A Ferrari Demonstration
Adenau, Germany, May 23rd.
AS a race the A.D.A.C. 1,000 Kilometres at Nürburgring was a bit of a farce, but as a demonstration of the power and force of Ferrari in motor racing it was most impressive. The only driver among the 126 taking part who was capable of challenging John Surtees, given an equal car, was Graham Hill, but as he was driving a 3.3-litre Ferrari, against the 4-litre of Surtees, the outcome was inevitable. On driving Surtees was in a class of his own, and his 4-litre 330P/2 Ferrari Prototype was equally unchallengeable, as we had already seen at the Le Mans test weekend and the Monza 1000-kilometre race. Consequently the only hope of the Nürburgring providing an exciting race was by reason of default or the untoward. From the start of the 44-lap race to the finish Surtees gave a magnificent demonstration of his prowess on the difficult Nürburgring, and of the might and power of 4-litre Ferrari, and he was very ably supported by Ludovico Scarfiotti who shared the driving, while the Ferrari mechanics refuelled the car and changed the rear wheels and tyres in double-quick time, so that they only lost the lead very briefly to their number two car, a 275P/2 3.3-litre, driven by Parkes/Guichet, the two red cars dominating the race. Surtees drove the first fourteen laps, during which he pulled out a fantastic lead over everyone else and then Scarfiotti did fourteen laps, by which time any opposition there might have been had fallen by the wayside or become demoralised, and Surtees then did another twelve laps, leaving a joyous Scarfiotti to do the remaining five laps and bring the car in to the finish. The second works Ferrari ran with equal clockwork-like precision, except for a brief moment of panic when Parkes got involved with a slower car and damaged the right-hand front corner of the bodywork and had to stop to have it hammered clear of the tyre and have a new wheel and tyre fitted, but all this did not endanger his second place.
This easy demonstration run by the Ferrari team in the overall picture was not evident in practice or on paper, for Ronnie Hoare the English Ferrari agent had managed to borrow a factory 275P/2 identical to that of Parkes/Guichet and it was entrusted to Graham Hill/Jackie Stewart, but after only ten laps it expired out on the circuit with electrical trouble that left it without any ignition and a flat battery, so any challenge it might have provided to the second works Ferrari was gone, and Stewart did not even sit in the car on race day. There should have been some serious opposition to the Ferraris from Ford, for the Dearborn entry looked pretty fearsome on paper, but was a hit of a shambles in sober fact, the total force being divided three ways instead of being united. Ford Advanced Vehicles of England, under the direction of John Wyer, entered the green open GT40 Prototype with 4.7-litre Ford V8 engine and ZF gearbox, the Halibrand wheels used in the Targa Florio having been replaced by the original Rudge-type wire-spoke wheels. It was driven by Attwood/ Whitmore and though it started off in 5th position and moved up to 3rd by default it was never a serious challenger and finally succumbed with engine bearer breakages. Shelby American entered two Ford GT40 coupés, modified in many ways and painted blue with a white stripe, and one had a 5.3-litre Ford V8 engine, but even with Phil Hill driving it it was no match for the 4-litre Ferrari with Surtees at the wheel. However, it did hold second place in the opening laps, but was 30 seconds behind in three laps, such was the pace that Surtees set. It lasted a bare seven laps before a drive shaft broke, and, as the 5.3-litre engine had twisted one in practice, this was no great surprise. The second Shelby entry was a similar coupé with the more normal 4.7-litre engine and was driven by Chris Amon in the opening stages, but was running on seven cylinders, which seems to be a Ford V8 habit. Although a fair way back it held 3rd place, and with the loss of the 5.3-litre car it was decided to switch the Phil Hill/McLaren team over to the smaller engined car at the refuelling stop and to try and get it on to eight cylinders. Unfortunately, when the signal was given to Amon to stop next lap, he was busily engaged in lapping a slower car and did not see the sign, so that he went on for the sixteenth lap and ran out of petrol almost in sight of the pits. He courageously pushed the car to the pits, but a lot of time was lost and after refuelling Bruce McLaren went off in it, but was way down the scoreboard. In the general excitement it was apparently forgotten that it had been running on seven cylinders and it continued that way. McLaren was lapping steadily around 9 min. 43 sec., when he suddenly appeared after 9 minutes on the twenty-ninth lap, firing on all eight cylinders for no apparent reason, and continued to do so. Surtees had set up a new GT lap record of 8 min. 50.5 sec., but even so, 9-run. laps by the Ford were good going. From this point on it ran perfectly and Phil Hill took over and continued the good work so that the car climbed hack up the leader board and finally finished 8th overall. Afterwards it was discovered that a plug lead was broken through to the inner wire and had been shorting on the engine until, by chance, it was shaken clear of any metal parts. As the distributor and leads had been taken off a Cobra that had been crashed the previous week-end it is likely that the initial flaw had been occasioned then. The third Ford entry was from Ford-France and was another coupé GT40 with 4.7-litre engine and it was in 1964 trim, with wire wheels and white paint with blue stripes. Driven by Trintignant/Ligier it was never in the picture and finally went out with broken engine bearers, though the drivers blamed the gear selectors, for when the engine dropped slightly and twisted the gearbox they could not select gears.
