1953 24 Hours of Le Mans

The 21th 24 -hour Le Mans race, the Grand Prix d' Endurance les 21e 24 Heures du Mans, was held from June 13 to 14 in 1953, at the Circuit des 24 Heures.

  • 2.1 pilots after Nations
  • 2.2 Final ranking
  • 2.3 Only in the message list
  • 2.4 Class Winner
  • 2.5 racing data

The race

Changes to the regulations

As a result, the solo drive from Pierre Levegh from the previous year changed or clarified the Automobile Club de l' Ouest the regulations. No driver was allowed to sit for more than 80 rounds in a row at the wheel and drive a total of not more than 18 hours. After 1953, the first World Sportscar Championship was held, the technical code had to be adapted. Cars with supercharged engines were still allowed, but their coefficient in the Index of Performance has been multiplied by two, which made it impossible for this racing car to win this competition.

The first time, velocity measurements were carried out in Le Mans. The Cunningham C5 -R by John Fitch and Phil Walters was there on the Mulsanne straight 249 km / h top speed of the fastest sports cars.

The race teams

Triggered by the first World Sportscar Championship was a wealth of factory teams to Le Mans. Of the 60 starters were no less than 50 company cars. Favorites were the factory Jaguar C-Type with its revolutionary disc brakes and the works Ferraris. The C -Types had received a new engine and in addition the disc brakes. The 3.4 - liter engine now made ​​220 ​​horsepower. The top car of the Scuderia was the 4.5-liter 340MM by Alberto Ascari and Luigi Villoresi. Ascari exceeded the 340MM in the race with a lap of 4:27:00 the 180-km/h-Hürde for the cut over one lap.

For the first time since 1949 was also the works team of Alfa Romeo at the start. Four vehicles were reported, three approved for launch. The 3.5-liter 6C 3000 CM were driven by Juan Manuel Fangio, Onofre Marimon, Consalvo Sanesi, Piero Carini and German last year's winner Fritz Riess and his compatriot Karl Kling.

Gordini brought new prototypes at the Sarthe and the Talbots were given new bodies. Briggs Cunningham came from overseas also with new prototypes to France. The C5 -R had a 310 hp Chrysler engine.

Also, Lancia came with factory cars to Le Mans. The rapid D20 coupes had 2.7 - liter supercharged engines. Panhard had the French aircraft designer Riffard committed, who missed the 0.7 -liter race car aerodynamic bodies. Also, Aston Martin and Renault participated with works cars.

From Germany Porsche came back to Le Mans. For use three factory cars, two 550 coupe and a 356 Not came at the start was the work team of Mercedes -Benz. The team of Stuttgart in 1952 had celebrated a double victory after the failure of Pierre Levegh, who was not very popular in France. Nevertheless, a second German team at the start was: Borgward Hansa 1500 was the racing his Le Mans debut. How Porsche 1951 entrusted the racing line from Borg Ward at one of the two vehicles a French driver pairing. In contrast, Mercedes had invariably committed in the previous year German driver.

Both Spanish Pegasos injured in training and could not participate in the race. One of the two coupes shared the Spaniard Juan Jover and later President of the FIA ​​, Paul Alfons von Metternich - Winneburg.

The race course

After the start was surprisingly the factory Allard J2R with Philip Fotheringham -Parker at the helm in the lead. However, this only lasted four rounds, then the car had a brake failure, and the British had to give up. There was a fierce exchange of blows between Stirling Moss in a Jaguar and a Ferrari works driver Luigi Villoresi, which lasted until unforeseen pit stop Moss due to a dirty fuel filter.

Even after the relapse of the Jaguar Moss remained the toughest opponent of the works Ferraris. The failure of the fast Villoresi/Ascari-340MM-Berlinetta because of clutch failure after 229 laps, won the race in favor of Rolt and Hamilton. The Scuderia but had suffered far worse: In the night Tom Cole was killed in an accident at the dangerous stretch Maison Blanche.

All Aston Martin, Lancia and Bristol were canceled. Tommy Wisdom suffered in an accident at Bristol severe burns to his hands and legs. One of the most original explanation for a failure by accident gave Reginald Parnell, of a factory Aston Martin DB3S with Peter Collins split. He was thinking of his pigs and have lost both the concentration as well as the rule of his car.


Pilot after Nations

  • Elder drivers: Italy Clemente Biondetti (55 years )
  • Youngest Driver: United Kingdom Peter Collins (22 years)

Final ranking

Withdrawn 1 accident in training 2 accident in training accident in training 3 4 5 replacement car not started 6 7 ​​Reserve Reserve 8 Reserved 9 Reserved 10 Reserved 11 Reserved 12 reserve 13

Only in the message list

Here are the teams, drivers and vehicles that were originally registered for the competition, but it did not participate for various reasons.

Class winner

Race data

  • Reported: 127
  • Starter: 60
  • Weather during the race weekend: warm and dry
  • Distance: 13.492 km
  • Honorary starter of the race: Jean Masson, French Secretary of State for Education
  • Distance of the winning team: 4088.064 km
  • Winners section: 170.336 km / h
  • Fastest race lap: Alberto Ascari - Ferrari 340MM Berlinetta (# 12) - 4.27.400 = 181.642 km / h
  • Race series: 3rd Round of the World Sportscar Championship