ROMU014 Tyrrell-Ford 019 Japanese GP 1990 – Satoru Nakajima
Tyrrell, a traditional F1-team, was struggling at the beginning of the Nineties. The glorious times of the successful Seventies were long time ago. Nevertheless the 019 turned out to be a “giant killer”. And that was certainly not because of the engine. The old Ford-engine which was tuned by Hart only had 620 hp. These were around 80 hp less than the top engines of Honda and Ferrari. The magic thing at the Tyrrell 019 was the aerodynamic. Responsible for this was Harvey Postlethwaite. The engineering guru was the inventor of the high nose – also called “Concorde nose”. Which Tyrrell helped to be competitive again. The seasonopener in Phoenix (USA), still with the deep nose, saw Jean Alesi beeing in front for 34 laps before he was overtaken by superstar Ayrton Senna. In the end Alesi finished second, teammate Satoru Nakajima saw the chequered flag in sixth position. In Monaco Alesi was again on top; this time with the “high nose”. Again only Senna was faster. The impressive start of the season was followed by a few problems. Only in Italy and Japan Tyrrell was in the points again – with two sixth places from Nakajima. The Spark model which is from the race in Suzuka was specially made for the Japanese market. And it is limited to 300 pieces. At the end of the season Tyrrell finished fifth in the Constructors’ World Championship. It was “Best of the Rest” behind the top four (McLaren, Ferrari, Benetton and Williams). The trick with the high nose, allowing more air to be conducted under the car towards the rearwing, was soon copied by the other competitors. The figures of the downforce of the 019 were so phenomenal that the other teams had to work hard in the windtunnels to discover the secrets of the 019. Tyrrell unfortunately could not profit from the role as a pioneer for a long time. With just 85 employees Tyrrell was far behind of the other teams which had 300 employees already at this time. Nevertheless Tyrrell can be proud of the 019. He has ushered in a new era. Today “high noses” are standard in nearly every monoposto-series.