On May 15th, the LX Spain Grand Prix F-1 will be held at the Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya, a sporting event with a long tradition in the city.
The history of the F1 Grand Prix of Spain in Barcelona began in 1951 and 1954 on the street circuit of Pedralbes, a neighbourhood near the Primero Primera Hotel. In those years the Formula 1 circulated in the city at over 250 km / h speed and the route ran along Avenida Diagonal, Avenida de Esplugues, Avenida de Pedralbes, Paseo Manuel Girona and Numancia street.
In F1 races organised by PeĆ±a Rhin, Paco Godia, one of the best Spanish drivers of those times, participated in Barcelona, āāwith a Maserati. In 1954 he managed to qualify in sixth position. The winner of the first edition was the Argentine Juan Manuel Fangio with Alfa Romeo and in the second came the British Mike Hawthorn with Ferrari, which took 3 hours to travel the 505 15'52'' kms at an average of 156.378 km / h!
After these first two races were completed, there were no more celebrations at the Grand Prix of Spain of F-1 in Barcelona until 1969, 71, 73 and 75. The organisers of the PeĆ±a Rhin gave way to RACC men who changed the location of the race to the street circuit of Montjuich. The track was very fast, difficult and selective, but the drivers preferred it. This ran through the Montjuic street which remains virtually unchanged. Most of the 1992 Olympic Game facilities are situated in this area.
In 1971, Alex Soler-Roig, also born in Barcelona and familiarly linked to the saga of the Primero Primera. He participated in the GP with a team called March. The victory went to the Scottish Jackie Stewart with Tyrrell, covering 303 km in 1h 49'03'', at an average of 156.413 km / h.
In 1975, German Rolf Stommelen was involved in an unfortunate accident, and the high speed of Formula 1 cars were the main cause that made Barcelona lose out on the option to continue organising F1 Grand Prix.
Finally, in 1991 and after many difficulties, Barcelona fulfilled the dream of having a permanent circuit for this racing sport.
Anecdotally, the victory of the inaugural race at the Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya was for Barcelona's Luis PĆ©rez-Sala Alfa-Romeo. And the first edition of the F1 GP was won by the British Nigel Mansell Williams-Renault with the distance of 307 km in 1h 38'42'' at an average speed of 188 km / h.
Since then, the Grand Prix of Spain F1 has continuously been held in Barcelona, and for the first time in 2006 the victory went to a Spanish rider, the Spaniard Fernando Alonso, who that same year would reach his second World Championship. During these years there have also been many participations from great Barcelonian drivers like Pedro de la Rosa, Marc Gene or Jaime Alguersuari, and the Spanish team HRT F1, managed by Luis PĆ©rez-Sala. In this season, we are fortunate to have the driver Carlos Sainz.
Perez-Sala Primero Primera Hotel saga has been sponsoring the sport since the 50s, the date on which this establishment was first opened. Therefore, in many common areas of the building you can see photos of races that took place during these past 60 years.
Currently, another family member, Daniel Juncadella, participates in the German Touring Car Championship (DTM) (Campeonato AlemĆ”n de Turismos) within the official structure of the Mercedes Team.
A parallel story with an endless passion that we want to continue living for a long time.