A NEW APPROACH IN AN AGE OLD BUSINESS+44 (0) 1926 691 141
Sold for: £11,813
In the 1970s, businessmen and motorsport fan Ted Toleman began his involvement in various car racing formulae in the UK. Toleman's entry to Formula One was announced in November 1980 and the Toleman teams' debut was in the 1981 San Marino Grand Prix. Over the next two years, their original Rory Byrne-designed TG181 car was extensively developed as it had proved overweight and underpowered, however, in 1983 the new car T183B showed improved form. The budget increased as Toleman's current sponsor - Italian white goods manufacturer Candy - was joined by Iveco brand Magirus and BP. Noted driver, Derek Warwick achieved Toleman's first points finish in the Dutch GP and scored again in the remaining three Grands Prix. These results placed Toleman 9th in the constructors' championship standings. The driver line-up changed completely in 1984. Warwick's performances were rewarded with a Renault contract and his place was taken by Grand Prix debutant and future three-time World Champion Ayrton Senna. Senna quickly made an impression on Formula One in his TG184 car and achieved Toleman's greatest result. In a rain-soaked Monaco GP, he finished in a close 2nd place behind Alain Prost. The torrential conditions forced the clerk of the course (Jacky Ickx) to stop the race after 31 of the scheduled 78 laps. It was a controversial decision that stirred up a conspiracy theory and resulted in much debate about whether Senna would have won. In May 1985, Toleman acquired major sponsorship from the Benetton clothing company. During the 1985/86 off-season, the knitwear firm purchased the team and it was renamed Benetton Formula prior to the 1986 season. Offered for sale is a "United Colours of Benetton" liveried Toleman TG185 rolling tub. This tub, according to our vendor, is understood to be chassis number TG185-01 the last built by Rory Byrne for Toleman Group Motorsport in January 1985. Chassis TG185-01 was purportedly driven in period by Stefan Johansson, Teo Fabi and tested by John Watson with notable results at Monaco and in Germany. In later years we understand the car raced in the Euro Boss Championship with a DFV engine fitted in place of its original Hart unit. TG185-01 is now for sale as a rolling show car without an engine and other ancillary parts such as brake calipers. This is a rare piece of Formula 1 history and at this reasonable guide would make an interesting centrepiece in a showroom, as part of a collection, or as the basis for a full restoration to a useable single-seater.