It took 36 years, but Formula 1 has finally returned to Circuit Zandvoort!. This also means that, betting on Grand Prix Netherlands is back. The Grand Prix Netherlands has a rich history to which historical chapters will hopefully be added in the coming years!
History of Grand Prix Netherlands
The Dutch Grand Prix is as old as Formula 1 itself. In 1948, a Grand Prix was held for the first time at Circuit Zandvoort. Formula 1 would not be established till two years later, so this was a standalone race under the name Zandvoort Grand Prix. The first winner was Thailand’s Prince Bira, in an old Maserati. A year later, it was Luigi Villoresi who won in a Ferrari. No winners at the betting shops back then, there was no mention of betting Grand Prix Dutch yet of course.
First Grand Prix Netherlands
In 1950, the name was changed to Dutch Grand Prix and the race was also run. Remarkably, the race did not officially count towards the very first Formula One season that year. The Formula One World Championship that year consisted of seven races. The drivers drove as many as 17 other races that year that were not included in the standings. Frenchman Louis Rosier was the winner in 1950. He also won the 24 Hours of Le Mans that year. In 1951, the same story: Rosier won, but the race did not count for Formula 1.
In 1952 and 1953, the GP Netherlands did qualify for the Formula 1 season. Alberto Ascari, in his Ferrari, won the race both years and also the world title. Two years later, he crashed horribly on the Monza circuit. In 1954, 1956 and 1957 the Grand Prix could not take place due to lack of money, in 1955 five-time world champion Juan Manuel Fangio won.
From 1958, Dutch Formula One fans were able to enjoy the race at the coast almost continuously for 27 years. British drivers dominated the Dutch GP for a long time. Multiple winners from the UK included Jim Clark (4), Jackie Stewart (3) and James Hunt (2). In those days it was betting on the Grand Prix Netherlands with a British flavour. Dutch squire Carel Godin de Beaufort competed seven times in a row between 1958 and 1964, with sixth place in 1963 as his best performance.
Fatal accidents at Circuit Zandvoort
The early 1970s however were gloomy years. In 1970, Piers Courage crashed at the circuit. There was another race in 1971 with Belgian Jacky Ickx as the winner, but a year later drivers refused to go to Zandvoort. The facilities around the circuit were said to be too outdated.
A year later, the Dutch Grand Prix returned, but there was a tragic accident. Roger Williamson crashed in his second ever Formula 1 race. His car landed upside down and he was unable to free himself from his burning car. Another driver, David Purley, still tried with all his might. He was, however, not helped by any marshals (without fireproof clothing) and even hindered by said marshals. Williamson died on the spot.
Niki Lauda, James Hunt en Jan Lammers
In the following years, the Dutch GP was the battleground of the likes of Niki Lauda and James Hunt, who both won twice. A win by Nelson Piquet (Max Verstappen’s father-in-law) in 1980 was followed by four French wins in a row. In 1985, Niki Lauda would prove to be the provisional last winner at Circuit Zandvoort, his third win. Before that, there was Dutch input in the form of Gijs van Lennep (1970s), Jan Lammers and Huub Rothengatter (1980s).
Return to Formula One after 35 years
After the 1985 race, the circuit’s operator, CENAV, went bankrupt, causing the Grand Prix Netherlands to disappear. The circuit would then remain unused for a while.
On 14 May 2019, it was announced that the Zandvoort circuit would enter the 2020 Formula 1 calendar as the Grand Prix Netherlands. However, the circuit had to compete against the Assen circuit, where motorbike races have been held for years. In the end, circuit Zandvoort became the chosen circuit for the Grand Prix Netherlands. No doubt helped by its history, but also, of course, by the strong lobby around ‘Zandvoort’.
The reason the GP Netherlands came back into the FIA’s sights after 36 years is also evident. Where Max Verstappen races, an Orange sea of fans follows. That’s box office earnings right there. It’s the best marketing the FIA could wish for.
