Kristianstad is a city and the seat of Kristianstad Municipality, Skåne County, Sweden with 40,145 inhabitants in 2016. During the last 15 years, it has gone from a garrison town to a developed commercial city, today attracting visitors in the summertime from Germany and The Netherlands; the city was founded in 1614 by King Christian IV of Denmark, the city's name means'Town of Christian', as a planned city after the burning of the nearby town of Vä and moving the city rights of the neighbouring town of Sölvesborg and Åhus to the new town. The purpose of the town was to safeguard the eastern half of the Danish province of Scania against any future raids from Sweden in the north, but as a symbol of the power of Christian himself. One of these raids had sacked the nearby town of Vä in 1612. Vä lost its charter and the people were moved to the new, better fortified city; the king founded the town of Christianopel in eastern Blekinge to serve a similar purpose. Construction of the towns was a great prestige project for the king, Kristianstad's church is considered by many to be one of the most beautiful buildings constructed by King Christian IV, or northern Europe's most beautiful Renaissance church.
This meant that the church was built larger than there was use for. The king wanted castle or fortress constructed inside the town but shortage of funds made this impossible, of the intendend castle only an arsenal was constructed which today serves as the main building of the local museum. In Christianstad the town planning of the Renaissance could be laid down for the first time at the foundation of the town; this makes the Kristianstad town centre of today easy to get around in. The city's coat of arms depicts two lions holding the King Christian IV's crowned insignia, the monogram C4; the coat of arms was only modified after the Swedish takeover following the 1658 Treaty of Roskilde in which the eastern third of Denmark was ceded to Sweden. The coat of arms is similar to the coat of arms of the former town of Christianopel in eastern Blekinge, a town founded by Christian IV. Since 1971, the coat of arms is used by Kristianstad Municipality. Kristianstad's coat of arms is one of the few coat of arms in the world depicting a foreign king's or queen's coat of arms.
A reason for the Swedes to continue using the old coat of arms could be its colours – blue and yellow. Pylyp Orlyk was after 1709 chosen as a Hetman in exile by the cossacks and the Swedish king Charles XII. While in Bender Orlyk wrote one of the first state constitutions in Europe; this Constitution of Pylyp Orlyk was confirmed by Charles XII and it names him as the protector of Ukraine. After 1714 Orlyk now together with several other cossacks followed the Swedish king Charles XII to Sweden. Orlyk with his family and about 40 other Cossacks arrived in Ystad, Sweden in late November 1715. After some months in Ystad they lived in the city of Kristianstad for some years. Orlyk wrote numerous proclamations and essays about Ukraine including the 1710 Constitution of Pylyp Orlyk. Kristianstad served as capital of Kristianstad County between 1719 and 1997, it now houses the regional parliament of the Skåne Regional Council. For a long time Kristianstad was a important garrison town, the A3 Wendes Artillery Regiment and the P6 South Scanian Infantry Regiment being the towns most prominent military units.
The town housed for many years the so-called Scanian Fortification Brigade. The Wendes Artillery Regiment served with distinction in the Napoleonic Wars. One of Sweden's higher courts of appeal was located in Kristianstad before being moved to Malmö in 1917. Sweden's lowest point, at 2.41 meters below mean sea level, is located in Kristianstad. Because of this, parts of the city have to be protected from flooding by a system of levees and water pumps. To expand the city, large areas of low-lying wetlands have had to be walled in to the east. To prevent future flooding of the city center, the existing levees are in the process of being reinforced and new levees against both Helge å and Hammarsjön are under construction. An extensive system of ponds and dams is under construction; the threat of flooding became substantial during late winter 2002, when the greater part of the public park Tivoliparken was under water. However, the wetlands around the city are starting to be regarded more as an asset, not least thanks to the creation of Kristianstads Vattenrike Biosphere Reserve.
