S4340 Brabham BT33 No.19 6th South African GP 1972 – Graham Hill
A debut of a new car can not be any better: the Brabham BT33 was first raced in the 1970 South African Grand Prix. And it immediately won – with Jack Brabham behind the wheel. It was the last victory for the company founder who died in 2014. At the end of 1970 Brabham stopped racing. Not so the BT33. It was still in use until 1972. However Brabham had already built a new car when the season started in 1972. At the seasonopener in Buenos Aires (and in South Africa) Graham Hill drove the BT33; Carlos Reutemann run the new model, the BT34. From the Spanish Grand Prix onwards Wilson Fittipaldi took over the BT33. And Hill switched to the BT37. The same applies for the race in Monaco. After that the BT33 disappeared in the museum. The car which was powered by a V8 Cosworth was built by Ron Tauranac. It was the first monocoque-style Brabham. And in memory of the very first Brabham, the BT3, it was painted in turquoise blue with yellow front and rear wings. From 1972 not only the colour of the car changed but also the possessions. Jack Brabham had withdrawn completely. And Tauranac didn’t like the new, business-oriented Formula One. He missed the gentlemen-days and was also overwhelmed with the search for sponsors. The man who rescued Brabham was Bernie Ecclestone. He took over the squad in 1972. And formed a completely new team. From Lotus he hired Bob Dance and Herbie Blash. And Ralph Bellamy joined from McLaren. The only one Bernie kept from the Tauranac era was a young South African: Gordon Murray. He should later be involved in the construction of some very successful Brabham racing cars. With three different types in one season Brabham set an unofficial record. In addition to the BT33, which is described here and is made by Spark in 1:43, there was not only the BT34 and the BT37 the team even tested a BT39 with a Weslake V12 engine. But this one never raced in a Grand Prix. Hill who often was only a shadow of the great champion he once was sacked at the end of the season.