Piquet
1988 A. Senna
1989 A. Prost
1990 A. Senna
1991 A. Senna
1992 N. Mansell
1993 A. Prost
1994 M. Schumacher
1995 M. Schumacher
1996 D. Hill
1997 J. Villeneuve
1998 M. Hakkinen
1999 M. Hakkinen
2000 M. Schumacher
2001 M. Schumacher
2002 M. Schumacher
2003 M. Schumacher
2004 M. Schumacher
2005 F. Alonso
2006 F. Alonso
2007 K. Raikkonen
2008 L. Hamilton
2009 J. Button
2010 S. Vettel
2011 S. Vettel
2012 S. Vettel
2013 S. Vettel
2014 L. Hamilton
2015 L. Hamilton
2016 N. Rosberg
2017 L. Hamilton
2018 L. Hamilton
2019 L. Hamilton

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