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Sir Stirling Moss’ Porsche RS-61 Heading to Auction

Submitted by on May 27, 2015

Stirling Moss 1961 Porsche RS61 Sports-Racing

Images: Bonhams

Bonhams will put Sir Stirling Moss’ delightful Porsche RS-61 up for auction at their Goodwood Festival of Speed Sale on the 26th of July, 2015.

“Just super cars – beautifully balanced and simply tailor-made for such races as the mighty Targa Florio around 440 miles of Sicilian mountain roads. That was one morning when I woke up and really could say to myself, For today’s race you have got the ideal car.” – Sir Stirling Moss via Bonhams

Stirling Moss 1961 Porsche RS61 Sports-Racing

Moss was bang on, of course – these cars won the Targa Florio in 1956, ’59 and ’60. In ’61 he and Graham Hill raced an RS60 with a larger 2-litre in the event. They led the first four laps with Moss at the wheel but would drop back some 76 seconds behind Ferrari during Hill’s stint. Less than 10km from the finnish Moss had brought them back into the lead by over a minute and was set to claim a lap record when the transmission failed.

Stirling Moss 1961 Porsche RS61 Sports-Racing

At the Nurburgring 1000 Kilometres the pair would be behind the wheel of a Porsche RS-61. They charged at the start thanks to a slick track, but were gobbled up by powerful Ferraris when the track dried. It would be another storm-to-the-front thriller as snow began to fall and the pair fought back through the field.. right up until, as Moss recalls: “I was set to take the lead when the little car broke – but it had been exciting while it lasted.”

Stirling Moss 1961 Porsche RS61 Sports-Racing

No doubt thanks to these thrilling adventures Moss developed an affection for these little Porsches, and when he encountered this car, chassis 718-070, he bought it.

He raced it at the Le Mans Classic, and then again for his last competitive race before retirement in the United States.

Stirling Moss 1961 Porsche RS61 Sports-Racing

The car was originally delivered to leading Porsche specialist Bob Holbert in Pennsylvania in 1961. He raced it in Sports Car Club of America East Coast events, before selling it to Tom Payne. Payne would continue to race on the East Coast, as did third owner Millard Ripley. This trio clocked some 13 wins and 20 podiums in SSCA National Competition in the little Porsche.

And all of that was in just two years! The car retired in 1963 and remained complete and original. It was restored for vintage racing in 1969 – before the decade was even out! Andy Prill completed another very thorough rebuild more recently, bringing it into race ready condition.

Stirling Moss 1961 Porsche RS61 Sports-Racing

This is a stunning little machine, owned by a true legend of the sport, and we hope to see it continue its racing career with its new owner. It will head to auction at Bonhams’ upcoming Goodwood Festival of Speed sale on the 26th of July, where it’s estimated to fetch between £1.7m and £2m.

For more information head to Bonhams’ official website here.

Images via Bonhams

Stirling Moss 1961 Porsche RS61 Sports-Racing

Stirling Moss 1961 Porsche RS61 Sports-Racing

Stirling Moss 1961 Porsche RS61 Sports-Racing

Stirling Moss 1961 Porsche RS61 Sports-Racing

Stirling Moss 1961 Porsche RS61 Sports-Racing

Stirling Moss 1961 Porsche RS61 Sports-Racing

Stirling Moss 1961 Porsche RS61 Sports-Racing

Stirling Moss 1961 Porsche RS61 Sports-Racing

Stirling Moss 1961 Porsche RS61 Sports-Racing

Stirling Moss 1961 Porsche RS61 Sports-Racing

Stirling Moss 1961 Porsche RS61 Sports-Racing

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