Siegfried Stohr is a former Italian racing driver who spent one season in the Formula One World Championship, driving for Arrows in 1981. He scored no points in nine starts. Earlier in a career, he contested in Formula Abarth, Formula 3 and Formula 2, winning two Italian championship titles.
Italian championship in Formula Abarth and Formula 3
Born in October 1952 in Rimini, he started a career in 1969 in karting competitions. His first competition with bigger cars was the Italian Formula Abarth in 1976. In his rookie season, Stohr was second in the points. In 1977, he won a championship title with five wins in fourteen races. In the same year, he also made his debut in the Formula 3.
Driving a Chevron-Toyota, Stohr became the Italian Formula 3 champion in 1978. He also participated in few races of the British and European Formula 3, but without any success.
Siegfried Stohr had a short but successful career
Two seasons in the Formula 2
With two championship trophies in his hands, the logical next step was the Formula 2. Stohr made an Formula 2 European Championship debut in 1979, driving a Chevron-BMW in most of the races. He scored two podiums, finishing second at Vallelunga and Pau. At the end of the season, he was 8th in the points.
Next year, Stohr joined Alan Docking's team and managed to win one race in a Toleman TG280-Hart, at Autodromo Pergusa in Italy. He added three more podiums to his account, finishing fourth in the final standings.
Siegfried Stohr in the #30 Arrows-Cosworth
Nine Formula One starts with Arrows-Cosworth
In 1981, Stohr reached a peak of his career, entering the Formula One World Championship. He was hired to drive the #30 Arrows A3-Cosworth for Ragno Arrows Beta Racing Team, alongside Riccardo Patrese as his teammate in the #29 car.
Stohr made a debut in the non-championship South African Grand Prix, not finishing the race. He failed to qualify for his first F1 championship event, the United States Grand Prix West at Long Beach. He started the next race, the Brazilian Grand Prix, but retired after 20 laps due to an accident. Stohr reached the finish line for the first time at Argentine Grand Prix, finishing ninth.
Bizzare accident at the Belgian Grand Prix
Stohr had one more DNQ at San Marino Grand Prix at Imola and then the Belgian Grand Prix came at Zolder circuit. Stohr had been involved in start-line accident with his teammate Patrese and team's mechanic Dave Luckett.
An engine of Patrese's car, who was fourth on the grid, stalled before the start and mechanic came to repair it, expecting that the start would be aborted. But, the race started. Stohr was 13th on the grid and he didn't see Patrese's car, crashing into it and badly hurting a mechanic. Fortunately, he survived.
A chaos continued after an accident and the race was stopped after just two laps. That accident resulted in more secure rules about mechanics on the grid.
Siegfried Storh recorded nine starts in Formula 1
Seventh place as the best F1 result
Stohr stayed with the team for eight more races. He failed to qualify in France and Italy, retired four times and reached a finish line just two times, at the German Grand Prix and the Dutch Grand Prix. He was 12th at Hockenheim and seventh at Zandvoort, just one place behind the last point-scorer.
For the last two races of the season, in Canada and Las Vegas, Stohr was replaced by Jacques Villeneuve Sr.
Siegfried Stohr is leading driving school since 1982
Stohr retired from racing in 1982
At the end of the season, Stohr left Formula One. He made one more start in the Formula 2, driving for Minardi at Mugello in May 1982.
After a retirement from racing, Stohr stayed involved into motorsport, starting a racing school and safe driving academy at the Misano circuit. He was also a columnist for some publications, writing about motorsport and safe driving. He has written several books, including 'Where the wind always blows, how to become Formula 1 driver' and 'Safe driving - Technique, Psychology and Guide Philosophy'.