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1961 Original Monte Carlo Rally Competitor Number Plaque *SOLD*

1961 Original Monte Carlo Rally Competitor Number Plaque *SOLD*

  • First time to market since the 1970’s
  • The car, UXX 954 was piloted by Tony Brooks
  • In outstanding original race condition
  • Part of a small collection
  • Very rare and much sought after
  • Please scroll down the page to read a full description for this lot, additional images can be seen by clicking on the main image

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Description

  • First time to market since the 1970’s
  • The car, UXX 954 was piloted by Tony Brooks
  • In outstanding original race condition
  • Part of a small collection
  • Very rare and much sought after

The idea for a rally to Monte Carlo was initiated in 1909 at a meeting of the ‘Association Sport Automobile Vélocipédique Monégasque’ which is today known as the ‘Automobile Club de Monaco’. The president proposed a race kicking off in a number of European cities which would ultimately all converge at a chequered flag in Monaco.

The club needed a sponsor. Up stepped the ‘Société des Bains de Mer de Monaco’ They recognised the enormous opportunity an event such as this could bring. It would not only bring wealthy car fans to Monaco from all over Europe, but also a form of very shrewd marketing opportunity for the country.

All competitors cars would bear the now legendary ‘Monte-Carlo Rally’ logo badge.

The inaugural ‘Monte-Carlo Rally’ was staged in 1911. Around two dozen cars started the rally. Just sixteen cars reached Monaco. A entrant from Berlin, Von Esmark, was the first to arrive. His jubilation proved to be short lived however. As he failed to take part in the final parade he was relegated to second place. That left Henri Rougier, a driver from Paris, as the overall winner of the first Monte Carlo Rally. The race was not to be without further controversy.

Events were interrupted by two World Wars, but by the ate forties the rally was going again and by the early Fifties with its mix of glamour, danger and derring-do by amateur racers, the Monte-Carlo Rally was cemented the world’s most iconic rally.

Fast forward a few short years and the 1961 race courted more controversy. It was also a turning point for the race which means the plate we have here is even more prized. In the late Fifties special stages appeared. The endurance element still existed, but on special stages flat out speed counted most. To balance this, cars were ‘handicapped’ meaning less powerful vehicles still had a chance of winning.

But big car manufacturers lobbied for the handicap to be scrapped. 1961 was the last time the system was used. Thus began the era of factory drivers. The gentleman driver period was well and truly over.

This competitor number plate #314 is from that very 1961 Monte Carlo rally, the last before factory racers took over. The plate celebrates its 60th anniversary this year.

It raced on an Austin London Taxi cab registration number UXX 794 entered by none other than the BBC. It was driven by the legendary racing driver Tony Brooks and Willie Cave. There is a very interesting article from Motosport magazine at the time. Apparently they did rather well, albeit having to retire early.

Plate #314 is part of small private collection. It was purchased by our vendor at renowned auto-mobilia sale held at Beulieu in the mid-seventies. Our vendor has had it in his treasured possession ever since. Therefore this will be the first time #314 has come to market in over four decades.

Please review the images, the vendor has advised us that the plate is aluminium and of a condition you would expect for a 60 year old to be! with some chipping to the paintwork.

Links to videos and media

Our view

These iconic original Monte Carlo Competitor Plates are highly collectable. Due to the passage of time, the early ones are rare now. This one comes with photographic provenance which is again rare. The car it was attached to is magazine featured. Having Tony Brooks at the wheel makes it even more special. The 1961 race one is seen as the last true amateur race before the race become dominated by professionals, it was a defining year for the race. We expect a lot of interest in this rare piece of history.

This kind of memorabilia is notoriously difficult to pin a guide price on. We can find only a few plaques from this era that have come to market in the last decade or so. Having said that our vendor has attached a very realistic and low reserve. We’d expect this piece to end somewhere around £700-£1,300.

 

Have a question about this item? Please contact the Evoke team at auction@evoke-classics.com and we will speak to the vendor on your behalf.  

We base our business on trust and know that the vendor’s description has been done to the best of their knowledge. However, before you bid, please ensure you have made all the necessary checks to satisfy yourself.   

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Bidder Bid amount Bid time
d**********s £300.00 2021-12-20 10:17:20
j**********r £250.00 2021-12-19 20:11:39
d**********s £200.00 2021-12-19 11:06:24
s******************************m £150.00 2021-12-14 09:33:08
s**********0 £100.00 2021-12-13 13:33:42
s******************************m £50.00 2021-12-11 13:31:11
Start auction £50.00 11/12/2021 12:00 PM

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