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Emerson Fittipaldi

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Emerson Fittipaldi
Nationality 22px-Flag of Brazil.png Brazilian
Years 1970 - 1980
Team(s) Lotus, McLaren, Fittipaldi
Races 149
Championships 2 (1972,1974)
Wins 14
Podiums 35
Poles 6
Fastest laps 6
First race 1970 British Grand Prix
First win 1970 United States Grand Prix
Last win 1975 British Grand Prix
Last race 1980 United States Grand Prix
Emerson Fittipaldi racing in the Indianapolis 500 in 1994.


Emerson Fittipaldi (born December 12, 1946, São Paulo, Brazil) is a highly successful open-wheel racing series driver, winning world championships in both Formula One and CART.


Career history

"Emmo" began racing in Europe in 1969 in Formula Ford cars, and progressed quickly to F1, joining Team Lotus during the 1970 season. The team's No 3 driver, he ended up becoming No 1 driver after teammate Jochen Rindt was killed at Monza and John Miles left the team. Thrust into the spotlight by leading F1's top team, he proved up to the task and won for Lotus in its first race post-Rindt.

In his first full year as Lotus' main man in 1971, Fittipaldi finished sixth in the drivers' championship as the team experimented with a new chassis, the Lotus 72. Armed with what was arguably the greatest Formula one design of all time, the Lotus 72D Emmo proved unstoppable in 1972 as he won five of 11 races and easily won the F1 Drivers' Championship from Jackie Stewart by 16 points. At 25 he was then the youngest champion in F1 history (his record was eventually topped by 24 year-old Fernando Alonso). It appeared he might do it again in 1973. But after three wins from four attempts with the 72D, he began to struggle in the new 72E that was unveiled mid-year. It resulted in the reverse of the previous year, Stewart beating Emerson for the Drivers Championship by 16 points; though the combination of the 72D and E's points earnings were enough to gain Fitipaldi's sponsor, Team Lotus, the 1973 F1 Manufacturers Championship.

Fittipaldi left Lotus to sign with the promising McLaren team. Driving the highly efficient McLaren M23, he had three victories in 1974, reached the podium four other times, and beat out Clay Regazzoni in a close battle for his second championship. The following season, he notched two more victories and four other podiums, but was second to a dominant Niki Lauda. However, at the height of his F1 success, Fittipaldi shocked everyone by leaving McLaren to race for older brother Wilson Fittipaldi's Copersucar-sponsored Fittipaldi team.

It was hardly a world class organization and the double champion regularly struggled, even failing to qualify for three races in his time there. Despite this, he remained with the team for five seasons but only managed a best finish of second.

After leaving F1 in 1980, Fittipaldi took time out from major racing for four years, returning in 1984 in CART. The 38-year spent his first season acclimatising to IndyCars, driving for two teams before joining Patrick Racing as an injury replacement. He stayed five years with the team, recording six victories and solid finishes in the overall standings. In 1989 he had five wins and finished in the top five in every race he completed, giving him a CART championship. Among his wins was a dominant performance at the Indianapolis 500 where he led 158 of 200 laps and won by two laps.

Roger Penske hired Emmo for his racing team in 1990 and he continued to be among the top drivers in CART, winning a race with Penske for six straight years. In 1993 he added a second Indy 500 victory, although the race was more well known for him breaking Indy victory lane tradition when he drank a celebratory bottle of orange juice instead of the traditional bottle of milk.

Despite approaching 50, he was still in Champcars in 1996 when an injury in Michigan ended his career. Fittipaldi didn't return to the race track after the injury but in 2003 he made a return to Champcars as a team owner.

Fittipaldi's nephew, Christian has also raced Formula 1 and CART and as of 2003 was working on a NASCAR career.


Formula One World Drivers' Champions
(1950Nino FarinaTemplate:·(1951Juan Manuel FangioTemplate:·(195253Alberto AscariTemplate:·(1954,55,56,57Juan Manuel FangioTemplate:·(1958Mike HawthornTemplate:· (195960Jack BrabhamTemplate:· (1961Phil HillTemplate:·

(1962Graham HillTemplate:· (1963Jim ClarkTemplate:· (1964John SurteesTemplate:· (1965Jim ClarkTemplate:· (1966Jack BrabhamTemplate:· (1967Denny HulmeTemplate:· (1968Graham HillTemplate:· (1969Jackie StewartTemplate:· (1970Jochen RindtTemplate:· (1971Jackie StewartTemplate:· (1972Emerson FittipaldiTemplate:· (1973Jackie StewartTemplate:· (1974Emerson FittipaldiTemplate:· (1975Niki LaudaTemplate:· (1976James HuntTemplate:· (1977Niki LaudaTemplate:· (1978Mario AndrettiTemplate:· (1979Jody ScheckterTemplate:· (1980Alan JonesTemplate:· (1981Nelson PiquetTemplate:· (1982Keke RosbergTemplate:· (1983Nelson PiquetTemplate:· (1984Niki LaudaTemplate:· (198586Alain ProstTemplate:· (1987Nelson PiquetTemplate:· (1988Ayrton SennaTemplate:· (1989Alain ProstTemplate:· (199091Ayrton SennaTemplate:· (1992Nigel MansellTemplate:· (1993Alain ProstTemplate:· (199495Michael SchumacherTemplate:· (1996Damon HillTemplate:· (1997Jacques VilleneuveTemplate:· (199899Mika HäkkinenTemplate:· (2000,01,02,03,04Michael SchumacherTemplate:· (200506Fernando Alonso


Indianapolis 500 Winners
Four-time winners

A. J. FoytAl Unser, Sr.Rick Mears

Three-time winners

MeyerShawRoseRutherfordB. Unser

Two-time winners

MiltonVukovichWardJohncockFittipaldiLuyendykUnser, Jr.Castroneves

One win

HarrounDawsonGouxThomasDePalmaRestaWilcoxChevroletMurphyCorumBoyerDePaoloLockhartSoudersKeechArnoldSchneiderFrameCummingsPetilloRobertsDavisRobsonHollandParsonsWallardRuttmanSweikertFlahertyHanksBryanRathmannJonesClarkHillAndrettiDonohueSnevaSullivanRahalVilleneuveLazierCheeverBrackMontoyade FerranRiceWheldonHornish