If the main race was a foregone conclusion the various class battles were the complete opposite and the biggest surprise came in the 2-litre Prototype class, where Porsche normally have things all their own way. Apart from a class win usually being a Porsche certainty, the faster of the 2-litres is often well placed in the overall picture and should the giants stumble then it is safe to assume that a Porsche will step into the breach, especially at the Nürburgring. Surtees and Scarfiotti gave a very impressive demonstration with the 4-litre Ferrari, but it almost paled into insignificance compared with the relative performance of the 1,600 c.c. Ferrari Dino coupé, driven by Bandini/Vaccarella. This two-seater coupé “Grand Prix” car staggered everyone by its performance and set a new standard. It also made it very obvious that technical progress in GT Prototype racing has been logging, for the 65-degree 4-camshaft V6-cylinder engine dates back to 1958 in basic design. This little red coupé with its yellow Grand Prix alloy wheels went so fast that a lot of people refused to believe it was only 1,600 c.c. As the class limit was 2,000 c.c. it did not matter much to Ferrari whether they were believed or not. On the opening lap it lay 8th overall and then moved up into 6th place; where it stayed, headed only by its big brothers and the two Shelby Fords. It was leading all the GT cars, of any capacity, all the LM Ferraris, all the Porsches, both 8-cylinder and 6-cylinder, and was undoubtedly the star of the show. As other cars struck trouble it moved up into 3rd place, was pushed back into 4th place by Whitmore in the open Ford, and then became 3rd again when the Ford retired. For a long while the Ferrari team were on top of the world with their 4-litre Prototype in first place, their 3.3-litre Prototype in second place and their 1.6-litre Prototype in third place with Porsches, Fords, Cobras, Alfa Romeos and everyone else behind them. Then there was a moment of panic when the Dino started to misfire and Bandini came into the pits. There was no undue noise, no smoke, no loss of oil pressure, everything seemed to be working properly so off he went again, but the misfire was still there and it remained to the end of the race, so that one of the Porsches was able to take 3rd place, and the Dino finished 4th. It later transpired that a piece of rubber from a seal in the air intake system had gone down one of the downdraught Weber carburetters and partially blocked a jet. But the Dino Ferrari had certainly made its mark.
In the Porsche camp all was far from well, for the team were upset by the death of Edgar Barth on the eve of the race, after a long illness, and in practice the open 8-cylinder Porsche, that went so well in the Targa Florio, had gone off the road for no apparent reason and wrecked itself. Bonnier and Rindt were driving the 8-cylinder coupé and though they finished 3rd it had not been easy, for the carburation was wrong and the engine cut-out on snap throttle openings. Davis and Miner drove a 6-cylinder coupé, as did Nocker and Klaas, and Maglioli and Linge, these racing versions of the 911 6-cylinder engine having two sparking plugs per cylinder. Although the Porsches were going well and they all finished the race they were overshadowed by the Dino Ferrari, while the Davis/Miner car was delayed by electrical faults. The works Abarth 1,60o c.c. that had gone so well in the Targa Florio lasted no time at all in this race and a works sponsored 2-litre B.M.W. fibre-glass coupé was withdrawn after some unsatisfactory practice.
