The Juan Fangio Car Racing Museum
The Juan Manuel Fangio Car Racing Museum pays tribute to the quintuple Formula One World Champion and summarizes the history of car racing in a dynamic display of over 50 cars
The Juan Manuel Fangio Museum is one of those museums one should not miss, as it shows car racing not only as a sports discipline but also as an Argentinian passion. In an amusing and documented way, the life of Juan Manuel Fangio, alias “the bowlegged man”, the most famous son of Balcarce, is told in chronological order since his childhood, through the history of the first repair shop he opened with his friend José Duffard, his beginnings as a pilot in 1936, the championships he won in 1951, 1954, 1955, 1956, 1957 and his memorable races until he retired.
The first great impact when one enters the museum is generated by a giant cup located in the entrance hall. It is a gift the Rosario’s Argentinian Association of Driving Wheels gave to Fangio when he returned to the country after becoming World Champion for the fourth time. The impressive award is as high and as heavy as Fangio was in those days. Likewise, the five prizes corresponding to the world championships he won are displayed in this sector, as well as some objects such as boots, gloves and goggles worn by the pilot during the competitions
The tour starts going up the ramps that emulate the race track. The museum, which occupies a total surface of 4,600 square meters, is divided into six levels: “Men and machines, the passion for road racing”, where road racing cars from those days are displayed; “The old repair shop”; “Courage, perseverance and driving talent”, which recalls the period 1936/1948 including the Northern Great International Prize; “Friend, idol and master of us all”, which contains cars and historical facts about great car racing pilots; in “New champions”, the cars presently used in road racing are shown; and, last but not least, “Maximum speed to the world summit” summarizes the period between 1951 and 1958 and displays the legendary Silver Arrow, a W 196 Mercedes Benz with an engine of 8 cilinders arranged side by side which, due to its stylized design, catches everyone’s attention.
In addition to the cars, each level shows trophies, badges and documents related to each period.