I must admit to giving up a week of my life to Tom Yang’s Ferrari restoration journal. A wonderful story of a sound engineer who undertook the daunting task of restoring a Ferrari 330 America purchased in boxes. We often throw the term “basket case” around when discussing cars that require a huge amount of effort — but when the project literally comes in baskets; well, that’s something else.
Something that should be applauded.
Having brought myself up to date on Tom’s site — and the remarkably victorious restoration of his beautiful, driven, Ferrari 330 — i dug a bit deeper into his site and came upon Tom’s collection of audio conversations with other vintage Ferrari owners telling their own rescue stories. I love stories like this, and even if these were videos, they wouldn’t capture the twinkle in the eyes of these proud rescuers any better than hearing them tell their stories does.
One story stood out in particular, of a very early rescue. Admiral Robert Phillips was a humble Lieutenant in 1960 when a series of happy circumstances brought him in contact with a broken down and neglected Ferrari 500 Mondial racer. In an era when people paid cash for their cars, he took out a loan of most of a years’ salary to purchase the wreck, and slowly brought it back to life on his own. No workshop manual, no reliable parts supplies, no local aluminum body shop.
Give the story a listen: here.
Thanks, Tom, for collecting these stories. And thanks to Admiral Phillips for sharing his with us.
Update: Admiral Phillips showed his restored Mondial at Pebble Beach this year. read more at Tom Yang’s site.