Three Ferraris at Le Mans

Ferrari, Le Mans, Tertre Rouge, klemcoll

Here is a classic Klemantaski image of three Ferrari 250 Testa Rossas rounding Tertre Rouge on their way onto the long Mulsanne Straight early in the Le Mans 24 Hours on June 25, 1960 . The leading 250TR59/60 entered by Scuderia Ferrari is being driven by Phil Hill and Wolfgang von Trips. Behind them runs another works 250TR59/60 this one in the hands of Belgians Olivier Gendebien and Paul Frère. The third car, a 250TR59, now a year old, has been entered by Luigi Chinetti’s North American Racing Team for the talented young Mexican Ricardo Rodriguez and experienced Belgian André Pilette.

For a series of laps these three Ferraris ran nose to tail, as seen again here in the Esses. The Hill/Trips 250TR unfortunately ran out of fuel Ferrari, Le Mans, Esses, klemcollout on the circuit on its 22nd lap. The same problem nearly befell the Gendebien/Frère car which coasted into the pits having just run out. The cause of this problem was most likely a miscalculation of the Ferrari fuel mileage, perhaps caused by the undetermined higher drag of their required high windshields. The same fate on the same lap caused the retirement of another works Ferrari, the 250TRI/60 of Ludovico Scarfiotti and Pedro Rodriguez.

During the night the Gendebien/Frère TR took over the lead with the Rodriguez/Pilette TR a some way behind but both cars facing a potential challenge, if they had trouble, from the Aston Martin DBR1/300, the same type of car which had won here the previous year, now driven by Jim Clark and Roy Salvadori. But no challenge arose and the top two runners ran comfortably to the finish, each four laps ahead of their pursuer.

Photos by Louis Klemantaski ©The Klemantaski Collection –

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