Ferrari 250 TR - 1958 Le Mans Winner
- Scale guide
A three-time winner of the World Sportscar Championship, the 250 Testa Rossa is one of the most successful Ferraris in history. It is now one of the world’s most sought after Ferraris, after only 33 of all its variants were ever built. The 250 TR was designed to offer customers already racing with the 500 TRC a much more powerful engine on a similar chassis to help retain the former model’s great handling. Rumour also had it that the FIA would place a three-litre limit on prototypes, and this indeed proved to be the case. As a result, the reliable Columbo-designed three litre V12 from the 250 Gran Turismo was used. As with other Ferrari racing cars, Enzo Ferrari demanded absolute reliability from all components, resulting in a somewhat conservative design approach that aimed for endurance racing success through durability rather than overall speed. This proved to be a multiple-title winning decision.
This fine model is of the #14 that was driven to victory by Olivier Gendebien and Phil Hill at the 24 Hours of Le Mans in 1958, clinching the World Sportscar Championship for Ferrari. To set the scene, the fabled 24 Hours of Le Mans race of that year attracted a huge crowd of some 150,000 spectators, gathered in anticipation of an exciting and closely matched dual between Ferrari, Jaguar, Aston Martin and Porsche. Scuderia Ferrari had a bumper entry of 11 cars in the race, made up of both works entries and privateer teams. The race was dominated by fifteen hours of rain, three of which were torrential, which saw thirteen separate accidents, one sadly killing gentleman-driver Jean-Marie Brussin. Gendebien and Hill held the lead for 22 hours and, when Hill finally crossed the line, it marked the first ever overall Le Mans win for an American and a Belgian driver, and crowned Scuderia Ferrari as victors at the Le Mans for the third time. The duo finished a dominating twelve laps ahead of their closest opponents in second place and would go on to be the first pairing to record three victories at Le Mans just four years later. Despite the atrocious weather for most of the race, the winners’ race distance of 4,101.926km would still have given them fifth place in the previous year's race.
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