My friend Simon Kelly has just had his Porsche 911 SC repainted by Tuthills in a cool Alméras Frères tribute livery. I managed to get a few pics of the finished item before jumping on the plane to Gran Canaria.
Almeras won the 1978 Monte Carlo Rally with an SC in the famous Blue and Gold ‘Gitanes’ cigarettes livery: probably the high point of the SC’s motorsport career. Tobacco advertising is a sensitive topic in Europe nowadays and many owners modify tribute livery branding slightly, to ensure their cars do not fall foul of any rules. Simon also tweaked the design of his decals a bit, to be sure the livery would not upset the wrong people.
“I wasn’t quite sure what I would do regarding the tobacco thing and, in the end, I had a last-minute wobble. I did some reading about it and it’s a grey area with governing bodies, regulators and the media all having a different take on what’s acceptable. I didn’t want the tobacco ban causing problems for the car, so for a quite life I used the French spelling of ‘gypsy’ instead of the Catalan.
“The decals were made by our mutual friend, Rick Cannell at Highgate House, and are a lovely job. Rick made them the same way as the originals would have been done, using layered vinyl and not the printed vinyl which is more common nowadays. Your photos remind me that I need to send Tuthills some new number plates I had made in the proper style!”
Regular readers may recognise Simon’s car as one I did a feature on back in the day, when it was painted grey and red. Built by Tuthills using one of EB Motorsport’s first Group 4 Almeras-style arch kits, Simon bought the car in 2011, selling an RSR replica and 968 Sport to buy this one instead.
The car has been a regular at the Below Zero Ice Driving camp in Sweden every winter and is heading back again for 2017, hence the font and rear guards and towing eyes, to drag it off the snow banks. I think this is going to look great on a white background – here’s to taking many more pics!