Georg Christian von Lobkowitz (racing driver)

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Lobkowicz 1932

Georg Christian Prince von Lobkowicz ( Czech Jiří Kristián Kníže Lobkowicz ; pseudonym Hýta ; born February 22, 1907 in Turnov , Bohemia ; † May 22, 1932 in Berlin , Germany ) was a Czechoslovak nobleman and racing car driver .


The family seat of the Mělník Castle

Von Lobkowitz came from the Popel-Lobkowitz house , which was related to the Bohemian royal family. His grandfather was Prince Georg Christian von Lobkowitz (1835–1908), an influential politician of his time, and his grandmother Anna, nee. Liechtenstein (1846-1924).

Georg Christian von Lobkowitz was born on February 22, 1907 as the first son of Friedrich von Lobkowitz and Josephine Antonie von Thun and Hohenstein (1886–1971) in Turnov. The title of prince, which was not recognized in the Czechoslovak Republic , which was proclaimed in 1918 , he inherited after the early death of his father in 1923 at the age of 16.


In 1928, von Lobkowitz competed in Austro-Daimler in a hill climb near the family seat of Mělník Castle, his first automobile race. At first he started under the pseudonym Hýta because he didn't want his family to know about his racing activities. In April 1929 he bought his first Bugatti , a T37A ( chassis number 37366). Exactly one year later he bought a T35C (chassis number 4949) with which he immediately won the Zbraslav-Jíloviště hill climb .

In 1930 he founded a racing community with his friend Zdenek Pohl . In the same year , von Lobkowitz competed in numerous races across Europe . Among other things, he started under the pseudonym Hyta and did not qualify for the Grand Prix of Czechoslovakia on his T35C, which was held for the first time on the Masaryk-Ring around Brno .

In 1931 he replaced the T35C with a Bugatti T51 with a 2.3-liter eight-cylinder engine . At the Grand Prix of Czechoslovakia in 1931 reached Lobkowitz so behind the Monegasque Louis Chiron and the Germans (Bugatti T51) Hans Stuck ( Mercedes-Benz SSKL ) and Heinrich Joachim von morning (also Bugatti T51) fourth.

In the spring of 1932 Georg Christian von Lobkowitz bought a Bugatti T54 (chassis number 54201) with which the Italian star driver Achille Varzi had finished third for the Bugatti factory team in 1931 at the Gran Premio di Monza . The heavy racing car with a 4.9-liter eight-cylinder engine was significantly more difficult for the inexperienced driver to control than the much smaller 2-liter cars he had previously driven.

Start of the AVUS race in 1932
The reconstructed accident car in 2013
The reconstructed accident car in 2013

Deadly accident

Von Lobkowitz entered the 1932 International AVUS Race in Berlin with the T54 . In the race on May 22nd, he started from the last starting position.

On the first lap, at km 7.7, near the forester's house on the approach to the Südschleife, von Lobkowitz was in fourth place in a fight with two other drivers. The German Hans Lewy tried to overtake him on the inside. Von Lobkowitz made room, but then was probably afraid of being carried too far outwards and steered again sharply inwards. Its speed of around 200 km / h led to the car breaking away. This slid over the eight-meter-wide median and the back straight into some trees and hit a railway embankment . The Freiburger Zeitung reported that Lobkowitz was thrown onto the tracks and taken to the St. Hildegard Hospital in Berlin-Charlottenburg . Erwin Tragatsch reports that he no longer regained consciousness and that he succumbed to severe head injuries a few hours after the accident. Georg Christian von Lobkowitz was 25 years old.

Before the race, the “ clairvoyantErik Jan Hanussen is said to have asked the race management to forbid Lobkowitz from starting, as the race would otherwise end tragically for him. Berlin newspapers later reported that he had even put these statements on record and personally warned the racing driver.

Zdenek Pohl took over the car of the accident, who rebuilt it and used it again in races. The British collector C. W. P. (Peter) Hampton later bought the vehicle. In 2013 it was supposed to be auctioned at the Bonhams auction house in Paris , but with an entry-level bid between 2.5 and 3.5 million euros, it did not find a buyer.



Web links

Commons : von Lobkowitz's Bugatti T54 accident car  - collection of images, videos and audio files

Individual evidence

  1. Lobkovicz., January 30, 2009, accessed January 12, 2016 (English).
  2. Leif Snellman: I Masarykův Okruh., June 11, 2014, accessed on January 12, 2016 (English).
  3. Leif Snellman: II Masarykův Okruh., September 30, 2015, accessed January 12, 2016 (English).
  4. Leif Snellman: AVUS RACE., September 11, 2015, accessed on January 12, 2016 .
  5. cf. Votýpka (2008), pp. 29-30
  6. ^ Bugatti Type 54 Grand Prix., accessed on January 12, 2016 (English).