FORMULA 2: The glory years, 1967–84

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By Chris Witty

Photographs by Jutta Fausel

Foreword by Jacky Ickx

PUBLICATION DATE To be announced

Unfortunately there have been delays with this very exciting project – but it will be worth the wait!

This sumptuous book, a feast of nostalgia, celebrates the wonderful era of the European Formula 2 Championship, 1967–84, on the 50th anniversary of its beginnings. Formula 2 pitted emerging heroes against the greats of the day and virtually all the top Formula 1 drivers – names like Jackie Stewart, Jack Brabham, Graham Hill, Jochen Rindt and Bruce McLaren in 1967 – battled with young chargers in races that thrilled huge crowds at the best European circuits, from the Nürburgring to Brands Hatch. In bringing the glory days of Formula 2 back to life in this book, passionate author Chris Witty has interviewed many of the surviving protagonists to present a colourful and evocative retrospective, supported by the work of Jutta Fausel, who photographed Formula 2 races throughout this period.

  • Pirth of the European Formula 2 Championship in 1967, when Jacky Ickx (the writer of the book’s foreword) became the first champion, driving a Tyrrell-entered Matra.
  • French Matra cars propelled the next two champions, Jean-Pierre Beltoise (1968) and Johnny Servoz-Gavin (1969), both Frenchmen.    
  • Of all the manufacturers of Formula 2 cars, March achieved the most success, Ronnie Peterson (1971) becoming the first of six champions to win in these British-built cars.
  • A fine all-British year, 1972, saw ex-motorcycle ‘great’ Mike Hailwood win the championship in a Surtees car.
  • French champions in five consecutive years: Jean-Pierre Jarier (1973), Patrick Depailler (1974), Jacques Laffite (1975), Jean-Pierre Jabouille (1976) and René Arnoux (1977) dominated their era and all but Jarier went on to become Grand Prix winners.
  • Toleman and Ralt cars – also made in Britain – emerged in the final years of the championship, which saw three more British champions: Brian Henton (1980), Geoff Lees (1981) and Jonathan Palmer (1983).
  • The other champions were Clay Regazzoni (1970), Bruno Giacomelli (1978), Marc Surer (1979), Corrado Fabi (1980) and Mike Thackwell (1984)
  • ISBN: 978-1-910505-19-9
  • Format: 280x235mm
  • Hardback
  • Page extent: 448pp
  • Illustration: 500 photographs, including colour
  • Word count: 100,000
Chris Witty was a motor racing journalist for much of the period covered by this book, first with Motoring News, then Autosport, and Formula 2 was the focus of his reporting. From 1980 he moved into public relations and marketing, first with the Toleman Group during the period in which it raced in Formula 2 and ran Ayrton Senna in its Formula 1 team. Following a spell with Richard Branson’s Virgin Group, he set up his own consultancy business, Chris Witty Associates, to handle marketing, sponsorship and media activities. He lives in Wiltshire.