The red and Martini-striped Brabham BT45B Alfa Romeo in which Hans-Joachim Stuck starred at Watkins Glen in ’77 will appear at the 21st annual Amelia Island Concours d’Elegance.
Alfa Romeo has confirmed it will send the Gordon Murray-designed beauty from the Alfa museum in Arese, Italy, to form the centerpiece of the “Cars of Hans Stuck” class at the concours.
Powered by the sonorous flat-12 Alfa Romeo engine, the Brabham BT45B was an update of 1976’s BT45. John Watson led 138 laps over the course of the 1977 season but was dogged by unreliability issues.
He set pole at Monaco, and was cruelly robbed of victories at both Dijon and Silverstone by fuel-feed issues.
German ace Stuck drafted in
Stuck was drafted into the Brabham squad from Round 4, when erstwhile team leader Carlos Pace – who led and finished second in Argentina – was killed in a plane crash. Stuck would go on to finish third in front of his home crowd at Hockenheim, and again reached the podium in Austria, in mixed wet/dry conditions.
Yet it is perhaps for his Watkins Glen performance that Stuck is best known. After qualifying on the front row at one of America's most challenging road courses, he burst into the lead and gave the 100,000-plus fans at the 1977 US Grand Prix a masterclass in the teeming rain.
Sadly, a broken clutch cable caused the car to jump out of gear mid-corner and he hit a barrier after leading the first 14 laps.
“I was at Watkins Glen in 1977 and have great memories of Stuck’s Brabham and the great sound of that 12-cylinder Alfa Romeo engine,” said Bill Warner, founder and chairman of the Amelia Island Concours d’Elegance. “We’re honored that Alfa Romeo has sent this car from their fabulous museum in Arese, Italy, to honor Hans Stuck.”
The 2016 Amelia Island Concours d'Elegance will be held March 11-13th on the 10th and 18th fairways of The Golf Club of Amelia Island.
The show’s Foundation has donated over $2.75 million to Community Hospice of Northeast Florida, Inc. and other charities on Florida’s First Coast since its inception in 1996. It draws over 250 rare vehicles from collections around the world.