LE MANS (June 21st/22nd) - Italian Domination
ECURIE ECOSSE attempts at completing the treble were dashed when both their Jaguars retired with piston failure during the first 30 minutes. Moss dominated the race at the start, until the engine of the works Aston Martin broke after 2 hr. 10 min. while Hawthorn and von Trips (Ferraris) and Brooks (Aston Martin) battled for second place. After the first spell of rain and pit-stops for driver changes, Hill (Ferrari) took over from Gendebien and went into the lead, while the Hawthorn/Collins car developed clutch trouble. The dusk-to-midnight period saw many crashes in the rain. “Mary” the French driver being killed and several others injured. Towards midnight Bueb, in Hamilton’s Jaguar. driving well in the wet, closed on the Ferrari and took a narrow lead at midnight. After more pit-stops Hill drew ahead of Hamilton and thereafter the Ferrari was not headed. The Jaguar challenge failed before mid-day, when Hamilton crashed in the wet, and the Ferrari finished 12 laps ahead of the Whitehead DB3S Aston Martin, Porsches impressively taking the next three places in a demonstration finish headed by the Behra/Herrmann 1600 RSK: earlier this car was ahead of the DB35 but developed brake trouble. The de Tomaso/Dayis Osea dominated the 750-c.c. class and won the Index of Performance after a perfectly trouble-free run. Lotuses had a bad race, only one car finishing, in last place.