The 2020 race was ultimately never run because of the Corona pandemic, but 2021 was. As if it was meant to be, Max Verstappen in his Red Bull won the race ahead of Lewis Hamilton and Valtteri Bottas.
The layout of the Zandvoort circuit was practically the same from the late 1940s until 1985. After a few short corners at the start, it was a big loop with fairly bland curves to the finish.
By the time of its return in 2021, the circuit had become completely different. Many more sharp corners, few straights. As a result, there were fears that the Dutch Grand Prix would become a second Monaco. Few chances to overtake and much depending on qualifying. For that reason, the last corner of the circuit has been changed. Overtaking is now far more feasible. With which betting GP Netherlands has become a lot more interesting.
Some experts therefore thought that the Assen circuit would be better suited as Grand Prix Netherlands. Motorbike races have been held there since 1925 and since 1949 the TT Assen has been on the calendar every year for the world championships in all motorbike classes. With that experience and the beautiful circuit, Assen would be better suited. On the other hand, Zandvoort, as mentioned, could lean on considerable influence, in the form of circuit owner Prince Bernhard and Jan Lammers.
Bet on Grand Prix Netherlands | Top 3 historic races at Circuit Zandvoort
After Jackie Stewart’s departure from Formula in 1973 (with his third world title), there was a battle between Ferrari and McLaren. In 1976, reigning world champion Niki Lauda and Clay Regazzoni were at Ferrari. At McLaren, it was James Hunt and Jochen Mass. However, a few weeks before the Dutch Grand Prix, Lauda had his terrible accident at the Nürbürgring in Germany, so he did not compete at Zandvoort. Regazzoni still made things very difficult for Hunt, but the Briton on his 29th birthday held a 0.9-second lead over the Swiss and two seconds over number three Mario Andretti. Eventually, Hunt would also take the world title in 1976.
The last Formula 1 Grand Prix of the Netherlands up until 2021 was especially beautiful because of the podium that was displayed. Nelson Piquet had taken pole position in his Brabham, ahead of Keke Rosberg, Alain Prost and the still inexperienced Ayrton Senna. Niki Lauda started from 10th place and Dutchman Huub Rothengatter in 26th and last place.
Piquet however ruined his start and even had to be pushed. Rosberg, Senna and Prost took off. Senna suffered temporary engine problems and saw Prost and the emerging Lauda pass. Prost still tried everything to pass Lauda, but the Austrian narrowly won. It would be his only win from that year and also the last in his career. Senna finished third and Alain Prost would become world champion that year.
Of course, we can’t resist adding last year as a historic race. Not the most exciting race, but it kickstarted the Dutch grand prix. With that, betting on the Grand Prix Netherlands was back on the menu. Let’s relive the final laps one more time.
Bet on Grand Prix Netherlands | Winners Grand Prix Netherlands Formula 1
As a Formula 1 world champion you usually win a lot of races that same season. That is by no means always the case though. Let’s see how many times the winner of the Dutch Grand Prix also became world champion in that same year to give a view of how to bet on the Grand Prix Netherlands!
1952 – Alberto Ascari
1953 – Alberto Ascari
1955 – Juan Manuel Fangio
1960 – Jack Brabham
1962 – Graham Hill
1963 – Jim Clark
1966 – Jack Brabham
1969 – Jacky Stewart
1970 – Jochen Rindt
1973 – Jackie Stewart
1976 – James Hunt
1977 – Niki Lauda
1978 – Mario Andretti
2021 – Max Verstappen
The Dutch Grand Prix typically takes place in late summer, often in September.
The Dutch Grand Prix returned to the iconic Circuit Zandvoort in the Netherlands, a track known for its challenging layout and historic significance.
Max Verstappen, a Dutch racing prodigy and World Champion, has become a crowd favorite and a prominent contender at the Dutch Grand Prix.
The Dutch Grand Prix returned after a 35-year hiatus, with the 2021 edition marking the revival of the event.
In 2021, Max Verstappen won the Dutch Grand Prix in front of his home crowd, delivering an emotional victory for Dutch fans.