1966 Sportscar Races
Le Mans 24 hour Race Drivers & Managers brief biographys
Le Mans 1966

Chris Amon

Chris Amon, who is only 23 years of age, is the son of a wealthy sheep farmer from New Zealand. In ’62 Amon entered a Cooper for the winter series, he was immediately noticed by Reg Parnell who brought him to the UK.

In ‘61 season he had raced a few times in a Lola but was not capable to winning with an old Climax engine. When it became an opportunity for them to have a BRM engine, Richard Attwood was moved in as a regular F1 driver and Amon promptly left.

He moved over to work for McLaren and has literally done thousands of hours testing for Firestone tires.

In 1965 he came to Le Mans and was partnered with Phil Hill who was so impressed by how fast he was, he stepped into a TV helicopter and left Chris Amon to start the race. Chris Amon immediately slotted in behind Bruce McLaren and they stayed 1-2 until Hill took over.

In 1966 Amon is continuing to race with Ford and this time is with McLaren and at Daytona they came 5th.

The important thing to remember about Amon is that within 6 laps he was the fastest person to drive the J-Car.


Mario Andretti

He absolutely adores and loves racing! He saw Alberto Ascari race at Monza and that was the biggest influence on his life.

He moved to the United States of America with his family. He raced in a ’48 Hudson Hornet in stock cars - he won 20 events in that car. He moved over to Champ cars in ’65 and finished 3rd in the Indianapolis 500, earning him ‘Rookie of the year’.

He went on to win his first Champ car race that year with 12 top 4 finishes, he became the youngest driver to win that title at 25 years of age.

This year he begun driving a Ferrari with Rodriguez and came 4th. He then continued oval racing in the US, to be called up by Fords to be offered a king’s random to race this year at Le Mans - the money was just too big of an opportunity!


Richard Attwood

Richard Attwood, 26 years old, served as an apprentice at Jaguar and begun racing in the early 60s.

He has driven Lola Fords in Formula Junior. In ‘64 he had a couple of non-championship wins for BRM, coming 4th in the News of the World Trophy at Goodwood. He has been in several hill climbs, raced an MRP in Formula 2 and is also been part of the Ford’s Prototype team.

He joined Parnell in ’65 driving their Lotus 25 BRM and finished with points on 2 occasions.

In 1966 he did the Tasman series where he drove a BRM, winning the Gold Leaf Trophy Race plus once again participating in F2 and Sports cars.

So far in ’66 he has been 15th at Daytona with David Piper and 6th with Jean Guichet at Spa- Francorchamps in a Ferrari Dino 206S Spyder, and 13th at Monza with David Piper.


Lorenzo Bandini

Lorenzo Bandini, now 31, begun work at 13 years of age assisting at a motorcycle shop. In 1950 he moved to Milan to work with for Goliardo Freddi in the “Garage Rex" in Via Plinio. It was a fortuitous move as a racing motorcyclist he was encouraged to race win cars as well.

In ’58 he scored a class win the Mille Miglia driving another of Senior Freddi’s - a Lancia Appia Zagato. He was then taken on by Ferrari.

In Sportscars he came 2nd at Sebring with Willy Mairesse and Nino Vaccarella in a Ferrari 250P. He was second in the Targa Florio in a Dino 196SP and took the win at Le Mans in a 250P, sharing the driving with Ludovico Scarfiotti.

He also won the 3hr trophy at Clermont-Ferrand in a privately entered 250.

In 1960 he was sightly disappointed with his start in F1 coming 5th in the British GP followed by a 3rd in Germany. He had a maiden win in Austria and in Italian he finished 3rd, then in the final race of the year in Mexico he let John Surtees move up from 2nd place so that he could become world champion.

in 1965 with Vaccarella he won the Targa Florio but it was not a good year for Ferrari. In ’66 he came 5th at Sebring, 10th at Monza and 2nd at Nurburgring.


Alan Mann

Born in ’36 he was a part time racer but then became team manager. His races include a Ford Cortina race for the Marlboro 12hr in America where he met the Holman Moody team who promptly sold him one of their very large cars. They had already sold a Galaxy to one of their competitors and they subsequently bought a Falcon and a Galaxy.

In ’64 Alan Mann become the top Ford Factory team driver in the UK and most of Europe. The team entered cars in events as diverse as Montecarlo, Tour de France, Le Mans and they pretty well won the World Championship for Shelby with a ’65 Daytona Coupe Cobra.

Some of their best drivers are really top notch; Graham Hill, Jackie Stewart, Sir John Whitmore, Frank Gardener ... they all raced for the team. Wins included the ’64 Tour De France wining in a Ford Mustang, the ’65 World Championship with the Cobra and the ’65 European Touring Car championship with a Lotus Cortina.


Alan Reese

Alan Reese, an english man, 28, started out with a Lotus 11 Sportscar in the early 60’s. He got a Lotus 20 and became quite a useful Formula Junior driver in ’61. He got an invitation to drive for the Lotus team in ’62, taking 3 wins in that season.

In ’63 he joined the Roy Wilnkelmann team driving a Lola Mk5 and worked quite heavily on the saloon car team helping out in the office. He has been driving Formula 2 Brabhams at the same time in ’64 and ’65.


Andre Wicky

Andre Wicky, has participated in Formula 1 a little and he did sportscars including a Lotus 24 for Philippe Bernetti. He did the 2 Syracuse Grand Prix, but hasn’t won anything so far this year but he is driving a rear engined, open Bizzarini which is a spectacular looking car although performance-wise isn’t really in the same race as the Fords, Chaparrals and Ferraris.


Jean-Pierre Beltoise

Jean-Pierre Beltoise, 29 years of age (actually knocking on for the general age of this team) is the son of a butcher for Paris. He has won 11 national motorcycle titles, was working for René Bonnier in their small class 1.1l sportscars and debuted in ’63 in one of their cars. In ’64 his whole life and career nearly came to and end at Reims when he was left seriously injured. Never the less he has made a quick comeback and in ’65 he was racing the Formula 3 Matras and he is overall doing very well in the Formulas. This year he is a very steady hand and has driven the Matra BRM very quickly.

Bob Bondurant

Bob Bondurant is now 33. He grew up in Westwood areas of Los Angeles. He started on motorcycles and in ’56 he took up 4-wheel racing in Sportscars with Chevrolet.

In 1963 Bob joined the Carol Shelby Ford Cobras in Europe and went on to win numerous races and a chance to compete in the ’64 GT World Championship. Paired with Dan Gurney last year, Bob won the GT category and placed 4th in a Cobra Daytona coupe in Le Mans. He remained in Europe in’65 winning 7 of 10 races, earning him the World Manufacturers Championship for the USA driving a Shelby Cobra. The honour would put Bob in F1 for Ferrari at the Watkins Glen GP.

In 1965 the team won the Manufacturer World championship. He was at Sebring with Ferrari in ’66 driving with Mike Parks but had gearbox trouble.

He became Technical consultant to John Frankenheimer for the film Grand Prix and has been chasing around all over the world with the filming of the famous movie about the world championship.

Driving sportscars he came 10th at Daytona in a Ferrari with Joachim Rindt and then came 4th with Hawkins and a Porsche in the Targa Florio - so he has been in a few different cars so far this year.


Brian Muir

Graham lost his teammate when he was disqualified and they flew in Brian Muir, an Australian. They flew him in this morning before the ’66 race, to give him 3 laps in the car. He has never driven a car that has driven faster than 140mph, he has never sat in a GT40 before and he has never competed in a 24 hour race prior to this event so.... this should be very interesting!


