A 1964 Crosslé 5S Race Car is for sale in the Motorsport Prospects Marketplace and it is an outstanding historic race car. If you enjoyed my recent article The Appeal of Historic Racing and you are looking for a cool vintage race car to own and race, then you should definitely check this one out available from Sam Hancock.
With 380bhp on tap from its Buick V8, this 640 kilogram sports racing car has, in recent years, established itself as a capable challenger to the mighty McLarens, Lolas and GT40s of Goodwood’s fastest grid, The Whitsun Trophy.
Indeed, in 2019 at Goodwood’s 77th Members Meeting, the car triumphed with Cameron Jackson taking a memorable victory from pole position against a brace of GT40s and Lotus 23Bs. In doing so he also recorded the fastest lap of the meeting.
Prepared today by Hi-Tech Motorsport, a well established and respected British preparer, chassis C5-S64-13 is accompanied by current HTP papers and a rich history file documenting its competitive life, spanning nearly six decades.
An Introduction to Crosslé
Founded in Holywood, Northern Ireland in 1957, the Crosslé Car Company is one of the longest surviving specialist racing car manufacturers. In the years since, their single-seater and sports car designs have not only dominated Irish motorsport, but also gained wide acclaim internationally with multiple British and European titles secured throughout the nineteen sixties and seventies.
Many drivers who have since gone on to become household names drove Crosslé cars early in their careers, among them Nigel Mansell, John Watson, Eddie Irvine, and Martin Donnelly.
Much like other customer-focused racing car manufacturers such as Lola or March, all Crosslé sports-racers (the 5S, 7S, and 9S) were designed and built to accommodate various engine and gearbox combinations, depending on the customer’s requirements.
This remains relevant today as the car offered here could potentially accommodate alternative engines to suit the eligibility preferences of its next owner.
Chassis number ‘C5-S64-13’ was ordered new by Irish racing driver, Brian Nelson, a multiple champion with both Scottish and Irish titles to his name.
First supplied with a Daimler SP250 V8 engine coupled to a Jack Knight gearbox, Nelson, campaigned ‘C5-S64-13’ throughout the 1964 and 1965 seasons, including events at Phoenix Park, Bishops Court, and Kirkstown.
Over the winter of 1964/1965, the car was modified to accept the wider bodywork introduced by the factory for the 7S model, but continued to compete throughout the 1965 season with the Daimler V8. In 1966, in line with other cars being developed by the factory, it became a 9S with a 2.0-litre BMW engine.
‘C5-S64-13’ was then sold to Michael Martin and then to John le Sage, who fitted a 2.5-litre Repco engine. Around 1968, the Crosslé was brought to the USA by a Robert Winkelman, subsequently passing into the ownership of Jim Profit. He sold the car to Jim Wallace in 1977, who in turn sold it to Jim Miller in 1980. Jim Miller then proceeded to race ‘C5-S64-13’ until November 1988, firstly with a Buick engine and latterly with an Oldsmobile. Jim Miller passed away in April 1989 and in February 1990 his widow sold the car.
During the car’s time in the USA, the Crosslé Car Company has kept in close contact with all the owners. When its then owner Neil Davies returned the car to them in the mid-2000s for restoration, they were able to confirm its history, noting that it had even retained its original braking and suspension systems! The extensive history files contain correspondence with the factory from very early in the car’s life, together with press cuttings and numerous bills.
The chassis is a spaceframe with the centre section aluminium clad / close riveted for additional stiffness.
In 2015 ‘C5-S64-13’ benefited from extensive renovation by historic racing car specialists, R M Wilson Engineering before moving into the care of Hi-Tech motorsport with its current owner whose continued investment has enabled the car’s recent displays of pace and reliability.
Engine & Gearbox
The car is powered by a 4.6-litre Buick-based Rover V8 engine breathing through quartet of Weber 48 IDF carburettors, producing approximately 380bhp at 6,500rpm. Drive is delivered to the rear axle via a ZF 5DS-25 gearbox, similar to that used in GT40s.
Where Can I race?
- Goodwood Revival, Whitsun Trophy (by invitation)
- Goodwood Members Meeting (by invitation)
- Masters Historic Sportscars
- HSCC Guards Trophy
“Considering the consistency of this car’s invitations to participate at both Goodwood events, along with its now proven ability to win there – not to mention a charming and well documented history – this little 5S is surely an attractive proposition.
There’s no doubt that to extract it’s full potential a capable driver of some experience is required, but that needn’t stop those of more humble ambition from enjoying the inimitable torque of a thumping V8 mated to a lightweight and clearly capable chassis.
I’m a little too tall for this one to have experienced it personally, but from everything I’ve seen and heard, it looks like tremendous fun!”Sam Hancock
You can contact the seller directly at this link and make your vintage racing dreams a reality.