Motor racing-1955 Le Mans disaster car makes $1 million

LONDON Fri Dec 2, 2011 6:14pm GMT

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LONDON Dec 2 (Reuters) - An unrestored car involved in motor racing's worst accident, at Le Mans in 1955, has sold at auction for more than $1 million after 42 years under wraps.

Auctioneers Bonhams said the Austin Healey 100 Special, in "barn find" condition, had fetched a world record 843,000 pounds at the auction in Weybridge, southern England, on Thursday.

Driven by Lance Macklin at the Le Mans 24 Hours sportscar race, it was rammed from behind by Pierre Levegh's Mercedes which then flew into the crowd and killed at least 83 spectators.

The car was impounded by the French authorities for 18 months before being handed back to the Donald Healey Motor Company for repairs, racing through the late 1950s and into the 1960s.

Bonhams said it had been stored, untouched, by the vendor since he bought it in 1969. (Reporting by Alan Baldwin, editing by Tony Jimenez; For Reuters sports blog Left Field go to: blogs.reuters.com/sport)

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