Elf Team Tyrrell 002 - 1971 United States Grand Prix
In the hands of the talented French racer François Cevert, the Elf Team Tyrrell 002 played its part in the Formula 1 fairytale that was Tyrrell Racing’s first full season as an independent constructor. A development of the very fast but unreliable 001, 002 drove every race of the 1971 season, ultimately scoring its and Cevert’s only victory in the United States Grand Prix in the final race of the year.
During the 1970 Formula One season, after he became disenchanted with the poor performance of the March Engineering chassis, and under pressure from Matra demanding he cease using Ford engines, Ken Tyrrell decided to build his own racing car. Employing ex-Ferguson designer Derek Gardner, who had worked on the Matra MS84 in 1969, the Tyrrell 001 car was designed and built in complete secrecy firstly at Gardner’s home, then at Tyrrell’s lumberyard in Surrey, as the team continued racing with the March chassis in the meantime. The 001 proved to be undependable, with Jackie Stewart failing to reach the chequered flag in any of its races during the latter stages of the 1970 season, though the sheer pace of the chassis was apparent as Stewart had led each race at some stage before retiring. After the season had finished, Gardner redesigned some sections of the car, altering the airbox, remodelling the nose section, lengthening the wheelbase and slightly narrowing the monocoque. In addition, Gardner had revised the front suspension, using a one-piece wishbone. Tyrrell continued to use the well-established Cosworth DFV V8 engine with 3.0 litre displacement; the power transmission was a five-speed Hewland FG40 gearbox. The team also switched tyre supplier to Goodyear after Dunlop withdrew from Formula 1.
The redesigned car ultimately birthed three different chassis known as 002, 003 and 004. For the 1971 season, François Cevert would pilot 002 and Jackie Stewart would race the 003, whilst 004 was not completed until later in the year. Cevert’s car was actually the first of the two new Tyrrells built for the 1971 season. Very much a development of the original car, 002 and 003 featured a thinner gauge aluminium for the monocoque skin but also additional safety features like sturdier roll-over bars. The 002 also had a slightly longer wheelbase to accommodate for Cevert’s taller frame. Initially, the two new Tyrrells looked similar to the 001 but the shape was developed during the season. A third car, 004, was built later in the year but only served as a spare.
In the hands of Cevert, the 002 was fast but inconsistent. At the season opener in South Africa, Cevert retired after skidding off the track at the difficult Leeukop corner. The Frenchman would fail to score points in the following Grand Prix in Spain, coming home in seventh, but only after sacrificing his attempts to take sixth position to allow teammate Stewart past in his battle for the race win with the Ferrari of Jacky Ickx. Crashes in Monaco and at Zandvoort ensured no points in the first four races for Cevert. His home Grand Prix at the new Circuit Paul Ricard was next and, after qualifying seventh, a strong and reliable performance saw him finish second to Stewart for his first podium of the season, also sealing the team’s first ever 1-2 victory. A broken pipe didn’t retire the car in the next race at Silverstone but did cost Cevert any chance of a competitive finish. The German Grand Prix saw the Frenchman again finish second to Stewart in another display emulating his Scottish teammate and mentor. At the subsequent race in Austria, it seemed that the French racer was finally going to achieve his first race win, after being waved through by Stewart, who himself was struggling with his car’s handling. Cevert was chasing down race leader Siffert but, with twelve laps to go, his gearbox exploded, immediately extinguishing any chance of victory. At the Italian Grand Prix, Cevert played his role in the closest ever race Formula 1 finish, crossing the line third behind Peter Gethin and Ronnie Peterson, and ahead of Mike Hailwood and Howden Ganley. The top five racers were separated by just 0.61 seconds, Cevert himself just 0.09 seconds from victory. Cevert’s points at Monza sealed Elf Team Tyrrell their first Constructors’ Championship, and their place in history as the first constructor to manage this at their first attempt. Cevert was then sixth at the penultimate race of the season in Canada, when the race was red flagged due to poor weather conditions. In the year’s final race, Cevert’s luck turned around as he finally clinched victory in the United States. It was a dominant race win, and the racer ultimately finished with a 40‐second lead over the BRM of Jo Siffert in second. Cevert’s maiden victory sealed a perfect season for the team. In the team’s first full season, Elf Team Tyrrell finished first in the World Constructors’ Championship, scoring more than twice as many points as their nearest rival.
