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This print is based on one of events entered by the Mecom Racing Team, the 1963 12h Sebring, where it was driven 4th overall and 1st in the GT class by Roger Penske and Augie Pabst. It appears the car was modified for this endurance event including the conversion to three side vents on the front wing, probably to aid cooling for the 12 hour race. In the early 1970’s the car was fitted with the engine from a crash damaged Ferrari 250GT #6045 and the shell painted red.
In 1985 the GTO was purchased by Ralph Lauren for his now well known car collection and in 1987 the car was reunited with it’s matching numbers original engine.
The Ferrari 250 GTO model was the ultimate development of the company’s 250 GT series in competition form, whilst still being useable as a road car, so it was still able to be driven to the track, raced and driven home. It made its public debut at the annual pre-season Ferrari press conference in January 1962, and made its competition debut in the Sebring 12 Hour Race, driven by Phil Hill and Olivier Gendebien, where it finished second overall to a Ferrari 250 Testa Rossa sports racing car, and won the GT category in the process.
Part of the lure of the GTO is its exclusivity as only 39 were built. In theory at least 100 should have been built, as this was the number required to qualify the car at the time for international sports car racing. In fact the letters "GTO" stand for "Gran Turismo Omologato" which translates into "Grand Touring Homologated" or "approval for racing". It was either Enzo Ferrari's name or his inscrutable charm that enabled the rule makers to let the technicality slip by. Not counted as part of the 39 is s/n 2643 GT, the GTO prototype built by Pininfarina on a 250 GT SWB chassis. This is why the total Ferrari GTO count is sometimes listed as 40.