Gijs van Lennep was reunited last weekend during the successful Historic Grand Prix Zandvoort with his Porsche 917 with the starting number 22. Together with the Austrian Helmut Marko, he won the 1971 Hour of Le Mans in 24. Many good memories were revived for the driver.
The presence of the Le Mans winner Gijs van Lennep and his famous car was one of the highlights of the Historic Grand Prix Zandvoort last weekend. Porsche was again prominent as one of the official and major partners of the festival.
An important attraction was the Porsche 917 with the starting number 22, with which Gijs van Lennep won the 1971 Hour of Le Mans in 24. One of the greatest drivers in Dutch history gained a lot of fame by winning the 917. In 1976 he did it again with a Porsche 936 Turbo. His fame was clearly noticeable during the Historic Grand Prix Zandvoort. He put his signature hundreds of times. And there was a kind word for everyone. Gijs van Lennep would have liked to ride a few laps on the dune circuit with the Le Mans winner from 1971. However, the structural condition of the Porsche 917 prevented that. The car with chassis number 917-053 has a magnesium chassis that has become dangerously brittle after more than forty years. “After I put him out at Le Mans, he disappeared in the factory museum. He is still there. I still think the 917 is one of the nicest racers Porsche has ever built. ”
Fourth edition of the Historic Grand Prix
The fourth edition of the Historic Grand Prix Zandvoort was also controversial in other respects. In total 52.500 spectators enjoyed a three-day program in the seaside resort of Zandvoort, in which historic motorsport and demos were central. The FIA Masters Historic Formula One Championship and two racing series with Grand Prix Cars revived the times of the Formula 1 Grand Prix of the Netherlands. Races with formula cars, touring cars and GTs offered the spectators a good overview of decades of motorsport history. Also bSpecial demos and the parade of racing cars through the center of Zandvoort gave the Noordhollandse event a historic character. The performance of Freddie Hunt in a Formula 1 Hesketh was experienced as special. He paid tribute to his father James Hunt, who surprisingly in 1975 with a Hesketh 308 - before Niki Lauda- - was the first to cross the finish line of the 24e GP of the Netherlands.
On to next year
The organization is now working on next year's edition. Then it becomes celebrated the first anniversary of the Historic Grand Prix Zandvoort. The Zandvoort Circuit Park and the Historical Auto Ren Club have already made the first contacts for the next historic Grand Prix spectacle in the renowned Dutch coastal town.