Ex-Alan Mann Racing Works 1968 Ford Escort Twin Cam Heads to Auction
Images via Bonhams
This Ford-supplied works 1968 Ford Escort Twin Cam Competition Saloon is an original car loaned by Ford to the Alan Mann Racing Team for the British and European Touring Car Championships. It’s recently restored, ready to race and heading to auction on the 19th of March at Bonhams’ Goodwood Members’ Meeting sale.
The car, ‘XOO 347F’, is one of six Escorts Ford sent to Alan Mann Racing in 1968. The cars were sent for the European and British Touring Car Championships, and 347’s intended use was as a spare for the British Saloon Car Championship. It would be driven occasionally by British Formula 1 driver and 24 Hours of Le Mans winner, Jackie Oliver.
Oliver’s best finish in the car came at Brands Hatch, where he pipped Frank Gardner to finish second behind Roy Pierpoint. At the conclusion of the 1969 British Saloon Car Championship, Alan Mann Racing sent five of the Escorts back to Ford, keeping the 1968 championship-winning car of Frank Gardner.
The next time 347 would take to the track would be in 1972, testing a new alloy block Cosworth BDA motor in UK national races with the Gillian Fortesque Thomas team. At the time it wore a Shell livery and was driven by Dan Moore.
1969 British Saloon Car Champion Alec Pool purchased the car in 1973, sending it to Gunyana in South America before selling it to Harry Watkins in 1975. Its globe-trotting life continued in 1977 when it was sent to Trinidad and sold to Greg Cozier, who finally sent it home to the United Kingdom in 2010.
Its authenticity was then confirmed by Alan Mann before it was bought by John Mitchell, who began a complete rebuild of the car to its original 1968 Group 5 competition spec. It now runs a Geoff Richardson 240bhp FVA motor with all new kit, sending power through a magnesium-case 2000E ‘Bullet’ gearbox. Modern safety gear was also installed, including FIA-specification roll cage, seat, harness, fuel cell and fire extinguisher system.
The restoration was completed mid-way through 2014, when it would compete in the Goodwood Festival of Speed and win the Pre-1982 Touring Car Class. The car is sold with a Geoff Richardson Engineering engine specification sheet and a letter from Essex County Council confirming that it was indeed first registered to the Ford Motor Company in Warley.
In perfect racing condition, this little Ford racer looks like plenty of fun, with originality and history to boot. It will head to auction on the 19th of March at Bonhams’ Goodwood Members’ Meeting sale, where Bonhams’ are estimating it will go for between £200,000 and £250,000.
For the full details, head to Bonhams’ official website here.
Images via Bonhams