Richie Ginther was a consistent and reliable driver who competed in F1 between 1960 and 1967, scoring one win and 14 podiums.
He drove for Ferrari, Scarab, BRM, Honda, Cooper, and Eagle, and was also a test driver for Ferrari and Honda, helping them develop their cars. He was known for his smooth and precise driving style, his technical knowledge, and his loyalty to his teams.
In this article we follow Richie Ginther’s career from being a local racer to the international F1 scene.
Richie Ginther – Early Life
Ginther was born in Hollywood, California, on August 5, 1930, but grew up in Santa Monica. He developed a passion for cars and mechanics at an early age and worked as a mechanic and a racing driver in various local events.
He was a friend of Phil Hill, who helped him get a chance to race in Europe with Ferrari in 1957.
Richie Ginther – Ferrari
Ginther made his F1 debut with Ferrari in 1960, at the Monaco Grand Prix. He finished third behind Stirling Moss and Bruce McLaren, scoring his first podium.
Richie finished second at the Italian Grand Prix that year, behind Hill. He continued to race for Ferrari until 1961, scoring four more podiums and finishing fourth in the drivers’ championship.
Richie Ginther – BRM
In 1962, he moved to BRM, where he became the teammate of Graham Hill. He scored his first F1 win at the 1965 Mexican Grand Prix, driving a BRM P261.
Ginthe finished second at the Belgian Grand Prix that year, behind Jim Clark. He stayed with BRM until 1965, scoring seven more podiums and finishing third in the drivers’ championship in 1963.
Richie Ginther – Honda
In 1966, he joined Honda, where he helped them improve their car and engine. He scored two podiums that year, finishing second at the Belgian Grand Prix and third at the Italian Grand Prix.
He also set the fastest lap at both races.
Richie Ginther – Cooper
In 1967, he moved to Cooper for the first two races of the season, but scored no points. He then switched to Eagle for the rest of the season, driving for Dan Gurney’s team.
Ginthe scored one podium at the Belgian Grand Prix, finishing third behind Gurney and Clark. He also set the fastest lap at that race.
Richie Ginther – Retirement
Ginther retired from F1 at the end of 1967, having won one race and scored 14 podiums in 52 starts.
He then moved to Mexico, where he worked as a car dealer and a racing instructor. He died on September 20, 1989, in France, from a heart attack.
Ginther was widely regarded as one of the best drivers of his era, and one of the most valuable team players. He was respected by his peers and fans for his talent, professionalism, and sportsmanship.
Ginthe was also a pioneer of safety and innovation in racing, being one of the first drivers to wear seat belts and fireproof suits.
He was a true gentleman and a legend of F1.
- American F1 Drivers
- Mario Andretti
- Bob Bondurant
- Eddie Cheever
- Mark Donohue
- Richie Ginther
- Maston Gregory
- Dan Gurney
- Jim Hall
- Phil Hill
- Peter Revson
- Logan Sargeant