Nino Vaccarella

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Nino Vaccarella
Vaccarella, Nino 1972-07-07.jpg
FIA Super Licence Flag of Italy Italy
Formula One World Championship career
Active years1961 Formula One season-1962 Formula One season, 1965 Formula One season
TeamsFerrari, non-works De Tomaso, Team Lotus, Porsche in Formula One
Races5 (4 starts)
List of Formula One World Drivers' Champions0
Career points0
Pole position0
Fastest lap0
First race1961 Italian Grand Prix
Last race1965 Italian Grand Prix
Vaccarella at 1970 1000km Nürburgring with Ferrari 512S

Nino Vaccarella (born March 4 1933 in Palermo) is a former Sports car racing and Formula One driver from Sicily, Italy.



After winning the 1964 24 Hours of Le Mans, the former headmaster of a nearby school became the local hero of the Targa Florio race after winning in 1965, then repeating in 1971 and again in 1975, when it was no more a World Sportscar Championship event. He also drove the big V12-powered Ferrari 512S in a heroic yet ultimately losing effort in 1970, damaging the car in the final stages.

Vaccarella participated in 5 World Championship Grands Prix, debuting on September 10, 1961. He scored no championship points. He also participated in several non-Championship Formula One races.

Sports car career

Vaccarella teamed with Umberto Maglioli for the 1960 Targa Florio in a Maserati Tipo 61 Maserati, which was owned by the Camoradi team. Maglioli had won the race twice previously and Vaccarella resided on the course. They took the lead in the early afternoon of May 8, maintained it for three laps, and then broke down. The event was won by Joakim Bonnier and Hans Herrmann in a small silver Porsche.[1] Vaccarella was paired with Lorenzo Bandini in the 1965 Targa Florio. The drove their Ferrari around the 10 twisting laps to claim victory in the 447.4 mile Sicilian event. They averaged 63.7 miles per hour and finished in 7 hours, 1 minute, 12.4 seconds.[2] In a Ferrari 330, Vaccarella and Bandini led most of the way in 1966. Their car missed a turn on the 7th lap, ran off the road and was too damaged to continue.[3] Vaccarella had been in the Ferrari when he waved his hand to acknowledge the cheers of enthusiastic fans. He made contact with a retaining wall that was inscribed Viva Nino.[4] Maglioli and Vaccarella piloted a Ford GT-40 to 5th place in the 1967 12 Hours of Sebring.[5] The May 8, 1968 Giornalia Di Sicilia proclaimed in its headline, Only Vaccarella Can Bring Off The Miracle. The meaning had to do with the Sicilian driver's great task of gaining victory in the Targa Florio in his 2.5-litre Alfa Romeo, called the Tipo 33. He was up against four German competitors who were driving Porsche 910 models. The Porsches had recently swept the endurance races at Daytona International Speedway and Sebring Raceway. Few experts gave the four Alfa Romeos much of a chance against the flawless Porsches, but Sicilians were trusting the skill of Vaccarella's driving.[4] Vaccarella qualified 8th for the 1970 24 Hours of Daytona in a Ferrari 512S. This was one of a series of 11 endurance events held in Europe and North America for the 1970 world manufacturers championship.[6] Vaccarella and Toine Hezemans won the 1971 Targa Florio in an Alfa Romeo. They crossed the finish line over a minute ahead of Andrea de Adamich and Gijs van Lennep, who also drove an Alfa Romeo. This race ended the dominance of Porsche, which had finished first in the previous five Targa Florio races.[7] Vaccarella competed in the 1972 12 Hours of Sebring in one of 4 Alfa Romeo 33/3TT's to be entered in the event. His driving partner was Nanni Galli.[8] They qualified 5th after another Alfa Romeo of Rolf Stommelen and Peter Revson, who started third.[9]

Formula One

Vacarella was selected for the 1962 Ferrari Formula One race team by Enzo Ferrari. He was joined by John Surtees, Mike Parkes, Willy Mairesse, Bandini, and Ludovico Scarfiotti.[10]

Complete World Championship Formula One Grand Prix results

(F1 driver results legend 2)

Year Entrant Chassis Engine 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 WDC Points
1961 Formula One season Scuderia Serenissima De Tomaso De Tomaso F1 Alfa Romeo (Formula One)
1961 Monaco Grand Prix
1961 Dutch Grand Prix
1961 Belgian Grand Prix
1961 French Grand Prix
1961 British Grand Prix
1961 German Grand Prix
1961 Italian Grand Prix
1961 United States Grand Prix
NC 0
1962 Formula One season Scuderia SSS
Republica di Venezia
Team Lotus Lotus 18 Coventry Climax Straight-4 1962 Dutch Grand Prix
1962 Monaco Grand Prix
1962 Belgian Grand Prix
1962 French Grand Prix
1962 British Grand Prix
NC 0
Porsche in Formula One Porsche 718 Porsche in Formula One Flat-4 1962 German Grand Prix
Team Lotus Lotus 24 Coventry Climax V8 1962 Italian Grand Prix
1962 United States Grand Prix
1962 South African Grand Prix
1965 Formula One season Scuderia Ferrari SpA SEFAC Ferrari Ferrari 158 F1 Ferrari V8 1965 South African Grand Prix
1965 Monaco Grand Prix
1965 Belgian Grand Prix
1965 French Grand Prix
1965 British Grand Prix
1965 Dutch Grand Prix
1965 German Grand Prix
1965 Italian Grand Prix
1965 United States Grand Prix
1965 Mexican Grand Prix
NC 0
Sporting positions
Preceded by
Ludovico Scarfiotti
Lorenzo Bandini
List of 24 Hours of Le Mans winners
1964 24 Hours of Le Mans with:
Jean Guichet
Succeeded by
Jochen Rindt
Masten Gregory


  1. Bonnier and Herrman Capture 450-Mile Targa Florio in 7:33:8, New York Times, May 9, 1960, Page 37.
  2. 100,000 In Sicily See Famed Event, New York Times, May 10, 1965, Page 46
  3. Mairesse First In Targa Florio, New York Times, May 9, 1966, Page 74
  4. 4.0 4.1 Vaccarella Will Carry Hopes Of Sicilian Auto Fans Today, New York Times, May 5, 1968, Page S27.
  5. Ford's No. 2 Car Is Given 2nd Place, New York Times, April 3, 1967, Page 44
  6. Porsches Capture Next Three Spots, New York Times, January 31, 1970, Page 40
  7. Italian Driver Is Killed in Race Won by Vaccarella-Hezemans, New York Times, May 17, 1971, Page 49
  8. Three Ferrari Teams to Seek Endurance Honors at Sebring, New York Times, March 19, 1972, Page S15.
  9. Andretti Captures Pole at Sebring With Lap Record, New York Times, March 25, 1972, Page 24.
  10. Ferrari Team Named, New York Times, December 2, 1962, Page 253.
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