Daytona Beach, FL — Belgian Formula 1 and endurance-racing legend Jacky Ickx will join a small group of non-Americans ever inducted into the Motorsports Hall of Fame of America when MSHFA hosts its 32nd Induction Ceremony on March 17.
“The MSHFA is unique in that it honors every form of motorsports, including cars, motorcycles, aviation and powerboats,” said MSHFA President George Levy. “For foreign nationals, only achievements in North America are considered. So, of the Hall’s 260 inductees to date, Ickx joins an incredibly select group that includes Derek Bell, Geoff Brabham, Colin Chapman, Jim Clark, Emerson Fittipaldi, Dario Franchitti, Denis Hulme, Bruce McLaren, Nigel Mansell, motorcycle ace and fellow Belgian Roger De Coster and few others.”
Ickx’s accomplishments in North America include the 1979 SCCA Can-Am title, with five victories in 10 races, plus wins at the 12 Hours of Sebring (1969, 1970), Mosport 1000 kms (1984) and Watkins Glen 6 Hours (1968, 1972, 1977) in everything from Ford GTs to Ferrari 312 PBs and Porsche 956s. He and Mario Andretti also co-drove to victory in the 1972 24 Hours of Daytona that was shortened to six hours that year due to the gas crisis.
Over the course of his career, Ickx set an all-time record for most endurance racing wins with 47, including six overall victories at Le Mans. Ever the experimenter, he entered the 1969 Daytona 500 in a Junior Johnson Ford, but a practice crash left him without a car for the race.
Ickx stepped into the international limelight at 22 when he set the third-fastest qualifying time at the 1967 German Grand Prix in a 1.6-liter Ken Tyrrell-entered Formula 2 Matra against the more powerful 3.0-liter F1 cars. In those days, the organizers added F2 cars to the grid so spectators at the then-14.2-mile circuit would see more action. At season’s end Ickx was crowned European F2 champion.
Soon he graduated to F1 and raced for several teams, including Ferrari, Brabham and Lotus. He collected eight wins, including two Canadian GPs (1969, 1970) and the 1970 Mexican GP, and finished second in the championship both years. Had he won the 1970 United States Grand Prix, which he led easily until his car failed, he might have been that year’s World Driving Champion.
Ickx will be presented for induction by longtime friend and Porsche co-driver Bell (they won Le Mans three times together), who was inducted into the MSHFA in 2012. Inductees are determined by a straight vote among 200 electors, comprised of previous inductees, journalists, historians and other experts on the sport.
In addition to Ickx, who will be inducted in the Sports Cars category, other honorees will be Red Byron (Historic), Chris Carr (Motorcycles), Floyd Clymer (At Large), Wally Dallenbach (Open Wheel), Rick Hendrick (Stock Cars), Tiny Lund (Historic), “Ohio George” Montgomery (Drag Racing) and Ivan “Ironman” Stewart (Off Road).
Get tickets online for the ceremony and/or other events happening March 16-17.