On Monday, we said goodbye to the six motorcycles that we were storing on behalf of our late friend Don Ludewig before they set sail to their new caretakers around the world.
His collection was the most obscure and phenomenal grouping of two and three-wheeled cycles I have ever seen. When his estate needed a place to store the oddities, we jumped at the chance to keep them safe and warm, as they were so loved by Don that half of them lived in his dining room.
For those who got to witness them in-person at our 2022 KMPR Holiday Shindig, count yourself as lucky, we will most likely never see anything like those bikes ever again, especially the time capsule-like BMW RS54 kneeler that Fritz Scheidegger took to the 1966 World Championship crown.
Cheers Don, we hope the next caretakers love the bikes as much as you did.
The Seven is back on its feet to fit a few bits, as well as figure out how much we have to bend, reshape and shave off the front fenders so that they are equal.
It took some doing, though most worthwhile things in this life are that way.
Since we began work on our late friend Michael Argetsinger's 1973 Elden PH10B Formula Ford in September, 2019, I've been accumulating results and statistics regarding the races Michael raced the car in during the 1973 'American Express Formel Ford Cup' season in Europe.
Allen Brown and Steve Farnsworth were a massive help in this, and I felt it was important to know about Mike's runs in the Elden, where he raced, and those he was competing against.
The final tally saw Mike finish 11th in points, while also running the series and maintain his day job in Germany.
The 1973 AmEx Cup saw many notable names who would later make their mark on the sport- Arie Luyendyk, Boy Hayje and Hans Binder among them.
Every once in a while, a photo is sent our way of one of our racing vehicles dug out of the past. A photo attached in an email from the IMRRC’s Josh Ashby floored us. The photo he sent showed our 1973 Elden PH10B on display outside the American Express office at the Kaiserslautern (Germany) Military Community in early 1973 with some young men who are checking out the Elden, and its would-be pilot. We know it is before June 2nd, 1973 as it is still sporting chrome mirrors in this photo.
And while most of the photos of the car showcase our late friend Michael Argetsinger, in this case, it is his brother Peter shown, whom we lost in 2019. Peter helped us greatly in our quest to identify the car as Michael's, and it seems he may have had a bigger role with the car than we first thought.
In the early part of 1973 Michael called Hamburg, Germany home, as he among other things worked out of AmEx offices there. Meanwhile, his brother Peter was in Holland. After the Int. ADAC-Bavaria-Rennen, held at the Salzburgring in Austria on May 19-20, 1973 Michael listed Bremerhaven, Germany his port of call on entry forms for the rest of the ’73 season. Both Hamburg and Bremerhaven are in 2023 travel time roughly 6.5 hours away from Kaiserslautern.
However, according to Michael and Peter’s friend Bob Crippen, the Argetsinger brothers of Michael, Peter and Rob all rented an apartment in April 1973 at Ramstein Air Force Base, which just so happens to be where the Kaiserslautern Military Community was located. Crippen mentioned in an email that he and Rob Argetsinger got jobs at the kitchen of the Officer’s Club at Ramstein AFB, and didn’t exactly recall what Peter and Michael were up to. He also mentioned Rob Argetsinger took the Elden out for a spin once, and did exactly that and incurring some damage.
We can tell you Michael’s 1973 activities are still classified, other than his on-track pursuits, which we’ve covered in great detail thanks to some amazing people who still hold Michael in high regard. We also know he must have logged quite a few miles with his Renault 16 road car during this time trekking all over Europe.
As for this photo and Peter being the man on display- we’ve had a suspicion for some time that he also drove the Elden at last one time in 1973. At the September 21-22 AvD/MAC-Rundstreckenrennen, his brother Michael was listed as running a Lotus, which could have been his old car from 1972, or perhaps rented or borrowed from another racer in the series. Peter is also listed as running in the event, but his chassis selection is simply stated as ‘FF.’
It might as well say ‘car.’
We think the Elden had a day with the younger Argetsinger, but we’re still waiting for a photo to pop up of a white helmet piloting the American Express Elden to confirm.
Until then, cheers Michael, and cheers Peter.