Racing legend dies after illness as Le Mans organiser breaks news

559     0
24 Hours of Le Mans runner up Michel Ferte has died (Image: Twitter)
24 Hours of Le Mans runner up Michel Ferte has died (Image: Twitter)

Endurance racing veteran Michel Ferte has died at the aged of 64, after a battle over several months with an unspecified illness.

The news was announced on Wednesday by the Automobile Club de l'Ouest, the organiser of the 24 Hours of Le Mans. Ferte was a regular participant in the famous race in his younger days, taking part no fewer than 13 times in the space of 20 years.

No official cause of death has been given, as the notice said only that he had been suffering from an illness over the past few months. Ferte has not competed at a high level in motorsport for 20 years, since his last appearance at Le Mans.

The peak of that career came in 1991 when, alongside team-mates Davy Jones and Raul Boesel, he finished second in the 24 Hours. Racing in their Jaguar XJR-12, they finished just two laps behind the winning team driving the Mazda 787B.

Before that, he also took part in plenty of single-seater racing including a race win in Formula 3 at Monaco. It proved to be a proud moment for the Ferte family overall, as his brother Alain had won the previous two editions of that same race.

F1 Academy details emerge ahead of new series for female racers to progress rridqziqtqitinvF1 Academy details emerge ahead of new series for female racers to progress

In Formula 2, he did not win a race but did finish third in the 1984 championship thanks to his consistent results. Five podium finishes helped him to finish behind the Brazilian Roberto Moreno and the title winner, Mike Thackwell of New Zealand.

Racing legend dies after illness as Le Mans organiser breaks newsFerte also finished third in Formula 2 in the 1984 season and tested in F1 for Ligier (Twitter)

Ferte got the chance to test an F1 car, signing with Ligier in the mid 1980s. But he never got the chance to race in the premier single-seater class, instead turning his attention to those many appearances at Le Mans up until his 13th and final crack at the race, in 2003.

The Frenchman also appeared in other events on the endurance racing calendar. Highlights included wins in the International GT Series in the 1990s, racing alongside his compatriot Olivier Thevenin.

After beginning his karting career as a 12-year-old, the motorsport bug remained with him for the next five decades. Ferte continued racing in the lower levels and was still making appearances just a few years ago up until 2018.

Daniel Moxon

Print page

Comments:

comments powered by Disqus