Ex-Rodriguez brothers Ferrari to race at Donington

| 4 Mar 2012

A SEFAC Ferrari 250GT SWB in which the Rodriguez brothers won the 1961 1000km of Paris is to take to the track at Donington in May.

The car – the last Societa Esercizio Fabbriche Automobili e Corse competition steed built – will be piloted by Lukas Hüni and Gary Pearson and is likely to have a ding-dong battle with another 1961 short wheelbase, to be driven by Jackie Oliver and Rohan Fernando.

The Ferraris will battle it out in the pre-1963 GT class at the 2012 Donington Historic Festival on 5-6 May.

Another exceptional car in the Pre-'63 GT race is the 1962 Porsche Carrera Abarth GTL, one of just 21 built. Neil Tolich is travelling from New Zealand to share the car with Bill Wykeham for the event.

Other well-known faces out on the track in the same grid will include musician Mark Knopfler, who will share his AC Ace with C&SC's Alain de Cadenet.

In the 1000km race, Rainer Becker, founder of the Zuma group of restaurants, will campaign his 910 Porsche against the Spanish historic F1 racer, Joaquin Folch, in the Escuderia Montjuïc Ford GT40 that won the 1968 1000km of Catalunya. 

Another highlight will be Jonathan Turner’s 1935 Squire Short Chassis, an early entry for the 'Mad Jack' race for pre-War sportscars. 

Squire built just seven rakish cars before it was wound up in 1936. The company's founder, Adrian Squire, was just 26 years old when the company closed and had worked up the initial designs – even producing a six-page catalogue – while still at school.

The cost of his dream car was to prove his undoing, however. At its launch the Squire was the most expensive sports car in Britain, costing approximately twice as much as a 2-litre Aston Martin.

Looking forward to the meeting, F1 and Le Mans ace Jackie Oliver said: "I'm both relieved and delighted to be back at Donington. For Rohan Fernando and myself with his Ferrari 250 SWB it will be our first opportunity to see who and how we will compete against others in Carol Spagg's Pre-'63 GT series. 

"Because this is the first time out with this iconic Ferrari in racing prep by Pearson Engineering, it's very interesting to see how it will perform. Also I will compete in the Laranca BMW TISA1800 for the U2TC series. It should be a great start to the 2012 classic season – and much to look forward to."

See the event website for more info and to book tickets.

Photos: Eric Sawyer/Jonathan Green