1965 Wolverine LD65 Chevrolet Group 7 CanAm Sports-racing Prototype  Chassis no. LD65-01

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Lot 257
1965 Wolverine LD65 Chevrolet Group 7 CanAm Sports-racing Prototype
Chassis no. LD65-01

Sold for £ 80,500 (US$ 100,399) inc. premium
1965 Wolverine LD65 Chevrolet Group 7 CanAm Sports-racing Prototype
Chassis no. LD65-01

* Unique US-built CanAm car
* In-period competition history
* Current FIA HTP
* Current ownership since circa 2010
* Restored since acquisition


A successful businessman and accomplished privateer racer, Jerry Hansen approached General Motors engineers Lee Dykstra and George Anderson in 1965 and asked them to design a mid-engined sports car for him that would be suitable for the forthcoming CanAm series. The result was the Wolverine. Three cars were planned to spread costs, but in the event only one was completed.

Dykstra designed a tubular steel spaceframe chassis, reinforced by stressed aluminium honeycomb sheets in a form of semi-monocoque construction, a not uncommon practice at the time. Suspension at the front was by double wishbones, while the rear consisted of reversed lower wishbones, top links and twin radius arms, an arrangement pretty much state-of-the-art for the period. Originally intended for the Corvette Grand Sport, the Wolverine's wheels were cast magnesium.

For most of the nascent CanAm sports-racers, Chevrolet's excellent small-block V8 was the power unit of choice, and thus it was for the Wolverine, in which the engine was mated to a four-speed (no reverse) McKee transaxle. Stylist George Anderson was responsible the new sports racer's barchetta body, which was fabricated in aluminium sheet using a wooden buck (the rear end is now made of glassfibre). Anderson's design featured relatively long, pointed front wings - said by some to resemble the claws of a Wolverine and earning the car its name. The completed car tipped the scales at around 750kg (1,650lb).

Built by Dykstra and Anderson during evenings and weekends, the Wolverine LD65 was entered by Hansen in the very first Can-Am race, held at the St Jovite circuit at Mont Tremblant, Canada on 11th September 1966. Faced with strong opposition from the latest Lolas and McLarens, Hansen qualified 25th and eventually finished in 20th place. Prior to that, Hansen had entered the Wolverine in two events in June '66 but the car did not actually make its competition debut until 3rd July when Hansen drove it to a debut win at the SCCA's Greenwood meeting. The car's next outing was at Mid Ohio on 28th August 1966, resulting in a DNF. Disappointed with the St Jovite result, Hansen did not race the Wolverine again after that.

Having acquired a McLaren for 1967, Hansen set the Wolverine aside. In 1968, the car was acquired by Frank Opalka and on 28th July of that year was raced by him at the Road America 500 Miles (DNF). The following year, the Wolverine passed to James Place. Records show that Place entered the car in three events in 1969/1970, though it failed to start in any of them. For 1971 Place acquired a Lola T160.

The current vendor acquired the Wolverine, completely dismantled and contained in 20 boxes and bundles of parts, circa 2010. He then had it shipped to his home in Denmark where a very thorrow assembly and preparation for racing, with the main emphases on originality, took place. Eventually the Wolverine was got running again and the vendor has competed ewith it twice at the Goodwood Revival Meeting. More recently, in 2016, the car was shipped back to the USA where it was displayed at the Rolex Monterey Motorsports Reunion at Laguna Seca. Only three races have been competed since the engine was rebuilt by Ted Wenz (Savannah Race Engineering) and the transmission overhauled by McKee. Offered with current FIA HTP, 'LD65-01' represents a wonderful opportunity to acquire a unique CanAm sports-racer with in-period competition history.
The original drawings signed by George Andersen supplied with the car.
Contacts
1965 Wolverine LD65 Chevrolet Group 7 CanAm Sports-racing Prototype  Chassis no. LD65-01
1965 Wolverine LD65 Chevrolet Group 7 CanAm Sports-racing Prototype  Chassis no. LD65-01
1965 Wolverine LD65 Chevrolet Group 7 CanAm Sports-racing Prototype  Chassis no. LD65-01
1965 Wolverine LD65 Chevrolet Group 7 CanAm Sports-racing Prototype  Chassis no. LD65-01
1965 Wolverine LD65 Chevrolet Group 7 CanAm Sports-racing Prototype  Chassis no. LD65-01
1965 Wolverine LD65 Chevrolet Group 7 CanAm Sports-racing Prototype  Chassis no. LD65-01
1965 Wolverine LD65 Chevrolet Group 7 CanAm Sports-racing Prototype  Chassis no. LD65-01
1965 Wolverine LD65 Chevrolet Group 7 CanAm Sports-racing Prototype  Chassis no. LD65-01
1965 Wolverine LD65 Chevrolet Group 7 CanAm Sports-racing Prototype  Chassis no. LD65-01
1965 Wolverine LD65 Chevrolet Group 7 CanAm Sports-racing Prototype  Chassis no. LD65-01
1965 Wolverine LD65 Chevrolet Group 7 CanAm Sports-racing Prototype  Chassis no. LD65-01
1965 Wolverine LD65 Chevrolet Group 7 CanAm Sports-racing Prototype  Chassis no. LD65-01
1965 Wolverine LD65 Chevrolet Group 7 CanAm Sports-racing Prototype  Chassis no. LD65-01
1965 Wolverine LD65 Chevrolet Group 7 CanAm Sports-racing Prototype  Chassis no. LD65-01
1965 Wolverine LD65 Chevrolet Group 7 CanAm Sports-racing Prototype  Chassis no. LD65-01
1965 Wolverine LD65 Chevrolet Group 7 CanAm Sports-racing Prototype  Chassis no. LD65-01
1965 Wolverine LD65 Chevrolet Group 7 CanAm Sports-racing Prototype  Chassis no. LD65-01
1965 Wolverine LD65 Chevrolet Group 7 CanAm Sports-racing Prototype  Chassis no. LD65-01
1965 Wolverine LD65 Chevrolet Group 7 CanAm Sports-racing Prototype  Chassis no. LD65-01
1965 Wolverine LD65 Chevrolet Group 7 CanAm Sports-racing Prototype  Chassis no. LD65-01
1965 Wolverine LD65 Chevrolet Group 7 CanAm Sports-racing Prototype  Chassis no. LD65-01
1965 Wolverine LD65 Chevrolet Group 7 CanAm Sports-racing Prototype  Chassis no. LD65-01
1965 Wolverine LD65 Chevrolet Group 7 CanAm Sports-racing Prototype  Chassis no. LD65-01
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