Coys Auction - True Greats
Royal Horticultural Halls
Tuesday 1st December 2009
From 1934 through 1960 the Offenhauser engine dominated American open wheel racing, winning the Indianapolis 500 24 times. By then, the company had already been sold, immediately after World War II, to Meyer-Drake, who continued to build race engines. From 1950 through 1960, Offenhauser-powered cars won the Indy 500 and achieved all three podium positions, winning the pole position in 10 of the 11 years.
Bought by Peter Gregory from the Joe Gemsa Collection in the USA for use in the Atalanta single seater project and displayed by Gemsa as a showpiece, this Indy race engine displays several AAA certification stamps on the cylinder head, supporting the theory that this unit was much used at Indy in period. This engine, despite its capacity of 4,485cc relies on only four cylinders; however, each cylinder has four valves, twin overhead camshafts, with an estimated potential of