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May 13, 2024

30 Historical Photos From the 1950 British Grand Prix, the First Formula One Race

The 1950 British Grand Prix, formally known as The Royal Automobile Club Grand Prix d’Europe Incorporating The British Grand Prix, was a Formula One motor race held on May 13, 1950 at the Silverstone Circuit in Silverstone, England. It was the first World Championship Formula One race, as well as the fifth British Grand Prix, and the third to be held at Silverstone after motor racing resumed after World War II. It was the first race of seven in the 1950 World Championship of Drivers.

The formation of Formula One was created in 1946 with the first race under the Formula rules being the 1946 Turin Grand Prix which was won by Achille Varzi in the Alfa Romeo 158. But it would not be until 1949 when the Fédération Internationale de l’Automobile announced a series that would take place the following year, one year after the formation of the Grand Prix motorcycle racing.

The 1950 edition of the British Grand Prix was also the designated European Grand Prix for the year, which was the 11th time that title had been held since the first one back in 1923. Before the first Grand Prix, four non-championship races were held all across Europe with Juan Manuel Fangio winning the races in Pau and San Remo with the other two races being won by Reg Parnell and Georges Grignard.

During the weekend, the race was also supported by an International 500cc race which was won by Stirling Moss driving a Cooper-JAP. There was also a demonstration run for the much-anticipated BRM P15, which was due to enter the sport later in the year. The race was attended by George VI, Queen Elizabeth, Princess Margaret, and the Earl & Countess Mountbatten of Burma.

The 70-lap race was won by Nino Farina for the Alfa Romeo team, after starting from pole position, with a race time of 2:13:23.6 and an average speed of 146.378 km/h. Luigi Fagioli finished second in another Alfa Romeo, and Reg Parnell third in a third Alfa Romeo.


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