In the story below, I tell the tale of Perth plastic surgeon Jayson Oates and the HK500 he was to auction in aid of the Hunger Project charity in which he is involved.
I was in Perth after the Australian Grand Prix and was hoping to see Jayson but my friend and former Facel owner Paul Blank gave me the news that Jayson had been made an offer by a prospective purchaser of the HK500 and was seriously considering it. The beautifully restored car was actually in a workshop at the time.
In fact while I was in Perth, Jayson accepted the offer. It has come from a German car collector who usually collects Mercedes – he has a 300SL roadster among others – and it was such a good offer that Jayson had to accept. It means that the car doesn’t go on a tour around Australia – which saves him some money – and that the Hunger Project charity benefits by over AUS$500,000 which is tremendous sum. Jayson has matched the offer price with a similar amount making this price.
The German car collector will keep the car in Perth where he spends half the year, while enjoying his Mercedes in Europe. But the ever-generous Oates is now considering restoring another car and going through the process again; an early Jensen 541 is being considered.
So instead of going to see Jayson Oates, Paul Blank kindly took me to meet another Perth car collector, Joe Ricciardo, father of GP driver Daniel. Joe is an enthusiastic historic racer with a Brabham in Australia and an HWM in Europe . He has a penchant for Italian cars, not surprisingly, and while he has a couple of Ferraris, he was making no comment regarding his son possibly racing for the Maranello team – although he would love it if he did! He didn’t reveal any plans to purchase a Facel Vega either!