Monday, August 19, 2013

Fred Gamble - A Lesson in Maserati History

     

Recently in my constant search for information on Maserati, I came across an article from an organization known as the Maserati Club. This club is a non-profit organization with chapters world-wide that focus on camaraderie, information, parts, and history of Maserati cars for owners and enthusiasts alike. Included in the first newsletter published by this organization in December of 1996 are letters from members to the editor. Most letters are first-hand accounts from either drivers or fans covering topics like handling of the cars and memories of those who saw these incredible machines in action. There is even some civilized argument between steadfast enthusiasts with slightly different views on some historic issues.

My personal favorite piece, however, is in fact from the editor himself, Fred Gamble. In his commentary Gamble speaks on the identity of three Maseratis originally owned by the American racing team, CAMORADI (Casner Motor Racing Division), in the late 1950’ and early 60’s that were shipped to them, new, for the Sebring and Havana races that year and the events that took place there.  

Within this article, Gamble challenges William Oosthoek’s comments, and points out the wrongful information he reported on.  After all, Oosthoek was not even born when these great cars were raced.

The identity of one or more of these cars was apparently called into question, and Gamble brought up the fact that historians were incorrectly relying on the chassis number for identification when, in fact, the practice of the day was to weld a number plate on the cassis that corresponded to a shipping number used with importing and exporting the vehicles. Therefore, the number could change depending on shipping and may account for differences in the original models before they were upgraded and transformed into the famous cars we know today, such as the Le Mans Streamliner. CAMORADI had one of their largest showings that year at Sebring, but suffered some difficulties with the new cars, which were later fixed and went on to success, but finished well overall.

      If you would like to read more of this article, I have included a link to a copy of the original article in this post. I hope you enjoy this fascinating read as much as I did, and learn from the insights of historians with first-hand knowledge.

 

Click here to read the original article.