On the peak⬇1966-1970
The Nürburgring victory suggested good things, but at Le Mans the car didn’t survived the evening. The rest of the season was not much better. For the 1967 racing season Hall modified the 2D into the 2F. This car was a big white monster with a huge wing . It won 5 of his 8 entries, including its & Phil Hill’s last race at Brands Hatch. After this race, the FIA changed its rules, outlawing not only the 2F, but also the Ford GT40 Mk.IV (winner at Le Mans that year) & the Ferrari 330 P3/4 and 365 P4 (winner at Daytona). As with the 2D, the 2F raced wearing Texas license plates. The 3 other races it failed to finish, but it was like the other named cars here freaking fast.
But they made a good debut in the CanAm series with 2 new 2E (°65 &°66). Hill & Hall took a double victory at Laguna Seca. Its success caused that other competitors like Mclaren, Lola or Ferrari copied the high wings for 1968.
The 1968 2G was a development of the 2E. It featured wider tires, and a 427 aluminum Chevrolet V8 engine. While on par with its competitors in terms of power, the lightweight 2C chassis was stretched to the limit and it was only Hall’s driving skill that kept the car competitive. For the 1968 CanAm series, still larger tires were added to increase grip.
The car scored no wins, only 3 second places. Hall’s racing career was effectively ended in a severe crash at the Stardust Grand Prix Can-Am race. (more tomorrow)
Never one to be complacent, Hall noted that the increasing down-force also created enormous drag. Seeking a competitive edge, the 2H was built in 1969 as the replacement for the 2G to minimize drag, rather than maximize down-force. However, the anticipated gains in speed were more than offset by the reduced cornering speeds and the car was consistently slower than anticipated.
The car needed a special modification for driver John Surtees (he had bodily issues since a huge crash at Mosport 1965), that they drove the first 5 races with a McLaren M12. Then the 2H completed 5 more races. In the training for his 6th race it was irreparable damaged. The relationship between Jim & John wasn’t well.
For 1970 Jim Hall constructed something really special. But this is another story.
To be continued…
This Ferrari Friday is looking exactly one year back to the 2014 Silverstone Classic. The very un-Ferrari blue and yellow scheme comes courtesy of the Scuderia Ferrari Svezia (Team Ferrari Sweden), with Flygvapnet (the Swedish Air Force) the main sponsor, as it raced in period. As much as I love Rosso Corsa, I have to say the Daytona looks amazing in this Gialloblu paintwork.