Targa Florio

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This topic contains 27 replies, has 4 voices, and was last updated by  Martin 1 day, 3 hours ago.

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  • #4192

    Martin
    Keymaster

    Driven to victory in the 1970 race by Siffert/Redman, this 908/3 (#008) speeds between the spectators lining the edges of the circuit. Although the demanding Sicilian course must have required some considerable nerve to drive quickly, passing this close to people at racing speeds must have been equally nerve-racking.

    Photo: Ted Walker Archive

  • #4195

    Martin
    Keymaster

    After their successful Targa the year before Porsche took it upon themselves to provide additional support for the JW and Martini 908/3’s in 1971, although things got off to a bad start with practice problems for the cars which left three Alfas at the head of the grid and only the two JW entries starting.

    Photo: Ted Walker Archive

    Things then went from bad to worse, with the Rodriguez/Muller car pictured here (in an eye catching Martini-like version of its Gulf colours) starting from 5th but like its team-mate not even completing a lap before an accident eliminated it, the aftermath of which is shown below.

    Photo: Unknown

    This meant a 1-2 for Alfa in the absence of any Ferrari factory interest in the event that year and the best-placed Porsche was a 911S in 4th place, one of four in the top ten.

  • #4198

    Martin
    Keymaster

    This negative has had a bit of a hard life but is worth including as it shows Maglioli in the Scuderia Sant Ambroeus 718RSK on the 1962 event. Unfortunately, the gearbox failed after three laps and so co-driver Spychinger didn’t even get behind the wheel in a race that two Ferraris won from the factory 718GTR. The SSA team was active from 1951 to 1970 and was founded to help Italian drivers get into Formula 1, their big success coming when Baghetti won his debut Grand Prix in 1961.

    Photo: Ted Walker Archive

    170793 – 116 – 62 TARGA MAGLIOLI

  • #4201

    Martin
    Keymaster

    In another less than perfect but atmospheric picture we see the Scuderia Filipinetti 906 (#128) of Mairesse/Muller on its way to its overall win in the 50th running in 1966. As this race took place on public roads it always attracted a huge number of spectators (as can be seen here) and who could blame them for flocking to see some of the top racing sports cars of the day in action at close quarters – and free of charge too.

    In fact, for many spectators it was just a matter of leaning on the sill of an open window or walking to the end of the street to witness this spectacle, but as with other great road races such as the Mille Miglia it was spectator (and driver) deaths which ultimately put paid to the event. By the time of its demise in 1977 -and the Mile Miglia had finished in 1957- it was a complete anachronism and truthfully had been so for some time.

    Photo: Ted Walker Archive

  • #5022

    Martin
    Keymaster

    The finish line crossed, the chequered flag waved and the works 904 (#005) of Pucci/Klass comes home 5th overall and 1st in class in the 1965 Targa. 904’s also filled places 2-4 this year (904-8 Bergspyder, 904-6 and 904-8 respectively) after Pucci and Davis (who came second this time) took the then new 904 to victory in its first season the year before. This view emphasises the squat stance and flowing lines of this beautiful car that was only 38.6”/940mm high.

    Photo: Ted Walker Archive

  • #5067

    Martin
    Keymaster

    Two pictures which show the Targa road course out in the countryside and for once minus the usual hoards of excitable Italians and their cars packed into any available space. With over 800 corners and each lap covering well over 40 miles you really couldn’t have too much practice, hence these two T-cars being used prior to the 1970 event.

    Perhaps in this instance we might also say ‘T is for tatty’, this white 908/03 (#003) being practiced by Jo Siffert.  Although using 917’s elsewhere during this year, for this race JW chose to run 908’s and this was a wise choice with Siffert/Redman winning.

    Looking slightly more respectable and with some Gulf stickers applied, this T-car is a 909 (#unknown). This final iteration of the factory ‘Bergspyder’ hill climb specials was probably the ideal choice as a practice car here and was finished in a deep red akin to the works racing support vehicles of this time. It is interesting that it had slightly different bodywork compared to that used on the hills, with that bulge in the nose and different tail details.

    It is fitting that the 909 and 908/3 should have appeared together in this way, as this was the debut event for the latter and it incorporated some of the thinking that had gone into making the former so competitive in its field. The Gulf stickers on the 909 are a bit odd though, as the car was entered by Porsche Austria and not JW, supporting their single 908/3.

