LeMans 1955 disaster

Discussion in 'Off-Topic Discussion & General Chat' started by CEDRIC, Jan 7, 2017.

  1. #1 CEDRIC, Jan 7, 2017
    Last edited: Jan 7, 2017
    Hi all, I thought this would be interesting for some of you, so..
    When I first got into cars about 3 years ago, I somehow came across the LeMans 1955 disaster. For those of you who don't know, a 24-hour race is being held in the French city of LeMans every year. 35 laps into the 1955 race, after sudden braking of a Jaguar, the car behind the Jaguar had to move to the left and got hit by a much faster Mercedes 300SLR, which then flew into the crowd, killing between 80 and 100 people. For those of you still reading, sorry if the way I'm explaining it is a bit boring, check the links below, there is a whole Wikipedia article, a documentary and even some footage of it.
    So once when I visited my grandfather at that time (3 years ago), and I was randomly searching the stuff he has in his drawers, i came across a money bill, from Mexico if I remember right, that a friend gave to him once. He continued telling how the mentioned friend once wanted to go with him to LeMans but didn't show up. Btw my grandfather worked at the railway and could travel for free by train through all of Europe ;), I can still remember when I could also travel for free (I think) with him as a child, just hop on the train with him without paying and go. He said his friend didn't show up and so he went alone to LeMans from Luxembourg (I checked, about 550km). He talked about an accident on the track there and the way he said it I thought it might not have been something big, but then he said it was in 19-.. was thinking, and I asked 55, and to my surprise it was at that year :O And so he told me the details and it was EXACTLY like described on the internet, but this time I heard it from a real eye-witness, and he said another time that he was about 20 meters away from where it happened.

    My grandfather used to go to the race every year but didn't go anymore after that.
    It was the worst accident in the history of motorsports, and as a result Mercedes and Jaguar quit racing for 30 years, and a lot of safety measures have been taken since then in motorsports, as well as these things created by John Fitch who himself participated in the 1955 race:
    Do you know anyone who has been there?
  2. Great thread man, I'm surprised I've never heard of it.
  3. It maybe sounds a bit edgy, but you got to make mistakes before you improve, so you know what to improve. Good we got lifted tribune's now. And of course the 24h cars a re way more safe than that they were
  4. I imagine what it was like to go there as a fan at that time, must have been a totally different feeling than today, seeing boxes on 4 wheels going at unbelievable speeds.
    It's incredible though how much safer racing is today

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