Bonhams’ verification began with the accepted Jaguar belief that this was the works team car which
substituted at the last moment as a Belgian Ecurie Francorchamps entry in the 1954 Le Mans 24-Hour race,
combining that chassis with the bodywork from an earlier Belgian entry which finished at Le Mans the
previous year. However, Bonhams’ specialist research confirmed otherwise.
“The Jaguar was not at all a combination of the chassis from one car, the body from another,” said James
Knight. “On further inspection, we established that the it really is the 1953 Belgian-entered Le Mans car in
toto, chassis number ‘XKC 047’ - still bearing its original, complete ‘K 1047’ body – but with its chassis
number merely re-stamped ‘XKC 011’ by the factory before sale in January 1955.”
Chasing the Jaguar for top honours, the 1985 Ferrari 288 GTO Coupé - a model so desirable that before
production had even begun, every single one had been sold - achieved €1,817,000 (£1,433,431).
A further highlight of the day’s auction was the magnificent, light and powerful straight-8 engined 1925 Bugatti
Type 35 Grand Prix Two-Seater, first owned by ‘Bentley Boy’ Glen Kidston. Chassis No '4450' offered was the
nineteenth such Grand Prix Bugatti to be manufactured by the Molsheim factory, and boasts a racing heritage
that includes notable drivers George Duller, Vivian Selby and Lyndon Duckett. After intense bidding, the
Bugatti sold for €1,058,000 (£834,656) to an auction room bidder.
Meanwhile - raced by two Formula 1 World Champions, Michael Schumacher and Nelson Piquet - the
1991-1992 Benetton-Ford B191/191B Formula 1 Racing Single Seater sold for an incredible four-times the
estimate, achieving €1,058,000 (£834,656) to a telephone bidder.
Further highlights include a 2006 Porsche Carrera GT Roadster, sold for €713,000 (£562,485), a 2008
Mercedes-Benz SLR McLaren Roadster, sold for €304,750 (£240,417), and a 1963 Ferrari 330 America sold
for €431,250 (£340,213).
Images ... Peter Singhof
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