1935 German Grand Prix

1935 German Grand Prix
Race 4 of 7 in the 1935 European Championship
Circuit Nürburgring-1927-Nordschleife.svg
Race details
Date28 July 1935
Official nameVIII Großer Preis von Deutschland
Nürburg, Germany
CoursePermanent racing facility
Course length22.810 km (14.17 mi)
Distance22 laps, 501.82 km (311.82 mi)
WeatherWet, overcast
Pole position
DriverAuto Union
Grid positions set by ballot
Fastest lap
DriverGermany Manfred von BrauchitschMercedes-Benz
FirstAlfa Romeo
SecondAuto Union

The 1935 German Grand Prix was a Grand Prix motor race held at the Nürburgring on 28 July 1935.



The 1935 event was considered to be one of the greatest motorsports victories of all time. The 1935 German Grand Prix will always be remembered as Tazio Nuvolari's greatest race. In a monumental drive, the Italian beat nine superior German Silver Arrows with an inferior red Alfa Romeo.[1] The 1935 German Grand Prix at Nürbugring was held under chilling and dreadful conditions.[2] An estimated 300,000 German fans including some of the most powerful and high ranking Third Reich officers showed up for the race that was run over the course of 22.8 km consisting of 174 turns.[3] There were high expectations that one of the German drivers would win the race since they had the most powerful and advanced cars. Three Alfa-Romeos were presented by the Scuderia Ferrari team and were driven by Italian drivers Tazio Nuvolari and Antonio Brivio, along with Monegasque driver Louis Chiron. The rest of the competitors were from Maserati, ERA and Bugatti and were contested under private teams. Italian legend, Tazio Nuvolari's Alfa Romeo P3 Tipo B enjoyed the maximum engine capacity used in these cars, 3.2 litre, 290 bhp.

The race position was determined by a ballot[4] and Tazio Nuvolari secured the front row at P2 but due to a poor start, Nuvolari dropped down to the third place with teammates Brivio retiring at lap 1 and Chiron at Lap 5 leaving Tazio with the only Alfa Romeo left competing in the race.[5] Italian legend Tazio Nuvolari, drove a very hard race in appalling conditions, and after a dreadful start was able to pass a number of cars, particularly while some of the German cars pitted. By lap 10, Nuvolari was already leading the race while the rest of the cars were struggling to maintain a grip on the now rain-soaked track. After a botched pit in which he lost a total of 2 minutes and 14 seconds due to refueling delays from a broken pressure pump, he joined the race at 6th place. He drove on the limit, made up the time and was 2nd by the start of the last lap- 35 seconds behind leader Manfred von Brauchitsch in a Mercedes. But von Brauchitsch had ruined his tyres by pushing very hard in the dreadful conditions- and Nuvolari was able to catch the German, passing him when one of von Brauchitsch's tyres blew out, and took victory in front of the stunned German High Command and 300,000 spectators. The small 42-year-old Italian ended up finishing in front of 8 running Silver Arrows- and 2nd placed Hans Stuck was 2 minutes behind Nuvolari.

For 1935, Nuvolari set his sights on a drive with the German Auto Union team. The team were lacking top-line drivers, but relented to pressure from Achille Varzi who did not want to be in the same teams as Nuvolari. Nuvolari then approached Enzo Ferrari, but was turned down as he had previously walked out on the team. However, Mussolini, the Italian prime minister, intervened and Ferrari backed down.

Manfred Von Brauchtisch the race leader at time was a full 35 seconds in the led at the start of the last lap. But Von Brauchtisch had been pushing so hard though to get the win that his tyres were totally destroyed and the great Nuvolari passed the German when the Germans tyres finally gave up and fell apart and Nuvolari took the chequered flag to win the race. Von Brauchtisch was nearly inconsolable but it was due to the pace of Nuvolari that the German had to drive so aggressively which was the German's downfall.[6]

In this year, Nuvolari scored his most impressive victory, thought by many to be the greatest victory in car racing of all times, when at the German Grand Prix at the Nürburgring, driving an old Alfa Romeo P3 (3167 cc, 8C, compressor, 265 hp) versus the dominant, all conquering home team's cars of five Mercedes-Benz W25 (3990 cm3, 8C, compressor, 375 hp (280 kW)), driven by Caracciola, Fagioli, Hermann Lang, Manfred von Brauchitsch and Geyer) and four Auto Union Tipo B (4950 cc, 16C, compressor, 375 hp (280 kW)), driven by Bernd Rosemeyer, Varzi, Hans Stuck and Paul Pietsch). This victory is known as "The Impossible Victory". The crowd of 300,000 applauded Nuvolari, but the representatives of the Third Reich were enraged.

