Archives for October 2013
By Dino Brunori
A couple of years ago VeloceToday did the book review of my book Enrico Nardi, A fast life and wrote, “Once the book is more widely distributed, more information will no doubt surface.” I’m sure that regular aficionados of VeloceToday are curious to know if something happened in the meantime. The answer is yes, and here are three different stories of recent Nardi barn finds.
In spring 2010, eBay listed an ad showing a BMW 750 twin motorcycle engine with a ND (Nardi Danese) stamping on it with a serial number of 110. A quick across-the-ocean call to John de Boer to cross-check our databases, and we ended up with the same conclusion: this particular engine was originally installed in Nardi chassis number 952/2. This car was purchased by Ferdinando Gatta, the brother-in-law of Gianni Lancia, and had a long racing career in seasons ’52 and ’53 in Italy before being sold in the USA by Tony Pompeo, continuing its career in SCCA races up to the early sixties. 952/2 was still in the States, in the hands of a collector who lives in Florida, and at the time had a Ford engine installed.
Once the owner of 952/2 knew of the BMW engine, it took him only 10 minutes to decide to purchase it to bring back the car to its original condition. This alone was a breakthrough, but the best of the story had still to come.
Barn Find Nardi Danese 750
Recently we had reason to get in touch with the seller of the Nardi Danese BMW engine as listed on eBay. During the conversation, he mentioned that he knew of a person with who had kept a Nardi BMW parked in the garage for the last 50 years with a blown engine. This led us on another chase but several attempts to contact the Nardi owner had no result at all; he did not reply to messages on the phone, to emails, nor would he even open his door when de Boer went to visit him. A dead end, it seemed.
Strange but beautiful concoctions…
By Wallace Wyss
If you are an old hot rodder, you might remember when Terry Cook was the dynamo editor of Car Craft, and later Hot Rod magazines. Most of the time, these gearheads don’t “cross-over” to classic cars but this writer was surprised to find Cook is the name behind Delahaye USA. He’s now a full-fledged classic car aficionado, designing cars and having them created from scratch via a number of fabrication shops. True to form though, his self-styled classics still have hot rod underpinnings. Sounds like a dream come true and Cook agrees. VeloceToday contributor Wallace Wyss, assisted by photographer Richard Bartholomew, interviewed Terry Cook at the Palos Verdes Concours in September.
WYSS: I saw your stunning Bugatti-styled car at Palos Verdes Concours d’Elegance. Are you a fabricator yourself?
COOK: Never a fabricator or builder, and not a mechanic. I’m a designer/bullshitter. A world-class bullshitter. I went drag racing in early 60’s, then quit racing myself and concentrated on journalism. I never had writer’s block.
WYSS: Is it true that you were unaware of classic cars until quite recently, like seeing a Bugatti in a NYC show?
COOK: It was in 1995 that I saw Oscar Davis’ 1939 Shah of Persia Bugatti and its pontoon fenders. That glimpse of that car changed my life for the better.
WYSS: I can understand… the Bugatti of the Shah will be featured in my next Incredible Barn Finds book. But how did you acquire the name “Delahaye USA?” Did you buy U.S. rights to the name? What happened to the last vestiges of the company?
COOK: The Delahaye Company went out of business in 1953. I started using it 8-9 years ago and nobody sent me a cease-and-desist letter; been using it for years with no objections from anyone. I received lots of nice letters from people with the Delahaye name thanking me for keeping the memory alive, and treating it with respect. I also have been making fiberglass Zephyr and boattail bodies under the flag of DECO RIDES.
Story by Roy P. Smith
What on earth is an Alpinche? If you are not familiar with Spanish Rallying you probably are puzzled. But to those who followed rallies in Spain, the Aplinche is well known, the result of a series of incidents that would lead to one of the great car-engine combinations.
The story begins with a determined, talented driver and intuitive engineer, Estanislao Reverter. Sadly, Estanislao is no longer with us, but his son Luis shared the story with me:
“My father, Estanislao Reverter, was born in Orense on 1 October 1929. ’Lalao’, as he was known, was a true promoter of motor sport. From 1955 he drove cars as varied as a Goggomobil, Renault 4/4, Fiat Abarth 1000 Bialbero, Panhard Dyna, Saab 96, BMW 700, Lotus Cortina, Lancia Fulvia, and Alfa Romeo GTA. He decided to set up the Escudería Orense, an organization that would help promote and organize rallies.
Story and Photos by Alessandro Gerelli
Automedon is an event that takes place in Paris at Bourget exhibition center every year in October. It is a collector car and motorbike exhibition with many owner’s clubs, spare parts dealers, and booksellers. Of course most of the cars are French, but looking around one may find everything because collectors and enthusiasts come to visit the exhibition with their cars.
This week is largely devoted to scrounging up money; we tell you several colorful ways to fatten the coffers at VeloceToday. Brandes Elitch and John Sexton tell us about Rush, and we snitch photos from the movie off the official website. We hope Opie doesn’t mind. Ed McDonough drives a Chapron Delahaye in an archived article and a news item about a Kickstart campaign.
Don’t forget that the Maserati T60/61 book is a classic work and can be yours if you win. The force may not be with you but the odds are.
Two of our most experience contributors ring in on Rush…
Images from Rush Movie
Thoughts on Rush: Brandes Elitch
Last night I saw the film Rush. To get right to the point, it is an excellent film, and anyone who has even a remote interest in auto racing should not miss it. Don’t wait for the video, because watching it on a small screen will not do it justice. It has to be seen in a theater with a wide screen and a powerful sound system.
[Read more…] about Reviewing Rush
This one is literally hot off the press. It is another Kickstarter campaign (last week Roy Spencer’s MotorBinder Kickstarter more than met its goals so that project will become a reality). For the next 30 days, there will be another project campaign to raise money for the publication of a Portfolio Collection featuring the artistry of Breck Rothage.
[Read more…] about Breck Rothage Art Kickstarter Begins
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