Regazzoni killed in a road crash

Former Grand Prix driver Clay Regazzoni was killed in a car crash in Italy today. He was 67 years old

The Swiss driver is reported to have collided head on with a truck on the A1 Motorway near Parma, while driving a Chrysler Voyager.

Gianclaudio Giuseppe Regazzoni, who gave the Williams team their first Grand Prix win in 1979, made his Formula One debut in the 1970 Dutch Grand Prix, as Ferrari handed him the second seat alongside Jacky Ickx.

He made an instant impression, finishing fourth in that race. Just four rounds later, he captured his maiden Grand Prix victory at Monza.

By the end of the 1970 season, Regazzoni had done enough to claim third place overall in the world championship.

Regazzoni stayed at Maranello for two more years, but with competitiveness lacking he made a switch to BRM to join Niki Lauda in 1973.

After a disappointing time there he returned to Ferrari the following year, when he and Lauda were recruited by new team manager Luca di Montezemolo.

Although Lauda was supposedly team leader, Regazzoni pushed him hard and eventually finished second in the world championship behind Emerson Fittipaldi, having taken a win in Germany.

In 1975 he won the Italian Grand Prix, but he would not find the form that he had previously enjoyed and by the end of 1976, despite winning in Long Beach, he was replaced by Carlos Reutemann.

A switch to Ensign and then Shadow was a big step down, but just when his career seemed to be on its way out, he was signed by Frank Williams to be teammate to Alan Jones for 1979.

He repaid that faith by delivering the team's first victory at Silverstone, but it was not enough for him to retain his seat for 1980.

A return to Ensign beckoned, but at Long Beach he suffered a brake failure at the end of the main straight and sustained spinal injuries after hitting a concrete wall.

That crash brought an end to Regazzoni's Formula One career, but he was still determined to carry on with motor sports.

He competed in the Paris-Dakar Rally in the 1980s and used a hand-controlled sportscar in some events. More recently he took part in historic rallies. He also commentated on F1 for Italian TV.

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