In just mere weeks it will be Ferraris as far as the eye can see at Daytona International Speedway when a truly world-class event, the Ferrari Finali Mondiali, comes to the World Center of Racing, December 1-4.
One of racing’s most successful manufacturers, this is only the latest example of a longstanding tradition of Ferraris at Daytona International Speedway. In anticipation of the coming event, we dug into our archives and looked at one of Ferrari’s finest chapters– the 1967 Rolex 24 At DAYTONA.
The 1967 season was the story of redemption for a Ferrari racing operation that was seeking to rebound from a 1966 racing season that saw Ford claim a 1-2-3 finish at both the Rolex 24 and the 12 Hours of Sebring, along with a victory at the 24 Hours of Le Mans.
At 68 years old, Enzo Ferrari was as hungry as ever to put Ferrari back in the winner’s circle. Thus, he empowered legendary Ferrari engineer Mauro Forghieri with a great amount of freedom in developing something new. What he would come up with would be one of the great race cars of the era.
The Ferrari 330 P4, as it became known, was upgraded with a 4-liter V12 engine, which gave it 30 more horsepower than its P3 predecessor. In addition, wider tires, more reliable wheels and a 5-speed gearbox were key features in this soon-to-be dominant car that saw several other refinements.
Ferrari produced two new Ferrari fuel-injected 330 P4s to challenge Ford, along with one reconditioned 330 P3.
In late 1966, Enzo Ferrari flew his team and the new 330 P4’ to New York City, whereupon they were driven in trailers to Daytona Beach, Florida for a private week of testing at Daytona International Speedway.
It was during this testing session that Chris Amon, who drove a Ford in the previous year’s Rolex 24, gave his long-remembered quote comparing the new Ferraris by explaining, “It’s rather like driving a truck compared to a car.”
Ultimately, Amon was right as all of Ferrari’s preparation paid off.
They dominated the 1967 Rolex 24 At DAYTONA, with their top three cars staging a 1–2–3 side-by-side parade finish at the start/finish line
The No. 23 factory-backed Ferrari 330P4 driven by Lorenzo Bandini and Amon won the race, followed by their teammates Mike Parkes and Ludovico Scarfiotti in the No. 24 330P4. The No. 26 Ferrari 330P3/412P entered by Luigi Chinetti Sr. came home in third place driven by Pedro Rodriguez and Jean Guichet.
Not long after the 1967 sweep at DAYTONA, Ferrari driver Mike Parkes commissioned a painting of the 1-2-3 finish, presenting it to Enzo Ferrari as a birthday gift. The legendary Prancing Horse founder prominently displayed the painting on his office walls until his death in 1988.
Don’t miss out of the next great Ferrari moment at Daytona International Speedway as, for the first time ever, the Ferrari Finali Mondiali comes to North America. Come see Formula One, GT, XX Programme and Challenge cars on the legendary high banks of DAYTONA, December 1-4.
Get your tickets today at 1-800-PITSHOP or at daytonainternationalspeedway.com.