Please excuse my english, we do our best…..
Le Mans still Le Mans … in 1959 Aston Martin had managed to win this falous race thanks to its DBR1 driven by Carol Shelby and Roy Salvadori. In 1960 Ferrari against attacked and signed a brilliant victory on its TR60 piloted by Paul Frère and Olivier Gendebien. Aston Martin withdrew from competition to focus on the launch of its new model, the DB4 GT.
In 1961, under pressure from the various importers who had seen sales explode after the 1959 victory, John Wyer, the race service manager for Aston Martin, looked into a new project called DP212. The frame will be DB4 Zagato’s one. This car with an aluminum body would return 80 kilos to the DB4, moreover, its engine will be the six cylinders of the DB4 Zagato model but reamed at 3886 cc powered by three Weber 50 DCO carburetors developing 327 hp. at 6000 rpm. Three years after their first victory at Le Mans, all hopes were therefore allowed for the edition of the 24h of Le Mans in 1962 Weber DP212 will be driver by two great drivers: Graham Hill and Richie Ginther.
The first hours of the race runed perfectly and the Aston Martin led the dance in front of the Ferrari, but unfortunately the engine of the English dropped in the 69th round, leaving victory to Phill Hill and his Ferrari 330.
Aston Martin decided to improve the aerodynamic performance of DP212. The results following the passage in the wind tunnel of the Motor Industry Ressearch Association, modified the rear of the car, which made appear a rear of type « Kamm tail ».
The design of the rear line of the car first descends to rise sharply. This line that will make the heyday of DB6.
David Brown decided to prepare 3 cars for the 1963 season which he named DP214 and DP215, the number 13 is mostly often banned from motor racing.
The three cars were innovative in terms of the chassis. It consisted of an assembly of square section tubes with two light metal firewalls in the middle. The engines were still the one of the DB4, a six-cylinder but pushed to 327 hp. Its positioning is lower and more behind by 22cm than on the DP212 giving a better distribution of the masses. Initially the DP215 should received a 5l V8 engine designed by Tadek Malek but the engine will not be ready in time, it will receive the same engine as the DP214. The rear suspension was independent and based on a double wishbone, the transaxle came from the DBR1. Finally, the car’s weight was still slightly lower than DP212. It was almost impossible to differentiate a 214 from a 215 but the 215 was registered in the prototype category, which left more freedom to the engineers and allowed an engine of 3995 cc.
For the 1963 24h of Le Mans, the Aston Martin DP 214 chassis 194, will be driven by Kimberly and Schlesser with the number 7. For the chassis 195 bearing the number 8 we will find Bruce Mc Laren and Innes Ireland, it will be Phil Hill and Lucien Bianchi who will pilot DP215 with the number 18.
The DP215 had to play the hare, forcing the Ferraris to follow it, hoping an italian engine failer. Unfortunately, it was the Aston Martins who experienced mechanical problems first. The DP215 had to abandon the race on a broken transmission. It nevertheless remained in the shelves by being the first car to have exceeded the 300km mark in the straight line of the Hunaudieres. A little later, it was the engine of the DP214 from McLaren and Ireland which exploded during full acceleration. The chassis 194 engine would not last longer. The car, at the top of its category, had to give up before mid-race on broken piston. The lack of time and preparation had not allowed to place forged pistons in place of the standards. The disillusionment was immense in the Aston Martin box.
The DP214 participated in the Brands Hatch Guard’s Trophy (Innes Ireland), in the Inter-Europa Cup in Monza and in Montlhéry where it won the victory driven by Le Guezec and Jo Schlesser.
The 194 DP214 chassis was entered by a private team at the 24 Hours of Le Mans in 1964, piloted by Peter Sutcliffe and Mike Salmon wearing the number 18 but the car will be disqualified for unauthorized refueling.
The 0195 frame will be highly rugged 1000 km to 1964 when a serious accident Nurburgring killing its driver (Hetreed). Today, there is only 0194 left to represent the DP214.
In 1963 David Brown decided to close the racing department and John Wyer joined the GT40 program with the success we know.
Here is DP212
Here is DP214
I did not have seen DP215 yet.
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