The ex-Curt Lincoln, Jack Brewer,1959 2-Liter Cooper-Climax Monaco Mark I Sports-Racing Two-Seater  Chassis no. CM-1-59 Engine no. 430/30/1164

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Lot 459
The ex-Curt Lincoln, Jack Brewer, 1959 2-Liter Cooper-Climax Monaco Mark I Sports-Racing Two-Seater
Chassis no. CM-1-59 Engine no. 430/30/1164

Sold for US$ 287,500 inc. premium
The ex-Curt Lincoln, Jack Brewer
1959 2-Liter Cooper-Climax Monaco Mark I Sports-Racing Two-Seater
Chassis no. CM-1-59
Engine no. 430/30/1164
This Cooper Monaco Mark I was the first of the production rear-engined sports-racing cars built in the legendary Cooper Car Company Ltd’s factory in Hollyfield Road, Surbiton, ready for the 1959 racing season. It was preceded by only one prototype car, which actually took the higher chassis serial number ‘CM-2-59’ since it was not signed off from the factory until February 26, 1959, whereas ‘CM-1-59’ had been signed-off on January 15 that year. While the ‘No. 2’ (prototype) car was delivered direct to Sebring, Florida, for its French-based former Grand Prix driver Hermano da Silva Ramos to compete in the 12-Hours classic, this ‘No. 1’ car was shipped to Helsinki, Finland, for its proud new owner, the Finnish industrialist Curt Lincoln.

Curt Lincoln was his nation’s leading racing driver of the period and he was extremely active in Scandinavian events and also competed whenever the opportunity presented itself ‘behind the Iron Curtain’ in Soviet territory, most notably on the public road course in Tallinn, Estonia, just across the water from Helsinki on the southern coast of the Gulf of Finland.

It was in November, 1958, that the original Cooper Monaco Mark I offset-driving position sports-racing car was announced by the Surbiton-based company to replace its preceding center-seat ‘Bobtail’ small-capacity models. The new design was named ‘Monaco’ after Maurice Trintignant’s victory in the world-famous round-the-houses Monte Carlo street race, the 1958 Monaco Grand Prix, behind the wheel of a Rob Walker-entered Formula 1 Cooper-Climax. The original Cooper Monaco Mark I model combined coil-and-wishbone front suspension with a transverse-leaf rear end and was a notably short-wheelbase sports-racing car, amazingly low and light for the period, clothed in stubby and purposeful aluminum bodywork. While there was no published price for these cars in the home British market, for the US the published prices were $7,700 for a 1500cc version and $8,250 for a 2-liter. In Britain – always happy simply ‘to be different’ – price was ‘open to discussion between factory and client’, and favored established clients obviously benefited from a significantly shorter discussion than any newcomers. Several cars were sold as tax-free self-assemble kits or collections of suitable parts for the customer to assemble, or have assembled, for himself.

In the original surviving Cooper Car Company chassis book – as recounted in the bible on these machines Cooper Cars (Osprey, London, 1983 et seq) by Bonhams & Butterfields consultant Doug Nye – only eight of these Mark I cars are listed as having been produced and sold through 1959

During 1959 the new Monacos which emerged not only in France and Finland but most notably – of course – in the UK and USA - were immediately successful. They displayed a slight advantage over the contemporary front-engined Lotus-Climax 15s. At the mid-season British GP meeting Stirling Moss made his Monaco debut in the first 2½-liter Climax-engined variant, while other owners fitted the 2½-liter Maserati 4-cylinder in place of Cooper’s preferred Coventry Climax FPF power unit.

Curt Lincoln continued to campaign ‘CM-1-59’ for several years in suitable Scandinavian events, and also elsewhere in Europe. His young daughter Nina would eventually meet and marry a meteoric young Austrian Formula Junior and Formula 2 racing driver named Jochen Rindt, tragically fated to become Formula 1’s first posthumous World Champion Driver, in 1970, during which season he led Team Lotus.

Curt Lincoln eventually sold this Cooper Monaco Mark I to the American owner/driver Jack Brewer of Elmira, New York. He raced the car for some years before eventually retiring it from competition and selling it to a new owner based in Vermont. Attempts were made to replace the car’s original Coventry Climax 4-cylinder racing engine with a Detroit V8 of some description, but reputedly this conversion work was never completed.

