Record £1.83m spent at Race Retro sale where 1958 Tojeiro-Jaguar is applauded when sold by Silverstone Auctions for £286,000 and Ayrton Senna helmet and overalls fetch more than £110k. Twin-engined 1275S flies to £29k+ result and late sixties VW Campers continue to be cool with buyers
Four things were particularly noteworthy about this annual sale, which, once again, was held within a pair of separate halls to the main exhibition complex occupied by the Race Retro show, but was run for the first time by Silverstone Auctions rather than previous incumbents Bonhams and H&H.
Firsly, there were buyers for nearly all of the more expensive kit.
Secondly, although statistically the most difficult sector of all to shift, a higher proportion of the competition cars than is the norm did sell here.
Thirdly, and even more pronounced than at last weekend’s Historics at Brooklands sale, there appeared to be more on-line participants than I can remember at a classics auction and, as a result, the i-bidding process took considerably longer and the cars session nearly crashed through the four hours barrier.
And fourthly, after 7 out of 8 bikes sold amounting to £30k and £180,000 of automobilia had been taken into account, the premium-inclusive sale total for the day came to £1.83m, a record gross for an auction during Race Retro weekend.
There were buyers for 71% of cars at Stoneleigh
Rebuilt from crashed in period remains by John Tojeiro himself between 1989 and 1994, an originally 1958-dated Tojeiro-Jaguar with D Type engine, which was raced at Spa and Portimao last year, raised £286,000 and applause. Having run out of puff at £160,000 under marathon auctioneer Jonathan Humbert’s whirling gavel, a 1960 Aston Martin DB4 Series 2 was sold immediately afterwards for £170,000 and £54,017 was also accepted for a 1954 DB2/4 Mk1 with 3-litre motor. A 34,000 miles since 2000 vintage DB7 Vantage with 6 manually-selected gears to play with cost £24,750.
Based on a right-hand drive 1976 911 Type 930 Turbo 4-speed donor, a now Type 934 Evocation in ‘Jagermeister’ orange livery with 450bhp under the right foot surged to an applauded £78,870 result. An Alec Poole raced 1973 Carrera RSR Rep with model correct 2.8 crankshaft, twin-plug heads and a recorded 265bhp at the wheels attracted £51,700. Whilst a 1961 356B Super 90 Rally Coupe with autographed roof by none other than 8 times WRC Sebastian Loeb was surely a gilt-edged buy for the £25,300 paid.
Celeb provenance was also on file for a £102,300 1966 Shelby Mustang GT-350 Fastback that had passed through petrol head DJ Chris Evans’ motor house and a £42,900 1968 Proteus C Type with ali-tub and doors had been previously owned by car collecting musician Jools Holland.
A 1934 MG PA had faithfully served Lancaster bomber pilot Len Miller for 62 years and infamously survived an attack by hurricane (of the 1987 great wind variety) that resulted in a roof collapsing on it found £40,150. An old-style 1962 Ford Consul Capri had form, having played a supporting role in an armed robbery. Following incarceration in Met Police storage, the mortal remains, by now in boxed component form, were rescued, restored and, 50 years and 55,000 miles after leaving Dagenham, raised £9900 on a Saturday afternoon in Warwickshire.
Volkswagen Camper Vans continue to be cool with the Glastonbury addicted or chilled out paddock overnighters. For both examples crossing the block here hooked new keepers prepared to pay £23,760 for a restored 1967 S042 1500cc Westfalia left hooker and £16,800 for a 3-owner 78,000m 1970 Devon Tourette in period-correct Savanna Beige with Type 4 2.1 engine on disc-braked 356 wheels. Rock on Tommy!
One of the most viewed lots in the sale, however, was a beautifully presented 1965 Austin Mini Cooper 1275S Mk1 ‘Twini’ that had been skilfully converted to twin-engine configuration to ape the BMC works/Downton 1963 Targa Florio entry and which therefore deservedly made £29,150. And after several over-estimated Group B MG Metro 6R4s have failed to sell at auction in recent months, the Peter Lloyd and then John Brodie rallied 1987 ‘A16 PLR’ with Goodman fettled 2.5-litre engine on throttle-slide injection did change hands here for £46,200.
Quite clearly, some of the awards season coverage that increased awareness of ‘Senna - the documentary’ was also responsible for boosting pre-sale interest for memorabilia with Senna provenance. Not such a surprise then that a race-worn Shoei full-face helmet donned by the Ayrton when driving for McLaren in 1992, for which up to £50,000 had been forecast, raised £74,750 with premium and a further £35,650 was invested in the Brazilian World Champ’s OMP fire-proof race suit with Honda and Marlboro badges. Investors would surely have been re-assured that both F1 collector items had authenticating certification from TAG/McLaren International.
After the successful conversion of some of the provisionally logged bids, 49 of the 69 cars changed hands, a 71% sale rate, for £1,615,560 with premium, an average spend per car of £32,971.
This was the first of two away games on the Silverstone branded enterprise’s 2012 calendar that will be held away from their home ground, the second being scheduled for the Classic Motor Show at the NEC in Brum 17 November. Before then, their next three sales all take place at the Northamptonshire circuit, the Spring Sale set for 18 May, the Silverstone Classic 21 July and the Autumn Sale 19 September.
Coming up next
In this spot next week, I shall review movers and discuss the prices paid for them at the first Barons fixture of the year at Sandown Park, where 21 or 48% of the 44-cars on the floor had sold by the time I had to press the go-button on this commentary - including a 1968 280SL Merc minter with Pagoda-top sold for £39,600 including premium (£40,320 with the dreaded VAT!). By then, too, some more vital stats can be digested from this weekend’s Bonhams Oxford sale at Shipton on Cherwell on the Banbury Road just outside Kidlington Saturday 3 March.
In the meantime, the resilience of market and buyers will be further tested by three more auctions at Coys in Westminster next Tuesday 6 March, Brightwells at Leominster on Wednesday 7, and Richard Edmonds at Castle Combe on both Friday 9 with automobilia and spares followed by classic vehicles Saturday 10. On your behalf dear surfers, and fueled by a regular intake of bacon butties, I shall ‘attempt’ to attend all three gigs.
And do watch out for those missing and now politically incorrect man-hole covers. On auction patrol the other day, I so nearly popped a costly alloy into an uncovered chasm, which is where the scrap metal pirates should end up! RH-E