Carol Shelby

Carol Shelby, 43 years old, during the second world war he trained pilots.

He begun racing in 1952, was spotted by John Wire in 1954 and begun racing for Aston Martin.

He has also driven with Phil Hill in Ferraris. He finally won the Le Mans in ‘59 for Aston Martin before retiring from racing and opening up his own driving / racing school and persuaded AC into making a ACA into the Cobra.

With good divers and engineers he beat Ferrari and gained the World Sportscar Championship from the GTO Ferraris. With such good will from FoMoCo they gave him control of the Ford GT project. His first 2 attempts at winning Le Mans have failed, this is his 3rd chance and he has absolutely no excuses.


Clive Baker

Clive Baker came 21st in an Alpine at Sebring and 20th in an Austin Healey at the Nurburgring.

Colin Davis

Colin Davis is the son of the legendary Sammy Davis, who was one of the Bentley Boys.

He is an advertising executive who’s racing career began in ’54 driving Cooper Nortons.

He has done Formula 3 and has mostly raced in Italy, having driven for several of the lesser teams over there.

His greatest success was being teamed with Antonio Puchi in 1964 when he won the Targa Florio in a 904 GT.

So far this year he has come 7th at Monza, also in a Porsche.


Dan Gurney

Dan Gurney aged 35, is the son of a very popular opera singer. He lives in California, begun racing on the west coast and like many people was found by the Nart Racing team.

He came to Le Mans for the fist time in ’58. By 1960 he had gained a place on the Works Ferrari Formula 1 team but is wasn’t until ’62 when he had moved on to driving for Porsche that he won his first Formula 1 race at the french GP. Between 1963 and 1965 Dan drove for Jack Brabham in the Formula 1 team, consistently proving himself as a match for Clark who was generally let down mechanically.

For the new 3l Formula this year he has formed the Anglo-American racing team and along with Harry Weslake they have created a V12 Formula 1 car which unfortunately has yet to turn a wheel and he is pressing on with a 4 cylinder engine in the same car with no great affect.

Gurney and Grant came 2nd at Daytona and were about to win at Sebring when their engine failed. Dan, driving in the last stint, pushed the car across the line and was promptly disqualified. Had he sat in the car he would have been second.

To make things look really interesting he has put car number 3 on pole with a stunning fast lap of 3m30.06 and an average speed of 142mph.


David Piper

Over the years David Piper has probably been the most successful private entrant that Ferrari have ever had. He certainly wins all the Ferrari races in the UK and puts in very good drivers. So far in 1966 he came 15th at Daytona with Guichet and he came 13th at Monza with Richard Attwood.

Dick Hutcherson

Dick Hutcherson, aged 35, born in Ohio in the mid-west, it was a decade before he really started racing in Nascar in 1964. He finished 2nd in his 2nd start of the season and next time around was taken over by Holman Moody who’s team was based in Charlotte. In last years series in 52 starts he finished 1st 9 times. With this ability in big cars he should be a very good second driver to Ronnie Bucknum.


Enzo Ferrari

Enzo Ferrari is the owner and still Chief Exec Manager - everything of the Ferrari team. He has been racing Alfa Romeos, followed by his own cars, since the 1930s. He has probably been one of the most successful people to have ever been associated with motor racing.

He is quite a difficult man and I think to sum him up as a person it is best to quote one of his top engineers who said said, “I wish the Pope would make you a Cardinal Enzo”, to which Enzo replied, “Why a Cardinal? The engineer replied, “Because then we would only need to kiss your ring.”


Eugene Dragoni

When Enzo Ferrari lost most of the leading men of his racing department in ‘61 he needed replacements quickly. Dragoni, who’s family made its money in perfume, needed a career change and he came and worked as a General Manager and Team Manager for Ferrari. He is in charge of both Sportscars and the Formula 1 team.


Frank Gardner

Frank Gardner, 36 years of age, has been racing all of his life. He took up racing in ’56 and won 23 out of 24 races in a C-Type Jaguar in New South Wales, Australia. He headed to England and went to work for Aston Martin. He joined the Jim Russel School of Racing in ’62, moved to Brabham to work in the Formula Junior cars. He had a great season in sportscars and Formula juniors in ’64, joined John Willament to primarily race Formula 2.

He was brought in to replace Jim Clark in the Touring car racing in both Europe and UK, when Fords realised that Clark’s victories were more down to him than the Ford. Willament entered with Formula 1 in ’65 with a Brabham BRM but the team were not ready to make this major step. A 4th place in the race to the champions was the best they had to show for the whole season.

Although offered a Brabham Formula 1 drive, Frank felt unable to beat Clark so moved on to Sportscars and saloons. He partnered John Whitmore in the 2nd at Spa where he was driving a 4.7l Ford GT40.

Gerd Hoch

Gerd Hoch is 34 years of age and has raced as a works driver for Porsche for a number of years. This year he came 10th at the Nurburgring.


Graham Hill

37 year old Graham Hill - few people need to introduce him. He began as an apprentice for Smiths after his national service in ’52. He took up rowing and he wears a helmet with their markings on. He was married in ’55 and drove 4 laps for 5 shillings at Brands Hatch in a 500cc Cooper. He conned Colin Chapman and Mike Costin into a drive back to London after an event at Brands Hatch and promptly got a job as a Mechanic for Mr Chapman.

In ’57 he races a variety of Lotus, Jaguar and Formula 2 cars. He has the most prolific of any person know. Between ‘63 and ’65 he scored a hat-trick of wins at both Monaco and the United Staes GP. In ’64 he only just missed out on the title. He has been Wold Champion and so far this year his most notable achievement is to be a rookie winner of the Indianapolis 500. Quite an amazing achievement that netted him somewhere in the region of $157,000.


Gunther Klass

Gunther Klass, 30 years old. In ’64 he debut in the Worlds Sportscars Championship in a factory Porsche. He was 7th at the Targo Florio at the wheel of a new 904 6 cylinder and his debut at the Le Mans 24 hr he retired in the 17th hour due to mechanical troubles but was 6th at the 1000km Nurburgring, just 1 lap behind Surtees. He achieved a 6th place in the Hill Climb in a 904 Porsche.

Earlier this year he teamed up to become 8th at the Daytona 24hr with Udo Schütz and then the Targa Florio he was paired with Colin Davis and he and his teammate Gerhard Mitter crashed into one another on the 6th lap while battling for the lead. Both cars went out, lets hope he does better at Le Mans.


Hans Hermann

Hans Hermann, 38, lead driver of Porsche 31 this year. He is a driver that has been around quite a while.

He has raced in the legendary Mille Miglia, Targa Florio and the Cararra Panoramica. He drove for Porsche in the Mille Miglia as far back as ’54. He became part of the Mercedes factory team in ‘54 and ‘55.

He has driven in Formula 1 for BRM. In the early 60’s he achieved some wins for Porsche, mainly in 1960 when he did well in the 12hr at Sebring and the Targa Florio.

From ‘62 until more recently he has been driving or Abarth as their only professional driver and has won a number of small class victories.

This year he retuned to Porsche and so far he came 6th at Daytona, 4th at Sebring and 4th at Monza which is a pretty good record for a 2l car.

Henry Ford II

Henry Ford the second is the grandson of the founder of the company. He took over the running of the company after his father Edsel died in 1943. Looking for a marketing program that would take Ford past General Motors he decided as motorsport for its way forward and has adopted many different forms of motor racing.

