Part three : Barchettas and protos

The first car to arrive prior to the end of the Ferrari Garages Zénith parade was the car number 3, a 1963 Merlyn Mark 6, Colchester Racing Developments in England. With its 1.6 liter four stroke engine, it was driven by Christopher Merrick, from Scotland. It was followed by the car number five, a two liter 1968 Chevron B8, driven by Sandy Watson from Switzerland.

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Car number 30 was also owned by a Scottish owner, Simon Durling, who was racing this 2013 edition with his 1.6 liter 1964 Elva Mark 7. One of the strangest cars was following with its very low front end, car number 34, was a Sauter Spezial KS0024 from 1963. With what was certainly one of the smallest engine of the day, with a total capacity of 850 cubic centimeters, it was driven by Stephan Sauter from Switzerland.

“The Sauter Spezial surely looked… special…”

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The car number 15 arrived then, although not the expected 1966 Porsche 906 its owner, Vincent Lasser, should have brought, but another barchetta he had chosen for that day. The second Crosslé subscribed for the hillclimb, car number 25 arrived then. It was a 1978 2 liter engine 42S driven by Philippe Sauge from Switzerland.

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One of the most expected car of the day, the first one, was a 1967 McLaren barchetta with a 6 liter V8, driven by Marino Rebmann from Switzerland. With its outsanding, almost Formula 1 alike performances it surely did the show on both days of the Retrospective. The amazing sounf of the engine surely deserved a second picture, with the amazing rear view so many of its competitors must have known very well at the time it raced.

“McLaren barchetta : V8, 6 liter capacity. Quite big comparing to the 2 liter engines of its vast majority of competitors.”

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Car number seven was an NSU barchetta, although it wasn’t equipped with the typical and now famous rotary engine. With its more traditional 1.3 liter engine, and its very good looking Gulf livery, it was driven by german enthusiast Volker Zielaskowski. Next up, car number 8, was supposed to be another 1969 NSU barchetta, driven by another german lucky owner, Tobias Aichele, but it looked liked he had decided to change his car planning too regarding the planning. The rear though of this car was worth a nice shot, especially with these very wide rear tyres.

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The 1961 Elva Courier Mark 2 arrived afterwards, driven by its swiss owner Hans Beukers. With its 1.6 liter four stroke engine, this car always remind me in a similar style the greatest Lotus of the sixties. “Light is right” said Colin Chapman, but his motto still lives with us, and inspired many other car enthusiasts, and surely Frank G. Nichols, who founded Elva must have been one of them.

“The Elva Courier reminds me of the first Lotus. At least, same spirit…”

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Another Merlyn Mark 6 arrived then, from 1963, driven by its swiss owner Olivier Ducret. It was followed by one of my favorite cars of the day, the 1967 Porsche 910 from french collector Jacques Cochin, which I had already observed in every details. It looked really amazing in this Martini livery and seemed to drive even better than it looked !

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Then the only Triumph of the lot arrived, if my memory is good, and one of the rarest… A 1955 TR2 LM, designed by the Coventry factory to compete at the legendary Le Mans 24 Hours. This car, number 23, was driven by its owner, german collector Peter Koch and was followed by two other british sports car, two Lotus Eleven, number 21 being a replica driven by Anne Muller for swiss team Scuderia Cegga, and the other one, number 16 was unexpected as its owner, british collector Williams Gareth should have come along with his Porsche 904 GTS Replica.

“The 1955 tragic Le Mans accident stopped prematurely the promising racing career of Triumph with its TR2.”

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The car number 24, the british 1966 Crosslé 9S we had seen earlier in the morning with its swiss owner Markus Messmer, was nicely getting uphill, finally freeing its four cylinder two liter engine on the way up to Villars-sur-Ollon. It was followed very shortly afterwards by the italian protos, including the 1971 Abarth 3000 V8 Sport, with its swiss owner Robert Fehlmann driving much more agressively. The british car would have some struggle to keep in front to the top, with the much more powerful Abarth.

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With the Sauter Spezial, the Fiat Abarth 850 Bialbero was surely the smallest engine of the day, but still proving that there was no need of a big engine on these twisty country roads and mountain hairpins, rather than having a light weight. Trying to prove that a big a engine in a light car is even better, swiss collector Philippe Gertsch was racing towards the Abarth with his AC Cobra 289.

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“Light weight with a small engine is great, but light weight with a big engine is even better. Right ?”

Finally, a belgium car, number 45, a 1961 Apal Porsche passed by, driven by its french owner Patrick Zylberfain, followed by the Borghi 001 that had interested ourselves earlier in the morning.

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