Ecurie Ecosse Racing Team
Ecurie Ecosse was a Scottish racing team based in Edinburgh, Scotland. The team was founded by driver David Murray and mechanic Wilkie Wilkinson in 1951. The team’s most notable achievement was winning the 24 Hours of Le Mans in 1956 and 1957.
The team competed in 3 races in Formula 1 in the 1952, 1953 and 1954 seasons. In the first two, the cars had engine problems and did not complete the race. In its last race in F1, they managed to complete the race, but arriving 12 laps behind the leaders. Then, the team changed its focus to sports car events.
The great achievement, without a doubt, was the victories in the 24 hours of Le Mans. In 1956 the winning drivers were Ron Flockhart and Ninian Sanderson, driving a Jaguar D-Type. In 1957, the team participated in the race with two Jaguar D-Types. Ron Flockhart won again, but racing with driver Iver Bueb. Drivers Ninian Sanderson and John Lawrence, who were driving the team’s second car, finished second, making a 1-2 finish for the team.
The team continued to participate in the 24 Hours of Le Mans until 1962. However, they were unable to complete any races after the team’s great achievement in 1957.
Among the many drivers who have driven for the team there are three-time F1 world champion Jack Stewart and two-time champion Jim Clark.
Ecurie Ecosse's Return
In the 1980s, after being inactive since 1971, driver Hugh McCaig announced the return of the team and, in 1986, won the C2 class of the World Sports Car Championship. The team remained active until the 1990s.
In 2011 Hugh MacCaig was revived again with four drivers, 25 years after the last title in the C2 class of the World Sports Car Championship. The team entered an Aston Martin DBRS9 in the 24 Hours of Spa in the GT3 class with the help of Barwell Motorspart, an Aston Martin Racing partner team, finishing the race in 20th place.
To transport the cars and equipment, the team used the Commer Transporter, a 2-story vehicle with the capacity to transport one car inside and two on top, in addition to space for the support team and workshop equipment. The vehicle was designed by Selby Howgate and built by bodybuilder Walter Alexander Coachbuilders of Falkirk, Scotland. Based on a Commer chassis, it used a two-stroke diesel engine.
In 2013, a collection of the team’s cars was auctioned for £8.8 million. Included in the collection were the Commer Transporter, Jaguar XK120, Jaguar C-Type, Jaguar D-Type, Tojeiro-Jaguar, Cooper-Climax Monaco, Le Mans Austin-Healey Sprite and Tojeiro EE-Buick Coupe.
The team’s success with Le Mans victories captured the public’s imagination. With this success, miniature manufacturers Corgi and CMR released Commer Transporter models customized in the team’s colors.
The Corgi miniature was made on a 1/48 scale and it was first released in 1961, being made until 1965. The first versions were dark blue, the latter light blue. The lettering was made in red, yellow or blue and the interior red or tan.
In the 1960s, Corgi released a special edition package that included the Commer Transporter and three race cars. Initially the package included the Commer Transporter, a Lotus X1 #151 * , a BRM P25 #152 * and a Vanwall #150 *. Later the Lotus was replaced by the Ferrari F1 #154 * and the Commer Transporter was painted in a lighter blue.
However, the cars included didn’t have the team’s colors. Perhaps Corgi just used the models they already made, and then used them to build the “gift set” with the Commer Transporter and three race cars.
* Corgi numbering for models.
CMR - Classic Model Replicars
CMR’s Commer Transporter was released in 1959 in 1/18 scale, which made it possible to manufacture a miniature rich in details, both on the exterior and interior. It was made in the original team color, metallic dark blue, with the team’s name in gold. It is approximately 52 cm long.