Outclassed by the big factory Prototypes, but having to run in their class, were five LM Ferraris, of which the Piper/Maggs one and the Mairesser “Beurlys” one were the quickest. The Belgian one was delayed out on the circuit when the fuse for the petrol pumps fell out of its holder, but later a split pipe on the oil radiator and a noise in the gearbox caused its retirement. The Piper/Maggs car was up to 6th place and going well when the left rear wheel broke most of its spokes and burst the inner tube. Maggs changed the wheel out on the circuit, with the tools carried in the car, but on his way to the pits a Steering link came loose and these delays put the car right back. In the closing laps the rear tyres were getting very thin and Piper toured round to finish in 16th position, whereas he might well have been 4th overall had the wheel not collapsed. At some point near the end of the race Bandini ran over one of the broken spokes from Piper’s wheel and it stuck in one of the Dino’s tyres and was not discovered until the car was in the parc-ferme after the race.
The big GT class was an all-Cobra affair with the two blue Daytona coupés run by Alan Mann putting up a performance that was as impressive as the Ford GT Prototypes were chaotic. Driven by Bondurant/Neerpasch and Sears/Gardner the two coupés ran like thundering great locomotives, never missing a beat, always being on time, making routine stops for fuel and driver changes and finishing 7th and 10th overall, the first pair winning their class and also leading all the GT cars throughout the race, Bondurant in particular driving a most impressive race.
In the 3-litre GT class Peter Sutcliffe had a well-deserved win with his green GTO Ferrari, ably assisted by Peter Lumsden but they had to drive most of the race without using the clutch when changing gear. It had started to slip and they found that by ignoring it completely, except for starting away after a pit stop, it gripped all right. Their chief opponent was the Dawney racing 1964 GTO Ferrari driven by Salmon and Kerrison but it was put out when the nut on the end of the left-hand half-shaft came undone. A group of five Porsche GTS coupés made up the 2-litre GT class, with Ben Pon and Gerhard Koch driving a factory car. They were well ahead and creeping up the scoreboard in the overall picture when the gearbox mounting broke, which delayed them for a long time, and though they were able to continue it was only at a reduced speed, so that a private GTS Porsche won the class. In the 1,600 GT class the Auto Delta works Alfa Romeo team were in trouble with their fibre-glass bodied GTZ coupés, for one was written off in practice by Frenchman Jean Rolland, and on the first lap Businello had his windscreen broken and was delayed while the bits were removed and also the rear window and he and Zuccoli had to drive it as an open car. The third car of the team, driven by de Adarnichi “Geki,” went as an Alfa Romeo GTZ should go, except that the exhaust system kept falling off and at one time it returned to the pits with the tail pipes on the passenger’s seat. The only opposition came from privately-owned Alfas, and Lotus Elans, so between stops the factory car was able to lead the class. The Luxembourg driver Wagner crashed his GTZ and was killed.
In the smallest class the Sicilian drivers Calascibetta/Virgilio repeated their splendid Targa Florio drive by bringing their factory Abarth-Simca 1300 home in first place. A B.M.C.entered M.G. Midget coupe driven by Hedges/Greene ran well and finished 4th in the class, while the Triumph Spitfire of Bradley/Prophet had a rear wheel break off.—D. S. J.
1st: J. Surtees/I. Scarfiotti (Ferrari 330P/3) .. .. 6 hr. 53 min. 05.4 sec.—143.9 k.p.h.
2nd: M. Parkes/J. Guichet (Ferrari 275P/2) .. .. 6 hr. 53 min. 50.2 sec.
3rd: J. Bonnier/J. Rindt (Porsche 8-cyl. P) .. .. 7 hr. 00 min. 59.6 sec.
