In the annals of motorsports, few victories are as unbelievable or remarkable as Ford’s triumph over Ferrari at the 1967 24 Hours of Le Mans. To this day, it remains the only all-American victory, with American drivers in American cars racing for an American team. But just three years later, Ford would withdraw from racing, and its performance program was all but dismantled. Many priceless treasures were tossed away and discarded, including many thought the trophy from the ‘67 Le Mans race.
Amazingly though, Hemmings Auto Blog reports that an anonymous do-gooder saved this trophy from the garbage bin and secreted it away for the past 45 years, only recently returning it to Ford.
In 1967, Dan Gurney and A.J. Foyt crossed the finish line at the 24 Hours of Le Mans in first place in a Ford GT, beating out the famous Ferrari team that had dominated Le Mans for years. This whole venture stemmed from the Ferrari patriarch re-negging on a merger deal with Ford at the last minute. Yet in many ways Ferrari had the last laugh, as a few short years later Ford would disband its racing team.
While the winning GT40 was saved, many other items of historical import were simply thrown out or discarded. But the trophy was saved, snuck out by an anonymous benefactor who kept the trophy hidden for 45 years. It was just recently returned to Ford (albeit a little worse for wear) and it will now be on display at the Henry Ford museum for all to enjoy.