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Fittipaldi on the F1 team-mate who was his “greatest private buddy”

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Two-time Components 1 champion and double Indianapolis 500 winner Emerson Fittipaldi was no stranger to racing in opposition to the perfect throughout a motorsport profession spanning greater than three a long time.

This included competing in the identical workforce as Jochen Rindt and Denny Hulme, in addition to Indy 500 winners Rick Mears and Danny Sullivan. However the Brazilian picks ‘SuperSwede’ Ronnie Peterson as his favorite team-mate as a consequence of their shut friendship.

“One of the best team-mate I had was Ronnie as a result of we began racing collectively in Europe, F3, F2 and F1 – he was a pricey buddy,” says the 77-year-old.

“I stayed at his house in England, he stayed at my home in Switzerland after which we raced collectively, it was a lot enjoyable. We have been team-mates however superb pals. At the moment in F1, he was my greatest private buddy and it was devastating after we misplaced him at Monza [in 1978].”

Peterson joined Lotus for the 1973 season alongside Fittipaldi, who had claimed his first F1 title with Colin Chapman’s workforce the earlier yr. The workforce took seven wins – three for Fittipaldi and 4 for Peterson – with the Swede securing his first F1 victory in France after each Lotus 72 drivers battled Jody Scheckter’s McLaren.

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Fittipaldi and Peterson have been team-mates at Lotus

“When he received France I used to be dicing with Jody, tried to overhaul Jody, and it was humorous, he tried to overhaul Jody after which raced me,” remembers Fittipaldi, who ended up three factors forward of Peterson within the standings, each overwhelmed by Tyrrell’s Jackie Stewart.

“I used to be third after which Ronnie gave an indication, after which I gave an indication saying, ‘I’m going to go Jody’ and we [Scheckter and Fittipaldi] crash.”

“One of the best team-mate I had was Ronnie as a result of we began racing collectively in Europe, F3, F2 and F1 – he was a pricey buddy,” Emerson Fittipaldi

Fittipaldi’s possibilities of retaining his title ended at Monza, when he completed second behind Peterson after they battled for the win, the reigning champion sad with Chapman’s choice to not implement pre-race workforce orders. Because of this Fittipaldi left for McLaren in 1974.

“Monza was an settlement that Colin didn’t fulfil, that was very upsetting,” provides Fittipaldi. “I perceive why he needed to do it, however after the race I used to be disillusioned and I stated, ‘Time to maneuver’.”

Fittipaldi says Peterson was his

Fittipaldi says Peterson was his “greatest private buddy” on the time

Photograph by: Motorsport Images

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