Race Numbers: 4, 57, 20, 30
Ownership: Original 1969 owner unknown (street car) Dave Heinz (1972 to 1973) Alex Davidson (1974 to 197_) Intervening owners – unknown? Jack Boxstrom Mike Yager
Drivers: Dave Heinz / Bob Johnson (LeMans 1972) Dave Heinz / Bob Johnson (1972 IMSA) Dave Heinz / Dana English (1972 SCCA) Heinz/ McClure/Johnson (1973 Daytona) Heinz /Thompson (1973 Sebring) Heinz (1973 IMSA Daytona 3 Hr) Alex Davidson (1975- __)
Original Color: red
Tires/Wheels: Correct period "American Mag" torque thrust wheels (aluminum reproduction) Front: # 10S-5861 = 15 X 8" Rear: # 10S-5161 = 15 X 10" Goodyear "Blue Streak" tires Front: 700-15 Rear: 800-15
Engine: Factory L-88 427 Blueprinting by Bo-Laws (560 BHP @ 6200 RPM)
Driveline: M-22 rock crusher (Muncie) Tilton HD single plate clutch (street/strip) Standard Corvette chassis with the original bolt-in 8-point roll cage HD L-88 specification with solid bushings front and rear Koni double adjustable shocks (F: 8210 # 1036; R:8210 # 1037) HD anti-sway bars Standard Corvette with HD Positraction unit New 3:36 gear set Fitted with original electric pump and new oil cooler Factory RPO J-56 brakes; twin pin calipers Porterfield carbon metallic pads Front cooling ducts and hoses Castrol 500 degree brake fluid GM rotors Steel braided brake lines
Interior: All specifications are to the 1968-72 FIA Group 4 Standard, according to FIA Homologation # 583. Homologation #583 did not allow modifications of a non-factory origin. This car is therefore "road legal", having driving lights, glass wind-up windows, and mufflers. It also has stock Corvette parts which include: Standard dash Custom switch and gauge consoles for six gauges Period bucket seat Vega "GT" steering wheel Full carpeting, sill plates, door panels, handles
Unique Characteristics: The car did eventually make it to Le Mans for the 1972 race, but not without some interesting stories. Most of the stories weren’t so interesting at the time but, as the restoration began, they really did help put the car in context. For example, the first interesting story has to do with the fact that the car was painted in a Ferrari red and blue and carried the Ferrari "Cavallino Rampante" logo on its front fenders for its Le Mans appearance. Walt Thurn has reported that the team's first application to compete in Le Mans was turned down. However, because the car was racing on Goodyear's new radial construction tires (and winning), Larry Trusdale, Manager of Goodyear's sports car racing program, intervened with Luigi Chinetti, owner of North American Racing Team (NART) and the Ferrari distributor for North America. Chinetti was closer to the "powers" at Le Mans and agreed to give over one of his four slots (three entries and a reserve) to the Toye English team. On May 23, 1972 the car was accepted as a reserve entry. In exchange, and faced with Gallic hubris over the "rebel" paint scheme of the English team, the car was painted in NART red with blue stripe and was adorned with the prancing stallions. Everyone was finally happy. The second rather famous story, and quite apart from the fact that it was the first Corvette to actually finish the race in twelve years, involves an accident during practice which affected both front and rear ends. Apparently while Ohio's "Marietta Bob" Johnson was driving a plastic banner blew onto the track and he skidded on it. The car went off and did some damage. Most of the obvious damage was repaired but a fuel overflow line had been pinched and wasn't noticed until very late in the race. As a result, the team couldn't use the full capacity of the tank so they had to pit about twice as often as they had planned. They also had to start the race from the back of the grid as they had not actually qualified; this put them in 51st position to start -- so far back, quipped Bob Johnson, that..." they had to go through Belgian customs again to get to the checkered flag."
Modifications: BODY WORK: Standard body work with front and rear L-88 flares from Greenwood molds Factory hardtop L-88 style lexan head lamp covers from original molds L-88 NOS hood panel incorporating cow ari induction (not repro) Front air dam LeMans side and rear marker lights NART race livery SAFETY ITEMS: All safety items to current Vintage/SCCA/FIA specification: 6-point Simpson safety belt 8-point roll cage 3-nozzle automatic fire suppressant system Window net High density foam roll bar padding 32 gallon ATL fuel cell "CIBIE" Le Mans cornering lights; 100 watt halogen bulbs
Notes/Race History: The RED # 4 car was originally built from an insurance job specifically for Le Mans, at (Toye) English Chevrolet, in a period of about two months. The team’s first car (# 57 Rebel) was deemed to be a bit long in the tooth and, on top of that, the Le Mans regulations would require significant changes in any event. It was just as easy to start fresh. Le Mans was the car's first race -- its baptism by fire. During the actual race Dave Heinz started as first driver and worked the car up to 28th spot from 51st. Then Marietta Bob worked it up to as high as 8th overall. More delays resulted from an electric fire and, at the finish, the car was 15th overall and 7th in class. It was the only Corvette to actually finish the race, up to this year when the Callaway Corvette finished second in class at Le Mans. pon their return to the US, a new-style rebel paint scheme (stars on red bars over a white car) was applied and the car raced through 1972 and 1973. The original 'Rebel' car was kept and raced until Mid-Ohio in July 1972 but the new car had all the best pieces so it was the one that was kept as the team's primary runner. 'Scrappy' was sold to Alex Davidson, then (through subsequent owners) to Kevin MacKay. In 1974 the 'Le Mans' car was re-bodied as a wide body. The chassis was painted mustard yellow. During the restoration Jack's workmen found the mustard yellow paint under the grey color it had when purchased; Walt Thurn used this as one of his authentication clues.
Registry ID Number: 863
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