The 1958 Portuguese Grand Prix was to witness one of the most famous incidents in F1® history. Nothing to do with the usual wheel-to-wheel jousting, instead it came to exemplify the gentlemanly behaviour and esprit de corps between the drivers of the 1950s era.
The grid saw Stirling Moss take poll and with Vanwall teammate Stuart Lewis-Evans claiming third, the front row of the grid had Mike Hawthorn’s Ferrari sandwiched between two Vanwalls.
Moss and Hawthorn got off to a good start and the crowd were able to enjoy the usual entertaining Moss -vs- Hawthorn (Vanwall -vs- Ferrari) tussle up front.
However the Vanwall’s innovative disc brakes started to reap dividends over the Ferrari’s drum brakes and Moss steadily pulled away. With Moss about to lap him in the penultimate lap, Hawthorn’s brakes finally went and he had to enter an escape road. In the process he stalled his engine and he had to push his car to get it restarted. He managed to get back on the track and finished second.
Or did he? An eagle-eyed marshal put in a report that Hawthorn had pushed his Ferrari in the opposite way to the direction of the circuit and was therefore liable to be disqualified.
At the Steward’s enquiry that evening, Stirling Moss however vouched that his opponent had in fact pushed the car on the pavement, and not on the track. Hawthorn got his points.
Vanwall however were triumphant claiming 1st and 3rd places.
This win also gave Moss the record for the biggest time difference ever between 1st and 2nd places in a F1® race.
The 1958 championship couldn’t be closer with only two races to go.
🇵🇹PORTUGUESE GRAND PRIX, August 24 1958, Oporto, Portugal. Temporary Street Circuit: 4.603 miles, 50 Laps (230 miles).
WINNING DRIVER: 🏁🇬🇧 Stirling Moss, Vanwall, VW10, 2h 11m 27.8sec, 104.9mph.
2ND PLACE: 🔥 Mike Hawthorn, Ferrari, 2h 16m 40.5sec.
3RD PLACE: 🔥 Stuart Lewis-Evans, Vanwall, VW6.
FASTEST LAP: 🔥 Mike Hawthorn, Ferrari, Lap 36, 2m 32.37sec, 109.3mph.
QUALIFYING TIMES: 🔥 Pole Position: Stirling Moss, Vanwall, 2m 34.21sec. 🔥 2nd on the grid: Mike Hawthorn, Ferrari, 2m 34.26sec. 🔥 3rd on the grid: Stuart Lewis-Evans, Vanwall, 2m 34.6sec.