was the last year of the privet entries for Sebring. I had entered, and
been accepted with my Bandini, with which I had pretty good
success in 1954. I went up to Carl Kiekhaefer, of Mercury
Outboard, and Tried to buy the Stanguellini that he had bought
from Briggs Cunningham, the car Briggs won with at Watkins
Glenn. Carl bought it to find out why it was so powerful
and had blown it up one the dynamometer, so was not interested
in selling the car - at least at that time.
second choice was to buy a Merc. 40 cu.in. outboard to put in
the Bandini. That really got Keikhaefer interested and during
the winter Mercury Outboard completely rebuilt the Bandini spending
about $4000.00 preparing it for Sebring- such as building a new
gas tank, all new brakes & lines, and
installing their latest racing engine. I co-drove with Paul
Gougleman, a former high point SCCA driver
in a 750 Nardi, whom I had gone to school with. We met at the
track with a rolling machine shop, squads of mechanics and
helpers, 3 airplanes flew down from Wisconsin with Carl and
other Merc big wigs.
the race the car went like a bomb, and we blew off the Renault
team, our class competition, and were leading an index of
performance, when after 4 ½ hours the Fiat 500 gear box failed".