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The gleaming red roadster pictured above, chassis no. 1178, is to be sold by Bonhams in Brookline, Mass., this Saturday, with an estimate of $280,000-330,000 (approx. £195,000-230,000).

The car was ordered new in 1956 from the Maserati brothers’ Officine Specializzate Construzione Automobili (OSCA) in Bolognese by Kleenex millionaire James H. Kimberley.

For, not content with cleaning up on the domestic front, ‘Gentleman Jim’ also aimed to wipe the floor with opposition on the racetrack.

And he did. The year he bought the car, Kimberley – with his co-driver Carroll Shelby (the racing driver best known as the driving force behind the AC Shelby Cobra sports car), won the Four-Hour Road America enduro race.

Kimberley subsequently sold 1178 to Otto Linton and Harry Beck, but the car’s racing pedigree continued. Linton and Beck took third place in its class in the 1957 Sebring 12-hour endurance race and returned the following year to win the 1.5-litre class outright.

Later in 1958, Beck, with new owner John Milos, won yet another endurance event, the Marlboro Six-Hours.

During the 1970s, 1178 was restored to pristine condition by Captain Ralph Stevens, whose legacy is marked by the Naval Academy emblem on the bonnet.
And, if the new owner ever does have trouble, a spare engine is being sold with the car!