An incredibly rare 1936 Delahaye 135 S Compétition Court racing car which made its track debut at the Three Hours of Marseille, endurance race while part of Écurie Bleu, will spearhead the Monaco Sale ‘Les Grandes Marques à Monaco’ taking place in April 2021…
Affectionately named ‘Blue Buzz’ because of the car’s sky-blue paintwork, the French national colour and the muffled ‘buzzing’ sound of their engines, the stunning Delahaye that fiercely campaigned in 1930s endurance races including the 24 Hours of Le Mans, will be offered in Bonhams The Monaco Sale ‘Les Grandes Marques à Monaco‘ and carries an estimate of €800,000 – 1,100,000.
Renowned for its success in concours d’elegances away from the track, and racing on it, the Delahaye 135 was one of the all-time great sporting motor cars of the pre-war period.
The French marques success was partly due to the efforts of Irish American heiress Lucy Schell who as a former racing driver also became the first female motorsport team owner, with her finest hour coming at the 1938 Pau Grand Prix when her semi-works Delahaye team was victorious against a seemingly unbeatable Mercedes team to take the chequered flag.
Two years earlier, Schell purchased the 135 S now offered by Bonhams, which made its debut at the 1936 ‘Three Hours of Marseille’ endurance race 1936 as part of Écurie Bleu, her three-car semi-works team.
This particular car, Blue Buzz II, competed in pre-war Grand Prix races at Donington, Pau and Commiges and endurance races such as the Belfast Tourist-Trophy before its greatest challenge, the 24 Hours of Le Mans in 1939. That same year, the Delahaye was rebodied in a more aerodynamic style by the respected coachbuilders Chappes Frères.
Following two subsequent ‘face lifts’ in the intervening years, the 135 S is now offered with coachwork in the style of the Chappes Frères bodyshell, retaining its original period running gear, engine and, most importantly, the original chassis – which is a rarity for a racing car of this period. Naturally, the Delahaye is eligible for the 2021 Le Mans Classic due to take place from 1 – 4 July among a host of world-class vintage racing and Concours events.
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