Saturday, March 26, 2011

SCARAB: ALL-AMERICAN CHALLENGER!

Lance Reventlow loved nothing more than a challenge and, in the late-1950s, he challenged the world’s best sports racers with an all-American car. Mike Gulett blogs about the original Scarab and we add info about the (Continuation) Scarab, below, you can buy today.
Two years before Lance Reventlow (19) was old enough to compete in SCCA racing, he already owned and had raced a Cooper-Climax T39 Bobtail and a Maserati 200S! Heir to the Woolworth fortune, Reventlow was Cary Grant’s stepson and, on his 21st birthday, inherited in today’s money, very close to $100 million. While racing in Europe in 1957, he visited a number of racecar constructors including Lister where they built the almost unbeatable Lister-Jaguar. He felt that he could do better with an American car powered by a Corvette engine. The result: The incredibly sexy Scarab. The rest is history.
Decades later, enter Sarasota Café Racer, Roger Feikema, Braden River Engineering, Bradenton, FL. Roger was successfully producing Jaguar XKE conversion kits for Mazda RX-7 platforms before he decided to clone the Scarab.

“I was in my 20s when I saw a Scarab race at Road America. It was and still is a beautiful all-American sports racer, and I wanted to bring it back and make it available at a reasonable price. And bring Chevy power into the mix,” said Roger in an interview with Kit Car Magazine, January 2004.
He came up with an exact replica of the original Scarab, with a fiberglass body and a proprietary tubular steel chassis with a 94-inch wheelbase. The first car, above, owned by Nub Turner, Holmes Beach, FL, is powered by a stock 350-inch ’97 Corvette LT1. Numbered like the original Reventlow #16 Scarab, it’s finished in PPG True Blue Pearl by Joe Grasky, Sarasota, FL.
Roger Feikema still owns the #2 Scarab, built before he sold the Scarab business in 2008 to Richard Kitzmiller, Scarab Motorsports, Prairie Village, KS. They offer Continuation Scarab “rollers” with aluminum bodies set up to take Corvette engines.

For Mike Gulett’s My Car Quest blogs on the original Scarab, please visit, http://mycarquest.blogspot.com/2011/03/lance-reventlow-and-scarab-race-car.html

Also, http://mycarquest.blogspot.com/2011/03/how-to-create-great-race-car-story-of.html

To get the latest information on Continuation Scarabs, check out: http://scarab-motorsports.com/home.php Also, www.brightonmotorsports.com

No comments: