Fifty years ago Dan Gurney and AJ Foyt devastated the record book breaking Le Mans' 5000 km barrier with the mighty GT40 Mk IV prototype.
It was the first all-American victory in the 24 Hours of Le Mans. Powered by a massively powerful 427 cubic inch stock-block V-8 engine Gurney and Foyt's red number-one simply out ran, out-raced and over-powered a fleet of international challengers.
To celebrate Gurney made racing history and changed the protocols of motorsport's podiums and victory lanes forever.
When handed the victors' Moet & Chandon Champagne, Gurney gave it a good shake and sprayed the surprised crowd with a froth of Moet. Cheers and laughter punctuated the moment. From that day a jubilant spray of champagne has become the winner's right in most top level motorsport competition, except Le Mans!
Since 2002, when Dan Gurney was our honoree, the Amelia Island Concours d'Elegance has preserved and honors Gurney's noble sporting tradition by spraying a salute to the winners of the Concours d'Elegance and Concours de Sport from a Moet jeroboam.
This weekend is the 85th running of the 24 Hours of Le Mans. To mark the 50th anniversary of that landmark Moet salute the staff of the Amelia Island Concours will honor Dan Gurney's and AJ Foyt's all-American triumph with a toast and a spray of Moet, the official Champagne of the Amelia Island Concours d'Elegance.
Salut, Dan! Salut, Moet!