Ferrari tok over the Lancia D50 chassis' in July of 1956, after much protracted negotiation. It turned out to be a real gift of a deal, Fiat and Lancia not only handed Ferrari the race car chassis' but all the spares, tools, tooling and bucks. If that wasn't enough drivers Eugenio Castelloti and Mike Hawthorn, plus designer Vittorio Jano now made Maranello their home!  

   Being Ferrari they had to put their own ideas into this new car. For 1956 the car was modified mostly but the return of fluid tanks to the tail and the fairing in of the panniers on each side. These now contained nothing more than the exhausts. Little by little Ferrari changed the D50 until little of the original design remained intact. This led to a rather strained relationship between designer Jano and team boss Enzo Ferrari. Especially when some of Ferrari’s technical improvements didn’t work out so well.     

   When Fangio pitted with a broken steering arm at Monza, for the Italian GP, the problem was traced back to the idea of drilling the arm to save weight! This was the last race of the season and at that point it looked as though the title was going to slip away from Fangio until a most extraordinary act of sportsmanship occurred. Team mate, and closest rival for the 1956 title, Peter Collins pitted his car, saw Fangio out of the race and passed his car to him, surrendering his chance for the title at the same time.    

   Ferrari won five of the eight Championship qualifying rounds that year, three to Fangio and two more for Peter Collins. Fangio took the title by three points from Stirling Moss. Fangio had 30 points, Moss 27 and Peter Collins accepted 3rd in the championship with 25 points.   

   Fangio also won two of the non-championship races that year for Ferrari too.

                                                                     1/24th scale kit.

                                                                        Built by Rod.

   Rod built this model in the late 1950s. It is straight from the box as designed by Merit featuring spoke decals on clear discs for the wheels, such was the technology of the era. The only tools and accessories available were from the older hobbies of woodworking and balse models. Fillers were rare and paints were enamels applied by brush. Detailing was done with wire and scratchbuilt paper tubes. Looking back now this seems a world away from photo-etch, liquid glues and acrylic paints applied by airbrush. Whatever the limitations of the are some fine results could still be achieved.

   J & L Randall Ltd was a British toy manufacturer from Potters Bar, Hertfordshire. Merit was the companies brand for general toys for general toys and it's plastic model kit range flourished in the 1950s and 1960s. Merit kits of aeroplanes and ships were available and the company was heavily into plastic railway accessories. But the the racing cars range is now considered classic and highly sought after today. The range consisted of 14 cars from the 1940s and '50s, two of them (the Alfa 158 and the Talbot-Lago), were sold as 'superkits' and had engine detail.