We are delighted to offer this extraordinary 1988 factory C2-class Spice with chassis number SE88C-003 for sale.
Spice Engineering, based at Silverstone Circuit in Towcester, was founded in 1985 by racing driver Gordon Spice and historic racer Ray Bellm. Together with their specially developed Ford Cosworth powered Spice-Tiga running in the C2 class, they won the C2 World Drivers and Teams titles. Spice and Bellm added another drivers title in ’86, this time with the new Spice constructed SE86C although Spice Engineering lost out to Ecurie Ecosse in the Teams championship. 1987 saw Gordon win his third straight drivers title and Spice Engineering their second Teams title.
For 1988, the new SE88C was introduced, a more refined and developed version of the previous year’s successful car. In a season comprising of eleven races, a Spice SE88C was only beaten once to the C2 class win. Seven of those wins were achieved by Spice and Bellm in this particular chassis, SE88C-003. They won at Jerez, Jarama, Monza, Le Mans, Brno, Brands Hatch & Sandown Park, and also finished 2nd in C2 at Silverstone and Spa, deservedly winning the 1988 World Sports Car C2-Class Championship and the 1988 LeMans 24hr C2-class win (driven by Spice, Bellm, De Thoissy). It is highly likely that no other single car has achieved as much in a single season at World Championship level. If that isn't enough, SE88C-003 also finished 2nd and 3rd in the 1989 and 1990 Le Mans 24hr bringing its Le Mans tally to 3 consecutive podiums!
For Spice Engineering this was also their third world title in four years. Having proved themselves the masters of the C2 class and with nothing more to prove, Spice Engineering moved into the bigger C1 class for 1989 and chassis SE88C-003 was sold-off. It was bought by powerboat racer and designer Don Shead who along with his son James and Canadian racer Robbie Stirling, entered the car for the ’89 season under the Team Mako banner. They won the C2 class at the Nurburgring, Spa and Mexico City and finished 2nd in C2 at Le Mans, Brands Hatch and Donington. SE88C-003 only raced once in 1990, at Le Mans, where it finished third in class. In 1991 the classes were restructured for the world championship, with Category 1 for 3.5 litre normally aspirated engines, and Category 2 for turbocharged cars. With the C2 “junior” class abolished, and nowhere to race, SE88C-003 sat unused for the entire year. In 1992 the car was taken over and run by McNeil Engineering in the Interserie for Robbie Stirling with 5th place finishes at Brands Hatch and Most the highlights of the season. At the end of the season the car was finally retired from active competition. (The detailed period-race history of SE88C-003 is listed in the History section below).
In 1999, Ray Bellm bought the car back and gave it to Michael Caine at GTC Motorsport who fully restored the car over a 12 month period back to its ’88 Le Mans class winning livery. In 2003, Ray sold the car to historic racer Harvey Cooke who campaigned the car in historics, including a return to Le Mans in 2004 for the Legends race run before the main 24 hour event. At Bonhams London Olympia Auction in December 2005, SE88C-003 was bought by Thierry Boue of London. In 2010 the car passed into the hands of racing driver and classic car collector Steve Tandy, who a few months later, sold the car to the Mike Donovan who raced SE88C-003 in the European and British historic racing scene, accumulating Championship class-wins in 2012, 2013 and 2014 after which it was sold to french racing driver Frédéric Da Rocha. SE88C-003 was acquired by its current owner in 2018 who - with preparer MECAUTO of Belgium - continued its winning streak in 2023 with another C2-class Championship win.
Immaculately presented as ever, SE88C-003 is now being offered for sale with extensive documentation and in excellent condition. Its Cosworth DFL engine has 800 km race-time left while the fuel cell and crack testing are valid until 2026. This famous Spice also comes with excellent spares including multiple sets of wheels, suspension parts, air jack system, tire warmers, 20+ gear ratios and setup sheets. Its FIA HTP is valid until 2029.
SE88C-003 - aka "The Rexona Spice" - is without a doubt the most successful Spice existing while also being reliable, competitive, and fairly simple to run and maintain. A perfect and class-winning entry for Group C racing!
Chassis : Aluminium honeycomb and carbon fibre monocoque with machined aluminium bulkheads.
Engine : 3.9 litre Cosworth DFL prepared by Cosworth engine specialist Richardson Engineering. Homologated at 540 bhp.
Bodywork : Carbon fibre and Kevlar.
Suspension & Brakes : Double wishbone front and rear suspension. In-period KONI adjustable shocks. AP 6 pot calipers.
Wheels : rims 16x10 inch front, 16x14 inch rear.
Gearbox : Hewland DGB 5 speed with 10:31 final drive ratio