Ferrari put the pedal to the metal in 1957 with new racing cars of magnificent four-cam V-12 power. In spite of Maserati’s V-8 response, Ferrari prevailed in what history would declare the final season for sports-racers of unlimited capacity.
The 1956 season of the World Sports-Car Championship saw Ferrari resuming normal service by taking the trophy. Its role as the season points winner since 1953 was interrupted only by Mercedes-Benz in 1955. Fully expecting Mercedes to carry on for another season, Ferrari armed itself with two 3.5-liter weapons for the 1956 season. One was the 860 Monza, a further evolution of Aurelio Lampredi’s four-cylinder 750 Monza. The other was a completely new V-12, the Type 130, displacing 3,491-cc (73 x 69.5 mm). With Aurelio Lampredi leaving in 1955 to join Fiat, the new twelve was designed under his successor, the youthful Andrea Fraschetti.
Assisting Fraschetti were two engineers of great experience. One was Vittorio Bellentani, who crossed Modena’s Via Emilia from Maserati to turn up at Ferrari. Also at Ferrari was Vittorio Jano. The legendary creator of such classic racing Alfa Romeos as the P2 and P3, Jano came to Maranello with the Grand Prix Lancias gifted to Ferrari during 1955. Although 65-years old, in 1956, the gaunt, bespectacled Jano was still a fount of creative ideas.
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