He tried to buy Ferrari but when negotiations failed he decided to build his own GT to race at Le Mans.

As he has been appointed the starter for this years race he has brought along his son Edsel Ford II and his new wife Christina, an Italian lady whom he married last year in St. Mortitz.

Herbert Linger

38 year old Herbert Linger. In ’52 Ferry (Ferdinand Anton Ernst) Porsche he was sent to America where he built up a good customer service in California.

He returned to Germany in ’46 and started racing, both for the Porsche team, as a test driver and running the development department. Over a period of 20 years he has had many racing successes - in fact he has had 90 victories overall. When Porsche were looking for a site to build a test circuit at the end of the 1950s Ferry Porsche categorically refused to concrete over fertile farmland. Herbert Linger introduce the idea of his home town. He said nothing grows there except sloughs and was able to convince the head of Porsche to build there in ’61.

This year so far he has only come 10th at the Nurburgring. In addition to his work he has been testing and running the development department and over a period of 20 years he has gained a great deal of racing success. Altogether he has won an amazing number of 30 class victories for Porsche.


Herbert Muller

Herbert Muller, a France-Swiss 26 year old, born in Switzerland. He started racing on two wheels in 1959. He later changed to Formula 3 and driving a 500 Cooper Norton was successful mainly in hill climbs. In the following years he attempted several hill climb events in Porsche.

In 1963 his long cooperation with Scuderia Filipinetti commenced and he made his debut in Formula 1, finishing 5th place in a Lotus 24 but Filipinetti decided to concentrate his efforts on Sportscars which put an end to Muller’s Formula 1 career. In 1966, this year, Muller has won his first big race; together, partnered with Willy Mairesse, they won the Targa Florio in a Porsche Carrera 906. They came 4th at Monza driving a Ford GT40 and they came 9th, together again, in a Ferrari Dino at the Nurburgring.

Holman and Moody

John Holman is 51% of Holman Moody; a team set up in America to race saloon cars. They became the main Ford racing team and have been very successful winning the longer races. They have also developed a business selling touring cars to rallying and acing teams in Europe. They also worked alongside Carol Shelby and are attempting to win Le Mans this year. They have sent over John Moody as he is the lead on the development side of the partnership and has come to ensure his 3 cars are ready and prepared when they come to the line.


Hopkirk and Hedges.

These two guys finished 4th and were disqualified in the Monte Carlo rally. In 1965 Hopkirk and Hedges drove to a class win at Le Mans. In 1966 Hedges came 19th in an MGB at the Targa Florio. Both of them have been rallying and racing their minis so this is just a one-off 24 hour race.


Pauli Toivonen

Pauli Toivenen is driving for Alpine, quite a controversial figure because he was given 1st place for Citroen in the Monte Carlo Rally despite him being 5th. The French authorities in Monte Carlo disqualified all of the English people, the Minis, the Ford Cortinas etc. and made Toivenen the winner. He walked out and was so embarrassed that he boycotted the rally and has promised he would never go near Citroen again, which is probably why he has moved over to Renault.


Ignatio Gunti

Although at 30 years appears to have done very little, he has mainly made his name driving saloon cars and sportscars, mainly through diving Alfa Romeos.


Jackie Ickx

Jackie Ickx is only 21 and a lot more is expected from him. He has the brio of Rindt and the control and circumspection of Stewart. He is an absolutely brilliant driver in the wet. He is the son of a famous motor racing journalist and has been 3 times winner of the motorcycle trials championship in his country of Belgium. In a Lotus Cortina he is definitely the man to try to beat. He has taken that national Saloon car championship in ’65. So successful and so good is he expected to be that Ken Tyrrell has taken him straight into a Formula 1 team.


Jerry Grant

Jerry Grant is 31. He is a road racer from Seattle beginning racing in 1956 at the age of 16. When he entered his first road race in Seattle he was leading the field when his car broke down. Then at 19 he was granted racing a Ferrari sportscar. He became undefeated in 27 races across a span of 2 years. During this period he capture the SCCA Northwest Sportscar Championship and was named sportscar driver of the year in the Northwest division. During this period Grant met his racing idol Dan Gurney who took him for a ride in the Lola which he promptly drove to 11 pole positions and 6 rack records in 12 events in the US Road Racing Championship which this year has been turned into the Can-Am Series. Gurney and Grant were 2nd at Daytona and leading at Sebring in the run-up to Le Mans ‘66.


Jo Bonnier

Jo Bonnier is an excellent driver, 36, lives in Switzerland. He has driven in Formula 1, he has driven in sportscars and he comes to this race having just won a 100km race at Nurburgring.


Jo ‘Seppi’ Siffert

Jo Siffert, 30 years old, initially a motorcycle racer before going into Formula 1 with the Swiss team. He was then taken over by Rob Walker to race in a couple of non-championship races and has now come back. He has raced successfully for Porsche at Sebring this year, coming 6th and he came 5th at Monza, also in a Porsche.


Jo Schlesser

Jo Schlesser is a pretty old guy at 38 years of age, started racing a in 1952 in a Panhard. He finished 2nd in the 1957 Leiege Liege Rally with a Mercedes. In ’63 he teamed in with Guy Ligier, and bought a Ford dealership in Paris. in 1960 he replaced his Mercedes with a 250 GT Ferrari. In 1961 he won the Rallye des Routes du Nord in a Lotus Elite. In 63, again driving with Ligier, they started work for Ford France. At the same time he drove Aston Martins at Le Mans and drove AC Cobras at Daytona.

He has had victories at Sebring and Reims in his class racing with Bob Bondurant. At Daytona in ’65 he was 1st overall in the GT class and then driving with Bob Bondurant he piloted a Cobra coupe to 4th overall and 1st in class at Sebring. So far this year in ’66 he has just been driving in Formula 2 with the Matra Cosworth team.


Jocham Nierpasch

He is a German and although he has had only minor successes in his racing career, he is still very young at 27 and a great deal is still expected from him in the future.


John Guichet

Now 38, the son of a prominent doctor, was born in Marseilles in 1927. in 1954 he founded a company that repaired and services naval industry.

He first raced a Ferrari in ’56 and has successfully raced Ferrari on and off for years but he is probably best known for wining the Le Mans 24 hour race in 1964 with Nino Vaccarella in a Ferrari 275P.


John Rhodes

John Rhodes os 38, has driven mini coopers a great deal. He has also driven in Formula Junior and other races. In ’65 he was the 1300 class champion in saloon racing. In ’65 he made his Le Mans debut driving an Austin Healey Sprite with Paul Hawkins, finishing 12th which is a pretty good position.

John has given up single seaters and is just focusing on his saloon racing this year. He is racing a 1300 mini. He finished 9th and was class victor in the Targa Florio, shared with Timo Mäkinen in an MGB.


John Whitmore

Sir John Whitmore’s career started in ‘59 when he found himself on the front row of the Daily Express Trophy Meeting at Silverstone. He was in very distinguished company, the other 3 people were Stirling Moss, Roy Salvadori and Colin Chapman. He came 2nd in his class to Colin Chapman and was rewarded with a drive at Le Mans with Jimmy Clark in a works Elite.

In ‘64 for he drove Lotus Cortinas and was runner up in the European Saloon cars championship.

His most spectacular race was at Spa during the 24hrs saloon car meeting, his fantastic dice with the Mercedes team led him to be more mentioned than the winner in the local papers.

