17/7/1912 - 3/6/1958
Record updated 03-Jun-20
Formula One driver for the Veritas team who died in the 1958 ADAC 1000 because he failed to notice the chequered flag and continued at racing pace. Coming across a slower car, his Ferrari slid wide and crashed into trees.
Erwin Bauer was born in Stuttgart, Germany on the 17th of July in 1912. It was only when Bauer started racing at an International level at the age of 40 that anything much is known about him.
In April of 1953 he co-drove a Porsche 356 Super 1500 with Hans Herrmann in Mille Miglia, finishing the race in a respectable 30th place. He then entered the German Grand Prix which was a Formula Two race held on 2 August 1953 at the Nürburgring Nordschleife. Driving a much-modified Veritas Großmutter Special he failed to set a time in qualifying and started on the back row of the grid. sadly his race was over on the second lap when his engine failed.
At the end of August he was back at the Nürburgring driving a San Giorgio entered Osca MT4 with Armando Franço in the 1000 km race, finishing 8th.
In June of 1954 he drove a Lotus Mark VIII in the Eifelrennen at the Nurburgring. Colin Chapman had arrived with his Lotus, but he was too late to complete the required practice laps and as a result was asked to hand his car over to Bauer.The Lotus was outclassed against the much stronger field, but Bauer drove well to bring the car home in 4th place. He raced a Lotus Mark VIII again at the Rheinland race at the Nürburgring at the start of August but this time failed to finish.
He did not appear to race in 1955 but returned to take on the Mille Miglia again with a Mercedes-Benz 220 A driving with Erwin Grupp and coming home in 25th. It was then on the the 1000 km race at the Nürburgring in June driving a Mercedes-Benz 220 S with Willi Heeks but failing to finish. He then raced a Borgward without success at Solitude and the Nürburgring.
Bauer had becopme a bit of a specialist around the Nürburgring and he was back in 1957 for the 1000 Km race driving Gotfrid Köchert's Ferrari 500 TRC. Sharing the driving with Köchert they finished 13th. The pair then took on Le Mans with the Ferrari 500 TRC but somewhat bizarrely ran out of fuel after three hours!
Continuing racing with Gotfrid Köchert in his Ferrari 500 TRC they entered the Nurburgring 1000 km race again in 1958. After a relatively uneventful race Bauer crossed the finish line in 10th. Unfortunately for Bauer he thought there was one more lap and continued at unabated speed until he met a car travelling much slower. he attempted to pass it on the outside of a turn but slid wide into the trees. The unfortunate Bauer succumbed to his injuries two days later.