Call us jaded, but these days a classic race car bringing over six-figures at auction is hardly newsworthy. Even if said car crosses the half-million dollar mark, it is hard to pay it too much attention. After all it wasn’t that long ago that some rather obscure race cars were going for close to a million bucks, at least before the bottom dropped out.
But this is one race car auction story unlike the others, because it features a gold-and-gem-encrusted scale model of one of the most famous dragsters to come out of the golden age of NHRA racing. The Greer-Black-Prudhomme Dragster model, sculpted by Luis Alberto Quispe Aparicio, sold for an incredible $146,000 at the recent Bonham’s spring auction.
This wasn’t your typical car auction either, but rather was focused on gems and jewelry, with an estimated $1.9 million of baubles up for bid. One of the prized pieces of this auction was the model dragster, based on the car driven by Don “The Snake” Prudhomme. Built by Kent Fuller and tuned by Keith Black, this car earned the best win record in NHRA history when the partnership formed in early 1962.
Carved from solid panels of ruby, which is a notoriously difficult stone to work with due to its hardness, this dragster comes with detailed Onyx tires as well. The Prudhomme dragster model also features a very accurate and detailed gold vermeil engine. For those that don’t know, vermeil is a combination of gold, sterling silver, and other precious metals. While the dragster fell short of its estimated $200,000 selling price, that is still an incredible sum for essentially a toy race car. We’d love to have it sitting on our mantle though.