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This is the complete race as broadcast on LIVE TV.
It was no surprise to see the two Renault turbo cars on the front row at Hockenheim, with Alain Prost
nearly half a second quicker than teammate Rene Arnoux. World Championship leader Carlos Reutemann was
third on the grid with his Williams team mate Alan Jones fourth, Didier Pironi was fifth in his Ferrari, and
Nelson Piquet was sixth in his Brabham. Also in the top ten were Jacques Laffite, Gilles Villeneuve (Ferrari)
and the two McLarens of John Watson and Andrea de Cesaris.
Alain Prost took the lead right from the start, but Carlos Reutemann managed to get ahead of Rene Arnoux.
On the run down to the first chicane, Didier Pironi went past Rene Arnoux, followed by Nelson Piquet. But
Piquet and Arnoux touched, causing Arnoux to pit with a flat tire. On the second lap, Didier Pironi’s Ferrari
engine let go, leaving the order as Prost, Reutemann, Alan Jones, Piquet, Laffite, Villeneuve and Patrick
Tambay. Alan Jones, fresh off his win at the previous race in the revolutionary new carbon composite
Williams chassis (the first in F1) began to battle Prost for the lead, finally passing him on lap 21.
Just after midway through the race, rain began to fall, and second place Alain Prost was having difficulty
controlling his Renault. Soon Nelson Piquet would pass Prost, and then leader Alan Jones began to have
ignition problems and headed for the pits. The race ended with Nelson Piquet taking the victory, Alain
Prost second, and Jacques Laffite third.
Footage is a bit grainy, but very watchable, and complete races from the 1981 season are quite rare.
Commentators are Barry Gill and James Hunt (not sure why Murray Walker was not on this one).