Úvod »Automobily osobní a dodávky»_Osobnosti & konstruktéři » Cunningham: The Passion, The Cars, The Legacy
Cunningham was a name which cropped-up in my earliest memories of Le Mans and as my interest in motor racing developed, I found the longer distance events for Sports Cars far more enticing that the increasingly shorter Grand Prix races. The Cunningham was just a car and I knew nothing about the man behind their existence until my knowledge expanded through an increasingly extensive library of motor racing books and magazines, of which I could never get enough.
With the advent of a functioning International Sporting organisation, World Championship events for Sports Cars and later Grand Prix races gradually included the USA, Briggs Cunningham, among others, was eager take on the challenge of the European giants and grasped the opportunity of establishing America as a legitimate competitor. When the very first event of the newly established World Championship for Sports Cars, in 1953, was won by a Cunningham car, America began to be taken seriously on the World motor racing scene, while the European press begrudgingly included coverage. However, Sebring 1953 was neither a fairy story with a happy-ever-after ending, nor the first time Cunningham had matched himself and his cars against the best that Europe had to offer.
During his lifetime, he had owned and raced a multitude of cars; some of which he kept. In his retirement, he assembled them all together in a collection near his home in California. He spent his time there, with the cars and his extensive library of literature and memorabilia, welcoming visitors and organised groups of enthusiasts. Events were held there, where man of the cars were demonstrated in the huge parking lot of the museum, much to the pleasure of those fortunate enough to have been there.
This work has taken over seven years to complete, with the assistance of numerous people who were there at the time, together with past and current owners of the multitude of cars connected with Cunningham, all of whom have been most forthcoming with information, photographs and recollections. Unprecedented access to the Cunningham family archives, provided by Briggs’ children, in addition to their invaluable support, has enabled this well-overdue recounting of the full Cunningham story, for the first time.
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