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Schlesser's Ferrari 250 GTO sells for record £22.8m

ESPN Staff
August 15, 2014
Jo Schlesser behind the wheel before his tragic debut crash in 1968 © Sutton Images

A Ferrari 250 GTO Berlinetta once owned by Jo Schlesser - who was killed on his Formula One debut in 1968 - has been sold at auction for a world record £22.8 million ($38.1 million).

The car was purchased by Schlesser in 1962 when he was just a young French privateer, and immediately entered into the 5,500-kilometer (3,418-mile) Tour de France Automobile that year along with French racing celebrity Henri Oreiller. However Schlesser sold the car after Oreiller crashed fatally at the pair's next race.

Schlesser himself was killed in a fiery crash during his local French Grand Prix six years later while driving Honda's experimental air-cooled RA302. His death was the fourth fatality of the 1968 season and prompted Honda's withdrawal from the sport.

The sale of the car, which took place at Bonhams' Quali Lodge Auction in California, breaks the previous record of the most valuable car sold at auction, nearly £18 million ($30 million) for a Mercedes W196 sold in England last year. Despite this classic car experts had predicted it would fetch twice its final amount.

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