Benetton Driven by Schumacher and Patrese Races into Bonhams Festival of Speed Sale

Goodwood - A Formula 1 survivor from the 1990s – a 1993 Benetton-Ford Formula 1 Racing Single-Seater, driven in period by two Grand Prix winning drivers, Riccardo Patrese and the seven-times Formula 1 World Champion Michael Schumacher, is in pole position for the Bonhams Festival of Speed Sale at Goodwood on Friday 24 June.

This rare jewel of the auction saleroom – one of only two Benetton B193B Formula 1 cars running in the world - contested five races in the 1993 Formula 1 season with Patrese at the wheel. The pair achieved their best position – third – at the British Grand Prix, behind race winner Alain Prost's victorious Williams-Renault FW15C and Michael Schumacher, second, in the sister Benetton-Ford B193B.

Schumacher himself had notably used this Benetton-Ford – chassis B193B-04 - in qualifying for that Grand Prix when he set the third fastest time. The car was extensively tested by both drivers throughout the season.

Designed under the direction of celebrated Formula 1 engineer Ross Brawn, then Benetton's Technical Director, and Chief Designer Rory Byrne, the B193B was the result of Benetton's intense period of high-tech development over the preceding winter. In a spirit of 'can do' the work embraced automatic gearboxes, active-ride suspension and traction control, all of which featured on the car, assembled around the very first carbon-composite monocoque chassis to be manufactured in the Benetton team's then brand-new Enstone factory.

Offered from the ownership of a Formula 1 connoisseur and Benetton enthusiast, the Benetton has been painstakingly preserved and prepared and is ready to run in demonstration mode. Its original 3.5-litre naturally aspirated (non-turbocharged) Cosworth Ford HB V8 engine has been slightly de-tuned for practical purposes and reliability. It is also equipped with passive suspension and a Motec electronic management system, rather than the original, for ease of maintenance.

Completing the specification is a choice of advertising and livery 'suits' produced for the various international markets, plus the seat mouldings and original seat belts for both drivers – the latter marked with the respective racers' initials.

The Benetton returns to Goodwood where it has been a welcome and familiar sight, as recently as this year's Members Meeting, having completed more laps of the motor circuit and more climbs of the renowned Goodwood hill, than almost any other contemporary Formula 1 car. It has an estimate of £1,100,000 – 1,600,000.

Tim Schofield, Head of Department, Bonhams Motor Cars UK, said: "We are thrilled to offer this example of Formula 1 ingenuity created by the masters of the sport. The Benetton still offers sufficient Formula 1 snap, crackle and performance to give a new owner full appreciation of just how capable Grand Prix greats like Schumacher and Patrese really had to be."

Another familiar Goodwood car offered in the sale is a 1931 Invicta 4 ½-Litre S-Type 'Low Chassis' Sports 'Seagull', £700,000 – 800,000, which was named the 'Ultimate Rakish Sports Car 1929-1940' Class at the 2004 Cartier Concours d'Elegance. Fully restored in the 1980s and 1990s, the Invicta has been owned by the vendor for almost a half-century and has a fascinating history, with its first custodian being a German aristocrat spy.

While 21st century drivers and the latest hyper cars will be tackling the Goodwood hill climb, the Bonhams saleroom will honour former racing aces such as the late Peter Blond, a much-loved and successful privateer racing driver who campaigned in period at the Goodwood Motor Circuit, as well as at Le Mans and the Nürburgring.

The Peter Blond Collection, comprising three Rolls-Royces and a Bentley – all with their own tales to tell - reflect his hobby of collecting and restoring pre-war road cars – to award-winning standard - which he took up after he stopped racing to get married.

The quartet is led by a 1936 Bentley 4¼ Litre All Weather Sports Tourer, (estimate £120,000 – 140,000). The Olympia Show car for that year, featuring particularly rare 'Four Door, Four Light' coachwork, this Bentley was also Peter's first foray into road-going sports cars and was retained by him for more than 60 years.

Completing the set are a 1933 Rolls-Royce Phantom II Continental Sports Coupé, with coachwork by James Young and owned by Peter for 40 years, estimate £85,000 – 115,000; a 1923 Rolls-Royce 20hp Barrel-sided Tourer, estimate £60,000 – 70,000, the final Rolls to be acquired by Peter and a 1932 20/25hp Close Coupled Sports Coupé, with coachwork by Gurney Nutting, estimate £85,000 – 115,000.

Bonhams is presenting its own Supercar Paddock at Goodwood featuring a 2009 Mercedes-Benz SLR McLaren 722 S Roadster, £550,000 – 750,000 and a 1993 Jaguar XJ220 Coupé, estimate £375,000 – 425,000.

The SLR McLaren was so-called after the 1955 Mille Miglia-winning Mercedes-Benz 300 SL, driven by British motor-racing legend Stirling Moss, which had the starting number 722. Powered by a hand-built AMG engine, the Formula 1 inspired carbon-fibre supercar has a top speed of 208 mph. Only 105 cars were produced, the majority at the McLaren factory in the UK – the car offered is the very first, Number One.

Two decades earlier, the XJ220 was also reaching speeds in excess of 200 mph, making it the fastest supercar of its time. On track, the mid-engine Jaguar, with its Tom Walkinshaw Racing chassis, campaigned at Le Mans, like its spiritual ancestor D-Type, winning the GT class of 1993. This UK-supplied example has covered circa 7,500 miles from new.

The Bonhams Goodwood Festival of Speed Sale will take place in its traditional setting of the private gardens of Goodwood House on Friday 24 June from 10.00 (automobilia) and 14.00 (motor cars). All lots can be viewed on Thursday 23 June, 10.00 to 17.30 and Friday sale day from 09.00.


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