Today the Vattenriket is a Unesco biosphere reserve. Kristianstad straddles the line between an oceanic climate and a humid continental climate typical of southern Sweden; the marine influence is greater during a season that averages above the freezing point. Summers are comparatively long by Swedish standards. Kristianstad has by now crossed a vital threshold, as the city and adjacent municipality, with a population of 80,000, in essence use no oil, natural gas or coal to warm homes and businesses throughout the extensive chilly winters, it is an absolute turnaround from 20 years ago. Absolut Vodka, owned by Pernod Ricard, is produced by the town of Åhus located within the municipality. Kristianstad was the main military seat in Scania for a long time, boosting military camps and trainings. After the reforms and military cutbacks of the 1990s all of these have been closed, although a new military presence is being established in nearby Rinkaby which holds an old military training ground. In and around Kristianstad are numerous enterprises concerned with agricul
Monza is a city and comune on the River Lambro, a tributary of the Po in the Lombardy region of Italy, about 15 kilometres north-northeast of Milan. It is the capital of the Province of Brianza. Monza is best known for its Grand Prix motor racing circuit, the Autodromo Nazionale Monza, which hosts the Formula One Italian Grand Prix with a massive Italian support tifosi for the Ferrari team. On 11 June 2004 Monza was designated the capital of the new province of Brianza; the new administrative arrangement came into effect in summer 2009. Monza is the third-largest city of Lombardy and is the most important economic and administrative centre of the Brianza area, supporting a textile industry and a publishing trade. Monza hosts a Department of the University of Milan Bicocca, a Court of Justice and several offices of regional administration. Monza Park is one of the largest urban parks in Europe. Monza is located in the high plains of Lombardy, between Brianza and Milan, at an altitude of 162 metres above sea level.
It is 15 kilometres from the centre of the region's capital, although when considering the cities borders, they are separated by less than 5 km. Monza is about 40 km from Como. Monza shares its position with Milan in the same metro area, is a big part of its new province. Monza is crossed from north to south by the River Lambro; the river enters Monza from the north, between Via Via Zanzi streets. This is an artificial fork of the river, created for defensive purposes in the early decades of the 14th century; the fork is known as Lambretto and it rejoins the main course of the Lambro as it exits to the south, leaving Monza through the now demolished ancient circle of medieval walls. Another artificial stream is the Canale Villoresi, constructed in the late 19th century. Monza has a typical submediterranean climate of the Po valley, with cool, short winters and warm summers. Precipitation is abundant, with most occurring in the least in winter and summer. Funerary urns found in the late 19th century show that humans were in the area dating at the least to the Bronze Age, when people would have lived in pile dwelling settlements raised above the rivers and marshes.
During the Roman Empire, Monza was known as Modicia. During the 3rd century BCE, the Romans subdued the Insubres, a Gaul tribe that had crossed the Alps and settled around Mediolanum. A Gallo-Celtic tribe the Insubres themselves, founded a village on the Lambro; the ruins of a Roman bridge named. Theodelinda, daughter of Garibald I of Bavaria and wife of the Lombard king Authari, chose Monza as her summer residence. Here in 595 she founded an oraculum dedicated to St. John the Baptist. According to the legend, asleep while her husband was hunting, saw a dove in a dream that told her: modo indicating that she should build the oraculum in that place, the queen answered etiam, meaning "yes". According to this legend, the medieval name of Monza, "Modoetia", is derived from these two words, she had a palace built here. Berengar I of Italy located his headquarters in Monza. A fortified castrum was constructed to resist the incursions of the Hungarians. Under Berengar's reign, Monza enjoyed a certain degree of independence: it had its own system of weights and measures, could seize property and mark the deeds with their signatures.
Berengar was generous evident by the donation of numerous works to the Monza Cathedral, including the famous cross, by giving large benefits to its 32 canons and other churches. In 980 Monza hosted Emperor Otto II inside the walled city; the Glossary of Monza, one of the earliest examples of the evolution of Italian language dates to the early 10th century. In 1000 Emperor Otto III became the protector of Monza and its possessions: Bulciago, Lurago and Garlate. In 1018, Lord of Monza, was consecrated bishop of Milan, resulting in the city losing its independence from its rival; these years saw a power struggle between the emperor Conrad II, Aribert. When the emperor died, he left important donations to the church of Monza. In the 12th century, it is estimated. Agriculture was the main occupation. In 1128 Conrad III of Hohenstaufen was crowned King of Italy in the Church of San Michele at Monza. In 1136 emperor Lothair III guaranteed the independence of the clergy of Monza from Milan. Monza subsequently regained its autonomy, not limited to the feudal government of lands and goods.
