Carrying the #15 on the 1955 Le Mans entry list, one spot below Mike Sparken’s #14 Ferrari 750 Monza chassis 0504M which I looked at some time ago, was today’s featured Maserati 300S chassis #3054 which was to be driven by Roberto Mieres and Cesare Perdisa two weeks after the car had been driven to victory at Monza by Luigi Musso and Jean Behra.
24 laps into the race #3054 was running in second place overall when it retired with a gearbox problem giving the drivers an unwelcome early night. Ironically this occurred 1 lap after the #14 Ferrari had retired with a broken motor.
A second Maserati 300S #3055, driven by Luigi Musso and Luigi Valenzano lasted 239 laps before it’s gearbox also failed making it the last car to retire from the 24 hour classic.
From it’s first four starts, by a 2 litre A 6GS in ’54 another in ’55 along side the two 3 litre cars, in the Le Mans 24 Hours Maserati had yet to record a single finish.
With it’s gearbox repaired Jean Behra drove #3054 two weeks later to victory in the 1955 Portuguese Grand Prix and at the end of 1955 Juan Manuel Fangio drove #3054 to victory in the first Venezuelan Grand Prix.
For 1956 the #3054 was fitted with a long nose body and the car was taken to Buenos Aires where Stirling Moss and Carlos Menditeguy drove her to victory in the 1000km race. Piero Taruffi and Jean Behra then drove #3054 to 5th overall and 1st in class in Sebring 12 Hours.
Carlos Menditeguy teamed up with Jean Behra to drive #3054 in the 1957 1000kms race at Buenos Aires finishing second but 1st in class.
The #3054 was subsequently sold to Venezuelan Escuderia Sorocaima and the known results during his ownership include a 22 overall and 3rd in class finish in the 1962 3 hour Daytona race with Guido Lollobrigida at the wheel.
After Daytona Charlie Kolb bought the car and recorded 2nd place finishes with it at Fernandina Beach and Marlboro before going one better to record a win at Savanah which appears to be the last recorded in period outing for #3054.
The car is seen in these photo’s at the Silverstone Classic with Stephan Rettenmaier at the wheel.
Thanks for joining me on this “Unwelcome Early Night” edition of “Gettin’ A L’il Psycho On Tyres”, I hope you will join me again tomorrow for a look at the first Le Mans winning Bugatti. Don’t forget to come back now !