Juan Manuel Fangio 100 years posted on 21 June 2011
Maserati honours one of its favourite ‘sons’ by reminding motor racing fans around the world of what would have been the 100th birthday of the legendary Juan Manuel Fangio.
Celebrations will continue here in the UK at the Goodwood Revival (16-18 September 2011), of which Maserati is a proud sponsor. Their annual feature tribute will be to Juan Manuel Fangio, on the centenary of his birth and 60th anniversary of him winning the first of his five world championships. A daily track parade will include a variety of his most famous cars, to honour the life and achievements of this incredible man.
Born in Balcarce, Argentina on 24 June 1911, Fangio’s name will be forever linked with some of the greatest accomplishments in the history of motorsport.
A winner of five Formula One World Championships, Fangio took two of his titles in Maseratis, bringing the most coveted prize in racing back to Maserati’s Modena home in 1954 and 1957.
Fangio will forever be remembered for saving the greatest drive of his life to win his fifth and final World Championship in a Maserati 250F.
On August 4, 1957, he lost the lead at the Nürburgring by pitting to refuel – an unheard-of strategy at the time – but went on to drive an incredible race, repeatedly smashing the lap record, closing a 1 min 48 s gap and overtaking the two leading Ferraris to achieve his final Grand Prix victory. At the end of the race, Fangio confessed that he had driven “in a state of grace” and that it was the best he had ever driven in his life.
The son of Italian emigrants to Argentina, Fangio always maintained a special relationship with Italy and, in particular, with Modena and Maserati.
The echo of one of his famous statements still resounds at Maserati’s headquarters in viale Ciro Menotti in Modena: “I raced and won with cars of all makes, but I always had a special relationship with Maserati. Not only were they safe and reliable cars always on the cutting edge of technology, but there was a relationship of friendship and a special atmosphere between the brand and I…felt at home.”