Historic Festival Honored Collector Set to Also Bring Vintage Motorcycles
Historic Festival 41 Honored Collector Lawrence Auriana’s motorsport collection extends beyond rare cars; it also includes vintage motorcycles with deep rooted racing history. Two special examples from his collection will be on display during the Historic Festival 41 at Lime Rock Park Aug. 31-Sept. 4.
Auriana is set to bring a captivating assortment of cars that will be showcased throughout the race weekend in Paddock A, while a special highlight awaits on Sunday’s Concours as they line Sam Posey straight.
In a four-part series, Lime Rock Park will shine a spotlight on each of the 17 cars that will receive honorary recognition during the upcoming Historic Festival. In part one, five rare Alfa Romeos were reviewed, in part two, four historic Ferraris, including Sam Posey’s podium-winning Ferrari 512, were highlighted. Part three told the story of five rare Maseratis, including a vintage Maserati hauler and Stirling Moss’ Winning 1956 250F Maserati.
In the final installment, two rare motorcycles and a bonus build from the Maserati brothers that will be attending Historic Festival 41 will be covered.
1964 OSCA MT4 Vignale
In 1947, having sold their company to the Orsi family a decade earlier, the Maserati brothers formed a new company in Bologna and began building light, small displacement sports cars under the name “OSCA,” an acronym for Officine Specializate Costruzione Automobili. The tremendous success of the cars on track gave OSCA worldwide recognition and respect.
The first MT4s had cigar-shaped bodies with removable cycle fenders and were powered by a 72 HP 1100cc four-cylinder engine. Over their 10-year production run, the capacity of the MT4 engines increased to 1491cc and 130 HP, and the cigar shaped bodies gave way to traditional barchetta-style coachbuilt bodies with integrated fenders. In all, about 40 MT4s were built from 1947-1957. This particular car was sold to OSCA importer Edgar Fronteras in 1954. It came with a 1452cc, single ignition engine and a unique, one-off Vignale body. That same year, it was purchased by Phil Stewart, who would compete with it extensively in the Midwest, including some 15 victories at Elkhart Lake, Wilmot, Milwaukee, Indianapolis and others.
During his two-year ownership, having experienced “a great deal of trouble” with the entine, Stewart replaced it with a 1491cc rare, twin-plug head engine purchased from Briggs Cunningham. In 1956, the car was sold to Jim Hall, who also competed in it. The car changed hands several more times and was restored in the late 1960s. In 1996, the car was purchased by Historic Festival 41 Honored Collector Auriana, who commissioned a complete, ground-up restoration by Epifani Restorations. In 2000, the car won first prize in its class at the Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance.
1972 Ducati 750SS Imola
The history of the 1972 Ducati 750SS Imola marks a significant chapter in motorcycle racing and design. Born from a collaboration between Ducati and its U.S. importer, Joe Berliner, the 750SS Imola gained fame through its remarkable performance in the inaugural Imola 200 race in 1972. This bike was raced by Bruno Spaggiari to a second-place finish. This event was a precursor to the modern Superbike World Championship and showcased the prowess of the Ducati motorcycle on an international stage.
In 1972, Ducati was a relatively small Italian motorcycle manufacturer primarily known for producing single-cylinder motorcycles. The company saw an opportunity to demonstrate its engineering capabilities by entering the Imola 200 race, a grueling endurance competition held at the Imola circuit in Italy. Ducati’s 750SS, designed by Fabio Taglioni, featured a 747.95cc air cooled O.H.C. (overhead cam) four-stroke Desmo V-twin engine with a compression ratio of 10:1 which produced 80HP at 900 RPM using two 40mm Dell’Orto PHM carburetors. It was also outfitted with distinctive silver metallic paint and blue stripes. The bike’s innovative design and powerful performance set it apart from its competitors.
The 750SS Imola’s success paved the way for Ducati’s entry into the production of high-performance motorcycles, contributing to the eventual establishment of the sportbike genre. Today, the 1972 Ducati 750SS Imola remains an icon, celebrated for its pivotal role in shaping Ducati’s racing legacy and its lasting influence on motorcycle design and performance.
1978 Ducati 900 TT Hailwood
The 1978 Ducati 900 TT (Tourist Trophy) Hailwood represents a remarkable fusion of racing heritage and production excellence. Named after the legendary racer Mike “The Bike” Hailwood, this motorcycle was a tribute to Hailwood’s spectacular comeback victory at the Isle of Man TT in 1978 riding a Ducati. The 900 TT Hailwood was a limited-edition production model that captured the spirit of that triumphant race, showcasing Ducati’s commitment to performance and craftsmanship.
The Ducati 900 TT Hailwood was powered by a 864cc air-cooled L-twin engine, designed by engineer Fabio Taglioni. This engine featured desmodromic valve technology, a signature Ducati innovation that eliminated the need for valve springs, allowing for precise control over valve movement at high RPMs. With its distinctive twin exhausts, frame, and bodywork, the 900 TT Hailwood bore a strong resemblance to the racer Hailwood had ridden to victory at the Isle of Man, cementing its status as a collector’s gem.
For tickets and event information, visit: https://limerock.com/events/historic-festival-41/