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Jean Guichet: Gentleman racer, Factory driver

October 30th, 2002

By Marcel Massini
All photos by Marcel Massini

The son of a prominent doctor, Jean Guichet was born in Marseille, France, on 10 August 1927. In 1954 he founded Compagnie Marseillaise de Réparations (navales), a company serving the French naval industry. He first raced a Ferrari (a 500 Mondial) in June 1956, at the hillclimb of Serrières-Annonay, and placed 2nd OA. His last race in a Ferrari was at the Le Mans 24 hours in 1967, where he drove a 330 P3/4. He successfully raced a Ferrari 250 GTO at Dakar, at the Nürburgring and in the Tour de France. But Jean Guichet is probably best known for winning the Le Mans 24 hours in 1964 with Nino Vaccarella in the Ferrari 275 P.

Apart from being a regular client in Maranello, one of the typical gentleman drivers of the 1950s and 1960s, Guichet was hired by Commendatore Enzo Ferrari to race the sports and prototype cars. The Frenchman also raced a Dino 206 S in 1966, together with Giancarlo Baghetti and Richard Attwood, in the Targa Florio and at Spa-Francorchamps.

Following an accident during testing in the Camargue region, he decided to abandon racing the sports prototypes. That's also why he did not race the Ferrari 512 S in the 1970 Le Mans 24 hours.

Jean Guichet is a close friend of industrialist and gentleman racer Pierre Noblet and also of Pierre Bardinon, the doyen of all Ferrari collectors. Guichet is now 75 years old but still very interested in all things Ferrari.

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