    Photos: Ted Walker Archive

    • #5727

      salvo61
      Participant

      T CAR 908/03     e’ 006 no 003

    • #5730

      Martin
      Keymaster

      Grazie Salvatore.

  • #5068

    Martin
    Keymaster

    After the T-cars practicing for the 1970 event, here are a couple of shots from race day it self. Prior to the start the cars are moved into position and although it’s sunny Sicily it has been raining. The 908/3’s are No12 (#008) of Siffert/Redman which won from pole, No.36 (#011) of Waldegard/Attwood which finished 5th from a grid 10th and No.40 (#009) of Kinnunen/Rodriguez which came second from a grid 5th.

    During the race the Kinnunen/Rodriguez car is seen about to pass the Scuderia Etna 906 (#102) of Nicolosi/Bonaccorsi which kept going to record a 38th place, three laps (but that’s over 130 miles!) behind the winner. In practice its best lap was over 15 minutes slower than the winning car and it had been raced by Jo Siffert some years previously when in Swiss ownership.

    Of course, while the ‘health and safety’ aspects of this shot need no further comment nothing symbolises road racing better than the Sicilian course. indeed, it is surprising that the race continued as a World Sportscar Championship round until as late as 1973 and even more so that it remained as a national event until 1977, when what would be the final race was brought to a premature halt due to a serious spectator accident. To put things into perspective, comparable events like the Carrera Panamericana and Mille Miglia finished in 1954 and 1957 respectively (both of their final runnings also including spectator deaths) and at the time of its demise the Targa, aside from road surface and barrier improvements, was very much the race that it had been when it began in 1906. The 1971 Porsche Le Mans winner Helmut Marko once described the race as “totally insane”, although this didn’t stop him averaging over 128mph around the course during the 1972 event, so we can certainly say that he spoke with authority.

    Photos: Ted Walker Archive

  • #5368

    Martin
    Keymaster

    An unusual view of this works 908/2K (#015) at the 1969 Targa Florio allows us to appreciate some of its finer points. Driven by Stommelen (here) & Herrmann to third place, it was one of seven 908’s entered by the factory (including a T-car) and these allowed them to capture the top four positions, this car coming 3rd.

    Photo: Ted Walker Archive

  • #5390

    Martin
    Keymaster

    The 1971 race was something of a disaster for the Gulf and Martini Porsches after the success of 1970 and this 911 of the Italian team Bonomelli Squadra Course also failed to finish. Crewed by Bonomelli/Beckers they qualified 20th as the first of 16 911’s, but went out on lap 4 of 11, although another 911 did manage 4th overall.

    Additional interest in this shot is provided by the factory Mercedes transporter, still in its traditional maroon livery rather than the JW Gulf colour scheme by then worn by its sister. Based on the 0317 PSV chassis, the bodywork was by Schenk of Stuttgart and at least one survives.

    Photo: Ted Walker Archive

  • #5454

    Martin
    Keymaster

    With a large number of Sicilian policemen taking an interest, the 911S entered by Strӓhle Autosport for Pucci/Schmid also competed in the 1971 event. Qualifying 22nd the car finished a very commendable 6th overall and 2nd in class.

    Well-known racing driver Paul-Ernst Strӓhle (1927-2010) also had a Porsche and VW dealership. Born into the motor trade, he began racing in his mid-twenties and became a very successful Porsche competitor, setting up his own racing team in the mid-1960’s. In later life he drove in historic races, still using the WN-V2 registration number seen here and on his other cars over the years. His Carera Abarth GTL that he raced widely (and which still exists in the USA) was registered WN-V1.

    Photo: Ted Walker Archive

    • #5455

      Ted
      Participant

      I always wondered why these 911 ran with Fuchs wheels on the front and British made Minilite wheels on the rear ???

    • #5458

      Martin
      Keymaster

      That’s a very good question, Ted and one that’s not often asked.

      I think that this combination first appeared on the 911S/T and I believe that usual factory supplier Fuchs did not make a wheel in the required size and offset. Presumably a very limited production run did not make economic sense, but it is interesting that the order for the rear wheels went to a British company and that Porsche were happy to have the two makes of different appearance on the same car, although I think that this gives a great and distinctive look. While a production road model would have required wheels to be of the same style to appeal to many potential buyers, symmetry on a competition car is less important.

