Ford conquers Le Mans
During the last half-hour the two Shelby cars closed up together, Ken Miles waiting for Bruce McLaren, who had lost the lead during the final pitstops for refuelling, and the light-blue and black 7-litre Fords circulated quietly together, gathering up the gold car of Ronnie Bucknum as they began what was obviously going to be their final lap and a thoroughly deserved victory for Ford.
The Fords of McLaren and Miles arrived, headlights ablaze, in as near a dead heat as they could judge, with Bucknum just behind them. The celebrating was dampened somewhat when it was announced that McLaren and Chris Amon had won, a dead heat being impossible as the cars had started at 4pm on Saturday with the Miles/Denis Hulme car already some yards ahead on the starting grid, so that as they arrived side by side on the same lap on Sunday at 4pm, the McLaren/Amon car must have covered a greater distance in the 24 hours, the difference being quoted as 20 metres. The overacting of the Shelby team had backfired on them and McLaren and Amon were received as rather surprised and dissatisfied winners of the race. — DSJ
The first of many
The Ford Motor Company has obtained a highly respected place in the field of competition motoring. At Zandvoort their new 3-litre grand prix engine took the Lotus 49 to first place on its initial racing engagement.
This achievement is outstanding — very much the event of the year and one that merits the warmest congratulations to Keith Duckworth, Mike Costin, Colin Chapman, Maurice Phillippe, Walter Hayes and all concerned.
Certainly, the Dutch GP showed the outstanding engineering ability of Cosworth Engineering. But success in motor racing is elusive and reports from Spa suggest that about the only Ford part in the new engine, the Autolite plugs, let Jim Clark down badly in the Belgium GP, where the V12 Weslake engine, which some experts thought would never cope with a very fast circuit, brought Dan Gurney’s Eagle to victory. — DSJ
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