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Wilbur Shaw's Maserati


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#101 Gerr

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Posted 11 October 2003 - 05:05

Hi Art,
The reason I had posted that stuff from R&T was to illustrate that everyone who had a Maserati three thousand and thirty series car wanted people to think that it was the Shaw/Indy winner.

Road & Track was mistaken. Why didn't they know Shaw's car was in the IMS museum?

There is some confusion about which Maserati had raced where, or in what year, or in what configuration, or with or without an Offy. The point of this thread is reduce the confusion or even solve the mixed-up Maserati mystery.

You must read the whole thread. It is TNF at its best, a bunch of guys all over the planet, working together, digging up data, trying to find the answer to a question........beats me why we do it but it's fun.

I like the IMS museum too. It is outstanding. The best. But the people there are human, they make mistakes. They had, in 1991, Hap Sharp's F1 Cooper displayed with a placard claiming it was Jack Brabham's 1961 Indy ride. **** happens. No big deal.

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#102 Aanderson

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Posted 12 October 2003 - 23:43

Originally posted by Gerr
Hi Art,
The reason I had posted that stuff from R&T was to illustrate that everyone who had a Maserati three thousand and thirty series car wanted people to think that it was the Shaw/Indy winner.

Road & Track was mistaken. Why didn't they know Shaw's car was in the IMS museum?

There is some confusion about which Maserati had raced where, or in what year, or in what configuration, or with or without an Offy. The point of this thread is reduce the confusion or even solve the mixed-up Maserati mystery.

You must read the whole thread. It is TNF at its best, a bunch of guys all over the planet, working together, digging up data, trying to find the answer to a question........beats me why we do it but it's fun.

I like the IMS museum too. It is outstanding. The best. But the people there are human, they make mistakes. They had, in 1991, Hap Sharp's F1 Cooper displayed with a placard claiming it was Jack Brabham's 1961 Indy ride. **** happens. No big deal.


I have read the entire thread, and it is most interesting, as yes, some real historical research and archeology going on. My point, however, is that in all this discussion, no one had mentioned (perhaps not knowing?) that the original guiding lights of IMS Hall of Fame were all men who were contemporary to the cars they were finding, restoring and displaying. AS for Road & Track, they can be excused, for back then, they were journalists just learning the craft of getting stories correct (as are automotive journalists trying to do today!), and under deadline, were relying on what they were told, most likely.

As for the Cooper on display, that car has been in the museum since 1962, was presented to them by one of Cooper's backers (John Zink?) for the Indy expedition in 1961. From my memory, reading an article about it in the Indianapolis Star (I was an Indy Star carrier in Jr High and High School), the car was presented as Brabham's 1961 Indy ride, and has been labeled as such ever since. In more recent times, a Cooper Climax did appear in California (?) advertised as being the actual Brabham car, but I do wonder if this one is truly correct? I believe there is some doubt as to whether it is, from some of my acquaintances who are pretty knowledgeable (including one who has worked for the Speedway for decades, and is quite a solid historian about most of the post-WW-II cars in the museum.

A few sources to check: Floyd Clymer's 1961 & 1962 yearbooks, perhaps someone might email or call Donald Davidson at IMS--his grasp of the history of these cars is immense, if he can feel free to set the record straight. One other thought: I seem to recall the Indy Cooper-Climax having its engine laid over to the left about 15-degrees or so, just about the only modification they were able to make to the car to set it up for Indy. If this is so only on the Indy car, then an an F1 chassis would either be incorrect, or would have been modified prior to its donation.

I do know of one "replica" car in the Speedway collection: The Andretti 1969 STP Brawner Hawk winning car was donated to the Smithsonian, rather than to IMS, in the aftermath of Andy Granitelli's tiff with IMS and USAC over the turbine issues, but a couple of years later, the Granitelli's reworked a second 68-69 Hawk into the same configuration as the 1969 winner, and IMS for years marked that car clearly as a replica, noting the existence and location of the original.

Are all the cars in the Speedway Museum correctly, and accurately restored? No, of course not. The art and science of antique car restoration (in all forms of cars) has risen greatly since the 1950's and 60's. Witness the Museum's first Miller acquisition, the Lockhart-built Louie Meyer #28. Mark Dees pointed out in his excellent work on Miller race cars that it has an incorrect front axle, something that no one realized as it was being put together in the late 50's. I noted, when scratchbuilding a scale model Miller 91 that it was also incorrectly finished, having chrome plated leaf springs where Miller was known for gun-bluing his springs.

Still, I'd like to see some solid documentation as to the accuracy of the Speedway's Cooper.

Art Anderson

#103 Don Capps

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Posted 13 October 2003 - 03:35

Art,

Doug Nye's book, Cooper Cars, is one of several sources stating that the Kimberly Cooper was entered by Pedro Rodriguez in 1963 and that identity of the IMS car is '12/60' -- a former Jim Hall, former Hap Sharp car which is equipped with FPF '430/17/1176'....

