Want: Protar scale models

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Protar Grand Prix models are about the coolest moto-ephemera there are for golden age GP history junkies. For starters, founder Tarquinio Provini is himself a small displacement Grand Prix legend. He raced illegally for 2 years under his uncle’s name, Cesare, until Provino was of legal age, then continued to race Grand Prix for over a decade, winning the Motogiro in 1954 and two successive World Championships in 1957 and 1958 for Mondial and MV Agusta respectively. Provino almost killed himself, breaking his back during the 1966 Isle Of Mann TT. That’s when he started making models of all the rarest, coolest prototype racers ever.>

The gallery images are the complete pages of a 1973 Protar catalogue, owned by BMW sidecar monkey Alex Kravchuk, who’s currently building IOM TT winner and Team Obsolete racer, Dave Roper, a seriously fine Moto Guzzi replica chassis out of the Works garage. Alex couldn’t find schematics for the original works Guzzi, so he bought the next best thing, Protar’s perfectly correct 1/9th scale model of the famed 1957 Moto-Guzzi V8 500cc racer, listed as “Art. 105″ in the catalogue.

Provini sold the company a few years ago just before his death to scale model producer Italeri, but the Protar models from this catalogue have long been discontinued. Increasingly rare, older models are expensive. An unopened example of the Moto-Guzzi V8 recently for well over $300.

  • http://www.motorsportretro.com rich

    yes want

  • Seymour

    Saw a nice Guzzi 500cc inline 4 cylinder in that catalog, did a little digging and found this: http://www.veloce.co.uk/shop/products/popup.php?prod_id=V4064&text=Sample%20Text

  • mateo

    oh yeh, time to get some nice little office toys

  • AadmanZ

    I think that should be Italeri

    • http://hellforleathermagazine.com Grant Ray

      Whoops. Fixed.

  • PeteP

    Tamiya and some other Japanese manufacturers still make some neat motorcycle kits. They have better detailing and are closer to scale than the old Protar kits. Unfortunately, Tamiya doesn’t sell a M-G V-8, or a Yamaha RD56, for that matter.

    • http://hellforleathermagazine.com Grant Ray

      PeteP, Tamiya’s level of detail can get incredibly high, especially when you start adding on aftermarket sub-kits. I had their Roberts Yamaha YZR 500 when was a tween during the Schwantz-Rainey years. However, Protar made models of bikes I didn’t know existed, like the two crazy Gileras. I’ve seen the Ducati racers with fuselages, but never the Gileras. Wow. And the Mondial models? Totally got me week in the knees.

      As for the RD56, didn’t Michelle Duff race that as well? I’d absolutely rock her number instead of Read’s.

  • PeteP

    Actually, now I remember it was the RD05 that I built as a kid.

    Parents gave it away when I went off to school. :(

    I see it as number 14 in the catalog. Dunno if it’s Read or Duff.

  • http://fraserart.com Doug

    I’ve enjoyed the beautiful side graphics of the box art. The Tamiya side graphic diagrams are so lovely as well. Nice post.

  • Mark

    Being an old 60/70′s racer, I bought three of the original models in the early 1970′s. The Morini single (which I watched race the RD 56 Yamaha’s at the USMC at Daytona), the 500cc 3 cyl MV Agusta, and the Benelli 250 “4″ with the curvy exhaust pipes. All models are amazing in quality and detail for their vintage. By the way, the Morini could more than match the Yamaha’s on acceleration and breaking but only lost out slightly on the long Daytona banking. Love those old racers!

  • http://www.motocorse.com Marco Dabizzi

    Hi Grant, the correct name of the founder of Protar was Tarquinio Provini, and the name of the company was due to his name (PROvini TARquinio).

    The terrible accident in 1966 was caused by the explosion of the engine of his Benelli, and not because the sun in the eyes like Provini told for many years.

    • http://hellforleathermagazine.com Grant Ray

      Fixed. Pardon my clumsy fingers. I got a little excited writing this one.