CAR RACING 1969
Drawing on treasures from the DPPI photo agency’s archives, Car Racing 1969, the fifth volume to join the Car Racing collection published by Éditions Cercle d’Art, offers a unique glimpse into the atmosphere of motorsport at the time. Created in 1965 at the initiative of photographers fascinated by the sound and fury of the track and the bravery of racing drivers, the DPPI agency has always been right where the action is. And, in the 1960s, this expression was not by no means mere metaphor!
Car Racing 1969 reveals a year of sporting and industrial daring, but also one of clashes. Fierce struggles pitted Ferrari versus Ford, Matra and Brabham, Lotus and McLaren, even as a new major rival, Porsche, surged onto the scene. These hard-fought battles delighted the photographers of the DPPI agency, to whom the national — and soon the international — press turned for help.
1969 was also the year when tensions of a different kind emerged. In the month of June alone, two drivers separately raised the issue of safety. Jackie Stewart set the tone, saying ‘I get paid to win, not to die’ at the Belgian Grand Prix, where he questioned drivers’ safety conditions. A week later at Le Mans, Jacky Ickx decided to highlighted the risks associated with the running start by walking calmly to his car – which nowise prevented him from winning the race. These protests were followed by action: the 24 Hours returned to a classic start and the Belgian Grand Prix was removed from the calendar.