In 1965 he drove a Cobra for Alan Mann and clinched the championship for Shelby. He also won the European touring car championship but he says his greatest race of last year was at Oulton Park when he won his class and finished 4th overall with no brakes, fuel or tires, and all this despite being gassed throughout both parts of the race.

He has also left the European circuit and hill climbs records absolutely decimated. They had a near walk over in their fantastic Cortinas. Whitmore has been outstanding in the Ford GTs this year as well - coming 2nd at Monza with Maston Gregory and 2nd at Spa with Frank Gardner, he was also remarkably fast at the April test day.


Ken Miles

Ken Miles, aged 47, moved to the US from the UK in early ‘52 as a service manager for a southern Californian GT distributor. He has probably trained more drivers than anyone. He works for Shelby at the Shelby Motor Racing Driving School but there are more sides to Ken Miles - he has charm, he has wit like nobody else, but he could be elaborately polite, he also has a command of sarcasm that makes your teeth shrink! He writes a column in the competition press which is absolutely superb and if you require an insight into competition motor racing in ‘66 I recommend you find these columns and read them.

He moved on from making the Cobra a success to developing the Ford Mk2. Whereas McLaren has the strategic thinking, Miles is the tactician. Last year Miles won the Daytona 24 hours and this year he finished 1st there and 1st at Sebring. A win at Le Mans would be a great way to finish off his season. He has lost his racing partner in Ruby but he isn’t at a disadvantage as he has Denny Hulme the formula 1 driver.


Leo Bebbe

Leo Bebbe was put in charge of all Ford racing by Henry Ford. He wanted the world identity - it took 3 years for Ford to win the Indianapolis. Leo Bebbe oversaw that racing program and he is now overseeing the Le Mans program with this being their 3rd time at Le Mans.


Lucien Bianchi

Lucien Bianchi is an ex-formula 1 driver. He has raced and rallied in ’57, ’58, ‘59, he won the Tour de France, he has also been in the Paris 1000km sportscar race. He has appeared in every type of race; touring cars, sportscars, rally cars and has been very successful in every discipline. So far this year he has only raced in the Targa Florio, coming 13th with Udo Schütz in an Alfa Romeo.


Mario Foghieri

He is the son of a tuner from the Ferrari works and has a degree in engineering from the University of Bologna. Despite his initial interest in aviation he was accepted to work at Ferrari and has put his heart and soul into it ever since.


Mark Donohue

A 29 year old who’s father is a patent lawyer who made his son go out and get an education before he started a working life. Mark got a BS in engineering. His first job was with Raybestos and on a trip with the company, that is an industrial dust collector, he met Gene Haas who introduced him to Roger Penske. Roger told him to get on by buying a car that is going to finish a race and win - always do things as cheaply as you can but always go first class. On that basis he bought an Elva Courier than had the same engine as an MG but was 600lb lighter.

In ‘61 Peter Revson’s Morgan and Mark’s Elva were at the class of the SCCA national honours.

The late Walt Hansgen was very keen on Mark and introduced him to long distance racing when he put him in the Ferrari in 1965 at Sebring. In ‘66 they came 3rd at Daytona and 2nd at Sebring. Unfortunately Walt was killed at the April test day and Mark is now paired with Paul Hawkins.


Mauro Bianchi

A 29 year old Italian who joined Renault mainly to do Formula 2 and 3 but will be racing at Le Mans along with Jacques Cheinisse, a young guy developing fast.


Massimo Natili

He has driven a bit of formula 1, mainly driven in things like Formula Junior. He had a Cooper Maserati, he raced last year. He has raced Brabhams mainly and in ’65 he raced a Formula 3 Brabham and won the 1l class. In the Italian sportscar championship he was in Lotus 23. This year he has not done any particular racing so it will be interesting to see how he does.


Maston Gregory

Aged 32, Maston Gregory is very fast but accident prone. He is the heir to an insurance company fortune so I guess he can do this purely as a playboy. He raced in Formula 1 and several other sportscars and other motor races. His most famous victory is obviously last year at Le Mans, sharing the Nart car with Jochen Rindt. It is reported that Maston is beginning to wind down his motor racing career, although he still engages with International competition he has given up day to day sportscar testing. His best result so far this year is 2nd with Sir John Whitmore in a GT40 at Monza. He was placed 17th with Revson in a GT40 at Daytona.


Mike Parkes

The son of the formal chairman of the Alvis company, Mike Parkes was born into a world of cars and motorsports. Parke’s training is as an engineer at the Rouge Group on Coventry. He stayed with them until ‘62 and then moved on to Ferrari. He has done some minor races but his success started with his move to Ferrari, winning the Sebring 12 hour and the SPA 500km in 1964. The season was cut slightly short with a testing accident then he won Monza 1000km in ’65. This year he drove at Sebring with Bob Bondurant but they failed to finish because of transmission problems, but he won at Spa with Scarfiotti and at Monza with Surtees. He failed to finish with Surtees in the Nurburgring 1000km because of suspension problems.


Pedro Rodriguez

Pedro made his international debut at Nassau in the Bahamas in 1957 driving a Ferrari. His brother Riccardo was driving a Porsche. Pedro as just 18 and his brother 2 years younger when Nart dispatched them to Le Mans at the wheel of a Ferrari 250 Testa Rossa. Riccardo was not allowed to drive but Pedro did and he has come back every year to Le Mans since. In 1962 Riccardo died in a horrific accident while practicing for the Mexican GP. Pedro considered retiring but continued and in ’63 he won at the Daytona International Speedway and took part in his first GP for Lotus in the USA and Mexico. He competed in Formula 1 sporadically this year with both Ferrari and Lotus. Rodrigues was considered the best sportscar driver of his era and a master of the wet.

Peter DeKlerk

South african, now aged 31, has always been interested in racing and as a youngster he worked his passage from Durban to London in order to learn more about motor racing, spending a spell working for Colin Chapman as a mechanic engineer. On return to his homeland he was employed by the Porsche agency and later by the Alfa agency but it was 1962 before he got a decent drive. He came 2nd to the local guy John Love and had to wait until this year before getting the opportunity to drive for the main team of Porsche. Whilst John love was around Peter DeKlerk was always going to be the bridesmaid, never the bride, finishing 2nd on many occasions. He finally abandoned single seaters at the end ‘65 and moved to Europe to drive in spostscars. He has finally got his chance at Le Mans this year, driving a Carrera 6 for the works team.


Peter Gregg

Peter Gregg, 26 years old, born in New York City. The son of a mechanical engineer, he has had a lot of advantages and a very good education. In ’57 he went to Harvard University and got a degree in english. In ’62 he took up a career in motorsport SCCA, the American Sportscar club. In April’ 63 he competed in production Corvettes. By the time he was discharged from the navy in 1965 racing was really in his blood. He took over a local Porsche agency, becoming a serious Porsche 904 racer and then moving over to competition in a Carrera 6. So far this year he has come 10th at Daytona and 7th at Sebring - a pretty good record.


Peter Revson

Peter Revson began racing in 1960 using his own Morgan. He then moved on to Formula Junior. In ’61 he joined the Sportscar club of America, racing his Morgan long the east coast, coming 4th in the championship.

