(Written for Classic & Sports Finance, for the December 2019 issue of Revolution, the digital magazine of Motorsport UK)
What is the most iconic racing car of all time?
What is the most iconic racing car of all time? There aren’t any right or wrong answers, but there are certainly a lot of them… Give yourself a minute or two and a grid full of contenders present themselves for discussion. 250GTO? D Type? GT40? 917? Stratos?
Period race photo of the 1962 Ferrari 250 GTO, s/n 3851GT
Jaguar D type Ecurie Ecosse 1957 Le Mans winner, Flockhart-Bueb.
For every iconic racing car there are hundreds that time has forgotten, so why do certain cars capture our imagination? Every racing car is built to achieve success on the track, but when it comes to achieving iconic, timeless status, track success plays second fiddle to a plethora of other attributes. Timing, design, cultural significance, impact on the motor industry and road car sales are also measures of the historical significance of a car. What about the team behind the racing car and the motivation that drove them? Why was that car on that grid on that particular day?
The Ford GT40 story is hot right now, with the ‘Le Mans 66’ movie in cinemas and ‘The 24 Hour War’ documentary available on Netflix. The story behind those crucial years at Le Mans is detailed, convoluted and absolutely riveting – the Ford GT gained it’s legendary status through so much more than driving across the finish line ahead of some other cars. It’s not the ‘what’ that makes the car, it’s the ‘how’, the ‘when, and the ‘why’. This story would never have come to fruition, we wouldn’t be writing about the GT40 today if there had never been the finance behind the project. You can have the worlds best drivers, engineers, pit crew and logistics team but without the finance to make it happen the car will never make it onto the grid.
You might not have the finance of an automotive behemoth behind you, but equally you’re probably not trying to achieve a one-two finish at Le Mans… Having the right people involved in your operation puts you one step closer to achieving your automotive dream, whatever that may be. Traditional sources of funding have always been wary of financing motorsport aspirations, but this is exactly what we do. At Classic & Sports Finance, we have been working in the motor racing industry for more than 20 years. Whether you are looking to release the capital in a classic car or asset to direct the funds towards motorsport, or to fund a purchase of racing equipment like a motorhome or trailer; we can help. We understand how best to structure your assets and your finance to give you what you want to achieve – you’d be surprised how much can be done once we start a conversation.