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Bill Harrah's Ferrari's

Discussion in 'Vintage (thru 365 GTC4)' started by Ferrari 360 CS, Jan 26, 2013.

  1. Thomas Magnum

    Thomas Magnum F1 Veteran
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  2. 15765

    15765 Formula Junior
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    The Harrah Daytona was in Las Vegas 2017 or 2018
     
  3. BMWairhead

    BMWairhead Formula Junior

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    I never saw the first one, but I did see #2 in person many years after reading about it in Road & Track, or some similar magazine. An engine swap, even if complicated, will ALWAYS (well, usually...) be easier than a body merge. Esp. a body merge with an engine swap. Those were fun days to be into cars!
     
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  4. Glassman

    Glassman F1 World Champ
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    Does anyone know what dealer Harrah bought the 410 Super America from.
    That could add to a very interesting story for me.
     
  5. Marcel Massini

    Marcel Massini F1 World Champ
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    MCM Modern Classic Motors in Reno was the official U.S. West Coast Ferrari distributorship and owned by William Fisk Harrah.
    Which means he ordered sometimes via Chinetti Motors but got the brand new cars directly from Italy.
    Here's a scan of one of their official large format brochures.

    Marcel Massini

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  6. Lowell

    Lowell Formula Junior
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    My 330GT was first sold by Pete Lovely, one of the distributors listed above.
    Lovely first drove the car from Reno to his mother's house in Northern California.
    It was showing and the windshield wipers did not work.
     
  7. Marcel Massini

    Marcel Massini F1 World Champ
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    Here's Lovely's dealership in Tacoma in 1966.

    Marcel Massini

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  8. 375+

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    Marcel when did MCM first become a Ferrari dealer and then later the West coast distributor? It seems that Chinetti came to rely on Harrah's resources, in the late 1960's and early 1970's Harrah would import 30 cars or more at a time.
    I assume that Farland-Buell was Temple Buell?
     
  9. Marcel Massini

    Marcel Massini F1 World Champ
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  10. Glassman

    Glassman F1 World Champ
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    Thanks.........would any of his cars have first landed at Rezzaghi?
     
  11. Marcel Massini

    Marcel Massini F1 World Champ
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    No, the other way round.
    VIA Harrah and then to the individual dealer.

    Marcel Massini
     
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  12. Marcel Massini

    Marcel Massini F1 World Champ
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    William Fisk Harrah, born in 1911, arrived in Reno, Nevada, in May 1937. His mother was Amanda Fisk Harrah. Bill Harrah spent the next four decades building a gaming and entertainment empire to rival any other. In the following years his casinos, highlighted by the multi-million-dollar operations in Lake Tahoe and Reno, became legendary for their intricate detailing, personal attention and lavish surroundings. Bill Harrah was also a great motor car enthusiast and collector of fine automobiles. He was totally intrigued by automobiles and his love for cars was more of an obsession. His venture started in 1948 with the purchase of a 1911 two cylinder Maxwell Runabout and also a 1911 Ford Model T. In the course of 40 years, he accumulated what was considered to be America's most comprehensive collection of automobiles. The William F. Harrah Foundation National Automobile Museum collection in its best years included about 1'200 cars of all makes and years. In 1964 Harrah became the Ferrari distributor for eleven West Coast states and opened Modern Classic Motors in Reno, Nevada. This agency also sold Rolls-Royce, Bentley and Jaguar. He hired competent automotive sales and service personnel to promote Ferraris in his territory, while Luigi Chinetti remained the distributor for the rest of the United States. Manager of Modern Classic Motors was Earl Callicutt. Bill Rudd, who later established his own shop in Van Nuys, Los Angeles, became Harrah's chief mechanic. Al Darlington, who worked for Mr. Harrah from 1959 to 1967, became head of the spare parts department at Modern Classic Motors. Between 1966 and 1969 Bill Harrah campaigned the factory-owned Ferrari Can-Am cars. Harrah, who died in 1978, had a passion for Ferrari. He personally owned a 1957 250 GT LWB TDF Berlinetta Scaglietti (chassis #0925 GT), a 1959 410 Superamerica Series III, a 250 GTE 2+2, a 400 Super America Coupé Aerodinamico (chassis #2861 SA), a specially customized 330 GTS, a 275 GTB, 365 GT 2+2, 365 GTB/4 Daytona Berlinetta Hot Rod (S/N 14169 in Rame Metallizzato), a 365 GT/4 BB (S/N 17733) and a 365 GTC/4. Most of Harrah's own Ferraris were equipped with personalised license plates, as can be seen in various test reports published in early Road & Track magazines. In 1964, Harrah's home, within the exclusive residential enclave of Skyland, at Zephyr Cove, on Lake Tahoe's eastern shore was completed. Harrah's 16,000-square-foot residence, a tribute to one man's exceptional taste and lifestyle, naturally also consisted of a huge car garage. And in one of the boxes parked his personal Ferrari 250 LM. Its chassis number was 6045 and it was the 19th of a total of 32 units built only. As Mr. Harrah was a tall man, needing a little more leg room than is usually supplied in the type of car he liked to drive, he never felt fully comfortable in the red racing Ferrari. In those years, Nevada was the only state in the United States without a speed limit - outside of the posted speed limits in towns. Harrah enjoyed to speed with his Ferraris. The 250 Le Mans was certainly Harrah's most competition-orientated Ferrari but LM 6045 was one of the few examples of the type which was never actively raced.

