At the upcoming 36th Rolex Monterey Historic Automobile Races, held at Mazda Raceway Laguna
Seca on August 14-16, the sound of the initial stirrings of over 450 race cars will be
complimented by the exquisite growl of the newest, most daring and most advanced vehicle
Porsche has produced to date, the 2010 Porsche Panamera gran turismo.
“This year’s Rolex Monterey Historic Automobile Races presents the perfect opportunity to
demonstrate that Porsche’s DNA, its competitive spirit and drive for perfection, runs from
the very first 356, Porsche No. 1 up through today’s all-new Panamera,” said Detlev von
Platen, President and CEO of Porsche Cars North America.
“We at Porsche are deeply honored to have been named the ‘featured marque’ on this, the
61st anniversary of the very first Porsche and the North American debut of the Panamera,
the very latest Porsche,” added von Platen.
In addition to the 145 Porsche racers already entered by their owners, or one-third of the
450-plus field, Porsche will showcase the Panamera on the world-famous race track and will
also provide display vehicles on site.
Along with the North American debut of the 2010 Panamera, four special cars with
significant American connections will also be on site — all on loan from the new Porsche
Museum in Germany:
The 1960 Porsche Type 718 Formula 2 racing car, which gave Porsche its first Formula 2 world
title and was driven in 1961 by Californian Dan Gurney, is making its North American debut.
The 1962 Porsche Type 804 Formula 1 racer, which was the car that brought Gurney to his
French Grand Prix win that year. This car has not been in North America since the 1960s.
The 1962 Porsche Type 718 W-RS 8-cylinder Spyder, in which Gurney and Joakim Bonnier
finished second at the Targa Florio in 1961, has also not been in North America for more
than 40 years. In the 1960s, it was raced in the U.S. by Gurney, Bonnier and Phil Hill.
The Porsche GT1 98LM, which helped Porsche finish 1-2 at the 1998 24-hours of Le Mans event.
Porsche-sponsored activities for the fans at Laguna will include a heritage display
including former and current race cars, Porsche’s current showroom product line, and
experts to answer Porsche questions. Porsche Motorsport North America, the racing arm of
Porsche in the U.S., will also showcase its engine and chassis services for both
professional and club/vintage racing, while the Porsche Club of America expects to have
more than 400 Porsches in its club corral and will parade all its cars on the Mazda Raceway
About Porsche Cars North America, Inc.
Porsche Cars North America, Inc. (PCNA), based in Atlanta, Ga., is the exclusive importer of
Porsche sports cars and sport utility vehicles for the United States. It is a wholly owned,
indirect subsidiary of Dr. Ing.h.c. F. Porsche AG. Approximately 200 PCNA employees provide
Porsche vehicles, parts, service, marketing and training for its 202 dealers. The dealers,
in turn, provide Porsche owners with best-in-class service. Throughout its 61-year history,
Porsche has developed numerous technologies that have advanced vehicle performance, improved
safety and spurred environmental innovations within the automotive industry. The company
continues to celebrate its heritage by adding to its long list of motorsports victories
dating back to its first 24 Hours of Le Mans class win in 1951. Today, with more than
28,000 victories, Porsche is recognized as the world’s most successful marque in sports car
racing. PCNA, which imports the iconic 911 series, the Boxster and Cayman mid-engine sports
cars, the high performance Cayenne sport utility vehicles and soon the Panamera gran turismo
for the U.S., strives to maintain a standard of excellence, commitment and distinction
synonymous with its brand.
For more information on the Rolex Monterey Historic Automobile Races, visit
It’s official. Four hundred fifty entries have been accepted for the 36th Rolex Monterey
Historic Automobile Races, one of vintage motorsport’s most revered racing traditions,
set for August 14-16 at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca. Of those, 145 are Porsche cars, helping
to celebrate Porsche as this year’s featured marque and lending live-action perspective on
the company’s storied racing heritage, which includes remarkable cars made famous by
This year marks the 40th anniversary of the iconic Porsche 917, and fittingly, four 917Ks
will take to the track. Three of those are re-uniting from the Gulf Wyer Team, and their
former Executive Director John Horsman will be watching them race along with Brian Redman
and Vic Elford, both of whom claimed victories at 24 Hours of Daytona and 12 Hours of
Sebring and are former Porsche factory drivers who raced the 917 at Le Mans. (Elford also
was behind the wheel of the 917 for the high speed scenes in the Steve McQueen film “Le Mans.”)