He teamed up with Teddy Mayer in 1962 to run a Formula Junior team. He and Timmy Mayer drove Coopers. In 1963 he moved to Europe and had a brief excursion into F1 with little success. He then undertook a full season in’64 with the semi-works Reg Parnell racing team, running a Lotus 24 BRM. It was a learning year with nothing in the way of results and he decided to take a step back. Tim Mayer was killed racing in the Tasman Series at Longford. Revson raced for the works Lotus Formula 2 and Formula 3 team in ’65, finishing 2nd in the Formula 2 race and winning the Monaco Formula in a Lotus 35. Later in the season he decided to go back to America and race in the sportscar series. It didn’t go brilliantly but he did take class wins at Seattle and Vegas in a Brabham BT8. In ’66 he has raced a GT40 with Skip Scott, they have taken 4 class wins so far, helping Ford towards the title. It also is clear that they took a class win at Sebring and whilst retiring at both, at Monza and Daytona at some point in those races he was at the front.


Peter Sutcliff

Peter Sutcliff is a British driver who has driven a great number of sportscars.


Phil Hill

39 year old Phil Hill who started racing in the 50s in an MG TC, drove a Ferrari in the PanAmerica Races in ’56 he was in Buenos Aires. He won the World Championship for Ferrari in 1961. He is regarded as the finest sportscar driver in the world. He has won Le Mans won 3 times. During practice this weekend he was the fastest driver at Le Mans having driven last years 7l Ford GT.


Piers Courage

A 24 year old who belongs to a brewing family ‘Courage’ and he is an Essex boy. He began driving a Lotus 7 funded by his father but when he wouldn’t go into the father’s business he was left to his own devices. He and Johnathan Williams went across Europe in’64 in a Lotus 22 and later a Brabham - they did moderately well. Charles Lucas was so impressed with them he entered a pair of Brabhams for Piers and Frank Williams and it proved to be a very successful campaign with 4 wins in major events including at Silverstone, Goodwood and Reims that led to an invitation from Lotus to do their Formula 3 car. He raced in a Lotas 41 for 1966. We will have to see how they get on, as he has not done any saloon sports type racing this year we have little to judge him by.


Richie Ginther

Aged 35, he first ran a race in 1951 in an MG but it was really 2 years later before he became seriously involved in competition. He shared Phil Hill’s Ferrari in the Carrera Panamericana. The pair were lucky to return unscathed from a crash that wrote off the car. In ’61 the team virtually swept the board with their shark-nosed 150 V6’s and Ginther was part of the Ferrari team that took advantage.

He made an ideal parter for Graham Hill when he moved onto BRM.

The ’63 season was his most successful and consistent, gaining points in all GPs bar one event to finish equal 2nd with his teammate in the championship behind runaway winner Jim Clark. Ginther stayed on for a 3rd year ’64, again proving his mechanical sympathy by finishing every GP. It was all change in ’65 as Ginther was hired to bring the much needed experience to the still fledgeling Honda project. As the season wore on it became a real threat until Richie has his greatest moment was when he won the Mexican GP last year. Ginther with Rodriguez were 3rd at the Nurburgring.


Robert Buchet

A firey frenchman of 44 years of age. He finished the war by taking up the sport of rugby. He became a garage owner in the early 50s and went into racing and rallying. He had several minor victories and between 1961 and ’66 he entered Le Mans four times. His greatest achievement at Le Mans was as winner of his class when sharing with Guy Ligier. Cars he has owned in the past were all Porsche including a 356 Carrera, 356B, GTl Porsche, a 904 4 cylinder GTS Porsche and a Porsche 906 6 Careera.

Rolf Stommelen

Aged 22, his father bought him a 904 Porsche GTS as a present and he raced it in 1964 and 1965 mainly specialising in hill climbs but he was good enough to attract the attention of Von Hanstein, Porsche race director. He was invited to join the works team for endurance racing and he shared a Porsche wth Frenchman Christian Poirot at Le Mans in 1965 but they only lasted 16 laps before the gearbox went.

Ronnie Bucknum

Aged 30, born in California, Ronnie Bucknum started racing in ’56, winning races and titles in the Sportscar Club of America ’59, ’60, ‘62 and ‘64. He scored 44 wins out of 48 races, however in March ’64 he was about to retire as his racing was going nowhere when he was suddenly approached by a representative of the Honda motor company. He was flown to Tokyo, climbed behind the wheel of their first Formula 1 car, made a fist of driving a single seater (he had never sat in the seat of one in his life before) but the Honda engineers had seen him racing a 904 Porsche at Sebring and felt that his lack of international racing pedigree was actually an attraction as he could test cars and race without any undue attention or expectation. Finally in 1964 at the German GP he made his debut driving a Honda F1 car but then suffering steering failure while in 11th place.

2 more races were safely completed for Fords and then they signed the vastly more experienced Ginther to head their ’65 challenge. Unfortunately Bucknum broke his leg at Sasuka and ended up sitting out most of the season, scoring his only World Championship racing point in the race at Mexico where he finished 5th but was again eclipsed by his teammate Ginther who won. He was invited to join the Ford team for ’66 and was paired with A.J. Foyt at Sebring where they were placed 12th.


Roy Pike

Roy Pike is an American who came to Europe in ’64, has mainly raced in Formula 3 and Formula 2 and has been moderately successful.

Sam Posey

Posey, now 22 is completely dedicated to a life as a driver. He began racing with a ’32 MG and raced with the MG for a number of years but it was too old. He then moved to Formula-V, and has also had several drives of an Alfa GTZ including at Sebring and has also recently bought a Porsche 904 which he ran in the Daytona 24hr race. In ‘65 was racing in the Bahamas and raced at Le Mans but lasted only 1 hour. So far in 1966 he came 11th at Daytona.



Johnny Servos-Gavin, 24 years old, born in Grenoble, left home to become a racing driver and has reported on the radio of the 24 hours. He is spectacularly good looking - so much so that girls fall over and pass out when he walks by. He spent all of his money on learning to drive, attending the Winfield Driving School in ’63, did Rallying in ’64, spending a lot of time in Brabhams in ’65. He is a bit wild but very, very fast and at the moment 4th in the French Formula 3 series.


It is very unfortunate that Scarfiotti is known as the Fiat Boss’s nephew because he has been one of the most successful racing drivers of racing drivers in the history of the sort. He is very good at hill climbing and in ‘63 he won Sebring with Surtees, at Le Mans with Lorenzo Bandini driving a 250 Ferrari, in ’64 in the sportscar team he came 2nd at Sebring, won the Nurburgring 1000km with Vaccarella and also finished 2nd at Mosport Park, Canada in a 330P and was 3rd in the 12 hours at Reims in a privately entered Manarello Concessionaires 250 GTO with Mike Parkes. He took his 2nd european hillclimb championship in ’65 in a Dino Ferrari. He had a win at the Nurburgring 1000km with John Surtees in a P2 and teamed up with Surtees again for the Monza 1000km where they finished 2nd.


Skip Scott

Skip Scott is still only 24. His great grandfather was President of the Pennsylvania Railroad and obviously he has been a very rich boy. He first raced a Lotus Elite while attending the University of Denver. In ’64 Skip worked briefly for Ford and raced in the 12 hours. He then moved to the west coast and became an instructor for Carol Shelby’s driving school. 1966 has been Skip’s year as he not only raced in the Essex Wire cars but he is also the team leader and manager so he has a lot to be proud of in the success that he has brought the team.


Spartaco Dini

Spartaco Dini from Florence is a 24 year old sportscar driver successful in hill climbs during 1965.


Sten Axelsson

Sten Axelsson began racing last year in a 904 Porsche and a Carrera 6. This year he achieved an 8th at Nurburgring.


Udo Shultz

Udo Shultz, aged 29, has raced a great many cars; Porsches, Alfa Romeo, Abath. In the 60’s a Porsche racing manager said of him that, ‘When Udo switches on the car ignition he switches off his brain,’ but I believe he came good in ‘66, coming 8th in the Daytona beach race.

