Juan Manuel Fangio II

Juan Manuel Fangio II

19/9/1956

Juan Manuel Fangio II was born in Argentina and is a former motor racing champion and the nephew of legendary auto racer Juan Manuel Fangio.

Juan Manuel Fangio II was born in Argentina and is a former motor racing champion and the nephew of legendary auto racer Juan Manuel Fangio.

Fangio II grew up meeting some of auto racing's most famous champions of his uncle's era. In 1958, his uncle was kidnapped shortly in Cuba, but Fangio Sr. was later released unharmed. Fangio II inherited his uncle's passion for motor speed sports.

He debuted as a professional auto racer with the IMSA in 1985. He had an award winning career, winning two GTP driver's championships, as well as 2 manufacturer titles when he was racing for Toyota. Fangio II further established his legacy in the world of auto racing by winning the prestigious 12 Hours of Sebring two times (as did his father), posting 21 GTP wins, and establishing an IMSA record with 19 solo victories.

Fangio II held pole position ten times during his career. He made most of his driving career in the United States and was chosen in 1992 and 1993 as an "All-American" by the American Auto Racing Writers and Broadcasters Association, entity which also named Fangio their 1992 driver of the year. His boss was Dan Gurney, who was also a personal friend. While Fangio II also participated in the CART circuit, he did not win any races at CART, a fact that he regretted.

In 1997, Fangio II called Gurney to let him know that he was retiring. He told Gurney that "[He had] discovered that, regardless of what [his] passion says, despite what [he] command[s his] mind to do, [he was] no longer able to give [his] whole being, [his] total focus and the exclusion of everything else to [the] sport that [he] loves", adding that "99 percent is not enough, [he] shall stop".

Said Gurney: "[he was] A gentleman in a drivers suit with a core of steel exuding an aura of Latin American dignity and honor even in the worst of circumstances will be missing from the grid".

Fangio II currently resides in Balcarce, Argentina.

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