This autonomy was never absolute, as the church of Monza was not able to cut its ties from the bishop of Milan. Frederick I Barbarossa visited Monza twice. In this period the city again regained its independence from a city hostile to the emperor. Frederick declared that Monza was his property and gave the Curraria, a right granted only to royal seats. During the period of the struggle against Milan and other cities of the Lombard League, Monza was prim
Morocco the Kingdom of Morocco, is a country located in the Maghreb region of North West Africa with an area of 710,850 km2. Its capital is the largest city Casablanca, it overlooks the Mediterranean Sea to the Atlantic Ocean to the west. Morocco claims the areas of Ceuta, Melilla and Peñón de Vélez de la Gomera, all of them under Spanish jurisdiction. Since the foundation of the first Moroccan state by Idris I in 788 AD, the country has been ruled by a series of independent dynasties, reaching its zenith under the Almoravid and Almohad dynasties, spanning parts of Iberia and northwestern Africa; the Marinid and Saadi dynasties continued the struggle against foreign domination, allowing Morocco to remain the only northwest African country to avoid Ottoman occupation. The Alaouite dynasty, which rules to this day, seized power in 1631. In 1912, Morocco was divided into French and Spanish protectorates, with an international zone in Tangier, it regained its independence in 1956, has since remained comparatively stable and prosperous by regional standards.
Morocco claims the non-self-governing territory of Western Sahara Spanish Sahara, as its Southern Provinces. After Spain agreed to decolonise the territory to Morocco and Mauritania in 1975, a guerrilla war arose with local forces. Mauritania relinquished its claim in 1979, the war lasted until a cease-fire in 1991. Morocco occupies two thirds of the territory, peace processes have thus far failed to break the political deadlock; the unitary sovereign state of Morocco is a constitutional monarchy with an elected parliament. The King of Morocco holds vast executive and legislative powers over the military, foreign policy and religious affairs. Executive power is exercised by the government, while legislative power is vested in both the government and the two chambers of parliament, the Assembly of Representatives and the Assembly of Councillors; the king can issue decrees called dahirs. He can dissolve the parliament after consulting the Prime Minister and the president of the constitutional court.
Morocco's predominant religion is Islam, its official languages are Arabic and Berber. E; the Moroccan dialect of Arabic, referred to as Darija, French are widely spoken. Moroccan culture is a blend of Berber, Sephardi Jews, West African and European influences. Morocco is a member of the Union for the Mediterranean and the African Union, it has the fifth largest economy of Africa. The full Arabic name al-Mamlakah al-Maghribiyyah translates to "Kingdom of the West". For historical references, medieval Arab historians and geographers sometimes referred to Morocco as al-Maghrib al-Aqṣá to distinguish it from neighbouring historical regions called al-Maghrib al-Awsaṭ and al-Maghrib al-Adná; the basis of Morocco's English name is Marrakesh, its capital under the Almoravid dynasty and Almohad Caliphate. The origin of the name Marrakesh is disputed, but is most from the Berber words amur akush or "Land of God"; the modern Berber name for Marrakesh is Mṛṛakc. In Turkish, Morocco is known as a name derived from its ancient capital of Fes.
However, this was not the case in other parts of the Islamic world: until the middle of the 20th century, the common name of Morocco in Egyptian and Middle Eastern Arabic literature was Marrakesh. The English name Morocco is an anglicisation of the Spanish "Marruecos", from which derives the Tuscan "Morrocco", the origin of the Italian "Marocco"; the area of present-day Morocco has been inhabited since Paleolithic times, sometime between 190,000 and 90,000 BC. A recent publication may demonstrate an earlier habitation period, as Homo sapiens fossils discovered in the late 2000s near the Atlantic coast in Jebel Irhoud were dated to 315,000 years before present. During the Upper Paleolithic, the Maghreb was more fertile than it is today, resembling a savanna more than today's arid landscape. Twenty-two thousand years ago, the Aterian was succeeded by the Iberomaurusian culture, which shared similarities with Iberian cultures. Skeletal similarities have been suggested between the Iberomaurusian "Mechta-Afalou" burials and European Cro-Magnon remains.
