The Daytona 24 Hours
Maranello –The Daytona 24 Hours is a motor sport classic and this year it celebrates its 53rd running, even if it’s only the 48th time it has run over 24 hours. Ferrari’s name has been etched on the winner’s trophy eleven times, with two outright victories and nine class wins.
The most famous of these victories came in 1967, with Ferrari securing a clean sweep of the top three places. Lorenzo Bandini and Chris Amon won in the factory 330 P3/4, ahead of the factory 330 P4 of Mike Parkes and Ludovico Scarfiotti and the 412 P entered by the North American Racing Team (NART) crewed by Pedro Rodriguez and Jean Guichet. It was an unforgettable victory, following on from the previous year when, for the very first time it ran for 24 hours and the win in the up to 3 litre Sports car class went to the 250 GTO driven by Jack Slottag, who was teamed up with Larry Perkins.
In 1968, a 250 LM won the Sport category: it was entered by Raceco-Miami for John Gunn, Guillermo Ortega and Fausto Merello. The following year, victory in the up to 5 litre GT class went to the NART 275 GTB/C of Sam Posey and the American – rather than the more famous Mexican – Ricardo Rodriguez.
NART’s winning ways in the Prototype class continued for two more years with the 312 P: in 1970 the win went to Sam Posey and Mike Parkes, and one year later it was the turn of Nestor Garcia-Veiga, Alain De Cadenet and Luigi Chinetti Jr. The American team came second in 1973 with the 365 GTB/4 thanks to François Migault and Milt Minter, a result that was good enough to claim the win in the over 2 litre GT category. The same car won again two years later with John Woodrer and Fred Phillips and in 1979, thanks to Modena Sports Cars and John Morton and Tony Adamowicz.
The 1998 masterstroke
The Prancing Horse marque had a barren time in the United States in the Eighties, but in the mid-Nineties, it built an amazing car, the 333 SP “barchetta.” The car, entered by the Doran/Moretti Racing team took the overall win for Maranello 31 years on from the memorable formation finish victory. The drivers who did the job were Giampiero Moretti, Mauro Baldi, Arie Luyendyk and Didier Theys. A further 16 years passed before the next victory, last year in fact, this time in the GT-Daytona category, courtesy of the Level 5 Motorsport 458 Italia, crewed by Townsend Bell, Bill Sweedler, Jeff Segal and Alessandro Pier Guidi.
The other wins
Ferrari has won a further 12 times at Daytona, in races not run over 24 hours. Particularly noteworthy among these was victory in the 1963 3 Hours, courtesy of Pedro Rodriguez in the NART 250 GTO, with the Mexican doing it again the following year in the 2000 km, paired on this occasion with Phil Hill. There was also an unforgettable triumph for Mario Andretti and Jacky Ickx in the 1972 6 Hours, in the factory 312 PB.