H&H's third visit to The Centaur Complex Nets over £1.5 million
Benefiting from fine weather and held in conjunction with http://www.liveauctioneers.com, the two-day event drew bidders from as far afield as North America, the Far East and mainland Europe (their participation being partially due to the fact that all lots were listed on eBay some ten days prior to the sale).
Although falling just short of its pre-sale estimate, the £550,000 achieved by the 1935 Alfa Romeo 6C 2300 Pescara Spyder was a new world auction record for a 6C 2300. One of just 60 first-generation Pescara models, the Spyder boasted unique Touring coachwork, Mille Miglia history and an infamous first owner, Benito Mussolini. A multiple concours winner on both sides of the Atlantic, it has been acquired by a private European collector.
Given the disquiet currently pervading the global economy, it was perhaps unsurprising that the auction witnessed some hesitant bidding, despite a very crowded saleroom. Nevertheless, it produced a variety of strong results. Six out of the seven cars entered by a German enthusiast found new homes, with the 1949 Cadillac Series 61 Sedanet Fastback Coupe (£23,100) and 1952 Jaguar XK120 Fixed Head Coupe (£27,775) both comfortably exceeding their top estimates.
The two red Jaguar E-types garnered a lot of interest and sold well, with the beautifully-restored 1962 3.8 litre Series 1 "Flat Floor" Fixed Head Coupe making £38,500 and the 18,000 miles from new 1973 5.3 litre Series 3 Roadster fetching £37,400.
Both the Ferraris on offer were successfully despatched, with the rare right-hand drive 1967 Ferrari 330 GTC exceeding its top estimate at £110,000 and the 3,800 miles from new 1990 Ferrari Mondial T commanding a more accessible £25,850.
Among the road-going rarities, the right-hand drive 1960 Facel Vega HK500 took £34,925, the 1961/1962 Lazenby "Lotus 17" Special £26,000, and the 1939 Raymond Mays Special Tourer £23,100.
With the ex-Colin McRae 1992 Subaru Legacy RS rally car sold pre-auction via private treaty, it was left to the ex-Tour de France class-winning 1967 Austin Mini Cooper S to headline the competition car results at £44,000. The 1966/1967 Brahma B2 Sports Racer rolling chassis and the 1959 Fafnir Formula Junior also changed hands for £19,800 and £14,750 respectively.
Almost certainly a new world auction record for a British single-cylinder, the estimate-busting £45,650 achieved by the ex-Tommy Robb 1962 AJS 7R generated a well-deserved round of applause.
Other impressive prices among the motorcycles included the 1951 Vincent Rapide Series C (£24,750), 1948 Norton Manx 30M (£12,100) and the barn find c.1961 Aermacchi Racer (£5,060).
A wonderful-looking machine, the c.1884 Coventry Rotary headed the bicycle results at £5,500. The £3,080 paid for the 1893 Crypto-Bantam and the £396 bid for the 1900 Singer Ladies Tricycle were notable, too.
Bolstered by a fine collection of models and property from an anonymous museum, the automobilia section totalled some £65,000 - a new house record. Top price of the day went to the Jackie Stewart / Tyrrell-Ford original artwork by Tony Smith (£2,925), closely followed by the charming Austin Seven Electric Child's Car (£2,812) and an imposing Napier Motors sign (£2,137).
Overall, the sale grossed in excess of £1,500,000.
RARE ASTONS AT THE ROYAL HALL Our next auction will be held on 15/16 April at The Royal Hall, Harrogate International Centre, Yorkshire, and has already attracted two very desirable Aston Martins: a 1962 DB4 Series IV Vantage (Estimate: £200,000 - £240,000) and a 1966 DB6 Short Chassis Volante (Estimate: £300,000 - £350,000). Other interesting lots comprise a collection of original Gurney Nutting coachwork drawings and assorted Mike Hailwood memorabilia.