1963 24 Hours of Le Mans

The 31 24 - hour race at Le Mans, the 31e Grand Prix d' Endurance les 24 Heures du Mans, took place from 15 to June 16, 1963 held 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

After only one year of the Automobile Club de l' Ouest renounced the experimental classes and led the categorization of prototypes again. Clear favorites to win were the Ferrari and primarily the work team itself in Maranello prepared three new sports car, the 250P, the use of the Sarthe before. Strongest opponent for overall victory were reported by the Maserati Maserati Tipo 151 France and the new factory Aston Martin. For the first time at Le Mans was also a gas turbine car at the start. Since 1950 Rover experimented with this technology. After Le Mans we brought a race car, the chassis of the British Formula 1 racing team BRM was designed and built. As a driver, the two Formula 1 drivers Graham Hill and Richie Ginther were used. The car was given the double zero as the start number and had to start out of competition. The tank of the vehicle was so great that the car does not fit into the regulations. But without problems, the two Grand Prix drivers managed the ACO exposed by prize of 25,000 francs. This was due when the car reached the 3600 km total distance. The rover managed 573 km and would be located more in the final standings at the seventh place.

AC used his new Cobras, with the car with starting number 3, the Peter Bolten and Le Mans winner of 1956 Ninian Sanderson drove, Stirling Moss worked as a team manager.

The Lola GT came much too late for scrutineering and then not quite meet the regulations. Under the supervision of the ACO officials of the cars had to be rebuilt, so David Hobbs and Richard Attwood but still able to walk into the race. The three works Ferraris led with a shovel and wood panels on the passenger seat in the race, as all three cars in the training stuck in the dreaded sand bank in the Mulsanne.

Serious accidents

After the first round led the Mexican Pedro Rodríguez, who had gone from the pole position in the race. But already in the second round of the Le Mans veteran André Simon sat in the Maserati to the top and kept this up for failure after two hours of racing. Then the Surtees / Mairesse Ferrari took the lead.

Just before 21 clock burst on Aston Martin DP214 of Bruce McLaren on the Les Hunaudières the engine and flooded the road with oil. This triggered a series of serious accidents. Jean Kerguen, Roy Salvadori and Jean -Pierre Manzon lost control of their vehicles. While Kerguen his Aston Martin only slightly damaged and could go back to the pits, the other two cars were completely destroyed. The worst accident was the Brazilian Christian " Bino " Heins, who was trapped in the wreckage of his Alpine M63 and helpless burned. On the night injured Fernand Tavano and Joakim Bonnier in short succession, but were unharmed.

Bon Olthoff was severely injured in another accident in Maison Blanche. The last accident occurred on Sunday at 10 clock. The superior leading Willy Mairesse just came from the fuel stop out of the box when he slammed into the Indianapolis into a barrier. Since too much fuel in the tank was spilled over this, and the Ferrari went up in flames. The Belgians escaped with burns on his hands.

In the end, however, Ferrari won for the seventh time. It was the first win for a rear-engined racing cars at Le Mans, and for the first time won two Italians for the Scuderia. The honor of France René Bonnet rescued once more with the victory in the index for Thermal Efficiency.


Pilot after Nations

Final ranking

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

  • Starter: 49
  • Weather during the race weekend: warm and sunny
  • Distance: 13.461 km
  • Honorary starter of the race: Comte de Hadelin Liedereke -Beaufort, president of the Automobile Club de France
  • Distance of the winning team: 4561.710 km
  • Winners section: 190.071 km / h
  • Pole Position: Pedro Rodríguez - Ferrari 330 TRI LM ( # 10) - 3.50.090 = 209.873 km / h
  • Fastest race lap: John Surtees - Ferrari 250P (# 23) - 3.53.300 = 207.714 km / h
  • Racing Series: Round 10 of the World Sportscar Championship