Back with more LeMans Classic footage, JH was good enough to write in about this marvelous Aston-Martin DB2/4 mixing it up with Masers, Allards and Jags at the Classic in ’08. Thankfully the driver had the video recording early for the running “LeMans Start”. Bring it back!
Even better, they let the video run into the night.. Admittedly not as much to see here, but that’s the point isn’t it: Racing when you can barely even see—when everything disappears and all that exists is the racing line and the upcoming curve.
This is a big day for The Chicane. We finally get to let you in on something that we’ve been dying to share on the blog for some time.
After months of work, we’re finally ready to debut the first pieces of a line of vintage racing inspired clothing. Chicane Trackwear will ultimately include a variety of garments and accessories inspired by our love of vintage racing: everything from our favorite racing models, marques, teams, races, and eras of auto racing history.
The first items are two t-shirts from two very different parts of our vintage racing heritage. The Riverside International Raceway t-shirt is inspired by the early races held at the track in 1957. There are a lot of tracks that we’d like to feature on t-shirt graphics. But for our first, we though it was important to celebrate one of America’s great Lost Tracks. It would be obvious to have a Green Hell shirt, or a Circuito Palermo (and I suspect we’ll have one of each eventually), but celebrating America’s sportscar racing heritage has always been an important part of The Chicane, and there’s not many tracks more missed than Riverside.
The Yamura Motors t-shirt is our way of showing appreciation for the fictional Formula 1 team at the heart of John Frankenheimer’s legendary film, Grand Prix. In a few frames of the movie, you can see the Yamura pit crews gathering around Pete Aron’s machine wearing coveralls with a graphic very like this one. Most people might not understand it; but when someone does, it’s magic.
Available exclusively from the newly launched—and soon to expand—Chicane Shop.
Another brilliant argument for the benefits of body-on-frame building. Are you bored with your Austin-7 or compact Ford? Why not just drop a new fiberglass body on that frame and have a sweet little racing special to take to the track or just cruise around town. See how easy it used to be to become the coolest kid on the block?
These were all from a single 1958 issue of MotorSport. The possibilities were endless, and cheap. Guess what you do if you’re bored with your compact Ford today… You deal with it. Or you glue a horrifically ugly wing on it. Yay! a big stupid wing!
I have long held a firm belief that you can only paint your car red if it’s from Italy: Corvettes in red? No. Porsches? Ew. Ferrari? Maserati? Bandini? Now we’re talking. Red just always screams “trying too hard” to me. But for some reason, and I don’t know if it’s the sexy Italian bodylines or just being used to seeing red Ferraris, but once you’ve decided to go all out on an Italian machine, the red just works.
This Cooper-Monaco, though, has me thinking that it must be the slinky curves and not the country of origin that does the trick. Because this little racer has more beautiful curves than it knows what to do with and looks marvelous in red. I love everything about this 1959 Cooper-Monaco. The Cooper team simply took its game-changing Formula 1 car and widened her to accommodate a passenger, wrapped the frame in this marvelous aluminum skin, and called it a day. In recent years, there has been a lot of talk about “race track technology for the road”, but it so often falls flat or, worse yet, was more a function of the marketing department than the engineering team.
That is not to say, of course, that this little beauty was a simple road car (although this was still the era when you drove your racecar to the track, knocked out a quick win, and drove her home). She’s a full-blooded racer with the pedigree to prove it. This example, Chassis CM.5.59, at the hands of Colin Davis, won her debut at the 1959 Grand Prix Messina. Sadly for this example, it was all downhill from there. She claimed a 5th place at the 1960 GP Cuba (again with Colin Davis piloting), and DNFed at the 1960 Targa Florio.
Thankfully, though, this was not the true end for this marvelous little racing car, and today the car offers some excellent perks for the vintage racer. Race engineer Carroll Smith (of Engineer to Win fame) converted the car, in period, to coil-over suspension. Later owner, Porsche IMSA racing champion, Bob Akin, converted the powerplant from her original Maserati 200SI to a Coventry-Climax/Hewland drivetrain.
Today, CM.5.59 is ready to race and available from Connecticut restoration specialists and dealer, Automotive Restorations, Inc, coupled with their vintage racing preparation service, it’s one-stop shopping for one amazing summer racing season. She’s a fantastic little racer and I can certainly think of worse ways to spend $225,000. More details on the dealer’s info sheet.
This remarkable machine was designed more than 40 years ago. But If one of these pulled up to you today on a lonely road and the driver frantically leapt out claiming to have just arrived from the future you would have no choice but to believe him.
An Autodelta 2-liter V8 behind the driver, a Colotti 6-speed gearbox at hand, these pornographic Franco Scaglione-designed curves all around you—how could it not be from the future?
Maybe it isn't so much from another time as it is from another planet, and can transform into an insect!
Can you believe that now, 40 years later, that we’re in the automotive design era we’re in? Ok, so we don’t have flying cars, but shouldn’t they at least, like this Alfa, look like they can fly?