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Maserati 4 CM 1100 and 4 CM 1500


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#1 john medley

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Posted 10 August 2004 - 22:33

Please resolve my confusion:

If the 4 CM1500 run in UK events with the distinctive light coloured flashes on the nose was originally a 4CM1100 chassis 1120 used by Furmanik for record attempts then sold to Gino Rovere ( who replaced the 1100 with 1500), then what is the story of chassis 1521 with (allegedly)a remarkably similar history.

The much modified ex EK Rayson 1521 was bought and raced in the UK 1949 by David Chambers who brought it back to Australia where its main racing history was in the hands of Tom Sulman.

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#2 David McKinney

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Posted 11 August 2004 - 06:16

As soon as I saw the thread title and the originator’s name I guessed what the question might be :lol:
I have had the same problem since the car with the funny nose-cowl reappeared in the UK in the 1980s.
There doesn’t seem to be any argument about Rovere racing an ex-Furmanik car at Brooklands in 1935, and it then passing into the hands of Teddy Rayson. I think it was Rayson who added the serrated flashes around the air intake, presumably to help his pit identify the car at a distance.
The Sulman car, 1521, can be traced after the war from Rowland Motors and Charles Mortimer to Roy Salvadori in 1948, Archie Baring 1949 and Chambers 1950. In post-Sulman times via Ralph Sach and Kerry Manolas to a Brooks auction in the UK in 1990, then by way of Dan Margulies 1994 to Peter Altenbach in 1997 and beyond.
Another ex-Furmanik car, 1120, meanwhile appears at a Christie's auction in the UK in 1976, acquired apparently by R A Jones, and campaigned in the UK from 1984 by Sean Danaher, who fitted the distinctive nose-cowl. He ran the car initially with 1100 motor and from 1991 as a 1500. Very successful in European historic racing 1992-1998 driven by Martin Stretton (first for Danaher, then for Simon Bull), and campaigned since 1999 by Barrie Baxter.
The question clearly is, which of these two cars was the original odd-nose-cowl one? The Sulman car always laid claim to it, though I don’t believe it had the distinctive front at any time after the war. I believe it may have had an 8CM-like front in the 1940s, and by its Australian period had a later-type treatment (a bit like a 4CL).
Sean Danaher is however adamant that 1120 is the car which was raced by Rayson with the funny nose.
What, I wonder, was the origin of the Furmanik/Rayson connection to the Australian car?

#3 john medley

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Posted 11 August 2004 - 09:21

Thanks, David , for the response. You are right about guessing the question: it's one of those things that have gnawed at me for years.

I dont think it was Rayson who added the flashes . There are enough photos of Rovere in 1934 to show the flashes on the car then. I cant think of a photo of Rovere at Brooklands in 1935 to confirm that this was the same car/ flashes, but I can recall photos of Rayson in the car without the flashes and looking like a small 8CM.

I believe the car was rebodied or at least re-nosed a bit like a 4CL in the 40s before it came to Australia.

I agree that the Rovere/ Rayson/..... Sulman line of ownership was always promoted as true.

So now to find out more about Sean Danaher's assertions. Anyone?

#4 David McKinney

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Posted 11 August 2004 - 10:10

I accept your statement about the timing of the flashes addition - I was being a bit sloppy.
Another comment without bothering to research matters (this time my excuse is that I'm at work) : I seem to remember a picture of a Maserati with the 8CM-type nose driven by someone said to be Rayson, but in fact showing Mortimer in what may or may not have been the same car.

#5 Egon Thurner

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Posted 11 August 2004 - 21:31

:lol:

It's always the same with existing pre-war Maseratis ...

And always the same ...

Take it easy ;)

#6 john medley

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Posted 12 August 2004 - 02:23

David's suggestion of the need for a clearer link from Furmanik to Rayson to Australian owners prompted me to hunt further.

On Pp 46-47 of Crump & Box' " Maserati..." are photos of Furmanik's 4CM 1100 in 1932 record breaking form. The car looks like a streamlined/ no fwb 4CM1100 with headrest. It doesnt look all that much like the 4CM with nose flashes shown on P 48. That car not only has nose flashes but no headrest, no streamlining, big front wheel brakes, and the vertical radiator shell bar unlike most 4CMs. We dont easily know its chassis number ( 1120? 1521? some other number?), but the caption says " Guiseppe Furmanik with a 4CM on the Pontedecimo-Giovi, 18 June 1933"; so we might reasonably assume that this is the same car, owned and competed in by Furmanik in 1932 and 1933.

If we dont know its chassis number, we do recognize the distinctive nose flashes as the same ones on the 4CM raced the next year by Gino Rovere. Venables' " The Racing Fifteen-Hundreds" P54 shows that distinctive nose leading off the line at Pescara. While not suggesting that Rovere had only one Maserati, the Furmanik-Rovere link appears clear enough. Possibly, Barre Lyndon's books would tell us more.