112Italy Tazio NuvolariScuderia FerrariAlfa Romeo Tipo B224:08:04.121
21Germany Hans StuckAuto UnionAuto Union B22+2:14.312
35Germany Rudolf CaracciolaDaimler-Benz AGMercedes-Benz W25B22+3:09.073
43Germany Bernd RosemeyerAuto UnionAuto Union B22+4:46.9124
57Germany Manfred von BrauchitschDaimler-Benz AGMercedes-Benz W25B22+6:13.354
66Italy Luigi FagioliDaimler-Benz AGMercedes-Benz W25B22+7:54.2134
78Germany Hanns GeierDaimler-Benz AGMercedes-Benz W25A21+1 Lap194
82Italy Achille VarziAuto UnionAuto Union B21+1 Lap114
94Germany Paul PietschAuto UnionAuto Union B20+2 Laps154
1021Switzerland Hans RueschPrivate entryMaserati 8CM20+2 Laps94
1116Italy Goffredo ZehenderScuderia SubalpinaMaserati 6C-3419+3 Laps44
1222Italy Pietro GhersiLuigi SoffiettiMaserati 8CM19+3 Laps164
Ret17France Philippe ÉtancelinScuderia SubalpinaMaserati 6C-3418Engine64
Ret9Germany Hermann LangDaimler-Benz AGMercedes-Benz W25A15Engine175
Ret10United Kingdom Raymond MaysERAERA B11Oil pressure105
Germany Ernst von Deliusn/a
Ret20Hungary László HartmannPrivate entryMaserati 8CM9Ignition146
Ret14Monaco Louis ChironScuderia FerrariAlfa Romeo Tipo B5Differential87
Ret23Italy Piero TaruffiBugattiBugatti T593Accident187
Ret15Italy Antonio BrivioScuderia FerrariAlfa Romeo Tipo B1Differential207
Ret11Italy Renato BalestreroGruppo San GiorgioAlfa Romeo Tipo B0Accident37
DNS15France René DreyfusScuderia FerrariAlfa Romeo Tipo B8
DNS19Germany Ernst von DeliusERAERA BPractice accident8
DNS22Italy Luigi SoffiettiLuigi SoffiettiMaserati 8CM8

Starting grid positions

1st Row3 Pos.2 Pos.1 Pos.
Alfa Romeo
Alfa Romeo
Auto Union
2nd Row2 Pos.1 Pos.
von Brauchitsch
3rd Row3 Pos.2 Pos.1 Pos.
Alfa Romeo
4th Row2 Pos.1 Pos.
United Kingdom
5th Row3 Pos.2 Pos.1 Pos.
Auto Union
Auto Union
6th Row2 Pos.1 Pos.
Auto Union
7th Row3 Pos.2 Pos.1 Pos.
8th Row2 Pos.1 Pos.
Alfa Romeo


  • Ernst von Delius destroyed his car during practice, so shared Mays' car in the race.


  1. ^ "1935 GRAND PRIX SEASON – PART 7, 1935 Grosser Preis von Deutschland, 1935 German Grand Prix, 1935 Comminges Grand Prix". www.kolumbus.fi. Retrieved 2019-04-08.
  2. ^ "History of Formula 1 – The German Grand Prix 1935". www.grandprixhistory.org. Retrieved 2019-04-09.
  3. ^ "1935 German Grand Prix | Motor Sport Magazine Archive". Motor Sport Magazine. 2014-07-07. Retrieved 2019-04-10.
  4. ^ "1935 GRAND PRIX SEASON – PART 7, 1935 Grosser Preis von Deutschland, 1935 German Grand Prix, 1935 Comminges Grand Prix". www.kolumbus.fi. Retrieved 2019-04-10.
  5. ^ "1935 German Grand Prix | Motor Sport Magazine Archive". Motor Sport Magazine. 2014-07-07. Retrieved 2019-04-09.
  6. ^ Hill, Matt. "Nuvolari and His Most Legendary Drive: The 1935 German Grand Prix". Bleacher Report. Retrieved 2019-04-08.

Media files used on this page

Circuit Nürburgring-1927-Nordschleife.svg
Author/Creator: Pitlane02, Licence: CC BY-SA 3.0
Nürburgring, layout 1927–1966, the Nordschleife
Flag of Italy (1861–1946).svg
Author/Creator: F l a n k e r, Licence: CC BY-SA 2.5
It is easy to put a border around this flag image
Flag of the United Kingdom.svg
Author/Creator: unknown, Licence: PD
Flag of Hungary (1915-1918, 1919-1946).svg
Flag of Hungary from 6 November 1915 to 29 November 1918 and from August 1919 until mid/late 1946.
Flag of Germany (1933-1935).svg
National flag and merchant ensign of Germany from 1933 to 1935.