The Iberomaurusian was succeeded by the Beaker culture in Morocco. Mitochondrial DNA studies have discovered the Saami of Scandinavia; this supports theories that the Franco-Cantabrian refuge area of southwestern Europe was the source of late-glacial expansions of hunter-gatherers who repopulated northern Europe after the last ice age. Northwest Africa and Morocco were drawn into the wider emerging Mediterranean world by the Phoenicians, who established trading colonies and settlements in the early Classical period. Substantial Phoenician settlements were at Chellah and Mogador. Mogador was a Phoenician colony as early as the early 6th century BC. Morocco became a realm of the Northwest African civilisation of ancie
Alan Stacey was a British racing driver. He began his association with Lotus when he built one of the MkVI kits being offered by the company. Having raced this car he went on to build an Eleven campaigning it at Le Mans under the Team Lotus umbrella. During the following years he spent much time developing the Lotus Grand Prix cars, most notably the front engined 16 and the 18, he participated in 7 Formula One World Championship Grands Prix, debuting on 19 July 1958. He scored no championship points, he participated in several non-Championship Formula One races. Stacey teamed with P. H. Ashdown in a Lotus 1098cc in the 1957 24 hours of Le Mans, they finished 9th with an average speed of 159.458 km/h. The top four places were taken by British Jaguar Racing teams. Stacey drove a Lotus-Climax to victory at Aintree, in a July 1959 race for sports cars of 1400cc to two litres, his time was 37 minutes 39.4 seconds. Stacey was killed during the 1960 Belgian Grand Prix, at Spa-Francorchamps, when he crashed at 120 mph after being hit in the face by a bird on lap 25, while lying sixth in his Lotus 18-Climax.
Stacey went off the road on the inside of fast, sweeping right hand Burnenville curve, climbed a waist-high embankment, penetrated ten feet of thick hedges, fell into a field. He died within a few minutes of Chris Bristow, within a few hundred feet of that wreck. In a mid-1980s edition of Road and Track Magazine, Stacey's friend and teammate Innes Ireland wrote an article about Stacey's death, in which he stated some spectators claimed a bird had flown into Stacey's face while he was approaching the curve knocking him unconscious, or possibly killing him by breaking his neck or inflicting a fatal head injury, before the car crashed. Stacey's driving was "conservative" according to one observer. Stacey's original Lotus VI was purchased from its owner by the Stacey Family and underwent complete, but sympathetic restoration in the hands of Stacey's schoolfriend, VSCC, Bentley Drivers Club and Historic Grand Prix Drivers Association racer, Ian Bentall who had helped construct the car; the Lotus is still in the hands of the Stacey Family where it makes occasional appearances on the track
Reims, a city in the Grand Est region of France, lies 129 km east-northeast of Paris. The 2013 census recorded 182,592 inhabitants in the city of Reims proper, 317,611 inhabitants in the metropolitan area, its primary river, the Vesle, is a tributary of the Aisne. Founded by the Gauls, it became a major city during the period of the Roman Empire. Reims played a prominent ceremonial role in French monarchical history as the traditional site of the crowning of the kings of France; the Cathedral of Reims housed the Holy Ampulla containing the Saint Chrême brought by a white dove at the baptism of Clovis in 496. It was used for the most important part of the coronation of French kings. Reims functions as a subprefecture of the department of Marne, in the administrative region of Grand Est. Although Reims is by far the largest commune in its department, Châlons-en-Champagne is the prefecture. Before the Roman conquest of northern Gaul, founded circa 80 BC as *Durocorteron, served as the capital of the tribe of the Remi — whose name the town would subsequently echo.