John Blanden's " Historic Racing Cars of Australia" says the sale of 1521 from Rovere to Rayson took place 1936. No doubt there are other sources to support this ( photographic evidence would be nice) but I havent yet found them. And we dont know for certain that the car with the nose flashes was the one sold. The photos I recall of Rayson's car looked like a " standard" 4CM

Eason-Gibson's " Motor Racing 1947" ( opposite P 61 ) shows the car clearly enough, with a different nose again, and so does the Pathe newsreel of Gransden Lodge. Numerous other sources suggest the postwar history as previously indicated by David McKinney. Keith Winser's Australian Motor Racing Yearbook 1951 links Rayson-Mortimer-Salvadori-Baring-Chambers before 1521 came to Australia.

Looking back at what I've typed above tells me that what I've done is simply put on paper the sequence of events and owners of 1521 as I've understood it all my life -- or have I typed some sort of legend or accepted faith? Certainly , I was surprised and mystified from the very first time I saw photos of those nose flashes on the red 4CM running in European historic events 50 years after the cars were built.

#7 David McKinney

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Posted 12 August 2004 - 05:05

Originally posted by john medley
..... so we might reasonably assume that this is the same car, owned and competed in by Furmanik in 1932 and 1933.

Not necessarily.
Furmanik was closely associated with the factory, possibly even an employee, and could have driven several different cars in this period.

#8 john medley

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Posted 12 August 2004 - 05:41

A Maserati Club site I found includes the words ".. in 1936 the 4CM1100 developed by Furmanik and owned by Rovere, using a special body, was used to set a world record for its class and the outstanding power of 143 bhp/litre was obtained -- never having been achieved before in an automobile engine..."

Another part of the same site has a photo of Rovere at Brooklands in ( it says) 1935 in the nose flashes 4CM1100.

And Boddy's " Brooklands"( 2001 edition) Page 359 shows Rayson's 4CM in 1936 looking like a standard 4CM

It seems to me that the main weak link in the chain related to WHICH Maserati was bought by Rayson from Rovere. It seems that it was not chassis 1120 ( or the Furmanik record car(s)). This notion is probably supported by the chassis number itself -- because it's hard to argue that 1521 could have been a 4CM1100 ( chassis numbers prefixed 11..) re-engined with 1500( despite the things that car builders do with chassis numbers).

There is more work to be done, but it seems at this stage that the concern felt by David McK and John M ( and others) about the nose flashes may be groundless. Perhaps I for one believed what I was told or simply jumped to the wrong conclusion -- for all those years. ( but I'd still like to know 1521's history before Teddy Rayson's ownership).

Egon, you're a hard man. I thought we were all TNF-united in our endless search for truth. Did I detect just a little whiff of cynicism or politics ....??

#9 Adam F

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Posted 12 August 2004 - 11:34

I can add a bit more detail to the 1521 car's immediate post-war appearances :-

It was owned immediately post-war by Harry Grey and Richard Dixon, and whilst owned by them it was raced by Ian Connell at the 1947 Jersey road race.
It was then purchased by Charles Mortimer in mid 1947, who raced it at Gransden Lodge that year.
It then passed to Roy Salvoadori for 1948 and was sold to Baring for 1949 and it was during his ownership, probably at the beginning of 1949, that the more modern "4CL like" front was added.

The photos in John Blanden's book (p215) of the car in Australia in the 1960s match the appearance when raced by Baring in 1949.

Regarding the car's immediate post-war appearance this is shown in a photo of Roy Salvadori in Anthony Pritchard's "Maserati - A history" (p105 top photo), and in Charles Mortimer's book "With Hindsight". Pritchard's book also shows Mortimer in the other Maserati he owned, a 6CM ex Brackenbury.

#10 Michael Müller

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Posted 12 August 2004 - 15:08

Hmm, is there any photo of Rayson and the 4CM?
It could be the missing link....!

#11 Michael Müller

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Posted 12 August 2004 - 21:02

Well, no photos anymore here on TNF. As I did not took them by myselves (unlikely for most of us if we talk about the 30's :cool: ), and as I'm not in the mood to spent days / weeks / months / years for finding the copyright owners, I will not post them here - over!

Well, #1521 - delivered on 31 Aug 1934 to Guiseppe Farina of Torino. Sorry, cannot show the proof, but this car looks different than the Furmanik 1100's. But it looks identical to the car driven by Roy Salvadori in 1948, and based on my knowledge this was also the car driven by Rayson in 1937. Where's the link? Rovere was team owner of Scuderia Subalpina in 1934, and from 1935 on President of Maserati, Farina was his protegé, and Furmanik had very close relations to Maserati (he later became even president of the ACI's sporting council). Mix them all up, and you have the "Maserati Mafia" of that period .... :smoking:
So for me there is no question that the "Australian car" indeed is #1521. However, this car obviously never had the famous flame cowling.

