Le Mans, Targa Florio, Nürburgring: The P orsche 908/02 'Flounder' has been used and belongs to the most famous car collectors in the world. Now Bonhams is looking for a new owner for the rarity. The car will go under the hammer in London on November 30, 2014.
The Porsche 908/02 'Flounder' with long-tail body can still be admired in the Porsche Museum until the end of August: It is one of the 20 racing cars the special exhibition '24 hours for eternity' on the traditional long-distance race at Le Mans, where Porsche has been competing with a Le Mans prototype for the first time since 1997, the Formula 1 sports car. The sports prototype, nicknamed 'Flounder' because of its particularly flat body shape, belongs to a racing car collector who made the rarity available to the factory museum in Zuffenhausen for the exhibition.
The international Porsche collector scene is here in excitement, because within only 3 days two unique racing cars from Zuffenhausen come under the hammer. In addition to the Porsche 908 /02-005, which is offered by Bonhams, Coys is auctioning a Porsche 904/6 with a remarkable racing history on December 2nd - also in London. You can read more about this auction here.
Overall victory in Daytona 1968 and third place in Le Mans 1970
Because the racer from the The 1970 season ensures the perfect Porsche result at the 24 Hours of Le Mans: Thanks to the success of Richard Attwood and Hans Herrmann in the red and white 917K from Porsche Salzburg, the brand not only scores its first overall victory in the world's most famous endurance race, but the brand celebrates a triple victory in front of the two fastest Ferraris. The long-tail flounder comes in third place. The two Austrians Rudi Lins and Dr. Helmut Marko, Le Mans winner from 1971 and today's head of motorsport at Red Bull.
The Porsche 908/02 'Flounder' now offered by Bonhams probably comes from the same collection as the 907 long tail from 1968 , which auctioned for $ 3.6 million in March. With this Porsche racing car (chassis 907-005)Factory drivers Vic Elford, Jochen Neerpasch, Rolf Stommelen, Jo Siffert and Hans Herrmann won the Daytona 24-hour race in 1968 in front of two other Porsche 907s.
Estimate up to 2.5 million euros
How much the Porsche 908.02 Spyder' Flounder 'with long tail will bring in at the English auction house is eagerly awaited by collectors. Bonhams reckons with an estimate of 1 to 2 million British pounds (equivalent to around 1.25 to 2.5 million euros).
For the first time, the exhibition catalog provides detailed information on the history of the Porsche 908.02 with the chassis ending with 05 : For the first time, the Porsche was used with the conventional Spyder body at the Sebring 12-hour race in 1969. At this long-distance classic in Florida, Vic Elford and Richard Attwood finished in seventh place.
After being used as a training car for the Targa Florio, the two-seater racing car will be used for the Austrian Grand Prix, the 1,000-kilometer race Final of the Brands World Championship at the Österreichring, loaned to Hans-Dieter Dechent. Dechent shared the effort with Gerhard Koch and took over the Porsche 908/02 'Flounder' for the 1970 season in his Martini International Racing Team.
Monza and Nürburgring missions
The racing car with chassis number 908.02-05 was used in all world championship races of the 1970 season from the second world championship run in Sebring, from the 1000 kilometer race of Monza with the driver pairing Rudi Lins and Gerard Larrousse. At the Nürburgring, Lins and Larrousse fought for sixth place with the Porsche year-old car.
For the Le Mans 24-hour race, however, Gerard Larrousse shared a Porsche 917 with a long-tail body with the German works driver Willi Kauhsen. As a result, Dr. Helmut Marko took the place of the Flunder-Spyder from the Martini International Racing Team next to his compatriot Rudi Lins: The Austrians were in second place for a long time behind the eventual overall winners Attwood /Herrmann in the Porsche 917 K from Porsche Salzburg, but had to deal with a jammed wheel nut be satisfied with a pit stop with third place overall.
After finishing seventh in Watkins Glen in the US state of New York, Lins /Larrousse achieved a podium finish in third overall at the world championship final at the Österreichring. In 1971, chassis 05 was used by Hans-Dieter Weigel, when the German 'Auto Usdau' team applied. After starting at Brands Hatch and Monza as well as at the Nürburgring, the 908/02 'Flounder' was used again in Le Mans: However, the driver pairing Claude Haldi /Hans-Dieter-Weigel had to park the Porsche after 18 laps with damage to the gearbox .
Jo Siffert awarded the Porsche 908/02 toSteve McQueen
Then the company of the Swiss works driver Jo Siffert bought this Porsche 908/02 to rent it to Steve McQueen's production company for the shooting of the movie 'Le Mans'. After Siffert's fatal Formula 1 accident in October 1971, the Porsche came into the collection of the Swiss Hans Grell. From there the racing car ended up in the collection of Peter Monteverdi.
The collector and car manufacturer from Switzerland then sold the Porsche 908/2 to Ernst Schuster, who had it restored in the USA with the long-tail body and among others at the Goodwood Festival of Speed. The US Porsche collector Julio Palmaz from the Californian city of Napa took over the flounder Spyder from him before it came to the current owner via another station.
The approximately 350 hp eight-cylinder engine was replaced by the former Factory mechanic Gustav Nitsche rebuilt. Now the long-tail version of the Porsche 908/02 flounder from the Le Mans 24-hour race, one of the most famous Porsche sports prototypes of the 1970s, is being offered again in London's elegant Bond Street. The price is an important indicator of the current collector's value of historic racing cars from Zuffenhausen.