1960 Chevrolet Corvette Race Rat

Chassis number: 00867S104420

George Reed of Illinois was a gentleman racer in the traditional sense of the term — wealthy, commanding and fi ercely competitive. By the late 1950s, he had already made a name for himself as a driver with strong fi nishes at Sebring, Nassau, Cumberland, Road America, Watkins Glen and Wilmot Hills.

In addition to his racing exploits, Reed was the owner of RRR Motors in Homewood, IL. RRR was not only a distributor for Ferraris, Alfa Romeos and Goodyear racing tires, it was the name of a racing club that George started in the 1950s. The acronym stood for “Reed’s Race Rats.”

By the late 1950s, RRR Motors was competing in the premier American road racing events. Although George was typically behind the wheel of a Ferrari, he yearned for success in other categories. In 1960, he found a perfect contender in the Chevrolet Corvette.

Around that time, Reed contacted Nickey Chevrolet and ordered this RPO 687 race-optioned Corvette specifically for the upcoming 12 Hours of Sebring. The car arrived in the first week of March, shortly before the race. Nickey’s legendary engine builder Ronnie Kaplan was put to the task of creating a rock-solid engine that could withstand the rigors of the punishing 12-hour race.

The car had made its way to Florida, where Reed enlisted renowned Corvette engineer Zora Arkus- Duntov, who was there merely as a spectator, to help with final race preparation. With his guidance, the suspension tuning was completed the morning of the race. The “Race Rat” took First in Class (GT-14) and an admirable 16th overall. The car finished the grueling race in 12 hours, 2 minutes and 30 seconds at an average speed of over 72 mph — impressive numbers for what was a heavily modified production sports car. Of the six Corvettes entered, this was the only one to finish in the top 25.

After the race, this very special Corvette passed through the hands of two owners before it settled with John Jurecic in 1962. He gave the car a more discreet appearance so it could be used on the street, and he enjoyed it for a number of years before selling it to his good friend Randall Krystosek in 1965.

Eventually, Krystosek could no longer contain his curiosity about his car’s early racing history and contacted Corvette authority Nolan Adams. After a thorough inspection, Adams found a number of unique features that distinguished the car from an ordinary street Corvette. The car was found to have an unusual high-performance generator, special fuel injection, the rare 5½-inch wheels and the “A” designation on the build number indicating an LPO (Limited Production Option) 24-gallon fuel tank. Krystosek retained the car until 2004, when a noted California collector acquired it. During the next few years, the Corvette was carefully researched and restored to its original racing colors. After it had been disassembled and the paint stripped for restoration, it was discovered that all the original factory and RRR Motors markings were still intact, and certain areas where racing parts had been installed were clearly visible.