What Happened On This Day June 17 In F1 History?

From Nino Farina's win at the 1951 Belgian Grand Prix to Lewis Hamilton's win at the 2007 US Grand Prix.

Mark Phelan

By Mark Phelan
Updated on June 17, 2024

Lewis Hamilton McLaren Wins 2007 US Grand Prix in Indianapolis
Lewis Hamilton for McLaren wins the 2007 US Grand Prix in Indianapolis.

What happened on this day, June 17 in Formula 1 history? Find out interesting facts and stories about Formula 1 on this day.


Nino Farina claimed victory at the 1951 Belgian Grand Prix driving a supercharged Alfa Romeo.

Despite only 13 cars starting the race, across three different manufacturers, the event drew a record crowd. There were three additional entries, including two Maseratis, that failed to make it to the event. Juan Manuel Fangio debuted a new suspension system equipped with specially designed concave wheels to accommodate the brake drums. The race would mark the only occasion in Fangio’s illustrious Formula 1 career, excluding retirements, where he finished outside the top four. Nevertheless, he earned a point for recording the fastest lap of the race. Although he placed ninth and only the top five finishers scored points, this result allowed him to maintain his record of scoring in every race he completed.


Bob Sweikert won the Indianapolis 500, the National Championship, and the Midwest Sprint car championship all in one season, a unique triple crown in motorsport history. Tragically, he died in a racing accident a year later, marking a sombre end to a remarkable career.


Adrian Campos, who would later identify and support young talent like Fernando Alonso, was born in Valencia 17 June, 1960. Known for his lesser success in Formula One but significant impact on motorsports management, Campos also ventured into managing the Hispania Racing Team in Formula One in 2010.


Jim Clark led a Lotus to victory at the 1962 Belgian Grand Prix, marking the beginning of a five-win streak at this event. His teammate, Trevor Taylor, and Willy Mairesse of Ferrari collided during the race, resulting in significant accidents, though both drivers emerged with minor injuries.


Denny Hulme ended the consecutive victories of Jackie Stewart and Emerson Fittipaldi by winning the 1973 Swedish Grand Prix, though his victory was unpopular with the local spectators after he overtook Swedish favorite Ronnie Petersen, who was hindered by a slow puncture, on the last lap.


Niki Lauda’s victory in a Brabham at the 1978 Swedish Grand Prix was marred by controversy over oversized cooling fans, which opponents claimed provided an unfair advantage by enhancing cornering capabilities and kicking up debris. Lotus boss Colin Chapman argued were “ten times the size needed”. The fans were swiftly banned despite protests from Brabham’s manager, Bernie Ecclestone, although Lauda’s win was upheld.


Nelson Piquet earned his first points of the season with a victory at the 1984 Canadian Grand Prix, driving for Brabham. After an intense race, Piquet, suffering from a foot burn due to a new radiator, needed assistance to reach the podium. Although Alain Prost briefly led, Piquet quickly regained and maintained the lead.


Lewis Hamilton won the 2007 US Grand Prix in Indianapolis ahead of his McLaren teammate, Fernando Alonso, who, as the season progressed, had become increasingly unsettled by Hamilton’s success. The two drivers battling it out in the race, with Hamilton matching Alonso’s fastest lap shortly after it was set. Alonso expressed his surprise at Hamilton’s rapid ascent to the top of the championship standings, despite previously voicing concerns over perceived preferential treatment towards Hamilton by McLaren. “It’s a surprise to see him doing so well and top of the championship.” Post-race, a journalist likened Hamilton to Tiger Woods, to which Hamilton humbly responded by distinguishing his own identity and sport from that of Woods. “It’s obviously nice to be compared to somebody like Tiger Woods but you just have to remember I’m not Tiger Woods. I’m Lewis Hamilton and this is Formula One, it is not golf.”

Seen in:

About The Author

Senior Editor

Mark Phelan
Mark Phelan

Mark is a staff writer specialising in the history of Formula 1 races. Mark researches most of our historic content from teams to drivers and races. He has followed Formula 1 since 1988, and admits to having a soft spot for British drivers from James Hunt and Nigel Mansell to Lando Norris. He loves a great F1 podcast and has read pretty much every drivers biography.

Latest Reads