In the course of Julius Caesar's conquest of Gaul, the Remi allied themselves with the Romans, by their fidelity throughout the various Gallic insurrections secured the special favour of the imperial power. At its height in Roman times the city had a population in the range of 30,000 - 50,000 or up to 100,000. Christianity had become established in the city by 260, at which period Saint Sixtus of Reims founded the bishopric of Reims; the consul Jovinus, an influential supporter of the new faith, repelled the Alamanni who invaded Champagne in 336. In 496 – ten years after Clovis, King of the Salian Franks, won his victory at Soissons — Remigius, the bishop of Reims, baptized him using the oil of the sacred phial – purportedly brought from heaven by a dove for the baptism of Clovis and subsequently preserved in the Abbey of Saint-Remi. For centuries the events at the crowning of Clovis I became a symbol used by the monarchy to claim the divine right to rule. Meetings of Pope Stephen II with Pepin the Short, of Pope Leo III with Charlemagne, took place at Reims.
King Louis IV gave the city and countship of Reims to the archbishop Artaldus in 940. King Louis VII gave the title of duke and peer to William of Champagne, archbishop from 1176 to 1202, the archbishops of Reims took precedence over the other ecclesiastical peers of the realm. By the 10th century Reims had become a centre of intellectual culture. Archbishop Adalberon, seconded by the monk Gerbert, founded schools which taught the classical "liberal arts"; the archbishops held the important prerogative of the consecration of the kings of France – a privilege which they exercised from the time of Philippe II Augustus to that of Charles X. Louis VII granted the city a communal charter in 1139; the Treaty of Troyes ceded it to the English, who had made a futile attempt to take it by siege in 1360. Louis XI cruelly suppressed a revolt at Reims, caused in 1461 by the salt tax. During the French Wars of Religion the city sided with the Catholic League, but submitted to King Henri IV after the battle of Ivry.
In the invasions of the War of the Sixth Coalition in 1814, anti-Napoleonic allied armies captured and re-captured Reims. In August 1909 Reims hosted the first international aviation meet, the Grande Semaine d'Aviation de la Champagne. Major aviation personages such as Glenn Curtiss, Louis Blériot and Louis Paulhan participated. Hostilities in World War I damaged the city. German bombardment and a subsequent fire in 1914 did severe damage to the cathedral; the ruined cathedral became one of the central images of anti-German propaganda produced in France during the war, which presented it, along with the ruins of the Cloth Hall at Ypres and the University Library in Louvain, as evidence that German aggression targeted cultural landmarks of European civilization. From the end of World War I to the present day an international effort to restore the cathedral from the ruins has continued; the Palace of Tau, St Jacques Church and the Abbey of St Remi were protected and restored. The collection of preserved buildings and Roman ruins remains monumentally impressive.
During World War II the city suffered additional damage. But in Reims, at 2:41 on the morning of 7 May 1945, General Eisenhower and the Allies received the unconditional surrender of the German Wehrmacht. General Alfred Jodl, German Chief-of-Staff, signed the surrender at the Supreme Headquarters Allied Expeditionary Force as the representative for German President Karl Dönitz; the British statesman Leslie Hore-Belisha died of a cerebral haemorrhage while making a speech at the Reims hôtel de ville in February 1957. The principal squares of Reims include the
West Berlin was a political enclave which comprised the western part of Berlin during the years of the Cold War. There was no specific date on which the sectors of Berlin occupied by the Western Allies became "West Berlin", but 1949 is accepted as the year in which the name was adopted. West Berlin aligned itself politically with the Federal Republic of Germany and was directly or indirectly represented in its federal institutions. West Berlin was formally controlled by the Western Allies and was surrounded by the Soviet-controlled East Berlin and East Germany. West Berlin had great symbolic significance during the Cold War, as it was considered by westerners as an "island of freedom", it was subsidised by West Germany as a "showcase of the West". A wealthy city, West Berlin was noted for its distinctly cosmopolitan character, as a centre of education and culture. With about two million inhabitants, West Berlin had the largest population of any city in Germany during the Cold War era. West Berlin was 100 miles east and north of the Inner German border and only accessible by land from West Germany by narrow rail and highway corridors.