#104 Doug Nye

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Posted 13 October 2003 - 08:18

Originally posted by Aanderson
As for the Cooper on display, that car has been in the museum since 1962, was presented to them by one of Cooper's backers (John Zink?) for the Indy expedition in 1961. From my memory, reading an article about it in the Indianapolis Star (I was an Indy Star carrier in Jr High and High School), the car was presented as Brabham's 1961 Indy ride, and has been labeled as such ever since. In more recent times, a Cooper Climax did appear in California (?) advertised as being the actual Brabham car, but I do wonder if this one is truly correct? I believe there is some doubt as to whether it is, from some of my acquaintances who are pretty knowledgeable (including one who has worked for the Speedway for decades, and is quite a solid historian about most of the post-WW-II cars in the museum...Still, I'd like to see some solid documentation as to the accuracy of the Speedway's Cooper.


Sorry Art but if the IMS Museum claim their Cooper as having been Jack's 1961 500 mount your apparent faith in their infallibility is not justified.

The Cooper in question was Jack's Formula 1-spec 'Lowline' spare for the programme and not a second Indy-spec, Indy-length chassis - it's just a different animal completely.

Have no doubts about the cuboid of airspace within which Philippe de l'Espinay had the correct 'Kimberly-Cooper' replicated/restored/recreated/rebuilt - whatever one cares to describe it as being.

That car has a good provenance - one which is in fact INFINITELY better than the IMS car if in fact the Museum does claim their Cooper to be Jack's 1961 Indy '500' mount, which would surprise me, because they do know better than this. Where the Maseratis are concerned this is a splendid thread which I have refrained from entering because I just know it will consume more time than I should spare at the mo - not because I'm better informed than any of the specialists here but because quite the reverse is true and it would just suck me in!

However, from long experience of listening to drivers and entrants holding forth on cars they once drove/owned, their testimony on which car did what is often the LAST one should listen to...

DCN

#105 Don Capps

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Posted 17 October 2003 - 14:39

Actually, the Hap Sharp Cooper in the IMS perhaps DOES have an "Indianapolis" racing history! It was probably the chassis Sharp used at the "Hoosier Grand Prix" in 1962. The timing fits...

#106 Johnny Mac

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Posted 29 November 2003 - 19:41

My dad was Johnny McDowell. I have a audio tape recording of my dad taken at Augie Kent's home sometime before the 1951 Indy 500 and his conversation states he has signed on with the IRC ( a guy and his 2 sons) for Indy and they have 2 cars.

"The Maserati Wilbur drove and then there's a new Maserati that Wallard drove 2 years ago and led the race until he had an oil leak. Last year they brought it out and Joe Petralli put a 176 cu inch blown Meyer Drake in it and Henry Banks drove it but had carburator trouble. "

He then speaks of his 40% cut and an additional percentage of sponser fees. He alsospeaks of a new supercharger company called Paxton with the ability to optimize engine and blower performance together. He does not specify which car he will be using, but I recollect he replaced a Maserati engine with an Offy in the car he drove. SpeedAge magazine, Clymer's yearbook, and Raresports Films video all report that his 1951 mount was the Wilbur Shaw Maserati with an Offy conversion. His 1951 car and the 1939(40,41) Shaw/1947(48)Horn/1949Wallard appear identical with the added headrest, while the 1950 Banks car has a much larger headrest and is much like the 1949 Agabashian car. Rodger Wolcott, a close friend of Tony Hulman, was the owner of the 1951 McDowell entry as well as his car owner the next year. Bill Ansted had left IRC my dad stated on the tape. Herb Porter was chief mechanic fot the Maserati and also for the Hart Fullerton supercharged Champ car used after Indy on the dirt tracks. I cannot tell if the dirt track car used the same supercharged Offy as the Maserati.

This is certainly an interesting topic just because it involves so many people of that era.

#107 Don Capps

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Posted 29 November 2003 - 20:12

Wow! Welcome aboard and thank you for that information!

#108 Gerr

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Posted 18 April 2005 - 07:02

We had a thread start a few days ago on Willys OHC Tornado 6. I dug out the R&T (July '62) that had an article on the Tornado to refresh my memory on that engine.
Had a glance at the classified adverts in the back pages and found under "WANTED":

MASERATI 8CTF bellypan to complete car number 3030, also need engine and running gear components. All offerings considered. W.E. Collins, 2 Jerusalem Ln. Cohasset, Mass. EV 3-0028.

And a little further down the same classification:

MASERATI TIRES. Need new or good used 19" race tires, preferably 600x19" for 8CTF Maserati front wheels. Stephen Pitcairn, 100 Old York Rd., Jenkintown, Pa.

Don't know if this is useful info or not, but there it is.



And a belated sincere thank you to Johnny Mac.

#109 MoMurray

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Posted 18 April 2005 - 15:50

Posted Image

This hangs in my office. My younger brother who knows I am a car nut, painted it for me as a christmas present a few years ago...

Mo.