Von Hanstein

He hires drivers on a handshake. He never uses a lawyer and he negotiates by phone. He is very charming and persuasive his cajoling sooner or later always puts them behind the wheel of a Porsche.


Willy Mairesse

Willy Mairesse, aged 38. He started racing and rallying at the age of 25. His real breakthrough came in 1956 when he switched to a Mercedes 300 SL. He competed in several rallies and also closed circuit motor races. He won the Liège-Rome-Liège beating his favorite Olivier Gendebien, in the process it sparked a bitter rivalry between these two Belgians.

His races have often ended in accidents and he has tried over the years to curb his aggression in order to become a more successful driver.

Late in 1959 Ferrari took an interest and offered him a drive in the 1960 Targa Florio. He finished 4th and was then taken on as a works driver for both Formula 1 and sportscars. Often crashing, his place in the team was always tenuous but he survived on and off between crashes and ended up partnering Surtees in the 1965 season to only once again crash out.

This year has been very successful for him, having won the Targa Florio driving a Porsche, he also came 3rd at Monza in a Ford GT40 and he finished 9th at the Nurburgring, this time in a Ferrari Dino. So he has raced all the cars this year and been very successful. At Le Mans this year he will be driving a P23 Ferrari 365 V12.


Innes Ireland - F.R. English Ltd/ Comstock Racing

Innes Ireland, 33 year old Yorkshireman, son of a veterinary surgeon, a pretty charming and fun characterful, trained in engineering with Rolls-Royce, he has seen service at Suez Canal as a member of a Parachute Regiment in 1953.  In '54 he started his own engineering company and begun racing with a Riley 9, 3 years later getting involved in competitive events in which he has some good success leading into him representing Lotus in F1, winning 3 non-championship titles in 1960 and 4th in the World Championship. Ireland isn’t someone who will life get in his way and he has continued to win events including Solitude GP and Flugplatzrennen race despite a nasty injury during the 1961 Monaco Grand Prix.  Even though he was turning into a solid performer, he was ousted by team lead Colin Chapman in favour of Jim Clarke.  Ireland’s performance proved he took the cars to the maximum of their ability but perhaps the cars limited his results.  He attended Le Mans last year with Sir John Whitmore, driving a Ford GT Mk1 but not completing the race.  


Berndt Jansson - Societe des Automobiles - Alpine

Swedish racing driver, born in 1931, test drives for Alpine Automobiles.  This year he has races in the Targa Florio but only covered 2 laps with his teammate Toivonen in an Alpine A110 Renault due to Gearbox issues.  This year he will again be racing with Toivonen, this time in an 1.3l Alpine A210.

Jean-Pierre Jaussaud - Matra Sports SARL


Partnering with Le Mans new blood Henri Pescarolo in a Matra M620-BRM, Jaussaud, born in ’37, is a French driver from Calvados who started his racing career in ’62 after and trying his hand in Formula 3 in ’64 with support from Shell.  He joined the works team of Matra only this year so this will be a very new experience for him.


Hans Herrmann - Porsche

Born in ’28, Baker Hans Herrmann started off as a a team member for the Mercedes-Benz factory team, taking a podium finish in the ’54 French GP, hindered by using older Mercedes-Benz W196 stock, points in the Argentine GP in ’55, and notably fast in the ’55 Mille Miglia.  He has raced for a number of teams; Mercedes-Benz, Maserati, BRM and for Porsche in both endurance and Formula 1 and 2 before spending some time with Abarth in hill climb events for a breather during which he enjoyed several success in the small car’s classes before returning to big events with Porsche.

In the run up to this race, Hans Herrmann has been to the Targa Florio but did not finish the race in a 906 past the 5th lap following an accident but did do well at Sebring 12hrs, coming 4th alongside teammates Gerhard Mitter and Joe Buzzetta in a Porsche 906, and 6th in a 906 at Daytona 24hrs with Herbert Linge.


Bob Grossman - Ford France - Ford

Bob drove at Daytona 24hrs this year, only managing 14th, and at Sebring with Ed. Loather in a Shelby Cobra, coming 10th.


Henry Grandsire - Society des Automobiles - Alpine

Grandsire won the Formula 3 title at Monaco in ’65 with an Alpine.  He was lucky to attend Le Mans last year as he crashed during the Targa Florio while driving an Alpine-Renault prototype, it crashed and caught fire, leaving him with quite severe burns, but he made it to Le Mans with Marco Bianchi but they failed to finish in their Alpine M65.  This year he will be driving with Leo Cella in an Alpine A210.  Outside of the racing Henry is involved in the development of a new TV cartoon character ‘Les Adventures de Michel Valiant’ with himself as the inspiration for a series following the exports of an Alpine driver.


Gustav Gosselin - Equipe Nationale Belge - Ferrari

Born in ’27 started out with rally races and hillclimbs before moving into sportscars and attending Le Mans for the first time last year.


George Follmer - NART - Ferrari

Folmer, born in ’34, is racing with Charlie Kolb this event in a Ferrari Dino 206S.  A very accomplished driver, last year he won the SCCA United States Road Racing Championship.  This year at Daytona 24hrs he was in Ferrari 250 LM #32 but suffered a failed generator.  At Sebring he appeared with Peter Gregg for Porsche in a 904 GTS, coming 7th overall.


Pierre Dumay - Ecurie Francorchamps

French racing driver born in ’28 from Algiers stated racing with motorcycles before moving into endurance racing. He has plenty of experience with both Simcas and Ferrari Berlinetta and managed 2nd in Le Mans last year in a 250LM with teammate Jochen Rindt.


Claude Dubois - Ecurie Francorchamps - Ferrari

Dubois, from Belgium, born in ’32 and driving in ’57 came to Le Mans last year and only just scraped through, coming 14th in a Standard-Triumph Spitfire.


André de Cortanze - Societe des Automobiles - Alpine

Cortanze, born in 1941 in Paris, is presently woking towards an engineering degree.  He has a good understanding of engineering and a flare for design.  He will be racing with Jean-Pierre Hanrioud in an Alpine A210 this year at Le Mans.


Claude Ballot-Léna - Mini Marcos

Born in 1936, 30 year old Ballot-Léna is a Parisian racing driver who work in his family’s road construction after his following national service.  He is proficient at both rallying and saloon racing with his name first coming to media attention in the ’63 Prix de Paris touring car race then racing Abarth cars.  He would have attended the Le Mans event last year but did not qualify.  This year Claude will be racing the unique 1.3l BMC engined Mini Marcos alongside Jean-Louis Marnat this year.  This will be his first year entering the event and the little car is causing quite a stir


Jacques Cheinisse - Ecurie Savin-Calberson - Ferrari

Frenchman Cheinisse, born in 1984, is both interested in circuit racing and rally racing.  He was at the event last year with Jean-Pierre Hanrioud in an Alpine A110, not finishing.  He will be driving alongside teammate Roger de Lageneste in an Alpine A210 in this event.


Leo Cella - Societe des Automobiles - Alpine

Born in 1938, factory driver Leo Cella started his career as a motorcyclist in the Italian Motorcycle Championships as a Aermacchi factory driver before moving into motor racing in ’61 with an Abarth 700 Bialbero with which he won his class.  He has done successful rally driving and Formula 3 until a brief hiatus in ’64 when he was bedridden following an accident at Spa 24hrs.  Last year Cella was back on form at the San Remo Rally and has returned to Abarth as a factory driver and a win in Zolder in a Fit Abarth 1000TC.


