“I only acquire cars of substantial importance and emotional impact, often without regard to investment potential,”
— Bruce Meyer
Cars from Bruce Meyer’s collection comprise the newest exhibit at the Petersen Automotive Museum in Los Angeles, where he is founding chairman of the facility celebrating its 25th anniversary this year. The exhibit is titled “Winning Numbers: The First, The Fast, The Famous” and these racing machines that Meyer has collected certainly live up to the exhibit’s title.
“He epitomizes true automotive passion, sharing his knowledge, fever and immense love for the motorsports hobby with the next generation of enthusiasts,” Petersen executive director Terry L Karges said of Meyer. “Winning Numbers reflects his discerning tastes as a collector, gathering only the most compelling examples of race cars from each genre of the sport.”
This exhibit of “motoring history” will run through January 19, 2020 and is the first installment of the museum’s three-part “California Collecting” series that focuses on three prominent collections belonging to local enthusiasts.
A VIP preview of the “Winning Numbers” exhibit was held February 22, featuring gourmet food on the Penthouse level and a fireside chat for the guests wanting to know more about these significant cars on display in the Bruce Meyer Gallery.
The exhibit includes competition cars such as Le Mans winners, land speed record holders, dragsters and important road racers:
• At the top of the list sitting proudly at the entrance to the Bruce Meyer Family Gallery, the winningest Ferrari road racer of all time, the 1957 Ferrari 625/250 Testa Rossa greeted the VIP guests with the ultimate grace and style. This “Hot Rod Ferrari” now houses the same V12 installed in 1958.
• The oldest car in the exhibit is a 1929 Ford roadster that Meyer drove to a top speed of 204 mph on the Bonneville Salt Flats in 2012.
• Known as the fastest closed car in America is the 1934 Ford Pierson Brothers Coupe that was dubbed “The Coupe that beat the roadsters.”
• Alex Xydias of So-Cal Speed Shop built and drove this Bonneville 1952 So-Cal Speed Shop Belly Tank built from a P38 fighter aircraft to a top speed of 198.34 mph, a record that still stands.
• Briggs Cunningham and team campaigned this 1960 Chevrolet Corvette at Le Mans back in the day.
• Built to win the GT Constructors Championship, the 1961 Ferrari 250GT SWB won its class at the 1961 24 Hours of Le Mans.
• Meyer’s 1962 Shelby Cobra, CSX2001 was found at Retromobile in Paris in 2006 and said, “If I had to pick one, just to put a smile on my face, it’d probably be the Cobra No. 1.”
• The most decorated car was raced by drag racing legend Don Prudhomme, winning 237 of 241 races piloting the 1962 Greer Black Prudhomme dragster.
• The 1965 Bizzarrini A3/C is a prototype housing a 5.4-liter Corvette V8 and delivered a class win in the 24 Hours of Le Mans.
• Winning the world’s most prestigious endurance race, the 1979 24 Hours of Le Mans, was the 1979 Kremer Porsche 935 K3 that Meyer states is one of his favorite cars.
Yet another Le Mans car, the 1967 Porsche 910, was on display on another floor due to the 10-car limit in the gallery.