Some cars you go looking for, some cars just seem to find you.
I’m car obsessed, a car crazed fool, so I spend a lot of time looking at the classifieds and keeping an eye on the up and coming auctions. It wasn’t unusual to find myself slowly pouring through the line up of cars on offer at the Silverstone Auctions Race Retro event. A three day affair with race cars being offered on the Friday, followed by a weekend of high calibre road going sports cars and classics.
A lovely BMW 2002 Tii Group 2 car had caught my eye, a great build with some nice features. The issue is there isn’t a large amount of racing for Group 2 cars, so although it’s a very cool car, there wouldn’t be a lot of racing available. The next lot however, really caught my attention. Taxi!
The main sale photograph immediately had my focus; there in action at the apex of La Source, Spa-Francorchamps, was a huge, bright yellow, 1964 FIA Ford Falcon. Built by Falcon Hell Racing and powered by a Peter Knight 440Bhp, 4.7Ltr (289 cu.in) screaming V8. The specification read like a wish list; magnesium cased T10 gearbox, Truetrack LSD, Ohlin dampers and a custom stainless exhaust with ceramic coated headers.
The second generation Ford Falcon was produced between 1964-1965, coming to the market in the same year as the more youth market Ford Mustang. Most of the cars were produced with the straight 6 engine, but in ’64 the Falcon was offered with a Sprint Package, giving a V8, stiffer suspension and a louder exhaust. Sadly the Falcon production was affected heavily by the introduction of the Ford Mustang, sales dropping steadily once the pony car was launched.
Complete with FIA papers this car was ready to race, eligible for a number of series, including the Masters Pre-66 Touring Cars Championship. Having a couple of friends that race Minis in the Master series, it would be a perfect opportunity to get in to some historic racing, offering titanic David versus Goliath battles with friends.
On the day of Silverstone’s Race Retro event, John Danby (of John Danby Racing) was at the auction and kindly offered to give the Falcon a once over. It lived up to the sales hype, looking like a fantastic build. I’d initially talked myself out of bidding, trying to put a sensible hat on, deciding that I just didn’t know enough about the involvement required to run a Falcon in a race series. But, come auction time, John convinced me that it really was a great opportunity, so we set a low bid.
Amusingly, I’m now the proud owner of an epic race car, a V8 monster that probably handles like a barge. Its ‘shout out’ livery won’t be missed as it rumbles down straights around the UK and Europe. Those Minis in the Masters Pre-66 Touring Cars had better watch out, Goliath is coming though! The first [CarCrazedFool] outing with be at the CSCC Swinging ‘60s meeting at Snetterton on April 8th/9th, just to get my eye in.
Check out the Falcon in action with it’s previous owner at the helm: