Ferrari’s at the Great Race (part two)

Some of the Sports Car Class at Pikes Peak 1960

(If you haven’t seen Ferrari part one scroll down and catch that first)

Dick Morgensen’s Testa Rosa 250

Richard bought his 1958 Ferrari 250 TR Spider Scaglietti new in 1958. Right off the bat he was racing at Santa Barbara, Del Mar, Palm Springs and tracks across the USA . Early on he ran the Ferrari red race car wearing the number 146, but quickly shortened it to “46” which it retained for the rest of it’s racing career. The 250 TR race cars were powerful brutes, running a huge 3 liter V-12 single cam engine, with two distributors and six carburetors, followed by a 4 speed transmission and drum brakes all around. . Only 32 of these stallions were built and the values of those remaining today are astronomical. (demanding 8 figure prices )

1960 Pikes Peak Hill Climb

Going into Pikes Peak, Dick Morgensen and his Ferrari 250 TR had already claimed 16, 1st in class results out of  the 22 races he had entered. The Sports Car Class at the PPHC in 1960 included many greats , Indy 500 winner Roger Ward in a Porsche RSK, Ak Miller who already was a two time sports car class winner at Pikes Peak in a Devin-Olds, Bill Krause in a Chevy-D-Jaguar , two BoCars driven by Bob Carnes and L.D. Stakehouse ,  Bob Donner Jr. in his Porsche RSK, along with several potent Corvettes . It was the place to be for sports car racing, but how would the rip snorting Ferrari Stallion Testa Rosa handle the dirt and the altitude ?

Qualifying

By the time practice week thins the heard, and going into qualifying you get an idea who has the right setup and what drivers have a chance at making the fastest time on race day. The sports car class was divided into three groups by engine displacement.  Group 3 0-1500cc, Group 2 1501-3000cc and Group 1 “Unlimited” 3001cc- and up.  A few of cars in the large displacement, Unlimited class had mechanical issues during qualifying and the Stiletto BoCar crashed.  Dick Morgensen was in Group 2 class for 1501-3000cc cars and qualified well, even besting some of the larger unlimited class cars .

Qualifying PPHC 1960  Sports Car Class

  1.  Ak Miller Devin-Olds  (460 V-8)
  2. Bill Krause  Chevrolet-D Jaguar
  3. Al Daniels Corvette
  4. Dick Morgensen Ferrari 250 TR
  5. Charlie Bryant Corvette
  6. George Menzer Corvette
  7. Carl Parise Corvette
  8. Carrol Royal (Victress-Buick)
  9. Ray Rouch  Austin-Healey
  10. L.D. Stackhouse Bocar XP-7
  11. Joyce Thompson Sprite ( 1st female at Pikes Peak !)
Dick Morgensen during practice at the 1960 Pikes Peak Hill Climb race. Ferrari 250 Testa Rosa

Race Day and the weather takes over !

Racing at 14,115 feet can bring some challenges and mother nature was the issue in 1960. The course was good in the beginning a few championship class cars made it to the top before the rain, sleet and snow arrived. But for the rest of the field it wasn’t a battle for time, it was just about making it to the top without taking the scenic route off a cliff side along the way. Seven of the twenty championship cars failed to make it to the summit. Then there was a break in the weather for a short time but mud became the evil. By the time the sports car class were ready to go, the weather was once again considered “Ferocious” .  You could tell what the weather conditions by the times racers were making on the course. 48 minutes 46 seconds for Dave Pauling, another victim would be Dick Morgensen with a time of 22 minutes and 40 seconds. The glory that comes from Pikes Peak isn’t always the fastest times, it sometimes comes from overcoming the adversity the mountain throws at you. Mother nature may have slowed his way to the top, but the sunshine would come out after the race was over in winners circle. The tales of the rain, sleet, mud and snow would be told for years to come from the 1960 Pikes Peak Hill Climb race.  (The record books for PPHC in 1960 for qualifying and race day results still show many errors and corrections are needed , I think they just threw their hands up by the end of the day.)

Race day after the weather passed, Dick still has snow in the front seats !

Of course this multi million dollar car still survives !

There are collectible cars and then there are REALLY collectible cars. The Ferrari name alone keeps this car very high on the must have list, let alone only 32 of the 250 TR were built AND the car has a wonderful and documented race history.  Ferrari 250 TR Serial number 0756-TR raced competitively from August of 1958 until November 27 of 1960. The value of the car was already skyrocketing by the early 1970s and the car would only be used for vintage events from 1976 on into the late 1990’s. A short stay in Mexico in the early 2000s and now back in the USA. The current owner has done a great job in keeping the car in the public’s eye and not stored away forever in some out of sight, climate controlled, dust free environment like many of the great cars go. Now fully restored and still wearing racing number 46, the car in just the last few years has been at the Ferrari Historic Challenge at Palm Beach, the Quail Gathering in Carmel Valley, the Monterey Historic Races at Laguna Seca and at the Pebble Beach Concours .

(Love to have some of you photogs out there to send me some pics to use of the car as it is now)

Two Ferrari’s at the Great Race, 

In part one we had heard about Johnny Mauro and his “375 Indy” racing the Peak from 1952-1956 and now you know about Dan Morgensen’s “250 TR: at the 1960 race, perhaps with the road being paved the entire way to the top now, we can see Ferrari make a come back at the Great Race, the Pikes Peak Hill Climb.

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