Giampiero Biscaldi - Ed Hugus - Ferrari

Born in Milan, Giampiero started racing in the 50s before getting involved with international racing events only 4 years ago, finishing 16th in the 1000km Paris race.  He was taken on by Abarth as a works driver for whom his best result was a third at Coppa Inter-Europe in an Abarth Simla 1300.  He has been to Le mans several times before and so has some experience of here track; he came to Le Mans in ’63 driving an Alfa Romeo Giulietta Sprint Zagato but was disqualified for prematurely refilling the oil, he was back in ’64 and came 15th with Giancarlo Sala and last year he drove with Bandini.  More recently he has just completed 2 years racing for Ferrari, coming 13th at the 1000km at Nürburgring last year and again attending Le Mans, this time in a Ferrari 275P2 but engine failure wiped them out.  This year he is trying his hand in a 275 GTP with Bourbon-Parma, perhaps after 2 fails, this will be 3rd time lucky.


Gerhard Koch 

This year he will be driving alongside Robert Buchet in Auguste Veuillet flat-6 2l, Group 4, Porsche 906S #34.


Sten Axelsson

Born in ’42, the 24 year old Swede, a photography enthusiast outside of racing, will be driving with Peter Gregg for Porsche in a Porsche906 Carrera 6.  He has plenty of experience with Porsche’s cars, owning and racing his own, the slightly older 904  (D15094), during the Swedish Touring Car Championship last year, missing the first race, taking 2nd in the 2nd race and winning the final 3 races consecutively.


Jocham Neerpasch 

Neerpasch is driving a Mk 1 Gt40 this year with young Jacky Ickx for Essex Wire Corporation.  He has been to Le Mans before, attending in ’64 which was coincidently his first major event too.  Then he was driving a Shelby Cobra for Brggs S. Cunningham with Chris Amon but they did not finish after the car failed towards the end of the race, returning last year with Jo Siffert and again failing to finish. Neerpasch has been trying to attain backing for a Formula 3 programme but that looks somewhat shaky after a crash earlier this year in Argentina.  He is involved with doing racing for Porsche’s factory team, he came 7th at the Targo Florio and 2nd in a Mustang at the 6hr Nürburgring race. 


Guy Verrier - Alpine

Guy Verrier is a true sportsman, involved in racing, judo, water skiing, boxing, wrestling, and rallying.  Born in ’28 he is one of the older drivers competing this year, his driving career starting back as a driving instructor before working as a test driver for Alpine on the M63, M64 and A210 and some rally involvement with Citroën, with a 5th at the Tour de France in 1960 in a Citroën ID 19, 8th at the Kenya Rally and 7th in the controversial Monte-Carlo rally earlier this year in Citroën DS 21.


Robert Bouharde - Alpine

Robert Bouharde has already gained some experience at Le Mans, running in ’64 alongside Michel de Bourbon-Palma in a 1.1l Renault for Société Automobiles René Bonnet, he also has Formula 2 experience at Monaco, running at the GP in 1960 in a DB Panhard.


Jean Kerguen - J.Franc

Kerguen, born in 1925 in Le Chapelle-Caro Brittany, started racing in ’57 for David Brown Racing, JP Colas in ’58 then racing for himself since ’59 in the World Sportswear Championship. He will be a returning driver to Le Mans this year, coming to Le Mans last year in a Porsche 904 GTS but not finishing  This year he is back with a Porsche and will be driving a 911S with Jacques Dewes for J.Franc.


Jacques Dewez - J.Franc

Dewez will be driving the #35 Porsche 911S at Le Mans this year with Jean Kerguen, they both appeared last year but did not finish. He managed 4m,12.8 seconds at Le Mans back in 1961 when he was testing a ‘Design Project 212’ engine for Ted Cutting and John Wyer using a privately entered 5000rpm Aston Martin DB4 GT Zagato.


Dieter Spoerry - Scuderia

Spoerry, born in 1937 in Zurich, will be racing for Scuderia Filipinetti with Peter Sutcliffe in a GT40 MK.I  He has good hopes this year as he managed 6th position last year at this event in a 250LM Ferrari.


Michel de Bourbon Parma - Ferrari

Prince Michel of Bourbon-Parma, born in 1926, is a decorated former soldier, enlisting at 17 years old and becoming a member of a 3-man sabotage team who were parachuted into Nazi-occupied France before later being sent to fight against the Viet Minh and becoming a Vietnamese prisoner of war for a period of 11 months.  After the war took up racing at 20 years old, entering the Tour de France and having already tried his luck at the Le Mans track in 1964 alongside Robert Bouharde in a Renault-Gordini 1.1L but not finishing.


Jean-Louis Marnat - Jean-Louis Marnat & Cie - Mini Marcos

Marnat is a keen rally and circuit racing driver, coming to light in 1959 after winning the Tourism category of the 6hrs of Saint-Cloud.  He has been keeping active in rallying using a Mini Cooper Sport and has previous experience of the Le Mans track, appearing first in ’64 with a Triumph Spitfire but not finishing.


Jean Burleys (Jean Blaton) - Ferrari

Jean Blaton, born 1929 and adopting a pseudonym as his private guise, is a hobbyist Belgian driver and classic car collector but he is an estate agent during most days.  He is not new to Le Mans, first trying his luck here in 1958 in Ecurie Nationale Belge’s Ferrari 250TR, managing a 3rd the following year and again in ’62 and coming 2nd in his 3-litre class in ’63, 5th in '64 and third again last year in ’65.


Jean Rives - S.E.C Automobiles CD

Jean-Pierre Rives is a French driver who will be racing alongside Georges Heligouin in CD SP66 #53.


Denis Hulme - Shelby American - Ford

Born in ’36 Kiwi Hulme was born to parents who run a tobacco farm where he was encouraged to learn to drive the form truck and reportedly could drive solo at only 6 years old.  The passion for cars was set, he finished school and found work at a garage, saving up sufficient money to purchase a MG TF and getting involved in hill climbs.  He worked his way up and bought a Cooper-Climax just before being taken up as the New Zealand driver to Europe, driving Cooper BmC and Cooper Ford in Formula 1 an 2 and soon also taking up saloon racing.  He came to Le Mans in ’61 with a car from Abarth taking a class victory.  So far this year his 250lm gearbox let him down at the Daytona 24hrs.


Claude Laurent - CD

Laurent is a french driver of CD cars, starting his racing career in 1961 racing a Citroën DS 19 at the Stuttgart Rally.  He has experience primarily with Citroën DS 19s and Panhard 24s.  This year he is driving a Peugeot engines CD SP66 with Jean-Claude Ogier.


Paul Hawkins - Holman & Moody - Ford

Kawkins, 29 years of age, also known affectionately as ‘Hawkeye’ is an Australian driver known for being a colourful character with equally as flamboyant linguistic abilities.  He started racing in Australia with Austin Healey but moved in 1960 to the UK to join the Donald Healey Motor Company ltd as a works foreman, taken on for his prowess with mechanics.  By April he was racing Sprites for Healey and by ’64 he was also involving himself with Formula 1 and Formula 2, winning in that in ’65 in an Alexis-Cosworth 7.

Last year he came 12th but 1st in his class, his teammate for the event was Hohn Rhodes.


Jean de Mortemart - Scuderia San Marco

Mortemart is driving alongside Jean-Claude Sauer in the only Serenissima Jungla GT Spyder entry this year.  Last year he drove an ISO Grifo A3C with Regis Fraissinet for Prototype Bizzarrini, coming 9th overall.