#110 T54

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Posted 19 April 2005 - 03:14

Posted Image

:clap:

#111 Gerr

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Posted 22 April 2005 - 18:06

More Maserati wheels, an odd coincidence:

http://sports.groups...y/message/32466


Super painting, Mo !

T54, Wow !

#112 Cris

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Posted 18 October 2006 - 18:48

Sorry to dredge up another old thread but there's something that needs correcting. On the second page there are numerous mentions (in race results) of George Weaver's V8Ri (actually 4504) being car no. 4501. 4501 is in fact the Phil Cade car, which I believe George owned for a short while. He did own the engine from this car and used it to keep Poison Lil (4504) running. I think he also had the original engine from 4502. In one of Mr. Argetsinger's posts he states the Weaver car is "4004" which I imagine was just a typo.

Regarding Weaver's 4C car, George may have owned as many as 3 of these at one point; he definitely had two complete cars plus parts and at least one of them came from Reg Parnell. Another may have had a US owner before it went to Weaver.

Here's one of them as it came out of hibernation:

Posted Image

I hadn't seen this thread before...absolutely outstanding work in it.

Cris

#113 Dutchy

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Posted 19 October 2006 - 13:30

I believe the 4CLT in the Donington Collection came from George Weaver's estate.

#114 O Volante

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Posted 20 October 2006 - 18:21

Very impressed to see this thread dragged up again!
Indeed, it has been a long, long time and I wonder if there is by now somebody around who can add to the core question, i.e. the identification and later carreers of the 8CTFs and 8CLs ...
I would really love to waste some energy, sleep, what so ever if only some news on the matter would become availlable!!!
PS: The 4CLT/48 are worth a new thread - who's interested???

#115 Ray Bell

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Posted 10 May 2007 - 22:03

Originally posted by Ray Bell
And to help this along...

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These needed to be resurrected...

#116 O Volante

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Posted 11 May 2007 - 18:15

Surprise, surprise - nice to have this thread back, but anybody around with new HISTORICAL information on the cars here in focus??? Wound love to learn something ...
If there is any interest, I'll be back with some info on the current whereabouts ...
Still very much in love :) with Maseratis's "seven 8s", as Richard Crump termed them (8CTF, 8CL & 8 CLT/50) many, many years ago!

#117 Jim Thurman

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Posted 10 February 2008 - 19:27

Originally posted by O Volante

c) Sorry, McRonalds, I can't answer your question about the picture. I don't have that issue of AQ; only made a short note about the 1931 (not 1930, as I said earlier, sorry) Miller V16, which was equipped for the 1950 Indy 500 with a Maserati engine. I have not even scribbled down the exact source, but the article was definitely published in 2000 or 2001. Accordingly in 1950 the Ed Shreve owned, Geo Hoster sponsored Miller-Maserati #84 was entered for Mike Burch. Unfortunately he didn't pass the physical tests, and was replaced by Billy Earl - who, of course, did not qualify! Earlier the car had a Ford V8 engine, and was known as the "Robt. Allison Special", run by Thane and Norm Houser. Before that the car had been owned by Joel Thorne.


In doing research on "Mike" Burch, I ran across the following of the restored Hoster Special. Maserati?...

http://www.conceptca...ve_Special.aspx

Click on the thumbnails to enlarge.

Maserati?...I think not.

#118 fines

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Posted 10 February 2008 - 21:32

Nice to see this thread pop up again, I have often thought about it - with trepidation, I hasten to add! :lol:

Everytime I glance over the Indy Car data I have assembled by now I am convinced the Maserati Indy story is now a piece of cake, but I haven't yet mustered the courage to make a real effort :rolleyes: Seriously, I can still see a problem area or two ahead, so for the time being I will just point out that there are a LOT of Maserati pictures available now at the IMS website, take a look here for a start:

http://www.indy500.c...y=60&offset=420

Then stroll through some of the other pages and years as well! Also, the Joe Barzda side of the story is now a bit clearer to me, after all Joe is a Sprint Car legend, and I have been living on a diet of Sprint Car racing for a couple of years now! :D I'll be back! :)

#119 coco

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Posted 10 February 2008 - 23:12

Originally posted by Cris
Sorry to dredge up another old thread but there's something that needs correcting. On the second page there are numerous mentions (in race results) of George Weaver's V8Ri (actually 4504) being car no. 4501. 4501 is in fact the Phil Cade car, which I believe George owned for a short while. He did own the engine from this car and used it to keep Poison Lil (4504) running. I think he also had the original engine from 4502. In one of Mr. Argetsinger's posts he states the Weaver car is "4004" which I imagine was just a typo.

Regarding Weaver's 4C car, George may have owned as many as 3 of these at one point; he definitely had two complete cars plus parts and at least one of them came from Reg Parnell. Another may have had a US owner before it went to Weaver.

Here's one of them as it came out of hibernation:

Posted Image

I hadn't seen this thread before...absolutely outstanding work in it.

Cris

Chris,
Its a 4CLT. s/n known?