Cevert would continue to race 002 for the 1972 season, though not with the same levels of success. Gearbox failure in Argentina, ignition failure in Spain and poor finishes in South Africa and Monaco meant again the Frenchman was without points after the first four races. Cevert did bounce back, earning a second position to Emerson Fittipaldi's dominant Lotus 72 at the Belgian Grand Prix, and then a fourth position in France, but only after crashing the new Tyrrell 006 in practice. He then crashed in Britain, finished outside the points in Germany and Austria and retired in the Italian Grand Prix after an engine failure. Italy would prove to be the 002's final race, as it was replaced by the Tyrrell 006 for the Canadian Grand Prix. Tyrrell 002 was later sold to Emerson Fittipaldi for his car collection in Brazil. American vintage racer John Delane would later claim the 2011 FIA Historic Formula 1 Championship behind the wheel of the 002.
Overall, the Tyrrell 002 earned one race victory, four further podiums and one fastest lap, scoring 19 points across two seasons and helping win the 1971 International Cup for F1 Manufacturers. Cevert would finish third in the World Drivers’ Championship.
This fine 1:8 scale model of Tyrrell 002 replicates the car raced to victory by François Cevert in the XIV United States Grand Prix at Watkins Glen on the 3rd of October 1971. The Grand Prix was run on a new circuit layout, and the weather was unusually warm, to the benefit of the 100,000 strong crowd that had gathered for the event. Cevert qualified fifth, half a second behind polesitter and teammate Jackie Stewart. A strong start off the line lifted the Frenchman up to second, ahead of Stewart and behind the McLaren of Denny Hulme. Stewart regained his composure quickly though, and was back in the lead by end of the first lap. By lap ten, Cevert had passed Hulme and the two Tyrrells were running first and second. Stewart began to struggle with tyre wear but acted as the ultimate team player, waving through his young teammate on lap 14 and doing his utmost to hold off the pursuing rivals up for another three laps. By the time the Ferrari of Jacky Ickx could pass Stewart on lap 17, Cevert's lead was 5.7 seconds. It was a lead Cevert wasn’t to relinquish, despite further challenges. At half distance, Cevert started to struggle with the same understeer issues that had plagued his teammate much earlier. By lap 43, Ickx had just set the fastest lap of the race and reduced the gap to just 2.2 seconds but, just as the pressure on Cevert was increasing, the Ferrari’s alternator fell apart, spilling oil on the track. Ickx had to yield, eventually retiring ten laps later. Denny Hulme in third hit the patch of oil and spun into the barrier bending his front suspension, prematurely ending his own race. Cevert’s lead was now over half a minute, despite a brush with the same guardrail that Hulme had crashed into, but it seemed luck was on young racer’s side and he reached the chequered flag to claim his first Grand Prix victory and the prize of $50,000. Cevert covered the 3,377 mile (5.435km), 59 lap race in 1 hour, 43 minutes and 51.99 seconds in an average speed of 115.092mph (185.227 km/h). It would be Cevert's first and only Grand Prix victory.
This model has been handcrafted utilising our own CAD data created by scanning the original 002 chassis in every detail, with the assistance of the Tyrrell family. The resulting prototype has undergone strict scrutiny to ensure complete accuracy.
The Tyrrell 002 is limited to 99 pieces at 1:8 scale.
In order for us to create your bespoke model, you will need to choose 4 extra options. Paint colour, interior colour, wheel style and caliper colour.
Please complete the form and a member of our Sales Team will contact you.