Jules Moriceau

Jules Moriceau

2/1/1887 - 20/6/1977

French racing driver who was a works driver for Talbot and Amilcar. Entered the Indy 500 in 1929 but crashed out on lap 31.

Jules Moriceau was born in Nantes in France. He worked as a mechanic serving his apprenticeship at Mors and then Darracq.

During the First World War he served as an ambulance driver then in 1919 he went to America and was the riding mechanic for Louis Wagner in the 4.9-liter Ballot in the Indianapolis 500, going out with a broken wheel on lap 45.

He became involved in racing with Talbot who he joined in 1921, initially as a fitter and then as a mechanic in the competition department, looking after Seagrave and Divo, and riding with them at Brooklands, Pena Rhin and the Targa Florio. He also enjoyed some success on the track and though he crashed out of the Le Mans 24 Hour race on lap 98 in 1925, the following year he finished on the podium in the Grand Prix de Provence at Miramas and in the Grand Prix du Salon at Montlhèry.

He finished 4th in the French Grand Prix (Grand Prix de l'A.C.F.) in 1927 driving relief for 'Williams' and at the end of the year left Talbot to become a works driver with Amilcar, winning his class in the Grand Prix d'Antibes (4th overall) in 1928.

In 1929 Amilcar entered an MCO in the Indy 500. The engine was rebored to 1.270 cc and was supercharged. Sponsored by Thomson Products, Moriceau qualified in fifteenth place, beside the Delage 1500 of Louis Chiron. On the 31st lap the car suffered suspension failed which caused Moriceau to spin off into the wall. Forunately energing unscathed, he watched the rest of the race from the stands. Chiron finished 7th despite problems with his tires and magneto.

He retired from racing after the Indy 500 and became the manager of a garage in Paris.

He died in Garches in 1977.

hr with thanks to Gilles Fournier.

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