Enzo Ferrari once famously declared that race cars “only become beautiful when they win”. However, a quick look at some of the historic competition cars might have you doubting his word, because there are some real stunners in the field.
Whether it’s the classic appeal of the Hudson Hornet or the evergreen curves of the Porsche 911, there’s plenty to admire about a vintage race car. If you’ve been toying with the idea of starting a classic car collection, specialising in race cars is something to consider.
But how to get started? If the idea seems overwhelming, here are a few hot tips to get you started on your collection of classic race cars.
Think Creatively About Storage
No-one launches into purchasing classic cars of any kind without first considering the subject of storage. While practical considerations are considerably less exciting than thinking about the actual cars, it’s a necessary evil if you want your vintage racing cars to stay looking their best.
If you’re blessed with an enormous garage that can hold a whole fleet, then no need to dwell on the issue: problem solved. Unfortunately, most people only have room for a few cars in their garage so you’ll need to find an alternative.
You won’t want to store your cars a long way from where you live. If you get the urge to take one for a spin, taking a long drive just to get there will put a real dampener on the occasion. If you have room on your land, constructing a purpose-built storage facility is the perfect solution.
Keeping the cars in a dry, ventilated and heated location will provide them with the necessary protection. Consider how you’ll move them in and out too; having to shift the whole collection just to reach one car will be intensely frustrating. Investing in hydraulic lifts and vertical shelving systems will help you make the most of the available space, as well as making it more convenient to reach the car you want.
Decide on Your Strategy
Collecting historic race cars is a wide spectrum and everyone has their own idea about how hands-on they want to be. Perhaps you’ll want to do all the work yourself but this requires a lot of time and expertise - something that not everyone has. Other people prefer to dabble in the fun parts, but get experts to carry out the more complicated parts of the restoration.
There’s no right or wrong answer but make sure you’re clear in your mind about what you’re looking for. Classic sports cars come in many different types of condition - and at different price points accordingly - so to avoid wasting money you should decide in advance how much work you’re prepared to do.
Visit Classic Race Car Shows and Events
One of the best ways to learn about classic race cars and the practicalities of building a collection is to speak to those who own one themselves. Attending classic race car events, be that a local meet or an international show, will give you the opportunity to see a range of impressive motor vehicles for yourself and speak to car owners in person about any questions you may have. Those in the classic race car community are absolute enthusiasts and will be more than happy to discuss their journey and offer any advice they possibly can.
Collect Memorabilia Too!
If you’ve got a passion for the vintage race car, memorabilia is a great way to show off your love. You might not be able to bring your classic Bugatti into the lounge in your home, but you can surround yourself with photos, models and other souvenirs.
You’ll find that there’s a lively market for racing car memorabilia, and you may discover some interesting purchases available for sale at classic car dealers. Other local amateur collectors may also be interested in trading so it’s useful to build up a network of contacts.
There’s a wide range of keepsakes and collectables available, from vintage manuals and books, to framed photos and scale models. As well as using the memorabilia to decorate your home, you might also want to consider displaying them in your garage or storage facility. What better way to make your love for classic race cars really stand out?
At DM Historics, we specialise in the sale, restoration and preparation of classic race cars and are here to help you start your journey. If you want to learn more, please don’t hesitate to GET IN TOUCH with our team today.