Author McDonough put 4 WPD through its paces at Silverstone, and discovered just why everyone was so excited by the car back in its day.
Photo: Pete Austin
Heavy Duty Lightweights
The year 2011 marks 50 years of the E-Type Jaguar or, as some of you know it better, the XKE.
It’s a bit unsettling to find myself being unphased by remembering things that happened 50 years ago—a sure sign of advanced age. Fifty years ago, in August of 1961, I spent a weekend at the Bridgehampton circuit on Long Island, across the Long Island Sound from Connecticut and some 80 miles from New York City. The race that weekend was essentially a club meeting, but with some very interesting people there. There was a Birdcage Maserati, and I think a Scarab or two. Then there was a white car with a large fin on it that had a lot of people speculating. I remember folks in the paddock saying that Jaguar was producing a new D-Type, which was being driven by a fellow from New Jersey by the name of Walt Hansgen. There was an impressive entourage around Walt and the car and a lot of attention was being given to a dapper-looking man by the name of Briggs Cunningham.
Become a Member & Get Ad-Free Access To This Article (& About 6,000+ More)
Access to the full article is limited to paid subscribers only. Our membership removes most ads, lets you enjoy unlimited access to all our premium content, and offers you awesome discounts on partner products. Enjoy our premium content.