Archives for November 2016
A Conversation with Don Racine: The story of his H-Modified Class Aardvark
By Peter Darnall
Photos courtesy Don Racine Collection
Don Racine has been involved with sports car racing for many years. He has developed an affinity for small-bore front engine/front wheel drive machinery and is an acknowledged master of the Mini Cooper’s unique handling characteristics. Don founded Mini Mania in 1974. The firm, which is now located in the California’s picturesque Gold Country, has grown to become the largest United States based supplier of parts for the Classic Mini.
Recently I had the opportunity to meet with Don at Mini Mania headquarters. The subject or our discussion was not the ubiquitous Mini, but his amazing Aardvark.
We present this video at the beginning of this article, because you won’t believe how fast the Aardvark is, and you’ll want to know more about Don’s vintage racer after you see the Aardvark in action as it eats Porsches, Jags and Gullwings at Laguna Seca.
The Aardvark is a feisty little sports racer based on the French Panhard Junior sports car. If you were expecting a sleek, Italianesque creation, you would have been disappointed. [Read more…] about Don Racine and the Aardvark
By Gijsbert-Paul Berk
All photos courtesy Renault Communications
This week Berk looks at the 1934 Renault record car and the 1956 turbine-powered Renault called the Shooting Star.
1934 Nervasport des Records
The background story of the 1934 Nervasport des Records shows a similarity with that of its predecessor the 40 CV Type NM. During the early nineteen-thirties the sales of the Nervasport, then the top model of the Renault range, needed a boost. The French economy passed through a difficult time and demand for the more expensive models had drastically declined. Therefore, Louis Renault decided to repeat what he had done in 1925 /1926 by building a car that could establish new speed/endurance records and demonstrate the advanced technology of his company. [Read more…] about Renault’s Racing Heritage Part 2
Photos by Alessandro Gerelli
Milano AutoClassica has a format unique in its kind: according to the PR, it offers “a winning blend of historic brands, past glories with current models and future previews of all the best that automobile manufacturers have in store.”
In other words, as with most huge classic car shows today, there is something for everyone, including test drives. So much, in fact that the event takes place twice a year, once in spring and the other in autumn; we reported on the March event earlier this year. And it is growing; the event in March saw a 15 % increase in attendance, and figures for the 6th edition held on November 25-27 show indicate an 18% increase from March. Next year however, there will only be one event instead of two. [Read more…] about Milan’s Autoclassica, Fall Edition
Story and Photos by Jonathan Sharp
November 6, 2016 – History dictates that the annual London to Brighton Veteran car run happens in November rather than a much warmer month, and this year it was very cold but sunny. [Read more…] about London to Brighton 2016
Story by Staff
This year’s Concorso Italiano celebrated a little-known part of Ferrari history, which is covered in two recent books authored by Randy Cook of Tallahassee, Florida.
His books, Bowtie Ferraris and Blue Oval, et al, Ferraris, document almost 100 Ferraris of the 50s and 60s that were at one time powered by Chevy, Ford, Buick, Chrysler and Offy engines.
The two basic reasons for implanting American engines into very rare and exotic cars of the time were to make racing Ferraris faster and easier to maintain, and to keep street driven Ferraris on the road and out of the scrap yard at a time when it was almost impossible to repair a broken Ferrari engine. Two magazine articles appeared in 1959 documenting the installation of Chevy engines into two different Ferrari chassis for street driving. A car featured in one of the articles was an unexpected guest at the Concorso, actually it was the body of the car (0024) which is now on another chassis (0097). [Read more…] about Ford and Chevy-Engined Ferraris at CI
By Gijsbert Paul Berk
Recently Renault invited a number of automotive journalists to the famous Montlhéry race track south of Paris for a demonstration of a number of their classic competition cars. Officially it was to commemorate that the French company has been over 115 years actively involved in motor racing, record breaking and rallying. But it also proved to be an unique opportunity to see and hear these wonderful machines in action. [Read more…] about Renault’s Racing Heritage Part 1
Story and photos by Graham Gauld
Nothing much happens around this part of the South of France. The hot spots of Nice, Cannes and Monaco lie on the sunny Coast of the French Riviera but here, inland about twenty miles away, village life is about the same as it has always been. But on Wednesday, Thursday and Friday of last week all that changed with one of the oddest auction sales I have ever attended. Here is the story.
Gerard Gombert was a one-time motor cycle racer and garage owner in Nice. He had some good customers and clients but gave it all up a number of years ago and bought a semi-derelict property right beside the main road from Draguignan and the perfume capital of France, Grasse.
What he bought was fairly dense woodland with a small house that bordered that road. Then compulsion took over and he began to collect things, mainly cars and motorcycles but eventually caravans, trucks and bric-a-brac that nobody else would buy. His property became a junkyard.
Story and photos by Jonathan Sharp
I had wanted to visit this show – now in its second year – not so much for the cars on display, but for a fondness for the location. Alexandra Palace (Ally Pally to us Londoners) is a historic entertainment venue in Alexandra Park, London and located in the north of the city. Known as the people’s Palace and home to concerts, exhibitions and various other cultural events, it was opened by Queen Victoria on her 54th birthday the May 24, 1873. Tragedy struck 16 days later when a fire, which started in the dome, reduce the Palace to ruins with only the outer walls left standing. Undaunted, the palace was rebuilt, opening again in 1875.[Read more…] about 100 Years of the Supercar at Alexandra Palace
Story by Roberto Motta, Photos by Media Renault – DPPI MEDIA
One round before the end of the FIA World Endurance Championship (WEC), Signatech-Alpine won the LMP2 Teams’ title, while Nicolas Lapierre, Stéphane Richelmi and Gustavo Menezes secured the Drivers’ crown.
Rounding off an exceptional season that saw the team win four races including the 24 Hours of Le Mans, the Signatech-Alpine A460 claimed the LMP2 Category Teams’ and Drivers’ titles in the FIA World Endurance Championship.
In light of this prestigious result, Michael Van der Sandem, CEO of Alpine, said “…this victory is the best advertising medium that we could give to the production cars that will be on sale from next year.”[Read more…] about Goal Achieved: Alpine Clinches the LMP2 Titles