In 1966 Ferrari upgraded their 365 P2 cars with body modifications by Drogo. These were used to support the newer 330 P3 for the outright victory at the 1966 24 Hours of Le Mans. Faced with competition from the mighty GT40 Mark II, reliability plagued not only the 365 P2, but the beautiful new 330 P3 which Ferrari had also prepared. For the first time in the 1960s, Ferrari became the loser and Ford won their famous 1-2-3 victory.
The first Drogo Spyder, chassis 0826, was converted from a 1965 Ferrari 365 P2 factory team car. These were the built for the 1965 24 Hours of Le Mans with largest available V12. At 4.4-liters, they were up against the larger Ford Cobras but neither could last the distance, giving the overall victory to the slower Ferrari 250LM.
At the time, the 365 P2 was the ultimate version of the Ferrari 250LM, sharing its spaceframe chassis and overall shape³. From year to year, the body design was upgraded since the series debuted in 1963 with the 250 P. Regulations in 1965 meant that the front windscreen had to be unnecessarily tall and gave the P2 Ferraris a distinct appearance. For 1966, this design was modified by Drogo with purposeful looking scoops in the front intake and a sleeker front windscreen shaped like a parametric curve.
In its new form, the 1966 365 P2 was given by private teams while SpA Ferrari SEFAC fielded the new 330 P3. At LeMans, chassis 0826 #16 was loaned to the English squad Maranello Concessionaires with drivers David Piper and Dick Attwood. It failed to finish the race after 3.5 hours with water pump failure². A sister car, chassis 0828, was prepared for Ecurie Francorchamps as #17. It was driven by Jean Beurlys and Pierre Dumay until it retired after 14 hours with engine problems². The two Drogo Spyders were joined by a third Ferrari 365 P2 Drogo Coupe nicknamed the ‘White Elephant.’ Unfortunately it too didn’t complete the race.
Beyond Le Mans, the Drogo cars were practically retired. Only 0828 was raced afterward at the 1000km Paris, GP Kyalami and Daytona with no results4. Furthermore, the 4.4-liter 365 engine was abandoned in favor of the 4.0-liter 330 unit.
1966 – 1966
1966 Lemans 24 Hour
DOHC 2 Valves / Cyl
3285 cc / 200.5 in³
77 mm / 3.03 in
58.8 mm / 2.31 in
261.0 kw / 350.0 bhp @ 8500 rpm
106.54 bhp per litre
443.04 bhp per tonne
790 kg / 1742 lbs
2400 mm / 94.5 in
1400 mm / 55.1 in
1370 mm / 53.9 in
David Piper, Dick Attwood, Jean Beurlys, Pierre Dumay
Sources and Further Reading.
1.Wimpffen, János L. Time and Two Seats. Motorsport Research Group: 2004.
2.Beehl, Nathan. Ferrari P Cars. Sapphire: 1985.
3.Massini, Marcel.Ferrari 250 LM. Osprey:1983.
4. Pirro, Emanuele. Barchetta.cc. Fantainment Magazin: 1997 – 2009.