Ferrari Dominated the Winter Races in South America


“Juan Manuel Fangio had recently claimed the first of his five Formula One World Championships, while countryman José Froilán González had also completed a highly successful year in Europe, during which he had made his works Ferrari debut. The 1952 season in Europe was not due to kick off until April that year so, for them and their South American peers, what to do in the meantime, between January and March?”

So begins a tale by expert Tony Watson about what race drivers do in the off season – they follow the sun and continue racing. Three South American countries put together a string of seven races for a “South American Tour”, taking place in January/February/March of 1952 in Brazil, Argentina and Uruguay respectively.

Giants such as Fangio and González were present for the Equipo Argentino, driving Ferraris, and there were several Europeans in attendance, namely Italy’s Felice Bonetto and motorcycle star Nello Pagani, aboard Maserati’s latest. Écurie Gordini also arrived with drivers Robert Manzon and André Simon. A few of the races saw Maurice Trintignant and Yves Giraud-Cabantous in Talbots, while Louis Rosier brought out his Ferrari 375 F1 for himself to drive. There was Thailand’s Prince Bira, plus Brazil’s Francisco “Chico” Landi, who raced his Ferrari 125 F2 in the first five races, and then transferred to a recently purchased 375 F1 model for the last two on Uruguayan soil, and Francisco Marques, who did so aboard Maserati and Ferrari machinery.

South American authority Tony Watson gives you the details, with text and charts of each race, along with never before seen images from the Fundación Fangio at the Museo Fangio – a fine coup, just for you.

The complete story of this epic and memorable adventure is now available in Cavallino 215, the October/November issue. Subscribe today!

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