Juan Manuel Fangio, "The Master," is a 43-year-old Argentinian ex-mechanic who in seven years has twice reached the pinnacle of World Championship against the elite of European Grand Prix drivers. Described by the late Professor Ferdinand Porsche, Germany's top designer, as "just the best there ever was," Fangio scored his first triumphs in 1948. He is regarded by many as the suave prima donna of the track because of a studied laziness and condescending politeness highly deceptive to the casual observer. Behind the wheel of a 200 mph Grand Prix machine, his nerves are ice, his judgment faultless and his determination unrelenting. Probably the greatest tribute to Fangio was paid three years ago by Mercedes when, laying their plans for their return to Grand Prix racing, they invited him to head up their team.
Jams Holbrook Kimberly, 47-year-old Chicago sportsman and tycoon, is not only America's No. 1 amateur driver but also an individualist with a flair for elegant dramatization. Driving his 4.5-liter Ferrari to an almost unbroken string of wins at major SCAA events, "Gentleman Jim" has crammed into less than a year a measure of success that normally would take many seasons. He was first attracted to the sport in 1950, and climbed to stylish competence through a succession of ever faster, more powerful cars, finally reaching speeds of 160 mph on his first try with the big Ferrari at MacDill AFB. Suave, handsome and aloof, Kimberly favors bright red racing dress ( SPORTS ILLUSTRATED, Aug. 16) to match his car colors. The proudest feather in his cap was a recent offer from Ferrari to join the team as a reserve driver.