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“Somebody Reasonable Would Not Drive So Fast in the Rain,” Inside the Mind of Jacky Ickx

« For those of you hoping to hear stories about racing, you will be disappointed. I am going to talk about gardening, » is a rather in auspicious start to three quarters of an hour with one of the top drivers in history. To Ickx, however, it’s a logical place to start. When he reached driving age at 16 his goal was to become a gardener or a gamekeeper, not a racing driver. With the gift of a motorcycle from his parents, Ickx’ path changed rapidly. Beginning in motorcycle trials, Ickx moved on rapidly to four wheels, and ascended quickly to the top levels. Not just Mr. LeMans, Ickx competed in 13 seasons of Formula 1, pranked valets, won the Paris-Dakar, Bathurst, and other races almost too numerous to mention.

With a deeply self-deprecating sense of humor, a quick wit, and surprising modesty, the man epitomizes Big Ickx Energy. To Ickx, his success in motorsport didn’t predominantly come from his own skill, but thanks to the stars aligning in everything that surrounded him, which « isn’t humility, it’s just being realistic. » Having the right tools and team at the right time brought him success more than his own efforts.

For the duration of the interview Mike Spinelli is quite obviously awed in the presence of a legend, and I fully empathize. Even several steps removed from the event, watching the interview on an iPad I was a bit starstruck by the openness and honesty of one of my motorsports heroes.

Grab your coffee and settle in. Even with 45 minutes at hand, Mr. Ickx has a lot of ground to cover in a relatively short time.

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A Pair of Jaw-Dropping 917Ks Snarl at the Goodwood Festival of Speed

If you’re considering cutting back on caffeine, the blaring exhaust notes of these two Le Mans titans might provide that pep needed to begin the day. Truly, the sound these two big 12-cylinder engines shoved in tiny 917s get the hairs on the back of your neck standing up and your heart beating a bit faster.

There aren’t many motors as musical as the famous flat-twelve, the Type 912, which burbles and cracks with a delightful combination of roughness at low revs and a sonorous bark as the engine nears redline. That, combined with the very mechanical gearshift, make these powerplants almost frightening to listen to.

They’re also a feast for the eyes. Whether you prefer the iconic Gulf-liveried car, which really needs no introduction, or the green car, you made the right choice. The latter—a car doused in a classic shade of grass green—was once run by David Piper, a well-heeled British privateer who campaigned several 917s in the early 1970s, and even lost part of a leg after crashing one.

Doused in brilliant green, the David Piper 917K is just as striking as the recognizable Gulf car.

As beautiful as they were dangerous—small wonder these cars became icons of racing’s romantic past.

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Porsche 917 : un concept-car pour son anniversaire

Porsche a marqué de son empreinte l’ère moderne des 24 Heures du Mans en remportant trois éditions consécutives en 2015, 2016 et 2017, ceci avant son retrait de la catégorie reine des LMP1-H. En 1970, la Porsche 917 a écrit les premières lignes de la légende Porsche dans la Sarthe. Un concept-car inspiré de la […]

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Une étude, une restauration et une exposition pour les 50 ans de la Porsche 917


Cinquante ans de la Porsche 917

Cela fait tout juste cinquante ans que la Porsche 917 a été présentée au Salon de Genève 1969. L’anniversaire est important, d’autant plus que la légende de la 917 ne fait que grandir au fil du temps, et Porsche va marquer le coup de plusieurs manières. L’histoire de la 917, nous nous y étions attelé […]

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Walter Röhrl Honored By the FIA Hall of Fame

 

Röhrl’s affiliation with Porsche began with a handful of races in 1981—including the San Remo Rally, in which he used a 911.

Few have risen to such prominence in rallying to become a near-household name like Röhrl, who began his rally career fifty years ago. Within three years of amateur rallying, he became a factory driver with Opel. His career launched then and there, and throughout the seventies and eighties, he went on to drive just about anything under the sun. With wins at Le Mans, Pikes Peak, and most WRC stages, he’s a unique driver with the versatility and mechanical sympathy to climb to such levels in the most dangerous decades of motorsport. This is why the 6’6″ German ace, though never having competed in Formula 1, is one of the few rally drivers/non-F1 champions to have the privilege of being inducted into the Motorsport Hall of Fame.

Röhrl won the Monte Carlo Rally four times in total, driving four different marques, and was world rally champion twice.

Has affiliation with Porsche started in 1981, when he entered the German Rally Championship in a 924, the 24 Hours of Le Mans in a 944 LM, and the San Remo Rally in a 911. Even when leaving his fourth decade,the time at which most retire from racing, Röhrl remained involved in motorsports—mainly through development.

Röhrl, one of the few who could drift the Carrera GT confidently, helped in the development in all of Porsche’s flagships for the last thirty years.

With his touch and sensitivity, he helped develop the 964’s four-wheel drive system, as well as Porsche’s greatest flagships including the Porsche 959, Carrera GT and 918 Spyder. Years of bold but methodical driving helped make these machines the masterpieces they were, and for that alone, Röhrl deserves to stand among the best.

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