Ciao!
Walter

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#120 cabianca

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Posted 09 February 2009 - 21:30

I have continued to work on this project since the original posts. Here are some facts that have come to light. All will not be news to all readers.



Rene LeBegue ran Maserati 8CTF 3030 in the 1940 500 (#49). The car used engine 3031 for that race.

Dean Butler, a former owner, says the 1948 McQuinn entry (#65) was Maserati 8CTF 3030.

Paul Russo's Maserati 8CTF 3031 (#25) started May 1948 with an Offy, but was changed back to the Maserati engine for the race.

The car Vuky practiced with in 1950 (#10) was the ex-Shaw Maserati (3032) with a Maserati engine.

The ex-Shaw Maserati 3032 was the 1951 Indy entrant (#12)for Johnny McDowell. The car had an Offy installed by McDowell. The Shaw lineage and the engine switch were mentioned by Speed Age and the Clymer yearbook. The Offy was one of the rare 180 c.i. supercharged engines.

Randall Cook raises the possibility that Jackie Holmes practiced 3032 in 1952? Can anyone confirm this, and if it is true what number did the car run with?

Robert J. McManus entered R. Neuman in 1953 in a Maserati using #43. The car had a Maserati engine. Both the Shaw car (8CTF 3032) and the Villoresi/Agabashian Maserati (8CL 3035) were given headreasts after arriving in the U.S. McManus owned both of these cars before selling them in a lot to the Speedway. Shaw's car is on display at the IMS museum and 3035 is partially restored in the basement. The cars can be told apart because the headrest on 3032 was short, and the one on 3035 was longer. It appears that the McManus entry in 1953 was 3035. Can anyone confirm this via a clear picture showing the long headrest?

There were earlier Maseratis at Indy that came to the US for the Vanderbilt Cup. They were V-8-engined model V8Ri. Fred Puhn has supplied details of his car, 4502 and it's mate, 4501.

4501's Indy Record
1939 Geo Robson #28 DNQ
1946 J. Brubaker #68 DNQ
1947 J. Brubaker #86 DNQ
1948 J. Brubaker #79 DNQ
1949 J. Brubaker #79 DNQ


4502's Indy Record
1939 Deacon Litz #28 Q31 F33
1946 Tommy Hinnershitz #34 DNQ
1948 Walt Brown #69 DNQ for Grancor
1949 Jim Rathmann #63 for Grancor. Now with Offy engine. Granatelli sold engine 4502 to Geo Weaver to use as a spare for his V8Ri 4504.
1950 Rigbsy/Auyolo #85 DNQ

When 4504 was restored for Weaver's widow by Steve Griswold (Berkeley CA) in the 80s, Gris took engine 4502 in part payment. Griswold sold the engine to Fred Puhn, the present owner of 4502.

#121 Frank S

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Posted 09 February 2009 - 22:13

4502 at Coronado, 2004:

Posted Image

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Fred in a red jacket, behind the Miles R2 "Flying Shingle":
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#122 Cris

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Posted 09 February 2009 - 23:57

Continuing on with the V8Ri Indianapolis history, but for the two other cars in the series:

4503's Indy record

1937 (As a converted two man car) Babe Stapp qualified 31st, retired on lap 36 (clutch) in 31st place.

4504's Indy Record

1938 Entered by HA Cheeseman but did not run.
1939 Driver was Henry Banks. DNQ
1940 Driver was Henry Banks. DNQ
Of course, after the war 4504 finally brought a good degree of success to the V8Ri reputation as George Weaver's "Poison 'Lil."

Cris

#123 fines

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Posted 10 February 2009 - 09:51

Originally posted by cabianca
Rene LeBegue ran Maserati 8CTF 3030 in the 1940 500 (#49). The car used engine 3031 for that race.

Dean Butler, a former owner, says the 1948 McQuinn entry (#65) was Maserati 8CTF 3030.

Paul Russo's Maserati 8CTF 3031 (#25) started May 1948 with an Offy, but was changed back to the Maserati engine for the race.

The car Vuky practiced with in 1950 (#10) was the ex-Shaw Maserati (3032) with a Maserati engine.

The ex-Shaw Maserati 3032 was the 1951 Indy entrant (#12)for Johnny McDowell. The car had an Offy installed by McDowell. The Shaw lineage and the engine switch were mentioned by Speed Age and the Clymer yearbook. The Offy was one of the rare 180 c.i. supercharged engines.

All of the above appears to be correct, as far as I can tell.

Originally posted by cabianca
Randall Cook raises the possibility that Jackie Holmes practiced 3032 in 1952? Can anyone confirm this, and if it is true what number did the car run with?

#41 "Speed Special", entered by Speed Partners of Indianapolis (IN). Probably true, but no pictures to confirm.