“The Porsche 917K was the greatest race car of all time” said Elford, noting that the “K”
denoted aerodynamic modifications made for the 1970 24 Hours of Le Mans, helping to give
Porsche its first overall victory in that race, followed by another win in 1971. It incorporated
Porsche’s revolutionary flat 12-cylinder engine. The long-tailed version could go 0-62 mph
in 2.7 seconds and reach top speeds of over 240 mph.
“The first time I drove the 917 was in 1969 (at Le Mans), and that car was a monster,” he
continued. “At the end of a straight you couldn’t just go from the brake pedal to the
throttle because the back end would want to come around, so you had to kind of finesse it…it
was uncharted territory back then and the car was very unstable.” Elford explained that he
was three hours from the finish and holding a 50-mile lead when his 917 broke down, taking
him and his co-drivers out of the running. John Horsman, who was an engineer as well as the
Gulf Wyer Team Executive Director, suggested the “short tail” modification for the car and
the 917K was born.
Elford added that in contrast to the 917 of 1969, the 1970 car (the 917K) was easy to drive
in the new short form. “At the end of the Mulsanne straight (at Le Mans) in 1969 the 917’s
top speed was around 200 mph, but in 1970, the top speed there was 220,” he said.
Races to Watch; Notable Drivers
With practice on Friday and warm-ups Saturday and Sunday mornings, racing will begin after
noon on each weekend day for 15 race groups that span nearly every era of motorsports history.
Saturday’s Group 7A (1964 – 1971 FIA Mfg. Championship Cars) is just one example of the
extremely rare and valuable cars competing: it features not only 917K Porsches but also two
Ferrari 512s and two Ford GT-40s, reminiscent of those competing in the late 1960s and
conjuring up images of the 1969 Le Mans race where, at the finish, a Ford GT-40 won by a mere
two seconds over a Porsche 908, making history as the closest margin of victory at Le Mans and
perhaps the most exciting race finish ever.
“For enthusiasts, the 2009 Rolex Monterey Historic Automobile Races will be very special,”
said Steve Earle of General Racing, Ltd., which owns and organizes the event. “You’ll be going
back in time, not just standing around admiring these cars. They are racing, and the sights
and sounds are the real thing.”
Notable drivers include England’s Sir Stirling Moss, often called “the greatest driver never
to win the World Championship,” driving a 1960 Lola MK I in Group 5A; South Africa’s Desire Wilson
(one of only five women to have entered an F1 World Championship Grand Prix), driving a 1952
Glockler Porsche in Group 3A; the USA’s John Morton (lauded for accomplishments in Can Am, Trans Am,
Indy Car, and endurance car racing), driving a 1985 Nissan GTP in Group 8A; and Kevin Buckler driving
his 2003 Rolex 24 Hours of Daytona overall winning Porsche GT3RS in Group 7B. Brian Redman
(multiple winner of Rolex 24 Hours of Daytona and 12 Hours of Sebring) will drive the unique 1969
Porsche 917 PA (Porsche’s first Can-Am effort) in Group 6B and a 1971 Porsche 908/3 (a twin to the
car with which he won the 1970 Targa Florio) in Group 7A.
Schedule of Racing
Saturday August 15, 2009
Group 1A) 1904 – 1940 Sporting Cars
Group 2A) 1925 – 1949 Racing and Sporting Cars
Group 3A) 1948 – 1955 Sports Racing & GT Cars under 1500cc
Group 4A) 1955 – 1961 GT Cars under 2200cc
Group 5A) 1955 – 1961 Sports Racing Cars under 2000cc
Group 6A) 1955 – 1961 Sports Racing Cars over 2000cc
Group 7A) 1964 – 1971 FIA Mfg. Championship Cars
Group 8A) 1981 – 1991 FIA Mfg. Championship & IMSA GTP Cars
Sunday August 16, 2009
Group 1B) 1947 – 1955 Sports Racing & GT Cars over 1500cc
Group 2B) 1971 – 1976 FIA Mfg. Championship Cars
Group 3B) 1961 – 1966 GT Cars under 2500cc
Group 4B) 1959 – 1966 Sports Racing Cars
Group 5B) 1963 – 1967 GT Cars over 2500cc
Group 6B) 1966 – 1974 Can-Am Cars
Group 7B) 1973 – 1980 IMSA GT, GTX, AAGT Cars
Tickets, parking directions and information on Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca are available by
visiting www.MazdaRaceway.com or calling (800) 327-SECA. For more information on the Rolex
Monterey Historic Automobile Races, visit www.montereyhistoric.com or contact General Racing, Ltd.,
firstname.lastname@example.org , +1 (805) 686-9292.