It consisted of the American and French occupation sectors established in 1945. The Berlin Wall, built in 1961, physically separated West Berlin from its East Berlin and East German surroundings until it fell in 1989; the Potsdam Agreement established the legal framework for the occupation of Germany in the wake of World War II. According to this agreement, Germany would be formally under the administration of four Allies until a German government "acceptable to all parties" could be established; the territory of Germany, as it existed in 1937, would be reduced by most of Eastern Germany thus creating the former eastern territories of Germany. The remaining territory would be divided into four zones, each administered by one of the four allied countries. Berlin, surrounded by the Soviet zone of occupation—newly established in most of Middle Germany—would be divided, with the Western Allies occupying an enclave consisting of the western parts of the city. According to the agreement, the occupation of Berlin could end only as a result of a quadripartite agreement.
The Western Allies were guaranteed three air corridors to their sectors of Berlin, the Soviets informally allowed road and rail access between West Berlin and the western parts of Germany. At first, this arrangement was intended to be of a temporary administrative nature, with all parties declaring that Germany and Berlin would soon be reunited. However, as the relations between the Western Allies and the Soviet Union soured and the Cold War began, the joint administration of Germany and Berlin broke down. Soon, Soviet-occupied Berlin and western-occupied Berlin had separate city administrations. In 1948, the Soviets tried to force the Western Allies out of Berlin by imposing a land blockade on the western sectors—the Berlin Blockade; the West responded by using its air corridors for supplying their part of the city with food and other goods through the Berlin Airlift. In May 1949, the Soviets lifted the blockade, West Berlin as a separate city with its own jurisdiction was maintained. Following the Berlin Blockade, normal contacts between East and West Berlin resumed.
This was temporary. In 1952, the East German government began further isolating West Berlin; as a direct result, electrical grids were separated and phone lines were cut. The Volkspolizei and Soviet military personnel continued the process of blocking all the roads leading away from the city, resulting in several armed standoffs and at least one skirmish with the French Gendarmerie and the Bundesgrenzschutz that June. However, the culmination of the schism did not occur until 1961 with the construction of the Berlin Wall. From the legal theory followed by the Western Allies, the occupation of most of Germany ended in 1949 with the establishment of the Federal Republic of Germany and of the German Democratic Republic. Under Article 127 of the Basic Law of the Federal Republic, provision was made for federal laws to be extended to Greater Berlin as well as Baden, Rhineland-Palatinate and Württemberg-Hohenzollern within one year of its promulgation. However, because the occupation of Berlin could only be ended by a quadripartite agreement, Berlin remained an occupied territory under the formal sovereignty of the allies.
Hence, the Basic Law was not applicable to West Berlin. On 4 August 1950 the House of Representatives passed a new constitution, declaring Berlin to be a state of the Federal Republic and the provisions of the Basic Law as binding law superior to Berlin state law. However, this became statutory law only on 1 September and only with the inclusion of the western Allied provision according to which Art. 1, clauses 2 and 3, were deferred for the time being. It stated that: Article 87 is interpreted as meaning that during the transitional period Berlin shall possess none of the attributes of a twelfth Land; the provision of this Article concerning the Basic Law will only apply to the extent necessary to prevent a conflict between this Law and the Berlin Constitution... Thus civic liberties and personal rights guaranteed by the Basic Law were valid in West Berlin. In addition, West German federal statutes could
The Porsche 550 was a racing sports car produced by Porsche from 1953-1956. In that time only 90 Porsche 550's were produced an impressive fact considering its dominance in the racing world at that time; the Porsche 550 is a mid-engined car, it was inspired by the Porsche 365 created by Ferry Porsche it was inspired by the spyder prototype. The Porsche 550 has a solid racing history the first race it entered, the Nurburgring Eifel Race in May 1953, it won; the 550 Spyder would finish top 3 in its class. Each Spyder was customised to be raced; the Type 550/550 A is powered by an all aluminium 1,498 cc aspirated air-cooled 4 cylinder boxer engine known as the "Fuhrmann Engine". Its valvetrain uses double overhead camshafts on each cylinder bank, driven by vertical shafts, actuating 2 valves per cylinder; the engine is equipped with twin 2-barrel Solex PJJ Carburetors and dual ignition with two separate ignition manifolds and two ignition coils as well as two double fall gasifiers. In its first version produced 110 PS at 6200 rpm and a maximum torque of 121 N⋅m at 5000 rpm.
