The Cuban Grand Prix, also known as the Havana Grand Prix, was a sports car motor race held for a brief period in the late 1950s in Havana, Cuba, last raced in 1960. The 1958 race is best remembered as the backdrop to the kidnapping of Formula One World Champion driver Juan Manuel Fangio by anti-government rebels linked to the 26th of July Movement.[2] There is an exclusive report in the newspaper Zig Zag by the man who allegedly kidnapped Fangio and a note by Fangio.[3]

Cuban Grand Prix
el Malecon
Cuban Grand Prix Circuit. Havana. 1957.jpg
Race information
Number of times held3
First held1957[1]
Last held1960
Most wins (drivers)United Kingdom Stirling Moss (2)
Most wins (constructors)Italy Maserati (2)
Circuit length5.591 km (3.23 mi)
Race length260.50 km (161.50 mi)
Laps50
Last race (1960)
Pole position
Podium
Fastest lap
1958 Cuban Grand Prix.

The race was established in 1957 as Fulgencio Batista envisioned creating an event to attract tourists, particularly from the United States. A street circuit was established on the Malecon. The first race was a success; it was won by Fangio driving a Maserati 300S, leading home Carroll Shelby driving a Ferrari 410 S and Alfonso de Portago in a Ferrari 860 Monza.

The following year the official Maserati team arrived in force with their fleet of Maserati 300S cars and Fangio and Stirling Moss as drivers. On the eve of the race Fangio was abducted from his hotel by an armed man.[2] The Cuban government ordered the race to continue. Moss and Masten Gregory led the race which was red flagged after just six laps. Armando Garcia Cifuentes had crashed his Ferrari into the crowd, killing seven.[4][5]

The 1959 race was cancelled as Fidel Castro's revolution entered its final stages. The race returned in 1960, at a new venue on service roads around a military airfield. Moss, driving a Maserati Birdcage for privateer team Camoradi, had a comfortable victory over NART run Ferrari 250 TR59 driven by Pedro Rodríguez with Masten Gregory third in a Porsche 718.[6]

Winners of the Cuban Grand PrixEdit

Year Driver Constructor Location Report
1960   Stirling Moss Maserati Tipo 61 Camp Freedom[7][8] Report
1959 Not held
1958   Stirling Moss Ferrari 335 S Malecon Avenue Report
1957   Juan Manuel Fangio Maserati 300S Malecon Avenue Report

GalleryEdit

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ "Havana". Retrieved 2018-12-02.
  2. ^ a b Laurence Edmondson (20 July 2010). "Kidnapped in Cuba". ESPN F1. ESPN. Retrieved 24 January 2012.
  3. ^ "Yo Secuestre a Juan Manuel Fangio". Retrieved 2018-11-18.
  4. ^ "A Grand Prix in Havana?". grandprix.com. 24 November 1997. Retrieved 24 January 2012.
  5. ^ Shelby, Carroll (1965). The Carroll Shelby Story. Graymalkin Media LLC. pp. 78, 97–100. ISBN 9781631682872.
  6. ^ "Stirling Moss Race History: 1960 Cuban Grand Prix". stirlingmoss.com. Archived from the original on 18 January 2012. Retrieved 24 January 2012.
  7. ^ http://www.motorsportsmarketingresources.com/short-stories/mmr-stories/1960-havana-grand-prix.html
  8. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2012-01-18. Retrieved 2012-01-24.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)

External linksEdit

See alsoEdit