Friday, November 23, 2012

Ford GT40 Hobbs/Hailwood 1969

Ugo Capeto, Ford GT40 Hobbs/Hailwood 1969. Colored pencil on paper, 9"x12". ©2012.

This is John Wyer Automotive Engineering's Ford GT40 number 23, piloted by David Hobbs and Mike Hailwood at the 1969 Sebring 12 hours endurance race. This is an original colored pencil drawing from a photograph in the book "Sports Car Racing, In Camera, 1960-69" by Paul Parker. The artwork is on Stonehenge archival paper.

The car did not finish the race due to front suspension problems. This late Ford GT40 was powered by the 4.9 liter (302 cubic inch) Ford V8 engine.

The story of the Ford GT40 is said to have started after the failed attempt by Ford to buy Ferrari in the summer of 1963. Not being overly happy by this mishap, Henry Ford II decided he would build a car that would beat the Ferraris in their own backyard, the European endurance race tracks with Le Mans (at the 24 Hours) being the ultimate prize.

It took a few years for the Ford GT40 to win at Le Mans but the success was total with a 1-2-3 finish in 1966 (Mc Laren/Amon, Miles/Hulme and Bucknum/Hutcherson). The Ken Miles/Denny Hulme should have won the race but since the three cars crossed the finish line at the same time (for an historic photo op), it's the car that started the further back from the starting grid that won. The engines on those 1966 cars were the big 7 liter (427 cubic inch) Ford V8s.

The name Ford GT40 is not an official name, Ford GT definitely is though. The GT40 moniker was given by the British press because of the height of the car, which happens to be 40 inches. The moniker kinda stuck and the Ford GT40 made history.

Prints are available at Ford GT40 Hobbs/Hailwood 1969 on

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