Mystery Ferrari Updates:

David Seielstad wrote:

"You note that it is probably #0650. It is not. Even though Gordon Glyer did race #0650 on #26 this is not his car. The Kessler-Lovely-von Neumann-Glyer-Harm #0650 has a scoop
on top of the front left fender. It also has a slit at the base of the wind screen.

There are two very good possibilities and a third possible:

1) #0636 Sold to Charles Rezzaghi in San Francisco and on to John von Neumann, then sold to Howard Wheeler in June 1957 and raced by Richie Ginther.   Then it was sold to Sam Weiss, #55, in April 1958.  Weiss sold it to Ed Vincent at the end of 1958 and Vincent kept the car until at least 1961 (Weiss and Vincent were at Oxford Motors in Sacra- mento).  Ed Vincent occasionally raced the car but he used #170. I do not know where the car went next but it stayed around California and eventually went to Ralph Stefano in Alaska.

2) #0654 This car belonged to Bunny Ribbs in California. He acquired it from somewhere in the mid or south-west, and it had been rolled. I have no record of Ribbs ever racing the
car. Once Gordon Glyer was at a race with his #0650 and he broke an axle. A black man came out of the crowd and said, "I have a wrecked car like yours and you can borrow
the axle." Glyer went to his garage, removed the axle and returned to the track where he was able to race. Later Glyer's wife returned the axle to Ribbs. Bunny Ribbs is the
father of the NASCAR and Indy driver Willy T. Ribbs. Oddly enough this car also went to Ralph Stefano in Alaska."

(4-9-10)   From Dennis Barden

"I was just speaking with Gordie Glyer on the telephone about some old car stuff, and he mentioned that there was a story on the internet about him and Bunny Ribbs that contained some factual inaccuracies which he really wished that they could be corrected:

The statements that Gordie would like to have corrected in the above story on your website are: 

1.     Bunny Ribbs’ initial comment to Gordie was, “If you had a replace- ment axle, would you be able to race this weekend?” When Gordie said, “Yes,” Bunny volunteered to lend him an axle from his Ferrari which was in San Jose.  Glyer did not go to San Jose, what happened instead was that Ribbs drove back to his shop, retrieved the axle and delivered it to Glyer to replace his broken axle.  Glyer was involved removing the broken axle from his Ferrari, not driving to San Jose.  Incidentally, when the offer was initially made, Gordie had difficulty believing that anyone would have a spare axle for a Ferrari, but Gordon Martin (the S.F. Chronicle automotive editor) assured Glyer that he knew Ribbs, and that if Bunny said he had an axle, Gordie could count on him to deliver it. 

2.     Glyer’s wife was not involved in the replacement of the axle. After the race, Glyer contacted Ferrari Representatives of California in Hollywood, CA, and had a new axle shipped directly to Ribbs in San Jose, CA as a replacement for the axle that he had generously loaned to Gordie.

Gordie says that the following article written by Gary Horstkorta (SF SCCA Region Historian) is more accurate.

“ . . . . Over the next two years, Glyer raced the 500 TR in sixteen events in the West including races at Vaca Valley, Minden (NV), the LA Times GP at Riverside, Laguna Seca, Pomona, Stockton, Santa Barbara and Shelton (WA), with many top five finishes. During the Stockton race in 1959, Glyer broke an axle shaft during a preliminary race and thought he was through for the weekend. However, a fellow appeared out of the crowd and said he could get a replacement axle. He disappeared only to return sometime later with an axle. Glyer repaired the car and went on to place 3rd and 2nd that weekend. The helpful fellow turned out to be Bunny Ribbs, father of future racer, Willy T. Ribbs.

Glyer sold the 500 TR in August of 1959 for $5,000 and replaced it with another Ferrari, a TR-250 and continued racing. 

What happened to the 500 TR? It went through a succession of owners over the years and eventually appeared at an auction in Monterey in 1997 where it sold for $455,800. Not bad for an old race car that had been in over sixty races when Glyer sold it in 1959! 

by Gary Horstkorta with thanks to Gordie Glyer for the photos”

 If you can make any corrections, Gordie would appreciate it."

(5-16-07)  From Scott Sperka:

"Re:  0654MDTR, the car was owned by Robert Walker of Little Rock , AR who lost his life in it in the initial race meeting at Meadowdale Raceway in IL on Sept. 14, 1958."

Link to photos of the car in action and coverage of Walker's accident at Meadowdale.  Page is from Ross Fossbender's Meadowdale site.

History of #0654  (Courtesy of  super-useful info source "Barchetta".)

When Ralph had the two TRs they were in very rough condition and at least one was missing its engine.

3) Far out possibility:  #0652. This was the Temple Buell 500-TR usually raced by Masten Gregory. It next went to Chester Flynn, a GM executive based in Venezuela and New York.  Flynn sold the car to William Burroughs who raced it in California. However, I think he sold it to Shelby in Texas and it went to Arkansas then Louisiana."

More:   "The August 20, 1961 Vacaville results list a "D. Burton, Ferrari" as finishing 13th.  This would be the mystery car and driver."

A big "Thank you" to David for this information.

Michael T. Lynch weighs in...

"The mystery Ferrari car is 0636 MDTR.  There's a picture of it on my website on the "More Photos" page.  The two cut-outs on the side give it away. No other TRs have that."

To see Richie Ginther in #0636 MDTR:  Go to Michael's website:   Click on the "More Photos" page and check out the #211 car -- 2nd row on the left.

More from Michael...

"Give David Seielstad credit for confirming #0636. He pointed it out to me when I sent him the color pic of Ginther that I posted on my site."

Congratulations to Michael & David for unraveling the Vacaville Ferrari mystery!

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