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Lot 226: De Tomaso Pantera Group 4

Techno Classica, Coys (2 April 2011)

The decision was made around November 1971 to race the Pantera in the 1972 season of the World Endurance Racing Series, the series in which the LeMans 24 hour endurance race is run. The Pantera would race in the GT class (group 4), a class dominated by Ferrari and Porsche. Ferrari race car driver and development engineer Michael Parkes was hired from Ferrari to develop the Pantera for this series and drive the Pantera too. Each of DeTomaso's 5 European distributors were asked to field a team in the series. The features that are the backbone of a race car are reduced weight, a powerful motor, the best tires allowed by the rules and brakes with tremendous stopping power. The Group 3 Pantera was the starting point for the development of these Group 4 race cars. The chassis were lightened with holes everywhere. Aluminum panels for the doors and bonnets replaced the steel panels of the production cars. A 351C racing motor was sourced from Bud Moore engineering of the USA and an unsilenced exhaust system was attached. Installation of the GT4 wheel well flares allowed Mike Parkes to fit class leading Goodyear racing tires. The magnesium wheels from the front of the GT4 were utilized, but wider ten spoke 15" x 14" rear wheels were installed in the rear. Four piston Girling brake calipers and massive disks performed the stopping chores. Other details included a stripped interior, plexiglass side windows, an air to oil cooler for the motor oil and bronze suspension bushings. The Group 4 Pantera was not intended to be a new model offered to the public like the Group 3 Pantera, it was a one time run of race cars for the 1972 and 1973 seasons of the World Endurance Racing Series. Chassis 2344 rolled off the production line on March 16th 1972. The first owner is recorded as the Ford Motor Company where the car resided with the Ford Experimental Department until 1973 upon which it was then sold to prolific racer Warren Tope whose father was an executive with the Ford Motor Company. Tope campaigned the car extensively throughout the early to mid 1970s with notable success and several wins under his belt in this car. Tope went onto compete at the highest level of motorsport before his untimely death in 1975 at the wheel of a McLaren Can Am car. In 1975 Jack Deren converted the car from the standard wings to IMSA flares but was restored to the original specification in the mid 80's. In 1986 the car was sold to Richard Conway and in turn sold to Alex Quattlebaum in 1989 where it resided until 2005 and then exported to Europe where it has subsequently competed in the Monza 1,000km. In the large history file supplied are period photographs of the car, bills, SCCA vehicle log book, correspondence from De Tomaso and EU registration documents. Described by the vendor as being perfect, and finished in its early livery of blue and white with '31' decals, this car is highly eligible for many historic events not just in Europe but also in the US where it once competed in anger. This car is 1 of only 13 Group 4 Pantera's in existence today with one destroyed in 1972, and as such is a highly collectable example of this fast appreciating marque. 1973 - Lime Rock - W. Tope DNF 1973 - Watkins Glen - W. Tope DNF 1973 - Sanair - W. Tope 1973 - Road America - W. Tope 1973 - Blackhawk Farms - W. Tope 1st 1974 - Pontiac Road Race - W. Tope 1st 1974 - Road America - W. Tope DNF 1975 - Sold to Kenper Miller, USA with numerous spares. 1975 - Watkins Glen 6 Hours - K. Miller / P. Miller 1975 - Daytona 250 - K. Miller / P. Miller 1980 - Sebring - Miller 1986 - Sold to Richard Conway 1989 - Sold To Alex Quattlebaum 2005 - Sold to Europe

Lot Details
Auction Techno Classica
Coys, Essen, Germany
TypeCar
Lot Number226
Outcome NOT SOLD
Hammer Price-
Hammer Price (inc premium)-
Year1972
Condition rating
Registration number
Mileage-
Chassis number874A/2344
Engine number
Engine capacity (cc)
Engine - cylinders
Number of doors