1969 Spa 24 Hours
After success in the 1968 Marathon de la Route, in 1969 Mazda entered the world famous Spa 24 Hour race with three R100 coupes.
Held on the ultra-fast 14km Spa Francorchamps circuit this dangerous race tragically claimed the life of Mazda driver Leon Dernier, yet the Mazda team bravely continued to race.
Against competition from BMW, Lancia, NSU, Gordini, Mini, Alfa Romeo and Porsche, the remaining Mazda R100s finished fifth and sixth, behind four Porsche 911s. The little rotary powered coupes had proved their speed and reliability in one of Europe’s toughest races, while repeating the success of the Cosmo the year before, a R100 finished fifth in the 1969 Marathon de la Route.
Did you know? The R100’s twin-rotor engine produced 200bhp at 9,000rpm, while the unsilenced noise of the rotary engine left European fans in no doubt about the unique engine under the bonnet.