Four Allards participated in this year’s Rolex Monterey Motorsports Reunion at Laguna Seca raceway. The Allards again paddocked as part of the Del Monte Trophy Racing Group (www.dmtrg.com), a gathering of late 40’s and early 50’s sports racers.
We were glad to see Bernard Dervieux return to Laguna Seca with his silver Cad-powered J2, along with John Mote’s ‘Smurf Blue’ Buick-powered K2. Jon LeCarner and Doug Klink are continuing to carry on the Jim Degnan/George Myers tradition with their red K2’s pitted next to each other.
This year the paddock area was graced by a fifth Allard that has recently come out of storage – the Tilton family ’53 J2X LeMans. #3066 is a veteran of the Pebble Beach and several other West Coast races of 1954 and 1955, and has been owned by the family since 1958. The car suffered body damage during a disagreement with some hay bales during the 1954 Golden Gate Races, and was fitted with a restyled front cowl to get it back on the track in 1955. There is strong speculation that Jack Hagemann, an esteemed northern California aluminum racecar builder of the day, performed this modification.
The four racing Allards ran among an eclectic group of their contemporaries in Group 2A on Saturday. Doug Klink and John Mote started in 11th and 13th spots in the 37car grid, and Jon LeCarner and Bernard Dervieux were in 17th and 26th. Mote moved up to finish 10th in the course of the ten lap race, and Dervieux took the checker flag in 20th place. Klink’s K2 was sidelined early in the race when a small, but significant, throttle linkage component broke at a most inopportune time. LeCarner had a second car running in Group 3A, so he had to bring his Allard in early to get his Devin SS to Pre-grid for the next event.
‘Car Week’ now includes six auctions. One Allard crossed the block this year – a red, Olds-powered J2X at the RM Sotheby auction. It was an older restoration, highly modified for rallying and racing. The car sold for $250,000.
We again enjoyed visiting with our old friend Lindsey Parsons. You may recall that Lindsey gained some well-deserved Allard fame by making several cross country trips with his J2X from his home in New Jersey to the West Coast over the past 20 years. He recently sold his immaculately restored J2X, but continues to keep his enthusiasm for Allards. We are looking forward to getting together again next year!
Words by Chuck Warnes, Photos by Colin Warnes