While it may not be a world-famous constructor like Ferrari, Lotus or McLaren, Britain’s Spice Engineering was a mainstay on prototype racing grids in the late 1980s and early-to-mid 1990s.
Now a Spice Engineering prototype that was once driven by Hollywood actor and racer Paul Newman has popped up for sale online, presenting wealthy readers with a rare opportunity to own this piece of General Motors racing history.
After experiencing a good degree of success in Europe, Spice Engineering founder Gordon Spice worked with General Motors to develop a customer IMSA Camel GT Lights prototype for 1988. The company then made the step up to the larger and faster GTP class for 1989 with the Spice SE89 chassis, which was campaigned as both a Spice works car and with customer teams.
One chassis Spice built that year, SE89P002, competed as a works car with the Prototype Technology Group team in the US, racing at circuits like Sebring, Sears Point and West Palm Beach. In the race at West Palm Beach, Greek racing driver Costa Los briefly led the race in SE89P002, while Wayne Taylor (who currently runs Cadillac DPi team Wayne Taylor Racing) qualified on pole with the car at Del Mar and even led for 17 laps.
For 1990, PTG struck a deal to have Hollywood actor Paul Newman race the car. Newman co-drove the car (which is the only Group C machine he ever raced) in the Road America 500 km, Watkins Glen 500 km and the 2 Hours of San Antonio, with the team taking a DNF, a 7th place and a 6th place. The chassis also contested the full 1991 IMSA season, including the 1991 24 Hours of Daytona and 1991 12 Hours of Sebring, although Newman didn’t race it for these events.
Chassis SE89P002 is for now listed for sale by a high-end dealership in Britain. The price is only available upon request, but it recently underwent a full restoration and received a new 700 horsepower Chevrolet V8 engine, so it’s definitely not being offered for a bargain. The good news is the car is sold ready to compete in vintage events like the Le mans Classic and Historic Group C.
Check out the listing for this ex Paul Newman racer at this link for additional information and photos.
Source: Racecars Direct