Originally posted by cabianca
Robert J. McManus entered R. Neuman in 1953 in a Maserati using #43. The car had a Maserati engine. Both the Shaw car (8CTF 3032) and the Villoresi/Agabashian Maserati (8CL 3035) were given headreasts after arriving in the U.S. McManus owned both of these cars before selling them in a lot to the Speedway. Shaw's car is on display at the IMS museum and 3035 is partially restored in the basement. The cars can be told apart because the headrest on 3032 was short, and the one on 3035 was longer. It appears that the McManus entry in 1953 was 3035. Can anyone confirm this via a clear picture showing the long headrest?

There is a very small picture in the Fox book's non-qualifiers section, and to me the car definitely looks like '3035', and not only the headrest! Contrary to what I may have said earlier on this thread (or elsewhere), I'm convinced this is the 8CL!

#124 fines

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Posted 10 February 2009 - 10:04

Originally posted by cabianca
There were earlier Maseratis at Indy that came to the US for the Vanderbilt Cup. They were V-8-engined model V8Ri. Fred Puhn has supplied details of his car, 4502 and it's mate, 4501.

4501's Indy Record
1939 Geo Robson #28 DNQ
1946 J. Brubaker #68 DNQ
1947 J. Brubaker #86 DNQ
1948 J. Brubaker #14 DNQ
1949 J. Brubaker #79 DNQ


4502's Indy Record
1939 Deacon Litz #53 Q31 F33
1946 Tommy Hinnershitz #34 DNQ
1948 Walt Brown #69 DNQ for Grancor
1949 Jim Rathmann #63 for Grancor. Now with Offy engine. Granatelli sold engine 4502 to Geo Weaver to use as a spare for his V8Ri 4504.
1950 Rigbsy/Auyolo #85 DNQ

When 4504 was restored for Weaver's widow by Steve Griswold (Berkeley CA) in the 80s, Gris took engine 4502 in part payment. Griswold sold the engine to Fred Puhn, the present owner of 4502.

A few corrections in bold. The issue is a little bit confused by the fact that Deacon Litz drove '4502' (#53) in 1939, but apparently* owned '4501' (#28)! Also, engines were modified to some degree. I am not sure on the actual serial numbers, but reasonably sure of lineage!

* actually one "J. L. Litz", perhaps a relative?

#125 fines

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Posted 10 February 2009 - 10:09

Originally posted by Cris
Continuing on with the V8Ri Indianapolis history, but for the two other cars in the series:

4503's Indy record

1937 (As a converted two man car) Babe Stapp qualified 31st, retired on lap 36 (clutch) in 31st place.

4504's Indy Record

1938 Entered by HA Cheeseman but did not run.
1939 Driver was Henry Banks. DNQ
1940 Driver was Henry Banks. DNQ
Of course, after the war 4504 finally brought a good degree of success to the V8Ri reputation as George Weaver's "Poison 'Lil."

Cris

Correct, as far as I can tell. That "HA Cheeseman" is actually Hollis A. "Bill" Cheesman, famous Sprint Car owner in the fifties. He owned the #25 Offy (ex-Pankratz/Myklebust) that Eddie Sachs won the 1958 Midwestern Championship in! :)

#126 Jerry Entin

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Posted 11 February 2009 - 21:23

Posted Image
Car claimed to be Ex Henry Banks Maserati 8CTF
This is as car appeared at Don Lee's World Sports Car Center in 1956. They were asking $3,500 for it and claimed it had Fresh Factory Mechanical rebuild and Up dated Modern Nose piece.
Also "Looks Good - Runs Fine". The Sport Center was located in Detroit, Michigan.

photo Al Allin - Bill Wiswedel collection

#127 Jerry Entin

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Posted 11 February 2009 - 21:26

Posted Image
Front View Showing More modern Nose piece

Posted Image
As seen at Dell Lee's in 1956.
The car didn't sell in 1956, In 1958 an ad was run in Road and Track and they were now throwing in all the spares and a Trailer for $4,000.
Here is the ad as posted by Gerr earlier in Post #98:

"Maserati, 300hp, 2 stage blown G.P. car, Latest Formula 1 style body by Scaglietti. Ten wheels and tires. $10,000 worth of spares including patterns for all engine castings; 5 axle ratios, quick jacks. Complete rebuild in Italy by OSCA works for methanol or gas. Has not run since. $4000 including trailer."

WORLD SPORT Car CENTER
17333 Livernois Ave
Detroit 21, Michigan


photo Al Allin - from Bill Wiswedel collection

#128 David M. Kane

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Posted 11 February 2009 - 21:41

$3500...hmm...wonder what it's worth in today's money?

#129 fines

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Posted 12 February 2009 - 09:13

Originally posted by Jerry Entin
Posted Image
Car claimed to be Ex Henry Banks Maserati 8CTF

Ex Henry Banks Maserati covers a lot of ground! :lol:

To wit: '3030', '3031', '3035' or '4504', the latter two not being 8CTFs, of course! I'm going for '3031'!;)

Comments?

#130 B Squared

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Posted 24 February 2009 - 15:32

Posted Image
photo: B² Design

I came upon this photo of the IMS basement Maserati. This was taken in either late 1994 or early 1995. It is the only shot I took of the car.