      Pre-1973 Minilites (as on the above 911) were of sand-cast magnesium as opposed to the die-cast aluminium type of slightly different appearance then introduced, the former being about one-third lighter than the latter. Coincidentally Fuchs and Minilite began producing wheels in 1962, although the origins of the Fuchs company go back to brass founding in 1910.

      The appearance of this combination of wheels appeals to my liking for the asymmetrical and locally there was once a very effective modified car (not a Porsche) which had four identical but differently-coloured alloys, a simple but visually arresting change that worked particularly well on a white car.

  • #5460

    Ted
    Participant

    Slightly off topic. I went on a Page and Moy trip to the Targa in 1965 (aged17) Took some fantastic shots of the Cobras and Ferraris from the side of the road only inches away from the action !!!!!

    • #5461

      Martin
      Keymaster

      That’s a picture (one of yours?) from the 1965 event in Post#5022.

      From the previous year this is the 904 (#075) of a pair often to be found competing in this model, Jaques Rey and Jean-Pierre Hanrioud. Entered by Rey, this car finished 14th, a lap behind the 1st/2nd factory 904’s.

      The scene couldn’t really be anywhere else, could it?

      Photo: Ted Walker Archive

    • #5462

      Ted
      Participant

      Yes that’s one of mine.Cant remember where abouts it was taken, just outside a villiage.

  • #5534

    Martin
    Keymaster

    We can see some strange Sicilian logic at work here in 1966, where those spectators on the left are being kept well back while the more exposed watchers are standing right next to the road.

    The number on this car is not clear enough to identify with any certainty as there were four 906’s with entries beginning ‘15’, but by a process of elimination I think that this is No.156 (#150) of the Italian team Scuderia Pegaso, driven by Capuano/Latteri. They came home 8th overall and 4th in class behind three other 906’s, one of which won overall.

    Photo: Ted Walker Archive

  • #5684

    Martin
    Keymaster

    A number of potentially race-ending hazards are present in this shot of Bjorn Waldegard in a 908/3 (#011) that he shared with Richard Attwood in 1970. You’ll note how he has positioned the car well away from the loose stones on the outside of the circuit and as can be seen at the top right, the road is about to climb through a steep hairpin and double back on itself. With some notable exceptions a car was never travelling in a straight line for very long on the Targa and even if it was it might well be down a street well populated with spectators, debris and the odd animal.

    The same car and one of its teammates (#009) when enough rain has fallen to delay the start of the race, with dry patches visible beneath the cars and the cockpits having been covered. Perhaps it is also the reason for the tyre change taking place on the No.36 before the cars are pushed backwards down to the start (see Post#5068 above).

    Spectators always seem drawn to stand and park on the outside of corners and the Targa was no exception – as if it wasn’t dangerous enough already! As the attitude of this 908/3 (#009) driven by ‘The Flying Finn’ (as it said on his helmet) Kinnunen and Rodriguez, is altered by the conflicting forces of cornering and power application it is interesting to compare the gap between the top of the front tyre and the bodywork with the preceding static shot. In the event Siffert/Redman in the third JW 908 (pictured in Post#4192 at the head of this section) won from pole with No.36 coming home 5th from a grid 11th and No.40 finishing 2nd from a grid 5th.

    Photos: Ted Walker Archive

  • #5726

    salvo61
    Participant

    Targa Florio 1964 Winner N° 86 Porsche 904 GTS A.Pucci – C.Davis

    copyright Sconosciuto

  • #5741

    Martin
    Keymaster

    In contrast to the opening shot in this section, here is the same car and driver (908/3 #008 and Siffert) showing another side of the 1970 event, pressing on to victory in open country with hardly a spectator to be seen. The suspension deflection gives some idea of the speed that is being carried.

    Photo: Ted Walker Archive

  • #5746

    salvo61
    Participant

    Pedro Rodriguez

    1971 – Pedro Rodriguez ,  verso Collesano durante il primo giro

  • #5747

    salvo61
    Participant

    Vic Elford

    Targa Florio 1971 – Vic Elford verso Collesano

    • This reply was modified 3 months ago by  salvo61.
  • #5749

    salvo61
    Participant

    Targa Florio 1971 , verso Collesano – Porsche 908 Larrousse – Alfa 33/3 Andrea De Adamich

  • #5863

    Mike Beattie
    Participant

    I was re-reading Vic Elford’s  book yesterday and came upon a tale I had missed on my first pass. A 917K did a lap of the Targa in 1970 !

