Archive for April, 2013

2 Liters. Barely Contained.

Here’s a video you can show your muscle car friends when they claim anything packing less than a 427 is just a dainty little commuter. This Abarth 2000 Sport Prototipo piloted by Max Comelli is a rabid wolverine. 2 Liters… a mere 122 cubic inches. This is why I so love these little lightweight racing machines.

1st in class for this run up a Brescian mountainside from Marone on the shore of Lake Iseo to Zone.

Man, I’ve really shortchanged hill climbs. I’ve always treated them as second class to wheel-to-wheel racing. I was wrong. This is thrilling.

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The Proving and Improving Grounds

Porsche racing ad

In a race there are two things you can count on. The unexpected and the unpredictable. So the car must respond with an almost animal quickness and sureness.

Speed alone is not enough. Every part of the car must possess the utmost in reliability. For Porsche, racing is the ultimate test of that.

We use the classic courses and tracks of the world as our research laboratories. They are the proving and improving grounds for established ideas. And the headwaters of inspiration for new ones.

It is not incidental that we have been the world’s champions for the last 3 years in a row.

The more we race, the more features we prove. And only when something has passed the test of the track does it ever show up on a car for the street.

Everything we’ve learned goes into the mid-Engined Porsche 914 and the Porsche 911.

At Porsche we do not race to make a name; we race to build a car.

For dealer information call (free) 800-553-9550. In Iowa (collect) 319-242-1867.

“Racing is the ultimate test.” Dr. Ferry Porsche

I love that they included the Cisitalia-Porsche in this ad.

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Spring Sprints with Novice Day – Kent, WA – 04/26 – Pacific Raceways – USA

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Born of a Blue Sky: GT40s and More at Amelia

After the success of last year’s look at the GTOs of Amelia Island, it’s little wonder that Justin Lapriore was invited back to Amelia to document this year’s concours. Often in the videos I share, there’s some questionable decisions being made: Uninteresting edits, holding waaaayyy too long on a shot of an empty track, or—perhaps most noticeably—bizarre music selections like contemporary pop music over 1950s race footage. Justin clearly demonstrates that it is possible to make the right decisions. Of course, when the GT40 is a featured marque, there’s little need for more of a soundtrack than that. When the music does kick in several minutes into the piece, it somehow meshes wonderfully with the animalistic power of the cars and the decidedly more refined nature of the event itself.

50 years of GT40. 50 years of Lamborghini. 50 Years of Corvette Stingray. A special tribute to Ducati. I’m glad that Justin was there to let those of us who were foolish enough not to attend tag along.

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The Mitty – Braselton, GA – 04/25 – Road Atlanta – USA

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Historic Grand Prix at Zandvoort

The increasing availability of high quality cameras on the cheap has sure bumped up the amount of excellent shoots and edits on video sharing platforms. It’s becoming a full-time job to dig through all of the marvelous historic and new footage of vintage racing—and I do try. Despite my best efforts I managed to miss this wonderful cut that Motorsport Media NL shot at the 2012 Historic Grand Prix of Zandvoort. Beautifully put together.

Thanks for sending this in, Rudy.

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High Flying Formula Vee Action

Nick Brittan takes the road less traveled at the 1967 Monaco GP support race

You’ve heard me extoll the virtues of the Formula Vee racing class. I adore it for it’s simplicity: A stock VW Beetle front beam; a 1200 cc Beetle engine; and a stockish tranny. How could that not be a good time? On top of that, the grids for the vintage Vees tends to be a good spot for tight racing with skilled drafts and dramatic overtakes.

Compared to this image from the support race for the 1967 Monaco GP, though, today’s Formula Vee races are positively tame. Apparently the rough and tumble formula vee racers weren’t a great cultural match with the champagne sipping Auto Club Monaco crowd and went on to prove it by opening their event with the bumping and pushing that you might expect of the unwashed.

This shot of Nick Brittan’s rather unconventional overtake near the yacht harbor chicane really probably didn’t do much to improve their reputation in the principality as evidenced by this bit from the Motoring News GP Report: “The Formula Vee race opened proceedings and proved only that such unstable cars should not be allowed near a race track. The only British driver involved, Nick Brittan, arrived at the chicane on his first lap to find a French-driven car sideways on in front of him; he hit it and rolled, falling back on his wheels, fortunately with no personal damage.”

More history of Formula Vee at Volkswagen Motorsport.

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Topps World on Wheels: Borgward Hansa

Topps World on Wheels trading card: Borgward Hansa

Digging back through the shoebox of Topps World on Wheels trading cards. This time: Borgward Hansa.

From the card’s reverse:

Horsepower: 52

This German car is one of the most recent entries into the sports car field. A commercial car by the same firm is the smallest production car to offer an automatic transmission. In addition to these cars, the Borgward factory has also produced three-wheeled trucks! Hansa passenger models are not low-cost transportation, but quality cars of moderate size.

This might be an early attempt at convincing American car-fans that small does not equal cheap and inferior.

More cards from the World on Wheels series in the archives.

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NoBraking.com Visits the CSRG Season Opener

CSRG 2013 Season Opener by NoBraking.com

I’m still buried under a foot of snow and I’ve been able to keep the cabin fever from setting in too hard… until No Braking posted their snapshots from the Classic Sports Racing Group’s event opening their 46th(!) season.

The April 5 race weekend drew 150 vintage cars to Sonoma Raceway which looks like it offers some excellent views. Some of these grids look a bit odd, but may have been an enduro or other cross-racing group sessions. Plus I like a mixed racing group—It’s always fun to see a smaller bore Alfa on the track with a Mustang. Fantastic stuff.

CSRG 2013 Season Opener by NoBraking.comCSRG 2013 Season Opener by NoBraking.comCSRG 2013 Season Opener by NoBraking.com

More photos on NoBraking.com, and check the Vintage Racing Calendar for their next event.

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Race the Rock Vintage Celebration – Rockingham, NC – 04/18 – Rockingham Raceway – USA

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