The British firm celebrates founder Bruce McLaren with unique, vintage livery

One of the three examples of the McLaren 650S GT3 that will race at this years 24 Hours of Spa will wear a special livery, the British firm announced today. The car run by customer team Garage 59 will wear a unique paint job based on the original logo that adorned the early race cars of the Bruce McLaren Motor Racing team.

Created to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the last competitive outing for the original squad with Bruce McLaren himself at the wheel, the livery features the distinctive red, white, and green paint job seen on early 1960s cars. Designed by British illustrator Michael Turner, it was also the first to feature the famous "Speedy Kiwi." The latter will also be present on the 650S GT3’s roof.

The iconic badge was also featured on the 1965 McLaren M2A single-seater prototype and a number of Group 7 sports cars. The most famous of the cars which ran the "Speedy Kiwi was the McLaren M1A, which scored the first podium for the team on its debut at the Canadian circuit Mosport in September 1964.

The special 650S GT3, which will wear No. 60 and make a one-off appearance at Spa, will be driven by Bruno Senna, Luis Felipe Derani, and Duncan Tappy. Garage 59 is the leader of the Team’s Championship in the Blancpain GT Series Endurance Cup with two wins from the first three events of the 2016 season.

The 2016 24 Hours of Spa is set to begin at 16.30 CST, Saturday, July 30.

Keep reading for the rest of the story.

Why it Matters

A driver, engineer, race car designed, and inventor, Bruce McLaren is arguably one of the most brilliant figures in motorsport. Credited with numerous innovative solutions, McLaren began his career as a Formula One driver in 1958 and set up its own full-fledged team in 1966. Although he failed to win the F1 championship, coming second in 1960 with Cooper, third in 1962 also with Cooper, and third again in 1969 with his own team, McLaren achieved great success in the Can-Am series, where his team won five back-to-back championships, two after his unfortunate death in 1970. With such great heritage attached to his name, Bruce McLaren dully deserves a special livery to commemorate the early Kiwi-badged race cars. Although it’s just for one race, the special paint will most definitely attract a lot of cheers from spectators in the memory of the man who basically built the McLaren brand from scratch.

Press Release

Ahead of the 2016 Total 24 Hours of Spa, it has been confirmed that one of the three examples of the McLaren 650S GT3 being run by customer team Garage 59 will wear a unique livery based on the original logo which adorned the early racers of the Bruce McLaren Motor Racing team. The logo featured on McLaren cars between 1962 and 1966.

The distinctive red, white and green design celebrates the 50th anniversary of the last competitive outing for the original Bruce McLaren Motor Racing Team emblem, with team founder Bruce McLaren at the wheel. Designed by British illustrator Michael Turner, it was the first to feature the famous ‘Speedy Kiwi’. The modern interpretation will run on the #60 650S GT3, which makes a one-off appearance at the twice-around-the-clock race with driving responsibilities shared between McLaren P1™ GTR Driver Mentor Bruno Senna alongside fellow Brazilian Luis Felipe ‘Pipo’ Derani and Brit Duncan Tappy.

Throughout its use, the badge featured on the 1965 McLaren M2A single seater prototype and a number of Group 7 sportscars. The most famous of the cars which ran the ‘Speedy Kiwi’ was the McLaren M1A ­– the first true McLaren race car – which scored the first podium for the team on its debut at the ultra-fast Canadian circuit Mosport in September 1964.

The #60 McLaren 650S GT3 forms part of a three PRO car assault by customer team Garage 59, which goes in to the race leading both the Blancpain Endurance Team Championship and the Driver Championship with Factory Driver Rob Bell. The #58 and #59 cars retain the regular Blancpain GT Series colour scheme.

The 2016 Total 24 Hours of Spa begins at 16.30CST (15.30BST), Saturday 30 July. Follow the progress of the 650S GT3 throughout the weekend by following @McLaren_GT on Twitter, and join the conversation using #McLarenatSpa.

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