Graham Hill, always a great favourite with the crowds at Watkins Glen, duly won his third successive US Grand Prix at the Upper New York State track.
John Surtees, Ferrari's leading driver, was absent from the starting line-up as he had been seriously injured in a sports car race in Canada, suffering multiple injuries including a badly broken left leg.
Hill started on pole from Jim Clark and Richie Ginther in the Honda, and took the lead at the start with Clark right on his tail. On the second lap Hill ran wide at a corner and Clark pounced, taking his customary position at the front of the field. However, by the end of lap five, Hill was back in the lead and on the 11th lap Clark retired with a broken piston.
Jackie Stewart, who had an early collision with Ginther and bent his suspension, retired a lap later with throttle cable problems. The weather then deteriorated rapidly and the cars with Goodyear tyres fared much better than those with Dunlop, and Hill came under pressure from the two Brabhams of Dan Gurney and Jack Brabham.
In the latter stages the track dried out allowing Hill to break the lap record on his way to victory. Gurney was happy to hold on to second place as his clutch was slipping and Brabham finished third.
The excellent promotion for the race, led by organiser Cameron Argetsinger, won the Glen the first of their three Best Organised Grand Prix of the Year awards.