Brian

#131 Vitesse2

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Posted 25 July 2010 - 18:59

This is probably an insoluble question, but here goes anyway.

In his autobiography, Wilbur Shaw says he was seriously considering buying a new Maserati for 1940, but held off because of uncertainty over whether it would also be usable in 1941 (I've found confirmation of this in an Italian press report from late 1939). By the time that was clarified - I believe at the end of January 1940 - the car he was intending buying had apparently been sold with no time to build another. This would have been 8CL c/n 3034. Barchetta.cc suggests that 3034 was delivered (completed?) on March 27th 1940 - I know it sailed for America on April 2nd, so that makes sense.

So, when was 3034 actually commenced? Was it perhaps partly built by late 1939, only for Shaw to postpone or cancel the order and Maserati to sell it on to Riganti?

BTW, before anybody mentions it, I do know that DSJ claimed two chassis would have raced at Zurich in October 1939, but he seems to have based that on a preview of the race in Motor Sport September 1939: he almost certainly wasn't aware that entry lists for Zurich had been published in early August and that both Maserati and Écurie Schell had entered two cars. Those entries would of course have been submitted before the 8CTFs were sold. Maserati also failed to show up in both Belgrade in September and Rio later in October: two entries for each race, with a logical conclusion being that had the 8CTFs not been sold to Lucy Schell the Brazilians would have snapped them up.

#132 harrisspeedster

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Posted 01 May 2011 - 13:20

I am new to Autosport.
Have been dropping by from time to time for research purposes.

At the start of this post/forum on Wilbur Shaw, it appeared to be centered around a few Maserati's.
The 1953 Chanute race was brought forth as well as the one Maserati.

I uncovered a color movie which is about 1 hour in length which covered the Rally, Concour and the 6 races that took place.
Benjamin F Harris III, unknown to most, organized , officiated for the SCCA in infant years and hosted this event as well as 19 others around the country.
One such other track was Road America, where Ben was nominated to be the track official and also threw the flag to start the race and end it, a picture of this is on the front page of Road America's track History page.
Ben also brought his good friend Harley Earl along with some GM concept cars.

Wacky Arnolt was also at the Chanute race, he was helping his good friend Ben, later on Barry Goldwater and Ben sat in Wacky's Sebring suite to watch him race.
Just a few of the hundreds of facts we have unearthed that we thought we would share.

The Maserati mentioned in this post/forum was there, btw, it was white and ran number 43.
There are many other great persons and cars in this earliest of color filmed racing action.

A blown Bugatti was entered into the Concour as well as a few other known and older race cars.

I am going to try having a firm try and still shot pics in the movie, many Ferrari's, Cunningham, Arnolts , Osca's and such, really coooool.

Glad to be here and I would like to add that I have learned a lot regarding my research from the members that have posted herein.
There is a huge untold story about Ben's involvement in the AAA, SCCA and FIA, let alone his futuristic creation he built from 1933-1936, the 1935 Harris fwd Speedster

Here is another great site, that without their help> Charlie>site owner and Paul Jaray, I would have never been able to begin and post this rough and 1/3 complete story.
http://www.autopuzzl...p?topic=11958.0
Please click on the links at the bottom of this rough story, you may be surprised.

As we have been over whelmed with other new documents, 100 more pages from family, we will soon launch a web site which is dedicated to finishing the story with the help of enthusiast's.
http://harrisspeedster.com/Harris2.php
John

Edited by harrisspeedster, 01 May 2011 - 13:37.


#133 cabianca

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Posted 09 May 2011 - 17:17

While some matters have been solved since I started this thread in 2003, others have never been resolved. Some pictures recently published on the IMS Site have recently rekindled my interest and I would like to reopen the discussion, in this case limiting the field to the two Maserati 8CTFs, 3030 and 3031, the car first brought to Indy by the Schell team in 1940.

There are pictures of many of the Maseratis mentioned previously in this discussion on the IMS site. To get there, go to http://www.indianapo...torspeedway.com
In the bottom Navagation area, go below Indianapolis 500 and go to Multimedia. When you get there, go to the right hand navigation area and click on More Galleries under Indianapolis 500. When the page comes up, go to the bottom and get to page 10. It has the galleries for 1940 thru 1950. There are obviously pictures of other Maseratis in these galleries and we can discuss them, especially the 8CMs later, if you will indulge my curiosity now re 3030 and 3031.

While we have agreed that these two cars have at least two visual clues that allow us to tell one from the other, let me comment on that. It appears that the differences are that 3031 has a bump on the frame valance on the left side (origin and purpose unknown) while 3030 has none. 3031 also has two holes in the bonnet to accommodate the two exhaust pipes, while 3031 has an irregularly shaped single rectangular hole for the exhausts. The picture on p. 105 of the Kimes/Dreyfus bio shows what I believe is 3031, but although it has the two hole bonnet, there seems to be no valance bump. Unless there is evidence to the contrary, my belief would be that the bump probably was created after Chinetti sold both cars to Lou Moore. It was definitely present when Mauri Rose used the car to win the pole in 1941.

