Following an extensive two-year restoration project, an incredibly rare Le Mans Triumph TRS sports car has been offered for sale by a Historic Car Dealership based in Oxfordshire.
Bicester Heritage-based specialists in post-war British sports cars, Pendine Historic Cars, describes the car ss one of just four ever built. The ex-works 1960 Triumph TRS is famous for playing a significant role in British motoring history as one of three cars which competed in Triumph’s 1960 and 1961 assault in the 24 hours of Le Mans, with their performance resulting in the prestigious manufacturer’s team prize.
Le Mans Triumph TRS – 927 HP
Originally registered as ‘927 HP’, the car set the scene for the yet to be released TR4 featuring one of the very rare ‘Sabrina’ twin-cam prototype engines, developed specifically for the demanding Le Mans race by the Triumph Competition department in 1959, of which only a handful exist today.
The rare and important historic sports car has been given a sale price of £295,000 and is sure to attract a wide range of collectors from around the world.
Jonny Shears, Pendine Historic Cars:
“This is a genuine ex-works Triumph TRS with extremely rare racing provenance as well as the legendary Sabrina engine, making it a very desirable, collectors’ sports car.
“Not only did this car compete twice in the world’s oldest and most famous endurance race, but the Sabrina engine developed by Triumph never made it into mass production, making this a truly unmissable opportunity for today’s racing enthusiasts or collectors to own a really special sports car, either for competing or showing at today’s most exclusive motoring events.
“This fantastic historic sports car is an access all areas invite to the top motorsport events, no doubt welcome at the Goodwood Revival and, of course, Le Mans Classic. We believe that in the right hands, 927 HP would be a highly competitive entry in current historic motor racing. A post-war British sports car, the provenance and performance certainly encompass it all,”
1960 24 hours of Le Mans
‘927 HP’ first competed in the 1960 24 hours of Le Mans driven by Peter Bolton and Ninian Sanderson. Despite running faultlessly, with the three TRS cars finishing in 15th, 18th and 19th places, this was not Triumph’s year and none of the cars covered the minimum distance required to be classified.
However, in 1961 all three cars returned to Le Mans, this time with ‘927 HP’ raced by Les Leston and Rob Slotemaker. This was Triumph’s year, with all three cars not only finishing the race but covering the minimum distance required and placing in 9th, 11th and 15th, running faultlessly throughout. This result won Triumph the manufacturer’s team prize.
Since the car’s racing success at Le Mans, it was sold in North America via the dealer network of privateers. Seldom used by the new owner, it was later purchased by a Mr K N Gwing of Virginia in 1972. Once again, the car was relatively untouched during this time until the owner’s passing, when it was inherited by Mr Gwing’s daughter. She then sold the car to the current owner in 2008.
The new owner then began a detailed disassembly and restoration to return ‘927 HP’ to its 1961 24 hours of Le Mans guise. This included rebuilding the original ‘Sabrina’ twin-cam engine, now one of just two that remain in use today.
Anyone wishing to see the car in detail can do so via this link.