This has to be the most significant European racing Cobra of all time.
Chassis CS2131 (also known as 39PH due to its registration number) started life as a ‘works’ A.C. Cars race car, and was promptly entered into the 1963 Le Mans 24hr, resplendent in AC green and equipped with a Shelby tuned 289 cu/in V8. With drivers Ninian Sanderson and Peter Bolton, the new, thundering, Anglo-American Cobra would go on to claim victory in the GT Class, making it the first and only AC Cobra to win Le Mans. 39PH would pave the way for the Shelby Daytona Coupe successes at Le Mans in 1964 and ‘65.
Following its incredible Le Mans win, 39PH was acquired by the Willment Racing Team for 1964. With Willment drivers Jack Sears and Frank Gardner, 39PH, now painted in the team colours of red with white stripes, would continue its winning ways. Victories at Oulton Park, Aintree and Silverstone followed, but nothing quite compared to the tale of the ’64 Brands Hatch GP Meeting. The infamous “Black Flag” race would add yet another wonderful tale to 39PH’s already legendary status, with ‘Gentleman’ Jack Sears taking an incredible win from Jackie Stewart after an early-race black flag. Following John Willment knocking RAC Steward Basil Tye into a flowerbed, Sears would carve his way from the back of the pack at a mesmerising pace. Arguably one of the greatest GT drives in history.
▪ Le Mans 24 Hours 1st in GT Class, 7th o/a drivers Peter Bolton/Ninian Sanderson.
▪ Goodwood Sussex Trophy – Jack Sears, 2nd o/a
▪ Oulton Park Gold Cup – Jack Sears, 1st in GT Class
▪ Aintree 200 – Jack Sears, 1st in GT Class
▪ Silverstone Sports Car Trophy – Frank Gardner, 1st GT
▪ Silverstone Daily Express International Trophy – Jack Sears, 3rd o/a
▪ Nurburgring 1000kms – Sears/Gardner Practice accident
▪ Brands Hatch GP Meeting, Ilford Films Trophy – Jack Sears 1st overall - the infamous “Black Flag” race, which Jack won from Jackie Stewart after being black flagged & entrant John Willment knocked the RAC Steward Basil Tye into a flowerbed! Arguably one of the greatest GT drives in history.
▪ Brands Hatch Guards Trophy – Jack Sears 1st GT, 5th o/a
▪ Goodwood RAC Tourist Trophy – Jack Sears 2nd GT, 4th o/a
- Class winner Le Mans 1963
- Brands Hatch GP Meeting, Jack Sears 1st overall (Black Flag race)
- Many other wins is 1964