Draper Tools supports Sunbeam 1000hp Land Speed Record car restoration

Draper Tools is supporting the restoration of the Sunbeam 1000hp, the Land Speed Record holder currently based at the National Motor Museum at Beaulieu.

Over the summer, the National Motor Museum is holding a raffle to win a Draper tool kit worth £3,000, with all proceeds going to the Sunbeam 1000hp restoration campaign. The aim is to raise £300,000 to restore the iconic car and take it back to Daytona Beach in Florida for the 100th anniversary of its record-breaking run in 2027.

The tool company began as a family business just short of a decade before the Sunbeam was built in Wolverhampton and its record-breaking run. The business has donated the toolkit to the National Motor Museum Trust.

“Motoring enthusiasts and mechanics will really appreciate the engineering involved in the production and restoration of the Sunbeam 1000hp, and will, I am sure, want to support our fundraising and relish the chance of winning a dream tool kit complete with its storage cabinet,” said Jon Murden, Chief Executive at the National Motor Museum.

Important history for the Sunbeam 1000hp

Driven by Henry Seagrave in its record-breaking run in 1927, the Sunbeam 1000hp, nicknamed ‘the slug’ due to its shape, was the first car to reach a speed of over 200mph, taking the Land Speed Record with a run of 203.79mph on Daytona Beach. 

The car was built on a budget, and reused a pair of Sunbeam Matabele 22.4-litre aircraft engines that had previously been used in a powerboat. The car also featured special tyres that could cope with the extreme speed reached, but only for just over three minutes.

The Sunbeam 1000hp may not be as well-known as Malcolm Campbell’s Bluebird models, the first of which it competed with for the Land Speed Record, but its legacy as the first vehicle to achieve over 200mph means it is a very important part of motoring history. It forms part of the Land Speed Record Hall at the National Motor Museum, alongside other record holders such as the Golden Arrow and both Bluebird cars. 

Nigel Whatley, Draper Tools Power Manager, added, ‘’We have always enjoyed a great relationship with the National Motor Museum and very much have a shared passion for classic vehicles, careful restoration, and the story of motoring. When we heard about the campaign to recommission the legendary Sunbeam, we knew it was something we wanted to get behind. 

It will really be something special to see such a historic vehicle brought back to life. Tools for classic vehicle repairs and restoration are a speciality of ours and we hope that offering a dream automotive toolkit helps deliver plenty of support for the campaign. We would like to wish the team every success on the project – we cannot wait to see the results!’’

Tickets for the raffle are available at the National Motor Museum. It is also possible to support the campaign to restore the Sunbeam 1000hp by donating online: nationalmotormuseum.org.uk/sunbeam-1000hp-restoration-campaign/ 

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