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Destined for greatness, Bellof falls on the battle-field

There wasn't much the incredibly talented and valiant Stefan Bellof couldn't do with a racing car.

At times, the electrifying young German driver appeared to defy the law of physics out on the race track, often racing on a tight-rope but oblivious of the perils.

Bellof was lost to motorsport on this day in 1985, when he took a disastrous step over a precarious line.

The 27-year-old was killed racing a Porsche 956 in the Spa 1000km race when he attempted an impossible move on rival Jacky Ickx at the bottom of daunting Eau Rouge.

Bellof was given his F1 credentials in 1984 by Ken Tyrrell, always the talent-spotter. His most memorable act during his short Grand Prix career was performed that year at Monaco, a race he came close to winning.

In pouring rain, he was the fastest man around the Principality that day, catching both leader Alain Prost and second-place man Ayrton Senna before the race was stopped. To add insult to injury, Bellof was later deprived of his podium finish when Tyrrell was found to have committed technical irregularities throughout the season.

Bellof also put his blistering pace to good use in sportscar racing, winning six times for Porsche and claiming the world title in 1984.

"Stefan was fast, fast, fast," remembers Porsche team mate Hans Stuck.

"We did a race together at Imola which we won in 1985. It was in the Brun Porsche and you know I am proud to say even now that I was in a car with Stefan, because he was special.

"He had this feel for a racing car that not many had. He was a great kid too and it was so sad when he went, so sad."