Alan Jones MBE (b. 1946)

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Alan Jones MBE (b. 1946)
Alan Jones
Alan Jones MBE (born November 2, 1946) was the first driver to win a Formula One World Championship with the Williams team, becoming the 1980 World Drivers' Champion. He is also the most recent Australian to win the Australian Grand Prix (in 1980). Born in Melbourne, Jones was the son of Stan Jones, an Australian racing driver and winner of the 1959 Australian Grand Prix. It was inevitable that Alan would want to follow in his fathers footsteps, and so the young Jones left for Europe in 1967 to make a name for himself - but success would not come easily.

Success In Formula 3



It took about 6 years before any notable results of his own, in a Formula 3 car. In 1974 Jones managed to land a full time Formula Atlantic ride, and his team owner parlayed it into a chance at Formula One the following season, after purchasing a car from the Hesketh racing team. After 4 races in Formula One the Formula Atlantic team chose not to continue racing. It was the very next race after his team had disbanded that he was named as an injury replacement for Rolf Stommelen on Graham Hill's racing team. He had a best finish of 5th at Hockenheim while there.

Jones earned his first full-time Formula One drive in 1976, in John Surtees' racing team. Jones' car was mostly known for its infamous Durex sponsorship, but he managed several good finishes in it, a 4th in Japan being the best of them. Surtees dropped him after that year as the pair didn't get along all that well, but Jones was able to continue his racing career in America when the Shadow team named Jones as a replacement for Tom Pryce, who had been killed in a freak racing accident in South Africa. Jones made the most of the opportunity and won at Österreichring for his maiden victory, finishing 7th in the championship.

In 1978, Jones, who was on the Williams F1 roster on alternate weekends, also signed with Haas-Hall racing, and competed in the Lola 333CS Chaparral in the Can-Am championship, taking 9 poles in 10 races. (Jones missed the Laguna Seca race due to an F1 scheduling conflict. Stand-in Brian Redman finished 12th in that race after the kill wire was crimped under a valve cover, resulting in intermittent ignition.)

Of the 9 races in which he competed, Jones won 5 (Atlanta, Mosport, Road America, Mid-Ohio, and Riverside). He finished 2nd to Elliot Forbes-Robinson at Charlotte after hitting a chicane and losing a spark plug wire, cracked up at St Jovite; lost a radiator at the Glen. He finished 3rd at Trois-Rivieres after losing a shift fork and being stuck with only 2nd and 5th gears on the tight road circuit. At that race, water-injected brakes were first used in Can-Am, developed by the Haas team and copied with varying degrees of success by others. Jones ran one Can-Am in 1979 (Mid-Ohio), where he and Keke Rosberg had fun running into each other and finishing 1-2, with Jones winning his last Can-Am start.

Alan Jones Formula One World Championship Career
Active Years
1975 - 1981, 1983, 1985 - 1986
Teams
Hesketh, Hill, Surtees, Shadow, Williams, Arrows, Lola
Races
117 (116 starts)
Championships
1 (1980)
Wins
12
Podium finishes 
24
Pole Positions
6
Fastest Laps
13
First Race
1975 Spanish Grand Prix
First Win
1977 Austrian Grand Prix
Last Win
1981 Las Vegas Grand Prix
Last Race
1986 Australian Grand Prix

Frank Williams Rebuilds His Formula One Race Team



In 1977 Jones had already caught the attention of Frank Williams, who was looking to rebuild his F1 racing team. Williams Grand Prix had struggled for success in its first years and Jones was entrusted to give them their first taste of it.

He didn't do much initially to do that, a second place finish in Watkins Glen being the best he could do, but he helped put the team on the F1 map in 1979 using the Williams FW07, after winning 4 races in the span of 5 events near the end of the season.

Jones finished 3rd in the championship hunt that year, and it was the springboard to an excellent 1980 campaign. Jones won 5 races in 1980, one of which was later declared non-championship so only 4 are officially recorded, and had a car which consistently made podiums, he was on 10 of them during the year.

At the end of the season he had beaten Nelson Piquet by 13 points in the standings, becoming Australia's first World Champion since Sir Jack Brabham. He had a good chance at a repeat in 1981, but a very combative relationship with Carlos Reutemann led to an intense rivalry that possibly cost both drivers a chance at the championship. He finished 4 points behind Piquet for the championship and 3 behind Reutemann.

He announced his retirement after the season, which he managed to cap off with a win in Las Vegas, but came out of retirement for a one-time drive with Arrows in 1983. Two more years later, Team Haas was created and Jones was the first driver for that outfit, and he would race a full season in 1986, his first in 5 years, but after a series of disappointing results he left Formula One for good.

Jones raced in the Australian Touring Car Championship after leaving Formula One, but never achieved the same type of results that he was used to. He later became a commentator with Channel Nine as part of their Formula One coverage team.

Alan Jones - Career Results (excluding Formula One)



Please Note: You can sort this listing by simply clicking on the column heading
1973

2

British Formula Three Championship
GRD
1978
1
Can-Am Cup
Lola T333CS Chevrolet
Haas-Hall Racing
1982
1
Australian GT Championship
Porsche 935
Porsche Cars Australia
1985
8
Australian Touring Car Championship
Alfa Romeo Alfetta GTV6
1985
23
CART Indy Car World Series
Newman-Haas Racing
1990
9
Australian Touring Car Championship
Ford Sierra RS500
Tony Longhurst Racing
1991
4
Australian Touring Car Championship
BMW M3
Tony Longhurst Racing
1992
7
Australian Touring Car Championship
BMW M3
Tony Longhurst Racing
1993
2
Australian Touring Car Championship
Ford EB Falcon
Glenn Seton Racing
1994
4
Australian Touring Car Championship
Ford EB Falcon
Glenn Seton Racing
1995
8
Australian Touring Car Championship
Ford EF Falcon
Glenn Seton Racing
1996
8
Australian Touring Car Championship
Ford EF Falcon
Alan Jones Racing
1997
11
Australian Touring Car Championship
Ford EL Falcon
Alan Jones Racing
1998
16
Australian Touring Car Championship
Ford EL Falcon
Tony Longhurst Racing
1999
62
V8 Supercar Championship Series
Ford AU Falcon
-
2001
44
V8 Supercar Championship Series
Ford AU Falcon
-
2002
38
V8 Supercar Championship Series
Ford AU Falcon
-
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