Humanity in general has, throughout its long history, had a love for competition. The desire to win is hard-wired in our genes and the attraction to speed… well, that just reflects our love of excitement and good old-fashioned fun! The invention of the automobile provided the perfect opportunity – and vehicle, literally – for people to challenge one another on early racetracks and road courses as they had previously done before with horses. Auto racing was also seen by perceptive car manufacturers as a great way to advertise – provided their cars were winners, of course. The saying “race on Sunday, sell on Monday” exemplifies the business of auto racing and the ever-expanding industry of racing, promotion and parts marketing that has grown up around it.
The auto racing industry has progressed quite a ways from its earliest days. Formula One racing, for example, has become a multi-million dollar sport with high-tech cars, generously paid drivers and big business sponsorships. NASCAR racing proves that “the business of America is business”, both on and off the track. The names of NASCAR events and entire series like the Nextel Cup indicate the need for big-time sponsorship and the copious flow of funding it provides the organizers, teams and drivers. Try to think of a racing car that doesn’t have logos and advertisements on it – bet you can’t, unless it’s a vintage race car.
Auto racing has truly become a big business. Besides sponsorships, revenue comes in from ticket sales and merchandising. This industry seems likely to continue its phenomenal rate of growth as people will never lose their love of thrills, spills and racing excitement!
Check in with Autoracing.com regularly to keep up to date on the latest auto racing industry developments.
The brilliant racing action of the Clash of the Titans will be heading down to the San Antonio Raceway on August 29th and 30th for the absolutely awesome Labor Day Outlaw Streetcar Nationals. Both days promise to offer fans the non-stop thrills that come standard with this level of racing, especially as the race will be another chance to accrue points for the Outlaws series.
The gut-wrenching action that has become synonymous with the Clash of the Titans will get underway on Friday, August 29th, with some open time trials and test runs that will take place between 18:00 and 23:00. Gates will open at 15:00, so if you want to get good parking you’ll have to arrive early and make the most of the event. The first round of pro qualifying will take place at 21:00, so make sure that you don’t go home before you’ve seen the really good stuff.
However, the really great racing action will get started on Saturday morning at 10:00. The 200 mph Clash of the Titans will leave you gripping the edges of your seat as you take in all the exhilarating excitement. The event is set to kick off with the Motorcycle and Import classes, which are back by popular demand. In this race you will be able to see some of the fastest bikes and imports at work as they battled it out to determine which is the fastest.
From that point on you’ll find plenty of racing action to keep you glued to your seat. The True Street Challenge, Heads Up racing and Import Battle will keep the tarmac red hot with burning rubber. However, if you do find you need a change of pace for a short while, there will be a car show and a vendor midway showcasing all the latest in automotive performance parts. There will also be a swap meet where you can purchase used parts and plenty of yummy food. Scott Singleton from RPM Magazine will have his camera ready to snap up any great cars that turn up for the event, so make sure that your automobile is polished up and ready for action. So make sure you don’t miss out on the great racing action next weekend. Get your tickets at any O’Reilly Auto Parts store for great discounts!
This year the Rolex Monterey Historic Automobile Races will be celebrating their 35th anniversary at Laguna Seca. The event, which will be presented by Toyota, will celebrate a number of highlights from past races. It will also see legendary driver Mario Andretti take his seat as the official guest of honor.
The 2008 Rolex Monterey Historic Automobile Races will take place on August 15 to 17 at the Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca. The event will be paying tribute to the first marque to ever be featured at the Historic Races in 1975, the Alfa Romeo. The Alfa Romeo 8C-2900B Mille Miglia will no doubt be sharing the limelight with Mario Andretti – as both are racing legends. The race will also see a number of other marques that have featured in the past 34 Monterey Historic races, including the 1908 Grand Prix Mercedes, which will be enjoying its 100th year of racing. A variety of historic Trans-Am cars will also take to the track during the course of the event. In all the weekend will see a variety of highly competitive and exciting races that are sure to wow fans.
Regarding the presence of Andretti at the event, Steve Earle – the President of General Racing Ltd which founded and organized the event – said: “We are extremely pleased to have Mario Andretti join us at the Rolex Monterey Historic this year. He is a living legend for all of us, and we’ll join together to celebrate the anniversary of his winning the World Championship in 1978.” Many consider Andretti to be the most accomplished driver to ever emerge during the history of motorsports and the legendary driver will be getting behind the wheel of his F1 Championship Winning Lotus 79 for a few demonstration laps during the course of the event. He will also be available to sign autographs and will be participating in some of the scheduled races that have been organized as part of the Rolex Monterey Races. Fans will get the chance to meet other legends during autograph sessions and enjoy plenty of additional entertainment in the form of an enhanced Consumer Expo. If you want to meet Andretti, get in on all the historic racing action and make the most of your weekend, make sure that you get down to the Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca for this great event!