Lotus 79 was almost unbeatable in the 1978 victorious season, and Colin Chapman’s team continued to use it in 1980 waiting the replacement by Lotus 80 during the season. For 1979 Martini replaced JPS as a main sponsor and car was painted in British racing green. Lotus 80 has appeared at Spanish Grand Prix, 5th race of the season, but proved to be a failure. The 80 has a tendency to loose downforce at low speed especially in braking and cornering. So after relatively promising 3rd place in Spain and retirements in Monaco and France in hands of Mario Andretti, 80 was abandoned and 79 continued to race the rest of the season. Andretti’s teammate Carlos Reutemann in the early 1979 season had scored several podiums, but in the second half of the year more effective next generation ground effect cars – Ferrari 312T4, Ligier JS11 and Williams FW07 – outclassed the Lotus 79. Andretti finished the season in 12th position, Reutemann was 7th.
|Mario Andretti||1||Martini Racing Team Lotus|