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1983 FIA Formula 1 Season

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1983 FIA Formula 1 Season
Photo Credit: Scuderia Ferrari.
Champion Constructor: Scuderia Ferrari (IT,8,20)
Putative Constructor: Scuderia Ferrari (IT)
Champion Driver: Nelson Piquet (BR,2,2)
Putative Driver: Nelson Piquet (BR), Alain Prost (FR,0,1)
Putative Constructor Entry Specification: Model 126C3, 1.49-liter, six-cylinder vee, aluminum/cast-iron engine, DOHC, fuel injection, dual turbocharged, five-speed, ventilated disc brakes, carbon fibre composite monocoque chassis, double wishbone independent suspension, 605 horsepower (Harvey Postlethwaite).

The FIA in 1983 mandates flat non-venturied floorpans for all entries, effectively terminating the ground-effects era established by Lotus in the late seventies. The sanctioning body also restricts the amount of onboard fuel for race entries, thus compelling the constructors to execute in-race refueling strategies for each contest. Many motorsport historians mark the 1983 season as the start of the turbo era in Formula 1. Scuderia Ferrari with its 126C3 entry impressively holds off Renault for the constructors' crown, taking the honors for the second consecutive season, earning its boggling twentieth putative constructors' championship, and ascending over Team Lotus as the all-time modern era championship leader with eight titles. After chasing Renault driver Alain Prost all season, Brabham pilot Nelson Piquet puts together a pair of victories in deep stretch and overtakes the Frenchman with his third place finish in the season finale at Kyalami in October for the crown. Piquet and Prost finish all square atop the putative drivers' points table. The disappointing result for Prost leads to recriminations within his team and his abrupt departure from Renault in the postseason. F1 returns to Spa and its modified yet still legendary circuit in May. Michele Alboreto provides Tyrrell with its final series constructors' victory at Detroit in June. Honda power returns to F1 with the Spirit team at Silverstone in July. Porsche returns to F1 with its notable TAG power unit with McLaren at Zandvoort in August.

HeM applies the Putative Model to all racing seasons for two primary purposes: First, to effectively normalize all racing seasons for empirical comparison across the decades, and second, to step clear of series organizers which score season championships primarily out of commercial interest or to attract manufacturer participation. The Putative Model simply scores all seasons in the same fashion as a standard track and field meeting, with the only purpose of tracking what takes place at the finishing stripe If the Putative Champion differs from the nominal Series Champion, please note the (SC) notation below.

Scuderia Ferrari110     Piquet77
Renault Gordini101     Prost77
Brabham BMW93     Arnoux68
McLaren Ford/TAG Porsche45     Tambay54
Williams Ford43     Rosberg K33
Alfa Romeo22     Watson J27
     Cheever27

Noteworthy 1983 Races

1983 San Marino Grand Prix Imola, Italy1983 1983 San Marino Grand Prix At Imola for the San Marino Grand Prix (302.5 kilometers) in May, the race comes to an Italian Scuderia Ferrari 126C2B under Patrick Tambay (FR) in 1:37:52.5 (average 115.19 mph), under forty-nine seconds ahead of a Renault entry. Riccardo Patrese in his Brabham passes race leader Tambay with only six laps remaining, yet a moment later the Italian loses control of his entry at Acque Minerale, skids off the circuit, and crashes hard into the ARMCO, gifting a victory to Tambay and Ferrari before the jubilant tifosi. Photo Credit: LAT Photographic Archive.
1983 XLI Grand Prix de Monaco Monte Carlo1983 1983 XLI Grand Prix de Monaco At Monaco for the Grand Prix (251.5 kilometers) in May, a British Williams FW08C Ford under Keke Rosberg (FI) takes race honors in wet conditions in 1:56:38.1 (average 80.46 mph), under nineteen seconds ahead of a Brabham entry. Rosberg moves out front on Lap 2 and never looks back on his way to a maiden victory in his adopted city of Monte Carlo. The FIA upholds its disqualification of Rosberg at Paul Ricard earlier in the season. Photo Credit: LAT Photographic Archive.
1983 Grand Prix of South Africa Kyalami, South Africa1983 1983 Grand Prix of South Africa At Kyalami for the South African Grand Prix (316 kilometers) in October, a British Brabham BT52B BMW under Riccardo Patrese (IT) notches the victory in 1:33:25.7 (average 126.10 mph), under ten seconds ahead of an Alfa Romeo entry. After title contenders Alain Prost in his Renault and Rene Arnoux in his Ferrari suffer early retirements, race leader Nelson Piquet in his Brabham waves by teammate Patrese on Lap 61 of 77, nurses his entry home, and crosses in third position to claim his second F1 drivers’ title. Photo Credit: David Lawson.
1983 XIV Race of Champions West Kingsdown, England1983 1983 XIV Race of Champions At Brands Hatch for the Race of Champions (168.5 kilometers, non-championship) in April, a British Williams FW08C Ford under Keke Rosberg (FI) bests the field in 0:53:15.3, under a second (.49) ahead of a Tyrrell driven by American rookie Danny Sullivan. Rosberg moves out front early, yet suffers from rubber wear after passing the midrace point, hence allowing Sullivan to close the gap. Sullivan catches Rosberg on the final circuit and both drivers race side-by-side before Rosberg edges out the American at the wire for a slender and dramatic victory. Photo Credit: Attribution Unascertained.