DK Engineering 2019 Year in Review

From international success in concours and motorsport to being entrusted with perhaps the world’s most significant Ferrari,

2019 has been another busy year for DK Engineering. It has also seen the completion of one of our most rewarding projects – the ex-Peter Sellers Ferrari 275 GTB/4 that is celebrated on this year’s Christmas card via an original artwork that we commissioned from our good friend Dexter Brown.

Chassis 09475 was acquired by Sellers when it was a couple of years old. At that stage, the legendary actor and comedian – who had previously owned, among many other great cars, a 250 GTE and a 500 Superfast – was spending much of his time in Geneva, and the four-cam became his daily driver for several years.

In 2015, ‘09475’ was passed to DK Engineering. Everything about the project was managed by our uniquely qualified team, from its comprehensive bare-metal restoration to its 1000-kilometre shakedown, its marketing – including the production of two Inspector Clouseau-themed videos that you can find on our website – and its subsequent sale. From beginning to end, it provided us with the perfect opportunity to showcase the all-encompassing service that we’re proud to provide.

In 1949, 166 MM chassis 0008M scored the marque’s maiden victory at Le Mans after an epic – and almost single-handed – drive-by Luigi Chinetti. In that same year, it also won the Mille Miglia, the only chassis from any manufacturer ever to win both of those world-famous races. To mark the 70th anniversary of its milestone victories, we oversaw the Ferrari’s appearance at a number of high-profile events whilst it was in our care, including the Concours of Elegance at Hampton Court Palace.

We were privileged to be entrusted with the car that helped lay the foundations of the Ferrari legend, as it undertook a European tour of significant events during the summer.

The concours schedule is becoming increasingly busy, and in addition to Hampton Court we attended international fixtures such as Villa d’Este, Monaco, Salon Privé and Zoute. Another packed season of racing got underway in April at the Goodwood Members’ Meeting. James finished third in the Graham Hill Trophy, sharing a Ferrari 250 GTO/64 with Nick Pastorelli, and later that month James and Andrew Smith (pictured) tackled the Tour Auto with the ex-Carreras Colombia Cobra. Frustratingly, the French classic turned into a case of ‘what might have been’. After a strong start on the opening day, they were delayed by mechanical issues before striking back with six wins from the 11 special stages, proving the car’s potential and raising hopes for a successful return in 2020.

DK Engineering’s Harvey Stanley teamed up with James on a number of occasions, taking their E-type to second in the Royal Automobile Club Tourist Trophy at the Silverstone Classic before scoring their first win together in the Cobra during the Dix Mille Tours meeting at Paul Ricard. Harvey crowned a successful year by winning the Gentleman Championship in Peter Auto’s 2.0L Cup, sharing a Porsche 911 with our valued client Richard Cook.

We have been delighted to continue our sponsorship of the Pre-1963 GT Championship, David Cottingham has successfully campaigned his AC Ace-Bristol, and other competition outings included a trip to the Modena Cento Ore. James drove ‘16425’, the last factory-built Ferrari Daytona Competizione, and came home with the Brandoli Trophy after a successful week with his fiancée Frida acting as co-driver.

Fortunately, they completed the event without falling out and were married later in the year! Elsewhere, James took his V10-engined Dallara SP1 sport-prototype to a class win in the Silverstone Classic, as well as fourth overall in the Goodwood Festival of Speed Shootout thanks to a fully committed run in damp conditions.

We also entered the Mille Miglia in the unique Pinin Farina-bodied Ferrari 166 MM, a car that we had restored between 2002 and 2005, and which we have sold on two separate occasions. In February, we’d taken the same car to Florida for the prestigious Cavallino Classic.

We were delighted to be presented with the Queen’s Award for Enterprise, especially considering that this was the first year for which we were eligible. The honour was in recognition of our continued international success and is for businesses that deliver sustained financial growth in overseas markets over a minimum three-year period. When receiving the accolade in October, we were honoured to conduct a tour of our premises for the Lord-Lieutenant Robert Voss CBE, Deputy Lieutenants David Cansdale and Justin Apthorp, plus the Honourable Henry Holland Hibbert and Private Ellis.

It’s been another impressively strong year in terms of sales, with our team finding new homes for several significant cars, including the aforementioned 166 MM Pinin Farina Berlinetta, which was acquired by new clients with whom we’ve been delighted to build a strong relationship. There was also a Cobra with impressive period competition history, a Maserati 3500GT Vignale Spyder, an Austin-Healey 100S, a Bugatti EB110 and EB110SS, and two right-hand drive Porsche 993 GT2s.

Of course, Ferraris continue to be a mainstay for all areas of our business, and this year we’ve once again sold a number of F40s and 288 GTOs, plus a righthand- drive 275 GTB/4, two very rare Enzos – one in silver and one in Tour de France Blue – a righthand- drive 250 GT Lusso and a right-hand-drive 500 Superfast.

As we look ahead to 2020, ongoing restoration projects in our workshops include the third 1954 works Jaguar D-type – chassis XKC 404, known by its registration number ‘OKV 3’. Among many others, we are also working on a V12 Atalanta coupé plus a Ferrari 250 GT Lusso that is nearing completion and which we will be offering for sale.

It’s certainly been another busy but rewarding and exciting year across the entire business.

From everyone here at DK Engineering, we wish you Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year, and we look forward to seeing you in 2020.

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