    Harrah was survived by Verna R. Harrah in Los Angeles/CA, Tony L. Harrah in Reno/NV and John A. Harrah in Reno/NV.

    Marcel Massini
     
  13. DWR46

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    Marcel: One comment. Al Darlington worked at MCM until the early 1980s. He was the best ambassador Ferrari had in the States. Compared to Chinetti's often indifferent attitude to owners and their parts needs, Al was just the opposite. He would literally do anything he could to help you find parts. MCM had, by the standards of the day, a large inventory (way more than Chinetti). When you called Al, you knew the parts were on the way, because he had them, and at the best prices. We spent two full days in 1975 roaming around the parts department. Al appeared to actually like the fact that we cared about the cars and the parts. He was a terrific host. By the way, MCM was located in the Harrah Chrysler dealership.
     
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  14. Lowell

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    Another somewhat related Harrah story.

    Before the year 2,000, I lived a long time in Seattle, Washington. During those years there was, in retrospect compared to modern times, a very friendly, long-time Ferrari dealership. I often used to visit it. I would ride my bicycle about a mile south from my house and lean my bike against an interior wall. After looking at any cars that I had not previously seen, I would go back, chat with the parts person, and then watch the mechanics work, being sure to stay out of their way.

    The dealership was called Grand Prix Motors. It was owned by Stephen Bayne. I once asked him how he got to be a Ferrari dealer. He told me that he called up Harrah. A secretary answered. He said that he wanted to talk with Harrah. The secretary told him that Harrah was very busy and asked Bayne what he wanted. He told her that he wanted to become a Ferrari Dealer. She said that she would get a letter sent to him that would appoint him the dealer for the state of Washington. And so it happened.
     
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  15. Edward 96GTS

    Edward 96GTS F1 Rookie

    Nov 1, 2003
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    Bill Rudd i believe resides in southern calif though im not sure if he is still repairing ferraris.
     
  16. tritone

    tritone F1 Rookie
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    Anyone have an address (for goog) ?
    TIA
     
  17. DWR46

    DWR46 Formula 3
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    Modern Classic Motors, Inc. 201 West 2nd Street, Reno,NV 89505. I got this off an invoice on which I paid $6.00 for a brand new original 275 Parts Catalog! 250/275/330 Exhaust Hangers were $1.05 each!
     
  18. 375+

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    Dyke how would you like to double your money?;)
     
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  19. turbo-joe

    turbo-joe F1 Veteran
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    when was this? what year?
     
  20. DWR46

    DWR46 Formula 3
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