DRIVERS Superstitions.

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Post by Alucard » 14 years ago

Latest post of the previous page:

That was probably for being wet and not catching fire as easily when crashing the tincans they used to drive back then!

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Post by Everso Biggyballies » 14 years ago

Number 13 in Motor Racing. Paul mentioned elswhere about #13 in relation to racing, so here we go. I guess something under the Superstition thread is appropriate. Im sure I had posted about it but maybe not....

Davina Galica O.B.E., the British Olympic Ski champion who gave up ski-ing to follow a career in motor racing during the mid / late 1970's, in F2 British Domestic (AuroraAFX) F1 championships and even 3 full blown GP's (although I think the may have failed to qualify) always ran #13 on all her cars wherever possible, and did so in F1.

The actual #13 has not been used (other than by request) since the late 1920's I believe, following a bad run of #13 fatalaties.

Paul Torchy,crashed and was killed in September 1925 at the San Sebastian Grand Prix, running #13 on his Delage grand prix car. Also 13 cars started in this race.

Count Giulio Masetti was running #13 on his 12-cylinder 2-litre supercharged Delage grand prix car at the Targa Florio in April 1926. His car rolled over, killing the 31-year old driver.

Consequently, to protect the drivers from the superstitions, given the Western traditional superstitions surrounding the number, the French Automobile Club decided to eliminate the use of #13. The Americans had done so years before.

A few more oddities on the use of #13.....

Toni hopefully can confirm this part but im sure #13 is not seen as unlucky in Italy, where 17 (?) has the unlucky label.

Some organisers used to go as far as to only use even numbers on their race programmes. Re even numbers, even numbers only was quite popular especially in Italy. The 1st British GP @ Aintree in 1955 was all evens. Fixed numbering returned to F1 in 1973.

Fon de Portago raced his private Ferrari with #13.

In South Africa they had a driver called Clive Trundell, who raced a Cooper T45 Climax (F2). He raced as no. 13, but he asked the organisers for the number.

Yves Courage requested number 13 from the ACO for his Le Mans cars.

Gabriele Tarquini raced in F3000 in 1985 with number 13

The next driver to carry 13 on his F3000 car was Philippe Favre in the second half of 1990.

Franco Uncini, 500cc World Champion in 1982, used #13 in most of the races.

Moises Solana who raced sometimes in F1 carried #13. Moises Solana did race #13 in the 1964 Gran Premio de Mexico, driving the Centro Sud BRM, but I think maybe #13 in Mexico is actually seen as a lucky number. In Bike Racing, it has been used until recently by Marco Melandri, who became the youngest ever GP winner in 1998.

Australian racer Bob Holden apparently goes out of his way to carry 13. This could well date back to when as a part of the factory BMC Mini Cooper S squad the Mini he shared with Scandinavian rally driver Rauno Aaltonen at Bathurst 1966 wore #13. They won.Bruce McPhee won in a Holden Monaro in 1969 running #13 at his own request.

In Japan #13 has no unlucky connotations, where #4 is considered unlucky. Satoru Nakajima refused to carry 4 on his 1986 F3000 Ralt, so John Nielsen carried that number instead, giving Nakajima race no.5.

Nakajima left the team before the end of the season, and Nielsen, having had a fairly poor year, thought that there might be something in race #4 being unlucky after all, so at the final race of the season, swapped to #5! I think the #4 problem to the Japanese may be that maybe due to the Japanese words for 'four' and 'death' having the same pronunciation ('shi'?).

This is the same reason, incidentally, that both Nakajima and Ukyo Katayama never carried #4 when they raced for Tyrrell; they both used #3.
Australian Race and Rally 'legend' Colin Bond changed his number to 8 from 4. The request to change it came from his Japanese tyre supplier Toyo.

Wayne Gardner used the #4 in touring cars in Australia when he gave up bikes. In 1997, Gardner swapped numbers with team-mate Neil Crompton (7) on the advice of a Japanese friend . Gardner won his first round wearing the number 7. Actually it seems strange that having ridden for Honda for a couple of years with the #4, no-one told him of the Japanese superstition.

Another numbering oddity unrelated to any of this is Australian Peter Williamson always used to have numbers that were two of the same on his hand built Toyotas. 33, 44, 66, 77, 88, all multiples of eleven

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Post by Jesper Hvid » 11 months ago

Found this photo from the 1914 Indy 500, click to enlarge:

Image

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/George_Ma ... ng_driver)
The origins of the number 13 being considered unlucky has a number of questionable explanations. Theories range from Mathematical (Since 12 is considered a perfect number, 13 must therefore be imperfect) to Astronomical (The uncommon occurrence of 13 full moons in a calendar year caused problems for early astronomers mapping lunar cycles) to Biblical (Judas was the 13th guest to sit down at the Last Supper) to Historical (the arrests, disbanding, and executions of the Knights Templar began on Friday the 13th).

