Chasing Classic Cars’: Race cars at Monterey 2010


For the automotive enthusiast and the serious car collector alike, Monterey’s annual auction week in August can only be described in the following way (and trust us, we mean this with the utmost respect and anticipation): A CLUSTER! A glorious, heady, jaw-dropping, inspiring, lustful cluster of cars, car parties, car tours and car auctions. Some also call it heaven.

The days and nights are officially jam-packed with a gazillion things to watch, attend and do. Pre-auction parties, post-auction parties, pre-post-auction parties and then there are the auctions themselves. It’s a car lover’s mothership to be sure; however, as much as you’ll want to wrap yourself up in every single moment of every single event on the peninsula that week, you can’t possibly do it all (unless you’ve developed a top-secret method of cloning yourself – in which case we want in). So, for all of you looking for the best-of-the-best this year’s auction scene, we offer one simple way to cut through the CLUSTER. Focus, focus, focus.

At Chasing Classic Cars, we had our eyes on several prizes. We were paying particular attention to these race cars as they crossed the block. They all have verifiable history and stories. Plus, the estimated selling prices were high and the economy squishy – all elements for an exciting auction.

Highlighted race cars from Monterey 2010

1. 1964 Cobra USRRC Race Car. Offered at no reserve. Hammering this car with a no reserve price seems to have worked out for RM in an anxiety-filled auction room. CSX 255, is an ex-Shelby team car with an unblemished history. One of only six Roadsters built of this ultimate, USRRC cut-back door specification and one of the most original and unmolested examples in existence, fully restored to its Shelby team appearance. (RM Auctions)

Sale price: $1.595 million


2. 1955 Jaguar D-Type. This D-Type has great documented race history and was expected to sell for upwards of $2 million. Almost. (RM Auctions)

Sale price: $1.9 million



3. 1958 Ferrari 250 ‘Pontoon Fender’ Testa Rossa. One of the most desirable sports racing cars of all time. Delivered new to Brazil, one of only 21 Pontoon Fendered 250 Testa Rossas built and rarer even than a 250 GTO. A superb, matching numbers example with very successful racing history. It’s rolling art for sure, but couldn’t meet the reserve. (RM Auctions)

NO SALE despite a high bid of $10.7 million


4. 2007 Ferrari FXX Evoluzione. We were watching this one to see if would fetch its $2 million estimate. Again, almost. You can’t drive this on the street unless you’re Jim Glickenhaus. (RM Auctions)

Sale price: $1.925 million



5. 2000 Porsche 911 GT3R. We liked this no-reserve car because it could make someone a happy weekend racer or be a $70,000 money pit. (RM Auctions)

Sale price: $96,250




6. 1961 Ferrari 250 GT SWB Berlinetta SEFAC Hot Rod. This car took 3rd Place Overall at the 1961 Tour de France and had the ability to single-handedly bring down the Gooding tent. It didn’t, but it made for some exciting auction entertainment. (Gooding and Company)

Sale price: $6.105 million


7. 1956 Maserati 200 SI. This car has amazing race creed and raced in the 1960 Cuban Grand Prix. At $2.64 million you might even find a stash of Cuban cigars under the seat. (Gooding and Company)

Sale price: $2.64 million


8. 1959 Ferrari 250 GT Tour de France. #1321GT headlined the second annual Mecum Monterey Auction. Another great car with amazing race history; 1st in class, 3rd overall at the 1959 24 Heures du Mans and 1st place at the 1959 Nurburgring 1000 KM race. It could have been a record-breaker, but it didn’t meet the reserve. (Mecum Auctions)

NO SALE despite a high bid of $3.5 million. 


9. 1971 AMC Javelin Mark Donohue Trans Am Car. Need we say more? (Russo and Steele)

Sale price: $770,000




10. 1928 Mercedes Benz S Boattail Speedster. The Marx Brothers owned this car. It didn’t actually race, race but it has a great race story that can never be wiped off is patina. (Gooding and Company)

Sale price: $3.74 million


– Jim Astrausky and Hannah Lintner, Chasing Classic Cars

Watch Chasing Classic Cars on Discovery Channel and Discovery’s HD Theater.

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Chasing Classic Cars is produced by Essex Television Group, Inc. whose award winning, all-HD broadcast division specializes in creating vivid adventure and personality driven documentary programming. Their series and specials have covered the legendary Baja 1000 off road race, post Katrina New Orleans and the war torn countries of Somalia, Afghanistan and Sudan. Current programming includes season one and two of Chasing Classic Cars, starring master car restorer and Ferrari expert Wayne Carini airing on HD Theater: A Discovery Company and seasons one and two of Dr. Danger on MOJO HD. Their work can also be found on the Travel Channel, Discovery’s Military, Health and International channels, HDNet and PBS. Executive Producers for Essex Television Group are Jim Astrausky and Dan Carey. Senior Producer is Hannah Lintner.

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