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There are traditional car racing competitions and then there’s the prestigious 24-hour Le Mans. This 24-hour race is a true test of the strength of a car. The race is known for its hard-to-maneuver turns, especially at the speed of 200mph.

Director James Mangold brought the Le Mans experience to life in the amazing new film Ford v. Ferarri. The movie is about how the two leading car manufacturers of the world came head to head in this competition.

Here are some fun facts about this movie:

Carroll Shelby designed the automobiles

Carroll Shelby was played by Matt Damon in the movie. His character was a WWII flight instructor who later turned to chicken farming and then finds his real calling in racing cars.

He began racing for Aston Martin and brought them to victory in the Le Mans. Unfortunately, health issues drove him to give up competitive racing and that’s when he used his knowledge to develop cars.

Ken Miles was hired to be a test driver

Ken Miles, played by Christian Bale, was one half of the legendary “bromance”. An English race car driver helped the American manufacturer bring home the title.

Miles began car racing after the World War and was known for his impressive record. He was hired for Shelby’s team to not only race, but also develop the cars.

He began racing the GT40s, which won the 24-hour race in Daytona amongst other top car races. Once the cars were developed to the best of their capability, it was time for the Le Mans.

To engineer a photo finish for Ford, Miles stalled for two seconds so that the other two Ford cars could catch up. The three ford vehicles won the race together!

Ford was interested in buying Ferarri

Before the release of the movie, not many people knew about Ford’s interest in wanting to buy the Italian sports car maker. Ferarri rebuffed the sale just before things could be finalized and the CEO of Ford was out to seek revenge! Winning the prestigious Le Mans, in his eyes, was proof in front of the world that they manufactured better cars.

The first attempt at winning this race didn’t fall through for Ford. That’s when they decided to get Carroll Shelby onboard who led them to success.

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