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10 Jun 2020

Photos by Porsche AG

50th anniversary of Porsche’s first Le Mans win

Fifty years after Porsche first tasted victory at Le Mans, we relive that pivotal race with its central protagonist

On 13 June 1970, Richard Attwood arrived at the Circuit de la Sarthe in a less than jubilant mood. Porsche had won six of the previous seven rounds of that year’s World Sportscar Championship and expectations were sky high at the 38th staging of the 24 Hours of Le Mans. Less so Richard’s.
“I’d been asked by the factory in February what specification of car I wanted for Le Mans and the new 5.0-litre engine wasn’t proven by that point. We’d dropped out the year before with transmission failure and I didn’t want to stress the gearbox any more than was necessary. So I chose the 4.5-litre.”
An understandable decision at the time, especially from someone who had been cruelly denied at Le Mans the previous summer, retiring after 327 laps – the last car to DNF. Practice and qualifying, however, had done little to encourage Richard and teammate Hans Herrmann.

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