Now the other "corpus delicti" - #1120. Furmanik's record car, Furmanik's race car, Rovere's Brooklands car - yes, I know, countless sources claiming #1120 for this. But do these sources also tell that Furmanik had a 2nd 4CM-1100, namely the prototype #1115? And both changed hands to Rovere in 1935, or back to the Maserati pool, or however one can describe this "left pocket - right pocket" transaction. So who really can tell me which car was #1115 and which #1120? And by the way, was the 1936/37 record car still the same as that of 1934? Anybody able to sort this out? Me not, at least not at this current moment.

#12 alessandro silva

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Posted 12 August 2004 - 22:00

The late Ian Connell in answering, by letter, a question of mine about the Dixon-Grey Maserati that he drove at Jersey 1947, asserted that it was the ex-Rayson car. It was then returned to Mortimer who raced it at Gransden >Lodge. A photo on Motor Sport, August 1947, p. 221 shows that this car is identical to the one raced the following year by Salvadori. A photograph in my possession of Farina in Torino, Coppa Principessa di Piemonte, 21/10/1934, shows the original 1521. Very similar, but not entirely identical to the Mortimer/Salvadori car, but later modifications can be assumed. Let us remark that these cars have NO headrest.

I have possession of a photo of Rovere at the Circuito di Milano in car "with flames". Date 28/6/1936. With NO headrest and very similar to Farina's, flames excepted.

A photo of Rovere at Dieppe 20/7/1935, Venables p. 69, shows a car WITH headrest and flames.
I have possession of two photos of Furmanik's 1934 record car. It is WITH headrest and is the same as the Dieppe Rovere car, excepted the radiator cowl and a fairing for the seat on the off-side. It can be assumed then that the Dieppe car was 1520 which received the 1500cc engine #1530.

#13 john medley

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Posted 12 August 2004 - 23:06

Thanks, gentlemen , for the contributions.

Adam F and Alessandro sent me rushing off to look up 1947 Jersey road race -- because that was new info to me.

Much of the rest I had worked out from various barely-connected bits of the jigsaw puzzle.

It's reasonable to assume that Rovere not just owned but had a significant hand in more than just these 2( ?) Maseratis, either on his own, or as part of Scuderia Subalpina, or as President of Maserati. There are suggestions that a Furmanik car was Rovere-owned, and broke records. I think I've found different sources suggesting Furmanik record-breaking in 1932, 1934,and 1936. One source refers( for 1936) to " Furmanik's veteran Maserati", suggesting one car only. Can anyone clarify how many?
We know that the " nose flashes " car was raced during the 1932 - 1936 record breaking period, looking quite different to the record car(S). While it would not be too difficult to play kitcars and convert the noseflashes car to recordbreaker(s) and back again( particularly since the record breaking appears to have taken place in the winter nonracing period), I wonder if a factory/ quasi factory operation would do that.

1521 was delivered August 1934 to Farina ( probably paid for by Rovere, though) and within 10 days he raced it and won, at Biella. It is not difficult to track the car for the rest of 1934 in Farina's hands, but trickier after that -- when the car appears ( to me, anyway)to have been subsumed into the Scuderia Subalpina operation . That is, until the Subalpina partner/ Maserati President Rovere sold it to Rayson, who first raced it in March 1936.
We therefore can be pretty certain that Alessandro's reference to the noseflashes car at Milan 28/6/36 refers not to 1521, but to the car that had the noseflashes all along ie 1120.
There are other dates in the jigsaw that mutually exclude -- so the picture becomes clearer.

What is not clear to me , however, is your last paragraph, Alessandro.-- not just the logic but the numbers.
Regards to all, and thanks again

#14 Porsche718

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Posted 10 February 2019 - 07:04

A photo of Rovere at Dieppe 20/7/1935, Venables p. 69, shows a car WITH headrest and flames.
I have possession of two photos of Furmanik's 1934 record car. It is WITH headrest and is the same as the Dieppe Rovere car, excepted the radiator cowl and a fairing for the seat on the off-side. It can be assumed then that the Dieppe car was 1520 which received the 1500cc engine #1530.

 

 I have just been doing research on 4CM "1520". The 6CM engine "1530" was fitted on 16th March 1936 whilst in the possession of Hans Reusch. I'm I querying the suggestion that Rovere raced this car 9 months previously.

 

According to my research Reusch had the car from August 1934 to late 1936?

 

Cheers, Steve



#15 Jhdrussell

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Posted 10 February 2019 - 09:15

You are confusing 4CM 1120 and 4CS 1520.
Have sent you a PM.