    It appears that there may have been some friction between the JWA Gulf team and that run by Porsche Salzburg who had arrived with a 908/3 to race and a 917K which was there for display purposes. Elford has qualified the 908 in 2nd spot but  was that approached by Piech and asked to do a lap in the 917, “As a favour”. So QuickVic did the honours and ran a lap that would have placed him 4th (some say 5th), but was so physically and emotionally drained after hustling the 580hp beast round the Sicilian hills, he had to be lifted from the car. He was allowed to race the preferred 908/3 but damaged the suspension on the opening lap.

    Here is a shot lifted from the printed version, so I apologise for the quality. Does anyone know which chassis it was, I think up to then Elford’s usual mount was 917/023 the eventual Le Mans winner

     

    • #5864

      Martin
      Keymaster

      With JW and Salzburg having specifically taken the 908/3 to the Targa due to the model being better suited to the nature of the course than the 917, it seems rather perverse that the latter still entered a 917, although Filipinetti and the works chose to use Ferrari 512’s -a comparable model to the 917- and came 6th and 3rd respectively. Perhaps the Austrians were hedging their bets and it is interesting that the car was entered properly and not as a T-car, the team having brought another 908/3 and a 909 for that purpose (Post#5067 above, although note that JW driver Siffert is in the 908). Both of those, like the 908/3 that they actually raced and the 917, were assigned to Elford/Herrmann, so it looks as though the Austrians were undecided as to which would be the most effective.

      The 917 was #011, listed as being finished in blue and white (as in the above picture) but at some point it appeared in plain red with Gulf stickers, just like the 909. It was also registered (S-U 3912) for the event and carried a number plate where the Shell sticker is seen above, but when these changes occurred is not clear. The application of a different colour scheme certainly happened to at least one 917 between its arrival at Le Mans and the race, so such things did take place. In its only previous race (Daytona, retired) it appeared in white with red stripes in the common Salzburg style shown above. One of the original homologation batch, it had been converted to short tail bodywork late in 1969 and took part in testing at Daytona shortly afterwards before being transferred to the Salzburg team just before Christmas.

      The car actually did eight laps of the Targa course (some 576 km) driven by Elford (3) and intriguingly also by Martini 908/2 driver Lins (3) and JW 908/3 drivers Kinnunen (1) and Rodriguez (1). However, any plans that there might have been to use the car in the race were curtailed by it being involved in a big accident with a truck on its way back from the pits to the team’s base at Cefalù. It was being driven by a team race engineer and such was the severity of the impact that it was broken in two, the driver surviving with little injury but the car being scrapped at the works the following month.

      On the face of it the 917 was reasonably competitive, qualifying 4th fastest, although that was still almost a minute slower than the pole-setting 908. Many thanks for highlighting this often overlooked aspect of the 1970 race, Michael.

      • This reply was modified 2 months ago by  Martin. Reason: Additional information
  • #5876

    Martin
    Keymaster

    Although their 908/3 victory the following year is perhaps better remembered, Porsche mounted quite an assault on the 1969 Targa and were rewarded with an excellent result. Entering six 908/02K models plus one as a T-car (and not forgetting a 911T) gave them the top four places and pictured is the winning car (#028/014) of Mitter/Schütz, the 3rd fastest qualifiers. Less than three minutes separated the 1st and 2nd place cars after over six hours of racing over the tortuous road course.

    Photo: Ted Walker Archive

  • #6003

    Martin
    Keymaster

    A picture that contains many of the elements of the Targa: The huge crowds, the painted slogans, the sun umbrellas, the smart policemen, the unforgiving surroundings and a racing car in full flight on a public road.

    In contrast to the previous year 1971 was very unsuccessful for Porsche, the 908/3 (#008) of Larrousse/Elford pictured qualifying 4th but only recording a 39th place after crashing on lap seven of eleven, a very different result from its win here in 1970. The same car can be seen in 1970 (No.12) and 1971 guises in various pictures above.

    Photo: Ted Walker Archive

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