Jean-Claude Sauer - Scuderia San Marco

Jean-Claude Sauer, driver to the only Scuderia San Marco Serenissima Spider entry, appreciates cars (particularly Ferraris) as much as he appreciates women.  Charming and upbeat he travels far for his work, that includes glamorising cars, glamorous fashion ladies and war reporting, working as a professional photographer.  He was once being chased by an agitated mob when incorrectly mistaken for a spy in Bombay while on a photographic job, and being left having to quickly dispose of a unique gift at an airport in Yemen when a chieftain has presented him with a necklace of human ears!  

He has driven endurance racing for a while and appeared with a GT250 last year at the Targa Florio but did not attain a finish as they were too slow to complete the race.


Jean Vinatier - Alpine

Born in 1933, Jean Vinatier is a french driver adept at rallying and endurance racing with success in both Renault and Alpine drives.  He took a win at the Tour de Corse in a Renault 8 in ’64 and has been involved in enduring racing at Le Mans since ’58.  


Pierre Noblet - Ecurie Francorchamps - Ferrari

Regularly referred to as a gentleman driver, Noblet is a French textile icon who’s background comes from family owned textile mills.  He was introduced to Enzo Ferrari in ‘53 by the his friends the Marzotto Brothers, owners in family to an established clothing line, knowing Enzo would be of interest to their friend and car enthusiast.  Noblet soon took hold of a 0310 (newly painted in French Blue) 250 MM Pinin Farina Berlinetta from Enzo. Originally the car was to be just another of his collection to be used on the road but friend Jacques Pollet enticed him into trying his hand racing it and what a fortuitous move it would be; building up experience rallying and then coming 2nd in ’62 at Le Mans.


Robert Mieusset - North American Racing (NART) - ASA

Robert Mieusset, born in ’43 is a former French pilot and son of a Renault dealer from Villeurbanne, his home town.   His grandfather was creator of Lyon automotive and he has driven successfully for the Lyon Team in both ’64 (Lotus Seven Trophy) and last year.  


Jochen Neerpasch - Essex Wire Corporation - Ford

Jochen Meerpasch, born in 1939, started his racing career with Team Borgward.  His family actually operate a Lloyd Goliath Hans Borgward dealership.  He is not new to Le Mans, he came here in ’64 with Chris Amon in a Shelby Daytona Cobra but was disqualified and tried again last year with Jo Siffert in a Maserati Tipo 65 but did not finish the race.


Nino Vaccarella - Scuderia San Marco - Ferrari
For Sicilian driver Nino Vaccarella this event will be no doubt in his mind much about reclaiming a title having won Le Mans in 1964 with Jean Guichet in a Ferrari 275P for SpA Ferrari SEFAC.  The following season he reached 7th at Le mans with Pedro Rodriguez in a Ferrari 365 P1/P2 Spyder.  So far this year he crashed out of the Targa Florio in a 330 P3 Spyder Ferrari.


Henri Pescarolo - Matra Sports SARL - Matra

Born in 1942 near Paris, Pescarolo is relatively new to endurance racing, starting out last year with a Lotus Seven as a result of which he has been given the opportunity of a 3rd Matra car in this years Formula 3.  He will be representing Matra Sports this year at his first entry into Le Mans with Jean-Pierre Jaussaud in a Matra M620-BRM.


Roger de Lageneste - Ecurie Savin-Calberson - Alpine

Roger de Lageneste, a calm and mild character, made his debut at Mille Miglia with a Peugeot 203 in 1956 and wining the French Rally Championship in ’60 during a brief move to Alfa Romeo and Abarth.  He is most at home in endurance racing, regularly participating in events such as the Liège-Rome-Liège.  Friendship with Jacques Cheinisse enabled Lageneste to get an in for working with Alpine and starting his relationship with Le Mans.  In ’64 with an M64 he won the Energy Efficiency Index with teammate Henry Morrogh but arguably last year really was his best year with a string of successful races and 12 world records in a 904 Peugeot. This year he returns for Alpine with their A210.


Jean-Claude Ogier - CD 

Ogier, born in Grenoble, SE France, debuted in 1960 at the Tour of Corsica Automobile, has made a name for himself co-driving primarily Citroën ID 19 and Citroën DS 21s alongside Trautmann, Bianchi and Servos-Gavin, doing quite a lot of rallying.  He will be entering Le Mans this year with Claude Laurent in a CD SP66.


Jean-Pierre Harold - Alpine



Bruce McLaren - Shelby American - Ford

Born in New Zealand, Bruce McLaren was the son of a motorcycle turned motorcar racing enthusiast.  Bruce grew up around his father’s passions as the family run a store and workshop and so the passion for vehicles soon took ahold.  In ’52 he made his own debut into competitive racing with a Austin 7 Ulster in hillclimbs.  He won a variety of races between '57 and ’63, now with Cooper and starting his own company; McLaren Automotive, he was also heavily involved in Formula 2 racing and his performance up with the best of them by ’59, moving up into Formula 1.  In ’63 he founded Bruce McLaren Motor Racing Ltd, leaving Cooper last year to start his own GP operation with Chris Amon, fellow New Zealand born driver and teammate in this years  Le mans drive.


Phil Hill - Chaparral

Born in ’27, Californian Phil Hill is an old hand at Le Mans - winning in ’58, ’61 and '62. He worked as a mechanic and by age 19 he was winning victories, namely at the San Fernando Valley Rally.   He moved to the UK with Jaguar to grow his experience, taking part in various competitions.  He returned to international competition and in the tragic ’55 race he took his first win at the track.  The competition win shot his career into stellar orbit when he was picked up by Ferrari to race as co-driver to Oliver Gendebien (a collaboration that would be successful many times ahead) and soon he was regularly attending races with Peter Colins in the US.  By the late 50’s he was both an endurance driver and Formula 1 driver and racing for Maserati at Reims, but Enzo Ferrari soon brought Hill back to race for Ferrari by offering him the prestigious position of the official Scuderia driver, later moving to the offshoot Ferrari Engineer created ATS following the mass walkout of chief designers and engineers from Ferrari when Enzo’s wife’s interference with the company reached an unwelcome climax.  He has driven all the cars; Ferraris, Jaguars, Fords, Aston etc.  Hill has been the first driver to break 9 minutes at Nurburgring and the first US born driver to win the Driver’s World Title, he is definitely one to watch at this years race.


Francois Pasquier - North American Racing Team

Francois Pastier will be attending this year along with Robert Mieusset in one of the two Ferrari-Engined ASA entries.


Alain Bertaut - S.E.C Automobiles CD

Born in 1928, Alain Bertaut first got involved in competitive racing at the Speed World Challenge Automobiles in ’62 but Bertaut has long been involved with the racing world.  His day to day life involves journalism, working towards editor-in-chief at l’Action Automobile et Touristique and shortly afterwards he started racing with CDs as a test driver.  He first experienced Le Mans in ’62 in a Panhard engine 702cc CD Dyna Coupé with teammate André Guilhaudin where they won the Performance Index and finished 16th overall. He returned in ’63 in a CD-DKW Coupé but his teammate Guilhaudin crashed the car out at Indianapolis within the first hour.  They returned again in ’63 in a CD-3 but again did not finish and didn’t bother retuning again the following year in ’65.  Hopefully they will find a CD that works for them - this time they will try their luck in a CD-Peugeot SP66.