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Texas mystery Monza


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#1 Jerry Entin

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Posted 30 April 2010 - 12:53

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Racing his blue #91 Ferrari Monza, Dick McGuire was a familiar sight in Texas during the late 50s and early 60s.
He ran it as a 750 Monza [DM class] in 1958, then as a 857 Super Monza [CM class] from 1959 on. This photo was taken at Green Valley in 1961. Note the two blisters on the hood.

McGuire bought the car from Big Jim Hall, the Houston Jaguar dealer, at the end of 1957. Hall raced the blue car once, at Galveston in July 1957, also under #91. Its chassis number is still a mystery, though. Big Jim's son Jimmy does not remember from whom his dad bought the car.

Does anyone have any idea of the identity of the Monza, and where it ended up?

photo : Willem Oosthoek collection
all research Willem Oosthoek

Edited by Jerry Entin, 30 April 2010 - 13:00.


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#2 Jean L

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Posted 01 May 2010 - 14:24

For this 750 Monza,I have this little sequence who need verifications & complements :

1955/12/9 Nassau,Governor's Trophy
#15 Ebby Lunken 18e

1955/12/10 Nassau,Ferrari Race
#15 Gregory 6e

1956/6/24 Road America
#100 Harry Woodnorth DNF

1956/10/7 Smarttfield
#? Harry Woodnorth

1956/11 For sale 9000$ in Road&Track

1958/ Hondo
#91 McGuire

#3 bradbury west

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Posted 01 May 2010 - 19:17

Jerry/Willem, I suspect that TNFer "cabianca" will be able to fill in any details you need.
Roger Lund

#4 marlondylan

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Posted 01 May 2010 - 21:14

Jerry/Willem, I suspect that TNFer "cabianca" will be able to fill in any details you need.
Roger Lund



I think this is the ex-Sparken Monza #0504M.

#5 Jerry Entin

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Posted 02 May 2010 - 01:05

Posted Image
Another picture of Dick McGuire's Monza, also taken at Green Valley in 1961.



photo: Willem Oosthoek collection

#6 Jean L

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Posted 02 May 2010 - 12:34

This photo confirme the sequence,there is a pic of the right side of #15 Nassau 1955 in "Ferrari and Maserati in action (1946-1956)" of Hans Tanner and it match.This ensemble,body 55 late,big mouth,857S type cockpit and this bonnet,is probably unique.
Now we have to found the story before Nassau 55 and after McGuire.I have no idea for the sn.I imagine an ex factory 500MD/750M/857S rebuilt after a crash and sold as new like for the story of 0542?/0562MD,but it is only speculation.

#7 Jerry Entin

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Posted 02 May 2010 - 13:09

Thanks for your persistence, Jean L:

If this Monza survives today and is restored with the various features shown in the Green Valley photos, it should have:

- a small windshield
- a square rearview mirror that is part of the body
- two hood bulges [put in after the 3.5-liter upgrade]
- [signs of] a mandatory roll bar under the headrest

How many can there be, especially with that square outside mirror? It should be possible to use the process of elimination, but we are not familiar with all the surviving Monzas today.

We asked Ferrari historians in the U.S., England and France, but none has been willing to put a chassis number on the car. Your theory of Ebby Lunken, then Harry Woodnorth as previous U.S. owners did come up as a possibility. Lunken ran it at Hagertown and Nassau in 1955, and asked Gregory to drive it in another Nassau race. Afterwards Gregory responded that the car did not handle and said to get rid of it. Apparently the Lunken car ended up with Woodnorth, who raced it at Road America and Smartt Field in 1956.

A blue Monza #91 appeared at Galveston on July 7, 1957, entered by Jim Hall of Houston. He finished 3rd overall in the prelim, then gave the ride to Dale Duncan for the feature. Duncan had retired the A.V. Dayton 300S Maserati during the prelim. According to Hall's son Jimmy, Duncan forgot to turn on the electrical fuel pump and came in after the first lap. Big Jim jumped in but the car was delayed too much already for top overall position, although it won DM2. Jimmy remembers the car as an excellent handler, though.

McGuire bought the car and appeared first at Eagle Mountain in October 1957, with a 6th oa in the prelim, next with a DM3 finish at Galveston in November 1957. He also ran it in 1958, 1959, 1960 and 1961, from 1959 on with the two hood bulges to clear the bigger engine.

I think that the long period of ownership by McGuire prevents it from being the Sparken Monza, chassis 0504. Some of the Ferrari historians suggest that it might be chassis 0522, a Monza sold to Portugal and wrecked, followed by a possible rebody at the factory. Nobody is sure at this point.

all research Willem Oosthoek

Edited by Jerry Entin, 02 May 2010 - 13:10.


#8 Jean L

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Posted 02 May 2010 - 15:05

I had a conversation with Antoine Prunet about the 750M #15 Nassau 1955 some years ago (before Internet) and he send me a photo who help for this identification.But at this time we found more questions than answers and no chassis number.
I suppose that 0522M is the car registred California-NSV919 in "Ferrari,the early spyders & competition roadsters" by Dean Batchelors,photos from 1973/75,also in various other books of this period.If it is correct,it is a different car.
Maybee this McGuire Monza was for sale in magazines in the early 60s.

#9 Jerry Entin

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Posted 03 May 2010 - 07:25

It is believed that his is the ex Lunken Monza. He got it in late 1955 and raced it at Hagerstown and Nassau. At Nassau he had Masten Gregory try the car out. Gregory said something was wrong with it and advised he sell it. Harry Woodnorth bought the car and raced it throughout 1956 then sold it to Old Jim Hall who sold it to McGuire.

McGuire raced the Monza between 1957 and 1961 at least. After McGuire I do not know where the Monza went, nor do I know where it is today.

The theory is that Lunken was sold a Monza that had been crashed in Europe and rebuilt with a new body. The best guess is serial 0524. This Monza was badly wrecked by Casimiro de Oliveira at the 26 June 1955 Boavista GP Portugal. The thinking is that it was rebuilt and palmed off on Lunken. When raced by Lunken and Woodnorth the car was red.

If it is not 0524 then that Monza must have been scrapped after the de Oliveira crash and we have no idea what the serial number of the Lunken/Woodnorth/McGuire Monza is.


all research: David Seielstad

#10 Jean L

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Posted 03 May 2010 - 15:39

I see 0524 as the one with the rear fins.
1955 Mascarenhas
1956 Borges Barreto
1957 Ferreira (Brasil)

#11 ERault

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Posted 03 May 2010 - 15:59

I see 0524 as the one with the rear fins.
1955 Mascarenhas
1956 Borges Barreto
1957 Ferreira (Brasil)



We had a thread on the finned Monza here :

http://forums.autosp...showtopic=65861