The engine of the 550 is mounted in front of the rear axle making it mid-engined. This gives it a more balanced weight distribution, allows for neutral handling. On the other hand, the low mass moment of inertia about the vehicle's vertical axis can lead to a sudden, difficult to control rotation of the car. Porsche used this design principle in the Grand Prix car of the Auto Union in the late 1930s; the first 550 had a synchronized 4-speed gearbox. Starting in 1956, a five-speed gearbox was used, but its first gear only had to start and had to be placed over a barrier and not synchronized. Excessive slip on the drive wheels in corners prevented a limited slip differential. Inspired by the Porsche 356, created by Ferry Porsche, as well as spyder prototypes built and raced by Walter Glöckler starting in 1951, the factory decided to build a car designed for use in auto racing; the Porsche 550 Spyder was introduced at the 1953 Paris Auto Show. The 550 was low to the ground, in order to be efficient for racing.
In fact, former German Formula One racer Hans Herrmann drove it under closed railroad crossing gates during the 1954 Mille Miglia. The first three hand built; the first raced as a roadster at the Nurburgring Eifel Race in May 1953 winning its first race. Over the next couple of years, the Werks Porsche team evolved and raced the 550 with outstanding success and was recognized wherever it appeared; the Werks cars were provided with differently painted tail fins to aid recognition from the pits. Hans Herrmann’s famous ‘red-tail’ car No 41 went from victory to victory. Porsche was the first car manufacturer to get race sponsorship, through Fletcher Aviation, who Porsche was working with to design a light aircraft engine and later adding Telefunken and Castrol. For such a limited number of 90 prototype and customer builds, the 550 Spyder was always in a winning position finishing in the top three results in its class; the beauty of the 550 was that it could be driven to the track and driven home, which showed the flexibility of being both a road and track car.
Each Spyder was individually designed and customised to be raced and although from the pits it was difficult to identify the sometimes six 550s in the race, the aid of colouring tail spears along the rear wheel fenders, enabled the teams to see their cars. The racing Spyders were predominantly silver in colour, similar to the factory colour of the Mercedes, but there were other splashes of blue, red and green in the tail spears making up the Porsche palette on the circuit; each Spyder was assigned a number for the race and had gumballs positioned on doors and rear, to be seen from any angle. On some 550s owned by privateers, a crude hand written number scrawled in house paint served the purpose. Cars with high numbers assigned such as 351, raced in the 1000 mile Mille Miglia, where the number represented the start time of 3.51am. On most occasions, numbers on each Spyder would change for each race entered, which today helps identify each 550 by chassis number and driver in period black and white photos.
The 1956 evolution version of the model, the 550A, which had a lighter and more rigid spaceframe chassis, gave Porsche its first overall win in a major sports car racing event, the 1956 Targa Florio. Its successor from 1957 onwards, the Porsche 718 known as the RSK was more successful; the Spyder variations continued through the early 1960s, the RS 60 and RS 61. A descendant of the Porsche 550 is considered to be the Porsche Boxster S 550 Spyder; the most famous of the first 90 Porsche 550s built was James Dean's, numbered 130, which crashed at the CA Rte. 46/41 Cholame Junction on September 30, 1955, resulting in Dean's death. As Dean was finishing up Giant’s filming in September, 1955, he traded in his 356 Porsche Super Speedster at Competition Motors, for a new 1955 Porsche 550 Spyder on September 21st, entered the upcoming Salinas Road Race event scheduled for October 1 and 2. According to Lee Raskin, Porsche historian and author of James Dean At Speed, Dean asked custom car painter and pin striper Dean Jeffries to paint "Little Bastard" on the car:Dean Jeffries, who had a paint shop next to Barris did the customizing work which consisted of: painting'130' in black non-permanent paint on the front hood and rear deck lid.
He painted'Little Bastard' in script across the rear cowling. The red