In the early 1980s ‘CM-1-59’ offered here passed to homes in Virginia, Florida, and finally to California where it lodged with prominent ‘vintage’ racing personality Don Orosco. The present vendor purchased the car from Mr. Orosco as long ago as 1984.

It was then that the car was completely restored and raced at Riverside in Southern California. In more recent years this car has appeared regularly at the Monterey Historics weekend and also in the Wine Country Classic. As the first-delivered production Cooper Monaco – and the very first such car to have been released from the charismatic Cooper Car Company’s British factory – this wonderfully aggressive-looking little sports-racing classic has immense historical significance. It is the tap-root of the rear-engined sports-racing dynasty which led direct to the Cooper-based Shelby American King Cobra projectiles of 1963-64 with their heavy-metal Ford V8 horsepower. It is also the progenitor of the direct line of descent which spawned ‘anything goes’ CanAm Challenge sports-racing car competition in the USA and Canada from 1966-74. In recent years ‘CM-1-59’ as offered here has been lodged on permanent display in the Towe Auto Museum in Sacramento, California, but with expert inspection and preparation this is a fine-history ‘vintage’ racer of enormous potential.
The ex-Curt Lincoln, Jack Brewer,1959 2-Liter Cooper-Climax Monaco Mark I Sports-Racing Two-Seater  Chassis no. CM-1-59 Engine no. 430/30/1164
The ex-Curt Lincoln, Jack Brewer,1959 2-Liter Cooper-Climax Monaco Mark I Sports-Racing Two-Seater  Chassis no. CM-1-59 Engine no. 430/30/1164
The ex-Curt Lincoln, Jack Brewer,1959 2-Liter Cooper-Climax Monaco Mark I Sports-Racing Two-Seater  Chassis no. CM-1-59 Engine no. 430/30/1164
The ex-Curt Lincoln, Jack Brewer,1959 2-Liter Cooper-Climax Monaco Mark I Sports-Racing Two-Seater  Chassis no. CM-1-59 Engine no. 430/30/1164
The ex-Curt Lincoln, Jack Brewer,1959 2-Liter Cooper-Climax Monaco Mark I Sports-Racing Two-Seater  Chassis no. CM-1-59 Engine no. 430/30/1164
The ex-Curt Lincoln, Jack Brewer,1959 2-Liter Cooper-Climax Monaco Mark I Sports-Racing Two-Seater  Chassis no. CM-1-59 Engine no. 430/30/1164
The ex-Curt Lincoln, Jack Brewer,1959 2-Liter Cooper-Climax Monaco Mark I Sports-Racing Two-Seater  Chassis no. CM-1-59 Engine no. 430/30/1164
The ex-Curt Lincoln, Jack Brewer,1959 2-Liter Cooper-Climax Monaco Mark I Sports-Racing Two-Seater  Chassis no. CM-1-59 Engine no. 430/30/1164
The ex-Curt Lincoln, Jack Brewer,1959 2-Liter Cooper-Climax Monaco Mark I Sports-Racing Two-Seater  Chassis no. CM-1-59 Engine no. 430/30/1164
The ex-Curt Lincoln, Jack Brewer,1959 2-Liter Cooper-Climax Monaco Mark I Sports-Racing Two-Seater  Chassis no. CM-1-59 Engine no. 430/30/1164
The ex-Curt Lincoln, Jack Brewer,1959 2-Liter Cooper-Climax Monaco Mark I Sports-Racing Two-Seater  Chassis no. CM-1-59 Engine no. 430/30/1164
The ex-Curt Lincoln, Jack Brewer,1959 2-Liter Cooper-Climax Monaco Mark I Sports-Racing Two-Seater  Chassis no. CM-1-59 Engine no. 430/30/1164
The ex-Curt Lincoln, Jack Brewer,1959 2-Liter Cooper-Climax Monaco Mark I Sports-Racing Two-Seater  Chassis no. CM-1-59 Engine no. 430/30/1164
The ex-Curt Lincoln, Jack Brewer,1959 2-Liter Cooper-Climax Monaco Mark I Sports-Racing Two-Seater  Chassis no. CM-1-59 Engine no. 430/30/1164
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