Completed at AC Cars in right hand drive configuration on 3rd January 1957, chassis BE 232 was road registered ‘593 CPC’ and retained by AC Cars. It would remain in AC’s ownership until being purchased by Mr Geoffrey Wilson of Bridgenorth, UK.
Wilson immediately entered ‘593 CPC’ at the Prescott Hill Climb, which would be the start of the Ace’s long running competition career, with Wilson competing in hill climbs and circuit races with numerous wins and podium finishes along the way. In late 1959, Wilson sold ‘593 CPC’ to a Mr Vic Hassall. Hassall was quick to carry on where Wilson had left off and immediately entered the Ace in more races and hill climbs with victories at Chateau Impney and Shelsley Walsh, and podium finishes at Oulton Park and Mallory Park. ‘593 CPC’ was also run at the Goodwood Motor Circuit during the Whit Monday meeting in May 1961 along with an appearance at the gruelling Silverstone 6 Hour relay race.
Following six years of competition use ‘593 CPC’ was returned to road trim and sold to John Knightly, who in turn sold the AC to Victor Yates in August 1965. Yates used the Ace on the road before placing it in storage in his garage with several other cars in 1972, it would remain there untouched for the next forty-seven years!
After many years of negotiations, the current owner was fortunate to acquire ‘593 CPC’ directly from the Yates family. The removal of the Ace from the garage where it had been stored for over four decades was featured by a well-known classic car magazine and was an emotional moment for both buyer and seller. Despite its competition use and many years of storage, the AC had survived remarkably well and remained highly original with only 25,000 miles on the odometer.
The current owner, a true AC aficionado, wished to respect the originality of the Ace but wanted to use the car in historic racing so a sensitive restoration was required to ensure it retained its period specification. The correct specialists were chosen for the different stages of the restoration and after three years, ‘593 CPC’ was complete and ready once again to see some of the circuits that it had raced at when new.
Proudly wearing its original aluminium body – in unpainted form – the Ace was invited to the 2016 Goodwood Revival where it finished a very credible 8th overall and was the first AC Ace home. An appearance at Le Mans Classic followed and a return to Chateau Impney where Vic Hassall had proven so successful all those years ago was a fitting tribute to ‘593 CPC’.
Equipped with glorious sounding Bristol engine and in full aero screen configuration the Ace is a highly versatile entrant for both circuit racing and road rallies. A hardtop roof and full windscreen are included with the Ace should the next owner wish to switch back to a more conventional and practical setup.
Today, ‘593 CPC’ is offered for sale in exemplary condition having been prepared by RW Racing Services and comes complete with a current FIA Historic Technical Passport, a selection of spares and a well organised and researched history file – all credit to the current owner who has clearly lavished much time and funds on bringing this highly original Ace back to the condition it is in today.
Photo Credit: Riiko-Andre Nuud, Riiko Photo