Le Mans '69

MixedMedia / Acrylic on Canvas
on 1.8” / 45 mm Wooden Museum Frame
63” x 43” / 160 x 110 cm


with Original signatures from Racing Legends
Jacky Ickx & Hans Herrmann

not for sale

The most spectacular car of 1969 was the new Porsche 917 L with an aircooled 12-cylinder engine. Rolf Stommelen took pole position in a 917 L travelling at almost 400 km/h. The first 917 models were regarded as being practically impossible to drive. A fatal accident occurred with a 917 on the first lap, with the remaining two 917’s dropping out after 21 hours before completing half the course.


The Porsche 908 from Herrmann and Larrousse and the Ford GT40 from John Wyer’s team driven by Ickx and Oliver were head to head three hours before the finish. What developed was one of the most exciting Le Mans finales of all time. The 908 was faster than the GT40 on the straights, but the latter enjoyed the advantage in the curves. The cars continually leapfrogged each other, with Hans Herrmann passing the Ford on the long straights and Jacky Ickx countering in the curves before the finish line. However, the full distance of 24 hours was unfortunately not achieved, with Ickx and Herrmann passing the finish line with 20 seconds to go. Consequently, both of them were forced to complete an unplanned additional lap – Herrmann with practically no brakes and Ickx almost out of fuel. Ickx used the deception of his indicator to signal that he was running out of fuel, letting Herrmann pass him so as to drive in his slipstream – and managed to overtake again at the end of the Hunaudieres straight.


Ickx finished with a lead of only a few metres. It was the fourth and last victory in succession gained by a GT40, the vehicle called “Grandmother”. For the 24-year-old Jacky Ickx, this was the first of six victories at Le Mans.