1961 12 Hours of Sebring

The Sebring 12-Hour Florida International Grand Prix of Endurance for the Alitalia Group took place on 25 March 1961, on the Sebring International Raceway, (Florida, United States). It was the opening round of the F.I.A. World Sports Car Championship. This was also the second round of the F.I.A. GT Cup.

Sebring International Raceway in 1952-1966
Ferrari 250 TRI



A massive total of 74 racing cars were registered for this event, of which 67 arrived for practice. Only these, 65 qualified for, and started the race.[1]


As was the normal for Sebring and because they was no qualifying sessions to set the grid, the starting positions were decided according to engine size with the 4.6 litre Chevrolet Corvette C1 of Don Yenko and Ben Moore being given first place.[2]


Most of the 40,000 spectators expected Phil Hill to win the race in his Ferrari 250 TRI/61, provided the car lasted the distance.

Stirling Moss had a bad start due to his Maserati Tipo 61 having problems starting as the battery was flat. It took the Englishman over six minutes to coax the car into life. However, after driving flat out for two hours, he handed the car over to Graham Hill. During the third hour, the car was withdrawn as it exhaust system fell apart.[3]

After 12 hours of racing, the race was won the Sefac Automobile Ferrari of Phil Hill and Olivier Gendebien, two laps clear of their teammates. Giancarlo Baghetti, Willy Mairesse, Richie Ginther and Wolfgang von Trips. The winning cars, completed 210 laps, covering 1,081.6 miles after 12 hours of racing, averaging a speed of 89.861 mph. The podium was complete by another Ferrari of Pedro Rodríguez (racing driver) and his brother Ricardo who were a further lap behind.[4][5]

Official ClassificationEdit

Class Winners are in Bold text.

