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Rolex Monterey Motorsports Reunion – Nothin’ But Corkscrew

Tim Odell August 27, 2015 Hooniverse Goes To..., Pebble Beach 6 Comments

Monterey Historics laguna seca corkscrewOnward with our continued “coverage” (in the form of massive picture dumps) of the Rolex Monterey Motorsports Reunion. Upon receipt of my media band and a photographer’s vest, you can be damn sure the first locked gate I bypassed was the Corkscrew’s. What follows are some highlights from Saturday’s Shelby GT350-specific (this year’s featured marque), the ’55-’62 Sports Cars (Vettes, 356s and some priceless Ferraris), Pre-1940 Sports Racing/Touring, and ’73-81 IMSA GT-GTX, AAGT, GTU (BMW CSLs, Turbo Porsches and some fast but offensively ugly Vettes and Monzas) races.

Ford was running VIP laps in the new GT350R. Sounded incredible, with brief interruptions of the front splitter scraping.

In case you’re curious, the white one with the stripes won. On sorting pictures, I got a kick out of how crooked the front-left side of the #169 car appears. Fiberglass panels? Track Damage? Not like we care; it’s just nice to see these cars are human too. Well…you know what I mean.

The breadth of cars in this field was refreshing. Most obviously, we’ve got the three priceless Ferraris, Gullwings, a pile of C1 Vettes and a background of 356s. However, mixed in were a P1800, Lotus 7 and Elite and some MGs that made great time. I believe the announcers estimated the value of the whole grid between 50 and 100 million dollars.

I lack the knowledge to comment intelligently on pre-war cars, but I will point out that the 900cc Morgan three wheeler was gridded next to the 10 liter #9 car. Other cars seemed to scream “don’t eat meeee!” in its presence. I can’t imagine how terrifying it must be to ride shotgun in one of these dropping down the Corkscrew with nothing but your buddy’s shoulder to hang on to.

The 70s was a weird time for race cars. That ’76 Corvette couldn’t be more American if its exhaust note was “The Star Spangled Banner”. Which is good, because its exhaust note was brutal enough to rattle my ribcage from 50 yards away. The driver’s hometown? Vourles France. It, the Monza and early Fox Mustang made a great showing in the standings, taking second through fourth behind Bruce Canepa in a 935. The Be-winged Porsches, BMW E9s and Datsun Zs were all over the middle of the pack. The M1 was much slower than you’d expect. Props to the guy who brought a Skyline.

Lastly, as far as I’m concerned, the “Old Yeller II Buick Special II” rocking a 6.6l Buick Nailhead, yellow possibly house paint and whitewalls wins the whole weekend.

  • longrooffan

    Man! That is some sweet old iron. Excellent vantage point. Thanks for sharing. And, yeah, Old Yeller will always win.

    • Bradley Brownell

      Old Yeller even had black wall tires with white walls PAINTED ON WITH A BRUSH.

      It was glorious to behold.

  • That Monza. The only dedicated race car that makes me weak in the knees is an IMSA Monza.

  • Van_Sarockin


  • dr zero

    Does it really matter that the M1 was slow if it is so pretty?

  • Sjalabais

    Fabulous prewar cars! Love the proportions of #18. #17, on the other hand, looks pretty…flexible.