Whatever the case, most folks tend to shy away from the number 13. High-rise buildings have no 13th floor and many airplanes do not have a 13th row on the seating chart. And, in motor racing, the number 13 is sparsely used. For the inaugural Indianapolis 500, car numbers were based on the timing of the entries and the number 13 was assigned to Billy Pierce of the Chicago-based Fal Car Team. Pierce, however, failed to make the field based on the qualifying procedures of the time.

George Mason started the Indianapolis 500 in a car with the number 13 in 1914. He dropped out of the race after 66 laps. The Indy 500 would not see another No. 13 for 89 years. It was, in fact, prohibited in the rule book to assign the 13 to a car for decades.
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Post by erwin greven » 11 months ago

I can remember Enrique Bernoldi refusing to drive the #17? Arrows. 13 and 17 being unlucky numbers in Brazil. And Italy too. Alitalia skips row 13 and 17 in their airplanes.
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Post by Circuitmaster » 11 months ago

I know that China believe 4 to be unlucky in a similar way, in fact any number that contains a 4 can be considered unlucky..

I haven't seen this manifest itself in sporting circles, though
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Post by Everso Biggyballies » 11 months ago

Circuitmaster wrote:
11 months ago
I know that China believe 4 to be unlucky in a similar way, in fact any number that contains a 4 can be considered unlucky..

I haven't seen this manifest itself in sporting circles, though
Japan as well.... there is a summary of stories about #4 in motor racing a couple of posts up. In fact here is the relevant part

Everso Biggyballies wrote:
14 years ago

In Japan #13 has no unlucky connotations, where #4 is considered unlucky. Satoru Nakajima refused to carry 4 on his 1986 F3000 Ralt, so John Nielsen carried that number instead, giving Nakajima race no.5.

Nakajima left the team before the end of the season, and Nielsen, having had a fairly poor year, thought that there might be something in race #4 being unlucky after all, so at the final race of the season, swapped to #5! I think the #4 problem to the Japanese may be that maybe due to the Japanese words for 'four' and 'death' having the same pronunciation ('shi'?).

This is the same reason, incidentally, that both Nakajima and Ukyo Katayama never carried #4 when they raced for Tyrrell; they both used #3.
Australian Race and Rally 'legend' Colin Bond changed his number to 8 from 4. The request to change it came from his Japanese tyre supplier Toyo.

Wayne Gardner used the #4 in touring cars in Australia when he gave up bikes. In 1997, Gardner swapped numbers with team-mate Neil Crompton (7) on the advice of a Japanese friend . Gardner won his first round wearing the number 7. Actually it seems strange that having ridden for Honda for a couple of years with the #4, no-one told him of the Japanese superstition.

Another numbering oddity unrelated to any of this is Australian Peter Williamson always used to have numbers that were two of the same on his hand built Toyotas. 33, 44, 66, 77, 88, all multiples of eleven

*Sebastian, Lance is faster than you... do you understand?*


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Post by John » 11 months ago

Circuitmaster wrote:
11 months ago
I know that China believe 4 to be unlucky in a similar way, in fact any number that contains a 4 can be considered unlucky..

I haven't seen this manifest itself in sporting circles, though
Lewis cancelling it out by going with the double-four.
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Post by Everso Biggyballies » 11 months ago

John wrote:
11 months ago
Circuitmaster wrote:
11 months ago
I know that China believe 4 to be unlucky in a similar way, in fact any number that contains a 4 can be considered unlucky..

I haven't seen this manifest itself in sporting circles, though
Lewis cancelling it out by going with the double-four.
Lewis parking in the smallest gravel trap in the world, in pitlane entry at the 2007 Chinese GP which cost him the WDC. :haha: :wink:
Edit: Just realised that he was in a McLaren then, and the the pre drivers perpetual number days, running #2 that year :whistling: :wink:

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Post by XcraigX » 11 months ago

There was a famous story of a driver who raced with a lucky charm in the cockpit, but without success. The team ceremoniously destroyed the charm and the driver returned to winning form. Only I can't remember who it was. Mika Hakkinen maybe? Something about a lucky stuffed frog?
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Post by Everso Biggyballies » 9 months ago

Valentino Rossi is superstitious and renowned for his pre-ride rituals.

On a race day, he will always watch the beginning of the Moto3 race to see how long the starting lights remain lit before going out at the start of the race.

Prior to riding (whether racing, qualifying, or practice), he will start his personal ritual by stopping about two metres from his bike, bending over and reaching for his boots. Then, when arriving at his bike, he will crouch down and hold the right-side foot-peg, with his head bowed.
In an interview, Rossi said "It’s just a moment to focus and ‘talk’ to my bike, like moving from one place to the next."

He also always puts the same boot on first, as he does with his gloves.

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Post by acerogers58 » 9 months ago

Glenn 'Fireball' Roberts refused to allow himself to be kissed by "beauty queens" at race tracks before a race, as the first three times he let himself be kissed, he had an accident.

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Post by PTRACER » 9 months ago

acerogers58 wrote:
9 months ago
Glenn 'Fireball' Roberts refused to allow himself to be kissed by "beauty queens" at race tracks before a race, as the first three times he let himself be kissed, he had an accident.
Not superstition, but distraction :haha:
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