Pos No Class Driver Entrant Chassis Laps Reason Out
1st 14 S3.0   Phil Hill   Olivier Gendebien Sefac Automobile Ferrari Ferrari 250 TRI/61 12hr 02:11.00, 210
2nd 415 S3.0   Giancarlo Baghetti
  Richie Ginther
  Willy Mairesse
  Wolfgang von Trips
Sefac Automobile Ferrari Ferrari 250 TRI/60 208
3rd 17 S3.0   Pedro Rodríguez   Ricardo Rodríguez NART Ferrari 250 TR 59/60 207
4th 10 S3.0   Hap Sharp   Ronnie Hissom Hap Sharp Ferrari 250 TR 59 203
5th 51 S1.6   Bob Holbert   Roger Penske Brumos Porsche Company Porsche 718 RS 61 199
6th 22 S2.5   Jim Hall   George Constantine NART Dino 246 S 199
7th 47 S1.6   Don Sesslar
  Ernie Erickson
  Bob Donner Bob Donner Porsche 718 RS 61 199
8th 16 S3.0   George Reed   Bill Sturgis McCook Window Company Ferrari 250 TR 59/60 196
9th 39 S1.6   Peter Ryan
  Ludwig Heimrath
  Francis Bradley Eglinton Caledonia Motors Porsche 718 RS 61 189
10th 12 GT3.0   Denise McCluggage   Allen Eager Denise McCluggage Ferrari 250 GT SWB 183
11th 4 GT+3.0   Delmo Johnson   Dave Morgan Johnson Chevrolet Chevrolet Corvette C1 181
12th 18 GT3.0   Gaston Andrey
  Robert Publicker
  Allen Newman Scuderia Serenissima Ferrari 250 GT California 180
13th 64 S1.15   Charles Kurtz   Millard Ripley Lola America Lola-Climax Mk.1 179
14th 44 GT1.6   Jack Flaherty   Jim Parkinson British Motors Corp. (USA) MG A 175
15th 66 S1.15   Joe Buzzetta   Glenn Carlson Donald Healey Austin-Healey Sebring Sprite 174
16th 43 GT1.6   Peter RIley   John Whitmore British Motors Corp. (USA) MG A 173
17th 42 GT1.6   Peter Procter
  Bob Olthoff
  Peter Harper Jack Brabhams Motors Sunbeam Alpine 173
18th 37 S2.0   William Helburn
  John Fulp
  Skip Hudson NART Dino 196 S 173
19th 31 S2.0   Briggs Cunningham
  Walt Hansgen
  William Kimberly Momo Corporation Maserati Tipo 60 171
20th 71 S850   George Peck
  Bob Richardson
  John Hoffman Clearwater Motors Osca S750 171
20th 32 GT2.0   Max Goldman   Ralph Durbin S. H. Arnolt Arnolt Deluxe 166
22nd 83 GT+3.0   Bud Gates   Harry Heuer Chevrolet Corvette C Bud Gates, Inc. 166
23rd 87 GT2.0   Bud Seaverns   Robert Hil S. H. Arnolt Arnolt Deluxe 164
24th 33 GT2.0   Tom Payne   Ray Cuomo S. H. Arnolt Arnolt Deluxe 163
25th 65 S1.15   Ed Leavens   John Colgate Donald Healey Austin-Healey Sebring Sprite 161
26th 30 GT2.0   Al Rogers   James Bailey Salter Auto Imports Morgan 4/4 156
27th 58 GT1.3   Ross Durant   Art Swanson Arthur Swanson Alfa Romeo Giuletta Veloce 155
28th 60 GT1.3   Fred van Beuren   Carlos Sales Autosport S. A. Alfa Romeo Giulietta Sprint Speciale 155
29th 26 GT2.0   Ike Williamson   George Waltman George Waltman Triumph TR3 154
30th 29 GT2.0   James Rushin   Don Parsons Suburban Foreign Cars Triumph TR3 153
31st 55 GT1.6   Filippo Theodoli   Freddie Barrette Filippo Theodoli Sunbeam Alpine 153
32nd 1 GT+3.0   Don Yenko   Ben Moore Yenko Chevrolet Chevrolet Corvette C1 151
33rd 59 GT1.3   Allan Jacobson
  Jim O'Brien
  Tom O'Brien Thomas O'Brien Alfa Romeo Giulietta Sprint Speciale 151
34th 40 GT1.6   Paddy Hopkirk   Peter Jopp Rootes Motors, Inc. Sunbeam Alpine 149
35th 46 GT1.6   Ed Gelder
  Bill Fuller
  Peggy McClure Carl Haas Automotive Elva Courier 149
36th 45 GT1.6   Don Horn   Ed Tucker Carl Haas Automotive Elva Courier 144
37th 67 S1.15   Cyril Simson   Paul Hawkins John Sprinzel Austin-Healey Sebring Sprite 144
NC 3 S1.6   George Robertson
  Bill Warren
  Ben Burroughs Red Vogt Chevrolet Corvette C1 133
DNF 50 S2.0   Hans Herrmann   Edgar Barth Porsche Auto Porsche 718 RS 61 Engine
DNF 60 S2.0   Jo Bonnier   Dan Gurney Porsche Auto Porsche 718 RS 61 Clutch
DNF 57 GT1.3   Ralph Troiano   Harry Theodoracopulos Lou Comito Alfa Romeo Giulietta Zagato 103
NC 80 S1.15   Lars Giertz   Bob Liess Abarth DFL Co. Fiat-Abarth Record Monza 110 Water & oil leak
DISQ 56 GT1.3   Charlie Rainville   Jake Kaplan Jake Kaplan Alfa Romeo Giulietta Sprint Speciale Illegal refuel
DNF 25 S3.0   Dave Causey   Luke Stear Rallye Motors Maserati Tipo 61
DNF 68 S1.15   L. Fritz Taylor   James Calhoun Abarth DFL Co. Fiat-Abrath 1000 S Broken head stud
DNF 63 S1.15   Chuck Hall   Alan Ross Lola America Lola-Climax Mk.1 Ignition failure
DNF 26 S2.5   Ed Hugus   Alan Connell NART Dino 246 S Transmission
DNF 69 S850   David Cunningham
  Tom Fleming
  Kent Price NART Osca S1000 Transmission
DNF 20 S3.0   Walt Hansgen   Bruce McLaren Momo Corporation Maserati Tipo 63 Rear axle
DNF 8 GT+3.0   Sherman Decker   Bob Bucher David Ash Aston Martin DB4 GT Broken hub
DNF 48 S1.6   Chuck Cassel   David Lane Association Automovilisti Santaneca Porsche 718 RS 61 Blown engine
DNF 36 GT2.0   Frank Laughton   Robert Bowers A.C. Cars Ltd. AC Ace
DNF 70 S850   Gene Beach
 John Bentley
  Henry Grady Begra Cars Begra-Saab Mk II Engine
DNF 11 GT3.0   Fernand Tavano   George Arents Scuderia Serenissima Ferrari 250 GT SWB Differential
DNF 7 GT+3.0   Bob Grossman   Duncan Black David Ash Aston Martin DB4 GT Broken hub
DNF 2 GT+3.0   Roy Reardon   John Kilbourn Yenko Chervrolet Chevrolet Corvette C1 Blown engine
DNF 24 S3.0   Masten Gregory
  Stirling Moss
  Lloyd Casner Camoradi USA Maserati Tipo 63 Suspension
DNF 27 S2.5   Richie Ginther   Wolfgang von Trips Sefac Automobile Ferrari Ferrari 246 SP Steering arm
DNF 41 GT1.6   Ed Wilson   Vince Tamburo Rootes Motors, Inc. Sunbeam Alpine Oil leak
DNF 21 S3.0   John Fitch   Dick Thompson Mono Corporation Maserati Tipo 61 Transmission
DNF 23 S3.0   Stirling Moss   Graham Hill Camoradi USA Maserati Tipo 61 Exhaust manifold
DNF 38 S1.6   Bill Wuesthoff   Augie Pabst Porsche Car Import Porsche 718 RS 60 Main seal
DNF 35 GT2.0   Leo May   James Johnston A.C. Cars Ltd. AC Ace Accident
DNF 72 S850   Howard Hanna   Frank Manley YBH Sales D.B. Le Mans Valve failure
DNF 9 S3.0   Pete Lovely   Jack Nethercutt Jack Nethercutt Ferrari 250 TR 59 Oil pump
DNS 5 GT+3.0   Jack Moore   Bob Johnson Glenn Campbell Chevrolet Chevrolet Corvette C1 Reserve
DNS 53 S2.5   Robert Publicker   Charlie Kolb Robert Publicker Lotus-Climax 19 Engine
DNS 86 S1.6   Herb Swan   Ed Johnson Lester Castings Porsche 718 RSK Reserve
DNS 1P GT3.0 Yenko Chevrolet Chevrolet Corvette C1 T-car


