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8W is forix.autosport.com's motorsport history section and covers the drivers, cars, circuits, eras and technology that shaped the face, sounds and smells of motor racing.

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The Indy 1964 second-lap disaster - Closing in on the truth
Part 5: On Black Noon by Art Garner

Exactly half a century ago the Indianapolis 500 lived through its most horrific overture, a fiery multi-car accident that stopped the race and claimed the lives of Dave MacDonald and Eddie Sachs. The cause of the accident was never established, and so for years, all sorts of theories and myths were allowed to run wild. Four years ago, Henri Greuter attempted to separate fact from fiction in a four-part series on the 1964 inferno.

Now it's time to add a fifth part to the series. Commemorating the tragic events of May 1964, Art Garnerís Black Noon was published just ahead of the 50-year anniversary and is the first book to fully deal with the horror blaze. We review the book while Henri adds his notes.

Dave MacDonald, Sears Allstate Special, 1964 Indianapolis practice

 

2014 Le Mans Classic report
A bigger-than-life experience

Pierre Mellinger/Tommaso Gelmini, Ferrari 365 GTB/4 Daytona, 2014 Le Mans Classic

Itís a treat that only comes once every two years. However, if you are looking to dive into the rich and exciting history of the Le Mans 24 Hours, there is only one place to go. Fittingly, thatís Le Mans itself, where the bi-annual Le Mans Classic has quickly grown into one of the crown jewels on the historic motor racing calendar. We went to taste the atmosphere at the LMCís seventh edition and found that it was bigger than ever.

 

Penske-Mercedes PC23-500I - Mercedosaurus Rex at Indianapolic Park
Appendix 7: a review of Beast by Jade Gurss

At 8W, we're not used to claiming bragging rights, but since it was first published in the fall of 2009, Henri Greuterís 30-part series on the Penske-Mercedes PC23-500I was the only work in the world that solely focused on that most amazing of Indy 500 wins: the one-shot-to-get-it-right victory taken by Al Unser Jr in 1994 driving a Penske PC23 powered by an Ilmor-designed and Mercedes-Benz-badged, purpose-built V8 turbo engine with 'stock-block'-inspired pushrod valve actuation. Yet for all its merits, Mercedosaurus Rex at Indianapolic Park cannot be said to be an inside story, despite Henri having talked to several of the project's key players including Nigel Bennett, Nigel Beresford, Chuck Sprague and Paul Tracy. This has now changed with Beast, a new book by Jade Gurss. Here's our review.

Al Unser Jr, Penske-Mercedes PC23-500I, 1994 Indianapolis 500

 

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