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Car launches in François Cevert's day!

François Cevert is in the driving seat as Tyrrell unveils its 005 in 1972.

French driver François Cevert was born on this day in 1944. He made his début in the Netherlands, four races into the 1970 season, following the sudden retirement of Johnny Servoz-Gavin. He went on to make 46 starts with Tyrrell alongside Jackie Stewart.

Stewart was the star of the team during this period, but Cevert was a solid support. His one and only race victory came at Watkins Glen in 1971 when he won by over 40 seconds. However he also picked up ten second places and a further two third place finishes during his time.

Here's Cevert at the wheel of the Tyrrell 005, when the car was launched in 1972. Compared to today's glitzy multimedia presentations, this one looks like it's being held in Ken Tyrrell's back garden!

In fact it was one of the very first times a team had held what we would recognise today as a an official car launch. Other teams such as Lotus and Ferrari were to quick to follow Tyrrell's lead.

Sadly, Cevert died in 1973 following an accident in qualifying for the United States Grand Prix. He hit the high kerbing in the uphill Essess, and made a devastating impact with the crash barrier.

Because of Cevert's death, Tyrrell withdrew its entry for what would have been his 100th race. Stewart retired from racing after this race but continued to be a tireless advocate for improved safety in the sport.

Cevert was 29 years and 224 days old when he died on October 6, 1973. He was laid to rest in the Cimetière de Vaudelnay in the village of Vaudelnay, Maine-et-Loire.

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