Class WinnersEdit

Class Winners
Sports 3000 – Class S-12 14 Ferrari 250 TRI/61 Hill / Gendebien
Sports 2500 – Class S-11 22 Dino 246 S Hall / Constantine
Sports 2000 – Class S-10 37 Dino 196 S Helburn / Hudson / Fulp
Sports 1600 – Class S-9 51 Porsche 718 RS 61 Holbert / Penske
Sports 1150 – Class S-7 64 Lola-Climax Mk.1 Kurtz / Ripley
Sports 850 – Class S-5 71 Osca S750 Peck / Hoffman / Richardson
Grand Touring +3000 – Class GT-13/15 4 Chevrolet Corvette C1 Johnson / Morgan
Grand Touring 3000 – Class GT-11/12 12 Ferrari 250 GT SWB McCluggage / Eager
Grand Touring 2000 – Class GT-10 32 Arnolt Deluxe Goldman / Durbin
Grand Touring 1600 – Class GT-9 44 MGA Flaherty / Parkinson
Grand Touring 1300 – Class GT-8 58 Alfa Romeo Giuletta Spider Veloce Durant / Swanson


Standings after the raceEdit

Pos Championship Points
1   Ferrari 8
2   Porsche 2
  • Note: Only the top five positions are included in this set of standings.

Championship points were awarded for the first six places in each race in the order of 8-6-4-3-2-1. Manufacturers were only awarded points for their highest finishing car with no points awarded for positions filled by additional cars. Only the best 3 results out of the 5 races could be retained by each manufacturer. Points earned but not counted towards the championship totals are listed within brackets in the above table.


  1. ^ a b c "Sebring 12 Hours 1961 - Racing Sports Cars".
  2. ^ "Sebring 12 Hours 1961 - Entry List - Racing Sports Cars".
  3. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2012-05-08. Retrieved 2016-08-28.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  4. ^ a b c "Reference at www.teamdan.com". Archived from the original on 2008-10-10. Retrieved 2016-08-28.
  5. ^ a b "Sebring 12 Hours 1961 - Race Results - Racing Sports Cars".

Further readingEdit

  • Alec Ulmann. The Sebring Story. Chilton Book Company. ASIN B0006CUAP2.

World Sportscar Championship
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24 Hours of Le Mans
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Targa Florio
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4 Hours of Sebring
1961 season Next race:
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