Jean-Claude Andruet was the only man ever to put a Ferrari on the podium of a world championship rally, finishing second overall on the 1982 Tour de Corse in a bright red 308 GTB that looked like it had just been driven out of a showroom at Maranello.
Although it shared substantially the same architecture and engine as the Lancia Stratos, the 308 GTB wasn’t a natural born rally car - largely because it was way too heavy at 1350 kilograms. Turning it into a rally car consisted of replacing nearly all the original panels with glassfibre, which came with the added bonus of motivating all its drivers not to crash it. The 308 GTB was only ever rallied on asphalt, which meant that it could use near-standard suspension.
While the project started off as a bit of an experiment, the 300-horsepower Ferrari proved to be extremely successful at Italian and European championship level, winning events such as Ypres and the Targa Florio.
Andruet took the car onto the world stage in 1981, with a mixed bag of results. But in Corsica in 1982, it finally all went right. Andruet actually led the event overall for the first five stages, before being overhauled by the Renault 5 Maxi Turbo of Jean Ragnotti.
Nonetheless, he clung onto second place, eventually finishing five minutes behind his compatriot after winning several stages. On that occasion Ferrari actually beat the entire Lancia factory squad - which caused a minor uproar in Italy - as well as the might of the Audi Quattro.
But this success never repeated itself, with Andruet and Ferrari’s next two outings both ending in retirement, at which point the programme was quietly canned.
Intriguingly, Ferrari had planned to homologate the twin-turbo 288 GTO under the Group B rules - but that wasn’t to be either. So Andruet’s place in history remains assured.