Wednesday, September 1, 2010

A Letter to My Stanguellini

This is how I thought you'd look if I ever got my hands on you. 
     You were just bits in a box. A wannabe perfect half sized repilca of Juan Manuel Fangio's Maserati 250 F.  Even now, all these years later I wish, oh how I wish, we had at least an hour together at the track.
Call me. 
 Love, Bob

The whole story came back to me when my friend Wright sent me a picture of three Formula Juniors at this year's Monterey Historic Races (aka Rolex-Monterey Motorsports Reunion.)

Wright's pic of 3 Formula Jr. hotties at Monterey last month
       Here's the story.  Years ago author and English Lit. Prof. Dave Ward called me from his  motorsports museum in Watkins Glen.  I was in London, and he wanted to sell me a car.  "How about Jim Clark's Indy car with no engine? $3,000? (this you will appreciate was a long time ago) 
OK, how about a Briggs Cunningham LeMans Cadillac, $2,500? You could fix it up easy.
We went through his list until he got to the Stanguellini.  In a box.  All it needed was assembly.  Including the Weber carbs.  The Webers too were in bits.
How much?
$1,500 and I'll put it together.
So I bought the car and Dave put it together and displayed it in museum.  It was fun to think of owning a car on display in a museum.  
A few years passed and Dave called again.  Somebody wants to buy your Stanguellini.
How much?
Ten grand.
So I never drove it, never saw it.  Always longed for just one drive around a race track.  I probably couldn't even fit in it, but still, I know we could have worked it out
Ten  years ago I got a picture from my Stanguellini's current owner.  He'd taken the car all apart and put it back together so she was brand new again.  I still have the picture. She's not the same, she's changed.  But then, neither am I. I don't know where she is now.  She never calls, never writes.  Somebody else pays her bills.

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