4th: L. Bandini/N. Vaccarella (Ferrari Dino 166) .. .. .. .. .. .. 43 laps
5th: U. Magholt/H. Linge (Porsche 6-cyl. P) .. .. .. .. .. .. .. ..43 laps
6th: P. Nocker/G. Klaas (Porsche 8-cyl. P) .. .. .. .. .. .. .. .. .43 laps
7th: R. Bondurant/J. Neerpasch (Shelby-Cobra Daytona) ..43 laps
8th: C. Amon/B. McLaren/P. Hill (Shelby Ford GT40) .. .. ..43 laps
9th: C. Davis/G. Mitter (Porsche 6-cyl. P) .. .. .. .. .. .. .. .. .. 42 laps
10th: J. Sears/F. Gardner (Shelby-Cobra Daytona) .. .. .. .. 42 laps
11th: A. Fischhaber/U. Schutz (Porsche 8-cyl. P) .. .. .. .. .. 41 laps
13th: J. Biscaldi/G. Bughetti (Ferrari GTB) .. .. .. .. .. .. .. .. .41 laps
14th: M. Abel/G. Selbach (Porsche 914GT8) .. .. .. .. .. .. .. 41 laps
15th: P. Sutcliffe/P. Lumesden (Ferrari GTO) .. .. .. .. .. .. .. 42 laps
16th: D. Piper/A. Maggs (Ferrari 275LM) .. .. .. .. .. .. .. .. .. .40 laps
17th: A. de Adamich/’Geki’ (Alfa Romeo GTZ) .. .. .. .. .. .. 40 laps
18th: J. Biscaldi/G. Bughetti (Ferrari GTB) .. .. .. .. .. .. .. .. 41 laps
19th: S. Calascibetta/G. Virgilio (Abarth-Simca 1300) .. .. 39 laps
20th: E. Furthmeyer/H. Schultze (Alfa Romeo GTA) .. .. .. 39 laps
21st: A. Schmalbach/M. Schick (Abarth-Simca 1300) .. .. 39 laps
22nd: P. Ettmuller/P. Harper (Ferrari 275LM) .. .. .. .. .. .. 39 laps
23rd: W. Lindermann/M. Ramminger (Ferrari GTO) .. .. .. ..39 laps
24th: H. Dechent/R. Huhn (Abarth-Simca 1300) .. .. .. .. .. .38 laps
25th: B. Pon/G. Koch (Porsche 914GTS) .. .. .. .. .. .. .. .. ..38 laps
26th: J. Springer/K. v. Wendt (Lotus Elan) .. .. .. .. .. .. .. .. 38 laps
27th: A. Hedges/K. Greene (M.G. Midget) .. .. .. .. .. .. .. .. . 38 laps
28th: C. Baker/J. Moore (Austin Healey Sprite) .. .. .. .. .. ..38 laps
29th: R. Basinello/T. Zecolli (Alfa Romeo GTZ) .. .. .. .. .. .. 37 laps
30th: J. Komusin/S. Mullers (Alfa Romeo GT) .. .. .. .. .. .. .. 36 laps
31st: P. Otto/H. Gilges (Martini B.M.W. 2-cycl.) .. .. .. .. .. .. 31 laps
Rally driver Peter Harper co-drove the Ferrari LM of Scuderia Filipinetti. It was delayed by radiator trouble.
The Baker/Moore Austin Healey Sprite coupé was alone in its class after the Alpine-Renault broke down, and had a trouble-free run, apart from slight starter-motor trouble at one pit stop.
Two Iso/Grifo coupés took part, one with fibre-glass body with i.r.s. in place of the normal de Dion rear end. The standard one ran out of petrol and the new one was too new and was withdrawn after the tyres had rubbed holes in the fibre-glass.
At the last moment the Shelby Fords and the Alan Mann Cobras decided to run on Firestone tyres, the French-entered Ford stayed on Goodyear’s and the English-entered Ford was on Dunlops.
There was the usual section of stow or badly prepared English club-racers having their first try at long-distance International racing. Some of them should have stayed at home.