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The 44th Grand Prix de l'ACF
IF any spectator has the feeling that he is being starved of motor racing then he should pay a visit to Reims at the time of the French Grand Prix. This year there was a 12-Hour race for Gran Turismo cars, a 30-lap race for Formula 2 cars and a 50-lap race for Formula 1 cars, the last event being the 44th French Grand Prix and being France's contribution to the World Championship series. Altogether there were nearly 15 1/2 hours of continuous racing plus three afternoons and evenings before the weekend for practice, so that anyone who feels that there is too much racing at some English events can rest assured that for real endurance a visit to Reims is well worth while.
Practice started on Wednesday afternoon, the F2 cars going out first and main interest centred around the R.R.C. Walker stable who has two Coopers fitted with fully-enveloping bodywork, with Moss trying both of them. Bridger and Lewis-Evans were sharing the Pa Moss-Gregory partnership. Cooper and Salvadori and Brabham were out in the works Coopers, while MacLaren and Burgess were running with the Sorbiton team, the former driving C. T. Atkins' car. Of the Lotus opposition only Allison turned out, making a very brief appearance in one of the 1957 cars before magneto trouble stopped him. The only thing that stopped practice looking like a Brands Hatch meeting was the lone works Ferrari Dino 156, driven by Collins in view of the strong opposition from the English teams. The 1957 race record stood at 2 min. 38.2 sec. and Moss soon improved on this with the streamlined Cooper, recording 2 min. 37.7 sec., but none of the others could approach it.