Based on the pictures available, I have assigned the cars to the following entries at the 500.

1940
3030 #49 Le Begue
3031 #22 Dreyfus

1941
3030 #17 Nalon
3031 #3 Rose

1946
3030 #18 Andres
3031 #25 Snowberger

1947
3030 where was it? Hannaway?
3031 #25 Snowberger

1948
3030 #65 McQuinn
3031 #25 Russo

1949
#21 Banks Offy power likely 3031
#35 Banks/Hanks Maserati power, likely 3030

I do not have photos to determine which car was which chassis at Indy in 1949. However, since the race # is the same as Uncle Louis’ 1949 Pikes Peak Maserati-Maserati, I’m guessing that 3030 was 35 at Indy. This is based on a picture of Uncle Louis in #35 at Pikes Peak in 1949 in 3030.

I have also determined that Louis Unser used 3031 at Pikes in 1946-7-8. It was Maserati powered, except in 1948, when it ran with an Offy.

Snowberger ran an Offy-powered 8CLT at Pikes Peak in 1949 #16. Since Unser was in 3031 that year, this would seem to be 3030.


Another aspect of the matter is that 3031 was taken to Indy in 1948 with an Offy in it. This was changed before the race back to Maserati power.


Any corrections to the above observations/theories are welcome.

As I said, I’m only interested in these two cars at the moment. Has anyone sorted out the European races for these two cars? The pictorial evidence in Orsini seems to show that at Tripoli, both cars had the two hole exhaust system. When it was changed on 3030 I do not know, except to say that Le Begue’s qualifying picture at Indy in 1939 has the single hole opening. This is in keeping with Orsini’s picture of the prototype, which one would expect to be 3030. It has the two hole system. Another picture of Trossi at the Italian GP in 38 shows two holes, yet Orsini identifies the car as 3030.

As I said at the beginning of this scribble, everything is not yet solved.

Many thanks for any help you can provide.


#134 Vitesse2

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Posted 09 May 2011 - 17:48

Michael: I can add something which you - and others - may not know to the story of 3030 and 3031. I have found an Italian press report that after their sale to the Schells in early August 1939 and the subsequent death of Laury in October the cars were returned to Maserati, presumably to be prepared for Indianapolis. However, they were actually shipped to America as early as January 1940, so I'd be very interested if anyone can tell me exactly where they were during the intervening four months or so before they ran at the speedway.

This of course raises the possibility that there may have been cosmetic changes between their last European appearance at Bremgarten in August 1939 and Indianapolis the following year.

I'm still looking for the build commencement details of 3034, although I have confirmed that the engine was about to be bench tested in October 1939 and would also be interested in details of the sale of the 8CTFs to Lou Moore.

#135 raceannouncer2003

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Posted 09 May 2011 - 18:15

Barchetta has some info on 3030 and 3031, with references for the European races. How accurate is that info? Here are the links:

http://www.barchetta....tipo.8.ctf.htm

http://www.barchetta....tipo.8.ctf.htm

By the way, I saw Joel Finn at Monterey one year, climbing out of his John Player Lotus and getting into his GLEAMING Maserati 8CTF. Someone asked how we was doing, and he said "I'm bored!"

Vince H.

#136 cabianca

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Posted 09 May 2011 - 21:34

Michael: I can add something which you - and others - may not know to the story of 3030 and 3031. I have found an Italian press report that after their sale to the Schells in early August 1939 and the subsequent death of Laury in October the cars were returned to Maserati, presumably to be prepared for Indianapolis. However, they were actually shipped to America as early as January 1940, so I'd be very interested if anyone can tell me exactly where they were during the intervening four months or so before they ran at the speedway.

This of course raises the possibility that there may have been cosmetic changes between their last European appearance at Bremgarten in August 1939 and Indianapolis the following year.

I'm still looking for the build commencement details of 3034, although I have confirmed that the engine was about to be bench tested in October 1939 and would also be interested in details of the sale of the 8CTFs to Lou Moore.


Re Lou Moore, Luigi Chinetti once told me that he brokered the cars for Lucy. He took his cut and moved into a hotel in Manhattan until he was alsmost out of money and then went to work for Alfred Momo. In retrospect, it sounds like it happened soon after the race, perhaps so the cars wouldn't have to be shipped back to NY, let alone, France.

As far as the January shipping date of the cars from France, Dreyfus drove one at the Swiss GP on 20 August 1939. It was his last pre-war race -- he was already in the Army. He says in his bio, "I had one more race, the last week in August on the Bremgarten circuit near Berne, the Swiss Grand Prix. Mercedes finished one-two-three. Auto Union followed four-five, then an Alfa, then another Mercedes, then me. I was drivin a Maserati this time, not for Ernesto, but for Lucy. She had finally given up on the Delahaye. The only other Grand Prix car an independent could get those days that was competitive at all was the 8C TF (sic) Maserati. And Ernesto was kind enough to get two to us on short order.

