Tamiya Diorama: 1989 British Grand Prix


Tamiya Diorama: 1989 Shell British Grand Prix

It almost doesn’t matter how many individual model cars you have in a collection or even how finely put together they are, there are very few that will grab the attention and interest from visitors than a diorama.

I personally only build Tamiya model cars so when deciding on what scene to depict, it was hard not to go past constructing a pit scene thanks to Tamiya’s release of three different pit stop mechanic sets. The first set, released in the late 70’s provides a wide variety of figures, perhaps reflective of how less-structured a pit stop was in the days when changing tyres was not a part of an optimal pit-stop strategy. As a result, additions like a team manager, female lap counter, a photographer and a pit board man provide a great addition to the release of pit mechanics in the ’90s. The second set reflects the focus on efficiency that surrounded a pit stop in the ’90s with each tyre having three men to change each tyre, while also showing the technology now imposed with the air hose gantry. The third set is a little harder to find but is the F1 driver and technical engineer set which included a team manager, driver figure and lap time monitor to sit on the front of the car. The technical engineer is reminiscent of

Tamiya Team SetTyre Change 2Tamiya engineer set


1989 Shell British Grand Prix 

The scene depicts Nigel Mansell coming into the pits on lap 42 of the 1989 Shell British Grand Prix at Silverstone to replace a punctured right front tire. The diorama consists of four sets of the ’90s tire changing crew with at least one of both the ’70s set and the driver and technical engineer set. The greater ease of removing the front wheels means that those mechanics at the front have completed the tyre change before those at the rear. Other details include the tri-colour lines that mark the Ferrari pit entry which Mansell has over-shot thanks to the difficulty in stopping with a puncture. The punctured front right tyre can be seen to the side of the car.

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