BONHAMS AUCTION SET TO SELL HISTORIC ECURIE ECOSSE RACING TEAM CARS
On the 1st December Bonhams’ New Bond Street Headquarters will have amongst its auction items Ecurie Ecosse racing team cars with a Double Le Mans record
Ecurie Ecosse is known as Scotland’s most famous racing team having won double Le Mans 24 hour races in the 1950’s and soon a wide-ranging collection of the racing team’s competition cars will have the honor of being a part of the first auctions taking place at Bonhams newly improved London HQ. Founded by David Murray, a Scottish amateur race driver in late 1951, the modest beginnings of the soon to be world famous racing team was one of an unassuming nature. However, the Ecurie Ecosse racing team went on to find widespread recognition after beating out some of the more prominent names in the racing circuit, winning consecutive Le Man 24-Hour races in both 1956 and 1957 for Jaguar.
The crash at the Nurburgring by David Murray during practice for the 1950 German Grand Prix was the beginning point of his now legendary team. Partnered with fellow Scottish enthusiasts, David Murray founded Ecurie Ecosse as a cooperative syndicate, backing mainly Jaguar sports cars that were skillfully tended to by the legendary mechanic ‘Wilkie’ Wilkinson. The illustrious racing team continued on towards earning both international and industry respect in the industry. The team can boast three-time Formula 1 World Champion Sir Jackie Stewart and his older brother Jimmy amongst its drivers, and competed in both sports car classics and single-seater Grand Prix racing.
In the short ten season of its main operation, Ecurie Ecosse scored some 68 victories, including its twin two Le Mans laurels, both achieved with its D-Type Jaguar cars co-driven by Ron Flockhart, Ninian Sanderson and Ivor Bueb. Though the racing team was disbanded in 1972, it was reformed again in 1982 under new direction, with its drivers still competing in the British GT Championship and the European Le Mans Series.
The Sunday 1st December Bonhams Sale of Important Collectors’ Motor Cars and Automobilia on showcases a private single-owner collection of eight of the Ecurie Ecosse compteition cars used by the team. Highlighted in the Dick Skipworth Ecurie Ecosse Collection are two racing team Jaguars – a 1953 C-Type and a 1956 D-Type. The Collection additionally showcases the iconic Scottish team’s famous double-deck Commer car transporter. The restored transporter, a Corgi toy favorite for many years, is capable of carrying three cars (one inside and two on top) together with support crew, and even features an onboard workshop. A well-known and respected figure in the Collectors’ Motor Car fraternity, Dick Skipworth has been a regular competitor in historic races and rallies for decades. He’s been a virtually lifelong ardent fan of Ecurie Ecosse. The Dick Skipworth Ecurie Ecosse Collection comprises:
1952 Jaguar XK120 Roadster
Establishing the foundation of Ecurie Ecosse Scottish cooperative racing team, the XK120 was used in racing campaigns by Sir James Scott-Douglas.
1953 Jaguar C-Type
The Ecurie Ecosse racing car was used by the team’s future Le Mans winner Ninian Sanderson, as well as by Jock Lawrence, Jimmy Stewart (late brother of Sir Jackie) and Frank Curtis.
1956 Jaguar D-Type
This short-nose ‘D’ without the fin is one of the most beautiful of all its variants and is a debut-race winner for the Scottish team driven by Ron Flockhart.
The one-of-a-kind Tojeiro-Jaguar is distinctive of all modern-era Historic sports-racing cars, used in racing competitions most notably by Barrie Williams.
1960 Cooper T49 Monaco
Driven for a collection of competitions which includes the Le Mans by Bruce Halford, Tommy Dickson and Sir Jackie Stewart, who used the vehicle during his quick rise to fame as World Champion.
1961 Austin-Healey ‘Sebring’ Sprite
The little Coupe is truly memorable through its campaign of the Scottish team’s 1961 Le Mans foray with drivers Ninian Sanderson and Bill Mackay.
1962 Tojeiro-Buick Coupe
Designed by John Tojeiro as the ultimate Le Mans 24-Hour race contender, this V8-powered rear-engine Coupe proved to be one of the forerunners of the 1963 Lola-Ford Mark VI GT and the Ford GT family.
The 1959 Commer Ecurie Ecosse Transporter
Aeronautical engineer Selby Howgate designed this racing masterpiece and it became immortalized by Corgi’s classic 1:48-scale model. The vehicle is fully restored and in running order with unique bodywork by Alexander’s of Falkirk and Commer TS3 flat-six diesel engine.
Bonhams’ Group Motoring Director, James Knight, said: “We are delighted to have been appointed to handle the sale of this magnificent Collection. It illustrates Dick Skipworth’s dedication towards acquiring a definitive representation of perhaps Britain’s best-loved motor racing team. The wonderful transporter typifies his commitment. It was discovered in need of loving revival and then restored at great expense to become the talisman and centrepiece of the Collection. We will be able to present the Collection, along with other important entries, in our just-completed, state-of-the-art flagship saleroom facilities. December 2013 promises to see another memorable auction at Bonhams.”
Announced at a press call and reception at Bonhams’ New Bond Street headquarters on Tuesday 3 September, the press call featured the Ecurie Ecosse Collection’s Jaguar XK120 and Jaguar D-Type on view.