The story of the mid-engined “Sharknose” Ferraris is one of glory and drama. Outstanding victories, such as winning the Formula 1 Championship in 1961 with American driver Phil Hill, are inextricably linked with profound tragedies–for example, the death of Wolfgang von Trips and fifteen spectators at the 1961 Italian Grand Prix in Monza. Newcomer Giancarlo Baghetti, on the other hand, is immortalised in the record books with three wins in his first three Formula 1 appearances–including the World Championship race in Reims.
The team’s sporting decline in 1962, after a glorious season the year before with seven Grand Prix victories, is pure drama. Constant intervention in team operations by Ferrari’s wife, Laura, drove away the entire leadership cadre of the Scuderia around Carlo Chiti, leaving to 26-year-old Mauro Forghieri the daunting task of running the team’s technical operations. Forghieri rose to the challenge and became one of the towering figures of motor sports.
While the monoposto 156, an icon in the world of Formula 1 and with irresistible styling by Fantuzzi, became a legend, the sports prototypes, also drawn by Fantuzzi, with their low weight and aerodynamically optimized shapes, had an enduring effect on the development of two-seater race cars in the years to follow. They celebrated wins in the Targa Florio, on the Nurburgring, and in the European Hill Climb Championship.
This book, with many previously unpublished images from the archives of the incomparable Bernard Cahier, paints a detailed picture of one of the most exciting epochs in motor sports, and one of its greatest icons–the Ferrari 156, and its prototype siblings, the 246SP and 196SP.