Friday, August 17, 2007
Maserati Celebrates Fangio

Anyone who is a fan of Formula One certainly knows who Juan Manuel Fangio is. Called the Maestro, the Argentine Formula One driver has the most championship of five until Michael Schumacher eclipsed it with his seven championships. During the first decade of the sport, Fangio was the one who dominated it. And this month marks the 50th year of his famous win in his entire career.

On August 4, 1957, Juan Manuel Fangio, driving the Maserati 250F, has done what nobody thought was possible. At the 1957 German Grand Prix’s closing laps, Fangio was 45 seconds behind the Ferrari drivers Mike Hawthorn and Peter Collins. It took Fangio only ten laps to close the gap between him and the Ferraris and went on to win the race. Fangio was driving for Maserati then and in celebration of his epic win at the Nürburgring, Maserati is presented a special trophy to the highest placed 250F at the OldTimer Grand Prix classic race.

The Maestro spoke highly of Maserati. He said: “I've raced and won in cars of all marques but I've always had a special relationship with Maserati: not only were the cars safe, reliable and always absolutely technically avant-garde, but there was a very special friendship and atmosphere between myself and the marque. I felt completely at home.”

Thus, it is not surprising that Maserati feels the same way about Fangio. The automaker recently launched a website in celebration of the Maestro’s win at the Nürburgring 50 years ago. The site describes Fangio’s win at the German Grand Prix saying: “The Argentine’s fifth and last World Driver’s Title was arguably his greatest, if anything because of the sheer superiority he demonstrated on tracks such as Buenos Aires, Rouen, or the infamous Nordschleife at the Nürburgring. Formula One historians generally agree that this was not only his finest race, but also the greatest Grand Prix ever run.”

And that counts the recent wins by Hamilton or Alonso or Massa or Raikkonen. Even the seven-time world champion Schumacher was not able to leave a mark such as what the Maestro did at that fateful race.

The car that Fangio drove in that historic race will be displayed at the upcoming Frankfurt Motor Show which will start on September 11. The legendary car will be displayed along with modern Maserati cars such as the new GranTurismo and the Quattroporte. Even among these modern supercars I know that the 250F that the Maestro piloted will stand out. Just like old times eh?

posted by Car Addict @ 6:34 PM  
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