INTERVIEW WITH SIMON CHESTER
A lifelong Porsche fan, in particular of the 911, Simon Chester had been looking into acquiring a classic 911 for a number of years, when he spotted the Rennsport stand at Goodwood Revival. He may not have quite realised it then, but it turned out that was the moment his mind was made up for him! On show in the summer sunlight were a couple of 911s that perfectly represented what Rennsport do with a build - and what they could do for him!
What Simon was looking for matched what Rennsport could do: namely, rebuild him a classic, old-style model to customised specification, with a final design that would essentially be a one-off, a car that was unique. “I was fortunate in that, living under an hour from Rennsport’s facility in Moreton-In-Marsh, I could visit Paul and see how everything worked. Their cars looked spectacular and I visited the workshop and saw how professionally they operated.”
The body style he wanted was the shape of a 70s RSR, in Gulf racing colours – an important part of the build for Simon. “Yes, that was important for me. Gulf used to sponsor many a Porsche racing team over the years and the blue is stunning over orange wheels. It makes for a unique, beautiful, yet ever-so slightly aggressive looking race car, with the duck-tail spoiler and trim under the bonnet.” Other specifications included an upgraded throttle body, wider wheels, rear arches, a shockingly loud exhaust system – oh, and seatbelts in the back for my six year old!”
The build process took an astonishing near 1000 hours of labour: Rennsport’s attention to detail is fast becoming a watchword in the world of classic cars and Simon Chester was pleasantly surprised how he was included from start to finish. “I made several visits to the workshop to see how things were progressing. Every now and then Paul would ring me regarding certain aspects of the build and we’d make the necessary decisions together. I loved the fact that I was included in the process – not just make a choice, wait for it to be finished and pay up!”
For Simon, his 911 is part-investment, part “boy’s toy”, partly a slice of nostalgia, maybe as he puts it “the start of a collection.” He enjoys being behind the wheel, whether or long drives or short, and certainly has no regrets about making Rennsport’s journey a part of his own. “It’s an iconic vehicle, with such a distinctive shape and style. Having a vehicle that doesn’t require expensive, regular maintenance is important too. I now own a car that will last forever, looks great and drives fantastically. Plus it shouldn’t depreciate either – bonus!”