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 usually finished in the top three in its class. Each spyder was designed and customized to be raced. The first 550 had a fully synchronized 4-speed gearbox. Starting in 1956, a 5-speed gearbox was used, but its first gear only had to start and (like the reverse gear) had to be placed over a barrier and not synchronized.