"My racing was over then, I had already cancelled other contests for which entries had been made. On September 1 I rejoined my unit as ordered. That same day Adolph Hitler declared war on Poland. Two days later France declared war on Germany. The inevitable had come to pass."

Later in the book, he goes on to tell about going to Laury Schell's funeral.

"Late in the fall (1939) I was given a short leave from the Army. Laury Schell had suffered another automobile accident, and in this one he died. He and his wife had been traveling from their home in the country to Paris. One of their mehanics had been at the wheel. They hit a tree. Laury was killed instantly. I drove all night in an Army car to get there, arriving at the church at Brunoy tired, dirty and unshaven, just as the eulogy was beginning. I stood between Harry and Phillip at the graveside of their father. Their mother wasn't there, Lucy remained in the hospital recovering from her injuries. I visited with her, then returned to my unit.

"Several months later, in January of 1940, I saw her again. The occasion was, once more, a sad one. My mother had died. My brother Maurice, also in the Army now, was given a pass to attend the funeral, as was I. Afterwards, Lucy Schell and I talked. She told me she believed she would receive the necessary permission for me to travel to the United States for the Indianapolis 500. She had already talked to Rene Le Begue about being the second driver. I had been aware that this had been in the Schell's plans; a number of months before he was killed, in fact, Laury had shipped the two Maseratis over in anticipation. He had considered it prudent to have the cars already in the States in case the Germans arrived in Paris in the meantime."

Schell died circa 20 October 1939, so if Dreyfus is correct the cars were here much earlier than January 1940. A possible resting spot for the cars might have been George Rand's garage in the Brewster Building on Long Island. Or, considering the Speedway's hospitality to foreign entries in those days, perhaps they were stored there. The latter seems unlikely because the team arrived late in the month compared to others.

BTW, it is often told that Dreyfus blew up Le Begue's car and that the engines were switched. There is nothing in the book to indicate this. There is a picture of Rene looking into the engine bay of his car, #22 with a disgusted look on his face and my belief is that is the car that was blown up. If this is so, there was no sense in switching engines, so perhaps the switch took place later. Both cars were together much of their life, first with Lou Moore, and later with Richard Cott. The switch could have been made at any point. I do know that 3030 has engine 3031 today.

Edited by cabianca, 09 May 2011 - 21:36.


#137 Vitesse2

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Posted 10 May 2011 - 00:55

I'm afraid René's memory was at fault - or more likely he didn't know the whole story: and why should he remember this trivia after 40 years? As your quote demonstrates, he omits entirely his abortive trip to Liège at the end of August for a sports car race on the 27th which was abandoned after practice - there is photographic and written evidence of that. Le Bègue was also there.

The Schells would probably also have entered the Maseratis in the Donington GP at the end of September and had definitely entered the Zurich race on October 8th, so the cars would certainly not have been sent to America before Laury's death: in early November they were reported to be back at Maserati "in a shed". The two Maseratis actually crossed the Atlantic on the Italian liner Rex, leaving Genoa on January 2nd 1940 and arriving at New York on January 12th: their departure was reported in the Italian press. That's why I'm intrigued to know where they were until May.

Lucy had also sent an entry for the Brescia GP - presumably one of the Delahaye 145s for Dreyfus and Le Bègue - but that entry seems to have been transferred to Écurie Walter Watney, either because she was unable to extract her drivers from the army in time and/or because the Italians refused to allow French drivers to race: I've looked very carefully at this and if they'd raced at Brescia the two Renés could have been in America a fortnight earlier, rather than the rushed schedule they found themselves bound to. Watney had to hire four Italian drivers and a crew of Italian mechanics at short notice in order to race as French citizens were not permitted to take part.

Thanks for the details re Lou Moore: I doubt it would have been in any way possible to return the cars to France, given the political situation. French Lines had transferred their trans-Atlantic services to Southampton in 1939, so there was no direct sea-route from the US to France - that's why Dreyfus and the rest travelled from Italy, since Channel crossings were also difficult for civilians at the best of times and totally chaotic after early May!

Edited by Vitesse2, 10 May 2011 - 00:56.


#138 David McKinney

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Posted 10 May 2011 - 05:45

Lucy had also sent an entry for the Brescia GP - presumably one of the Delahaye 145s for Dreyfus and Le Bègue - but that entry seems to have been transferred to Écurie Walter Watney, either because she was unable to extract her drivers from the army in time and/or because the Italians refused to allow French drivers to race

Wasn't the race limited to 3-litre cars? Possibly a late change, which would have led to the Delahayes being replaced by the Delages. Though the fact remains there were no French drivers in the race

#139 Vitesse2

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Posted 10 May 2011 - 09:02

Ah - good point! Sometimes the bleedin' obvious hits you in the face and sometimes it doesn't. Run to Italian national regs rather than the Formule Internationale sports car regs. Also explains why Alfa didn't run the 412s. :blush:

Schell and Watney had both announced single entries for Brescia though, with Watney even naming Gérard and Monneret as his drivers at the time.