Break out the champagne in France! Former Grand Prix driver Robert Manzon – the last living points-scorer in the very first Formula 1 World Championship season – is today celebrating his 95th birthday!
Born in the French city of Marseille, Manzon initially worked as a diesel equipment distributor before he became one of the cornerstones of Gordini’s Formula 1 foray.
He earned a call-up to the team in 1948 and became a regular fixture at the front of the field in their often-fragile cars. He earned a solid fourth place at the 1950 French Grand Prix, while in Gordini’s Formula 2 campaign, he was a regular podium-finisher.
Gordini introduced a new six-cylinder engine for the 1952 season, and with it came an immediate improvement in the team’s and Robert’s fortunes. Three points’ finishes – including an excellent third at Spa-Francorchamps – would come his way.
He ran an outstanding second at the 1953 Argentine Grand Prix before his car lost a wheel, and he repeated his podium effort at the following year’s French Grand Prix, this time driving a Louis Rosier-run Ferrari after he quit Gordini.
He returned to Gordini ahead of the 1955 season, and lost a certain podium finish at Monaco when his gearbox packed it in with a handful of laps to go. Sadly, he would enjoy little in the way of further championship success before he hung up the keys at the end of the 1956 season.
Latest posts by Richard Bailey (see all)
- ‘The Unknown Kimi Räikkönen’ - 8 December, 2018
- Hamilton wins Abu Dhabi finale - 26 November, 2018
- Pirelli stays as F1’s tyre supplier - 25 November, 2018
- Supercars: Reynolds wine finale, McLaughlin takes the crown - 25 November, 2018
- Supercars: Van Gisbergen stripped of victory - 25 November, 2018