One of America’s most important F1 cars is up for auction

aar eagle mk1

Dan Gurney’s first AAR Eagle is up for auctionMathieu Heurtault – Gooding & Co.

Dan Gurney’s All American Racers has produced a number of outstanding race cars over the decades, and it all started here. This is AAR Eagle Mk1, chassis #101. As far as American racing cars go, it doesn’t get any better.

All American Racers was formed in 1965 with the goal of winning the biggest races in the world. In Europe, AAR raced as Anglo American Racers, first entering Formula 1 in 1966 with this car, the Mk1. The most famous Eagle Mk1 is chassis #104, the one that Gurney drove to victory in the 1967 Belgian Grand Prix, becoming the first and only American car to win an F1 Grand Prix at the hands of an American driver. The ’67 car was powered by a 3.0-liter Weslake V-12 and used an innovative chassis made in part from titanium and magnesium. This earlier Mk1 was powered by a 2.7-litre Coventry-Climax four-cylinder mated to the de rigor Transaxle Hewland.

Chassis #101 was used by AAR in the 1966 and 1967 F1 seasons before making way for the V-12 car. With Gurney at the wheel, he achieved 5th place at the French and Mexican Grands Prix and a 7th place at the German Grand Prix. Also of note were Phil Hill and Bob Bondurant who both raced the car for AAR. After his time with AAR, the car was sold and promoted by Al Pease, a Canadian who holds the ignominious distinction of being the only driver disqualified for a Grand Prix for being too slow. (In Pease’s defense, he’s been very successful elsewhere in Canadian motorsport.)

dan gurney, moises solana, mexico grand prix

Dan Gurney driving Eagle Mk1 #101 at the 1966 Mexican Grand Prix.Bernard Cahier – Getty Images

AAR built just four examples of the Mk1 and it was their only F1 car, as the team shifted its focus to American open wheel racing. This car comes with its original Climax engine, although the sender installed another engine for competition use. Gooding and Company notes that chassis #101 underwent a “comprehensive” restoration by J&L Fabricators race shop in Puyallup, Washington, and comes with a number of paperwork dating back to its days as a team car. Since new, it has had only four owners, and Gooding and Company estimates it will sell for between $3 million and $4 million. A lot of money to be sure, but this is one of the most significant American race cars of all time. This particular chassis may have only a few F1 top tens to its name, but it also marked the beginning of one of the greatest racing constructors in the world.

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