Looking at the history of auto racing, the Canadian-American Challenge Cup holds a special place in the hearts of many enthusiasts. Never before--and never since--the series' duration from 1966 to 1974 has such multi-faceted and powerful machinery been on the track. CAN-AM's most generous rules allowed cars such as McLarens, Shadows, and the omnipotent Porsche 917s to rise to fame. Among those first supercars were a few other, less known, but not less exotic cars built for a sole purpose: to be the fastest two-seat, full-bodied automobiles on the planet.
The McKee Olds and the Ryn-A-Gade II were but two of these specials. We are proud to offer the latter one for sale here. Built in 1972 by Tom Rynd of Kalamazoo, Michigan, it was a gorgeous-looking car, but couldn't compete against the likes of the all-conquering McLarens driven by Bruce McLaren himself, Denny Hulme, and Josef Motschenbacher, the "big guns" having many times the budget to burn that Rynd's team had at its disposal.
Issued its first SCCA logbook # 6043--a copy of which is included--on 3/10/72, car and owner participated in numerous regional and national races as an A/Sports Racer, to this day the top class. Logbook entries from famous tracks such as Black Hawk, Elkhart Lake, and Mid Ohio, establish the car's provenance and race history throughout the early-to-mid 1970s.
Click on any of the above images for a full-size view
Above: photo on the left showing the car in its original livery of Ford "Frost White" and "Poppy Red" back in '72.
The car retired in the late '70s until it was resurrected for the purpose of Historic Auto Racing in 1991. It received an extensive mechanical restoration and was raced at Moroso, and, 5 weeks later, on 8/9/91, at Road Atlanta where it achieved 1:45 lap times. Very impressive, indeed!
The car was sold to a private museum and underwent a professional, nut-and-bolt restoration in early 1998. During this open checkbook approach, over $45K was spent, nearly $15K on the engine alone. The car received its current livery and was raced from 1998 until 2001 at various vintage events, namely the Brian Redman Challenges. We recently acquired it, along with some other fine cars, from its late owner's estate. It presents itself today virtually "like new," most certainly looking better than it ever did before.
Let's have a closer look!
Finished in the classic blue-and-white livery of the Shelby Competition Coupes, the car looks simply stunning and draws a crowd wherever it is shown. The steward's first logbook entry on 5/20/72 reads "very sharp!" Further logbook entries read: "neat & clean," "well prepared," and "car is beautiful." How' bout that?
Finally, the steward's first entry in the current SCCA logbook (# 11-8530) reads "very unusual car!"
No argument here . . .
Ryn-A-Gade II is built around a gloss-black, powder-coated, tubular frame; its fiberglass body parts are reinforced by sandwiched aluminum panels.
Front and rear body sections can be tilted up or entirely removed, the doors mount with winged DZUS fasteners.
Motorvation comes from a fresh, high-compression Ford 302 (block # 9F107824), with CANFIELD billet aluminum heads, port-matched Edelbrock Victor intake, topped by a big bore Holley carburetor, fed by 110 octane race gas. You crank the TILTON starter and the 600+ hp power plant comes to life with an earthquake-like rumble.
Q-tip clean, even "down under," you spot fenderwell headers, the custom-built, deep-sump oil pan, S.P.A. oil cooler, and some of the extensive AEROQUIP braided line plumbing.
Cockpit presents itself all original, as it did 33 years ago, with just a few necessary safety upgrades. There's still the original white steering wheel, the aluminum dash with vintage STEWART WARNER and SUN gauges, the HURST shifter controlling the 4-speed Top-Loader tranny with aluminum bellhousing and welded-in scattershield, RAYDOT mirrors, and the original, mandatory passenger seat. Updates include brake bias controller, fire system (still with original push button), and state-of-the-art COBRA Kevlar racing seat, meeting current FIA certification. At this time, there is no harness installed, as the rules require it to be updated every two years.
Roll bar gives testimony to race history since 1998. In its current setup as a Group 7 car, Ryn-A-Gade II won against contemporary McLaren and Shadow CAN-AM cars, reaching top speeds in excess of 200mph, without breaking a sweat!
Battery is mounted in an aluminum box, right behind the cockpit. Custom-built fuel cell rests safely inside a steel cage and received new foam and bladder recently.
Interestingly, Ryn-A-Gade II is equipped with a uniquely engineered, one-off Ford Detroit Locker 9" IRS rear end with vented inboard disc brakes. Not only is this setup absolutely bullet-proof, it is also much more economical to run than a rather fragile Hewland. Tom Rynd, now 70, told us, "you just can't break tranny or rear end!"
Weighing 1600 lbs dry with 48%/52% front-to-rear weight balance, this 600hp rocket is surprisingly nimble to manoeuver. We couldn't resist to test drive it and felt super confident, even though the car was scarily fast. Cockpit will fit a 6'2" driver, perhaps taller, as the seat mount is variable.
Ryn-A-Gade starts on the button, without any ill manners or issues of any kind. There is no smoking, no overheating, nor any oil leaks. Electric fans and brake lights work fine. The car is very easy to work on; all mechanical parts are readily available. It runs and drives every bit as good as it looks; that's guaranteed!
Currently mounted is a fresh set of custom-built DURA LIGHT 3-piece aluminum wheels, shod with GOODYEAR EAGLE racing slicks of the size 23x10.5/15 up front and 27x14/15 in the rear.
This super clean, fully pedigreed CAN-AM race car comes ready to run anywhere. It might be one of the true vintage race car bargains available for sale today. With contemporary McLarens selling for $250,000 and Porsche 917s breaking the Million Dollar barrier, how could you go wrong buying this one for less than the cost of its recent restoration?
As an additional bonus, Ryn-A-Gade II comes with 3 sets of wheels. Aside from the new set mounted, there are two sets of Tom Rynd's original, hand-made wheels from the 1970s. One set is shod with HOOSIER slicks, the other one still wears vintage GOODYEAR Blue Streak rain tires!
We sold this car in September 2005. To view vehicles we currently have for sale, please visit Californiaclassix' SHOWROOM.