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Hans Herrmann and Le Mans 1970

by | Mar 18, 2012 | Classic Porsche Blog, Porsche People

Porsche legend, Hans Herrmann, has been inducted into the Sebring Hall of Fame. Herrmann’s award came this weekend, during the 2012 12 Hours of Sebring.

Hans Hermann, Juan Manuel Fangio, Karl Kling

2012 was the 60th running of the historic half-day race, an event Herrmann (seen above with Fangio and Karl Kling) won twice in his career. In 1960, he won at Sebring in a Porsche 718 RS 60 shared with Oliver Gendebien, winning the Targa Florio in the same year. Having raced in F1 with Maserati, Cooper and BRM, Hans also raced F1 for Porsche. Lack of success prompted a move to Abarth.

A few years later, Hans returned to Zuffenhausen. The team struggled with the 906 for a couple of seasons before finding their feet in 1968, with the awesome 908. Hans again won Sebring, this time alongside Jo Siffert.

The following year, Herrmann’s 908 missed a Le Mans win by a very narrow margin. In 1970, the baker from Stuttgart made up for it by clinching the first win for Porsche at Le Mans in the 917, alongside Richard Attwood. The car was one of just seven finishers in a race of total chaos.

Hans Herrmann was 42 when he won Le Mans: an age that many drivers of his era did not live to see. After the event, he retired from racing but continues to attend many European and US events.

Now the grand age of 84, Herrmann’s importance in the history of Porsche should not be underestimated. Nor should the affection he is held in amongst the Porsche cognoscenti: one chat with the major players at the Porsche Museum speaks volumes about how Stuttgart regards one of its all-time favourite racing sons.

Congratulations Hans! Well deserved, and many more besides.

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