If you’ve been following our series on this wonderful album of audio recorded during research for John Frankenheimer’s Grand Prix, you know what a joy it is to hear Phil Hill lead us through some of the stops of the ’66 season. This time, it’s Monaco.
We start with 30 seconds or so of the the full grid of 16 drivers revving in preparation for the start of the GP. This could have well been the inspiration for the marvelous opening credits/overture sequence at the start of the film. Then we take a spin around the track with Graham Hill. A thrilling drive indeed.
It’s also interesting to hear Phil describe the technical details of the engine and transmissions of Formula 1 cars, followed by audio of drivers really pushing their engines and transmissions hard in several portions: hard on the brakes through Gasometre Hairpin and head up towards the pits, through the tunnel towards the chicane, and as heard by the spectators. As always, fantastic audio.
Follow along with this track map, pulled from the back of the record jacket.
We started our series celebrating this wonderful LP made during Frankenheimer’s filming of the epic Grand Prix by taking a tour of Monza. Let’s take a step back and get the basics with our host, Phil Hill. John Frankenheimer gives a wonderful description of the basics of F1 of the 60’s. Then Phil talks to Graham Hill about the differences between Grand Prix racing and sportscars. Hearing these voices speak with passion about their sport makes me wish for these attitudes to come back to the international motor racing community.
I particularly like the segment with Frankenheimer where he describes some of the motivations for making the movie. Later, Graham Hill describes the differences between Grand Prix driving and competing in the Indianapolis 500. Outstanding.
Have a listen.
In preparation for his masterpiece 1966 film Grand Prix, John Frankenheimer undertook a series of audio recordings to help capture the spirit, mood, and excitement of the Formula 1 season. This LP is the glorious result of that research. Hosted by Phil Hill and featuring interviews with Graham Hill and Frankenheimer, this record takes us through the sounds of the Grand Prix season of 1966.
Grand Prix is the best racing movie ever made. Frankenheimer puts us in the cockpit, the pits, and in the stands. He developed camera mounting techniques that are still in use today. Some people will tell you that McQueen’s film LeMans is the better racing movie — Those people are wrong.
But enough about the movie (I’m sure I’ll be writing much more on that in the future). This LP was something that I didn’t know about until recently. And over the next couple of weeks I’ll post up tracks from the album. This first bit cuts straight to the chase and puts us right on the start finish line of Monza. This, of course differs from the banked track of the movie — which stopped being used after the ’61 season (here’s a 2003 photo of the banking). We’ll hear the engine note of Jack Brabham’s Repco V8, Jim Clark’s Coventry-Climax, Ginther’s Honda V12, and Surtee’s Cooper Maserati. Then we’ll take a tour of the circuit aboard Michael Parkes’ Ferrari (Parkes sat on pole and ended up 2nd in the race that year).
Listen carefully and you can follow along on the track map.