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Best of the Cahier Archive: Jo Siffert

Submitted by on November 2, 2011

Jo Siffert, or “Seppi” as he was known to his family and  friends, began racing on two wheels before switching to four with a Formula Junior Stanguellini.

The popular Swiss driver  joined the Formula 1 circus as a privateer in 1962 with a Lotus-Climax. His F1 career spanned 96 starts for Brabham, Rob Walker Racing, March and BRM.

A highlight was winning the 1968 British Grand Prix in Rob Walkers 49B at Brands Hatch, holding off Chris Amon’s Ferrari.

1968 brought more success, this time at the wheel of factory Porsche sports cars including 907s, 908s and 917s which he used to win the Daytona 24 Hours and the Sebring 12 Hour races.

In 1970 Porsche bankrolled a drive for him in the March Formula 1 team because they did not want him to move to Ferrari in sports car racing, but the March effort yielded no results.

For1971 he joined his sportscar colleague Pedro Rodriguez at BRM and won his second Grand Prix in Austria.

Sadly at the Race of Champions at Brands Hatch, 35 year old Seppi crashed heavily and the car caught fire. Siffert could not free himself from the burning wreck and he died.

His funeral in Switzerland was attended by 50,000 people and a Gulf-Porsche 917 of Team John Wyer led the hearse and procession through the streets of Fribourg.

This is the latest in our series of  photo specials showcasing the stunning images from the Cahier Archive. The collection, by photographers Bernard Cahier and his son Paul-Henri are part of a massive collection of 400 000 originals of which 17 000+ pictures are currently available on their website.

Images: TheCahierArchive©

Buy prints of these photographs from just $49

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