American Venues

This topic contains 23 replies, has 1 voice, and was last updated by  Martin 1 month ago.

  • Author
    Posts
  • #4216

    Martin
    Keymaster

    With no notes to amplify this and the following pictures we can only speculate on the purpose of The Flying Dutchman, as this 356 is signwritten. Apparently a 1957-59 356A Carrera Speedster with a cut-down windscreen, roll bar and special exhaust it looks to be immaculately turned out right down to the German flag stripe.

    The surrounding vehicles point to the time being the 1970’s and the location looks to be a race track, although the letters designating any SCCA class are absent. For now this beautiful car must remain an enigma until someone can provide more information.

    Photos: Ted Walker Archive

  • #4219

    Martin
    Keymaster

    ^Against a background that is unmistakeably Sebring we see the slightly savaged 962 (#HR4) of Foyt/Haywood that came 4th from a grid 7th in the 1988 Twelve Hours, where the model filled the top five places. As can be seen from the chassis number, this 962 was made using an American non-factory tub manufactured by Fabcar for Holbert Racing.

    Photo: Ted Walker Archive

  • #4222

    Martin
    Keymaster

    The photographer has caught four Porsches at the head of the field in 1973 at the Road Atlanta Can-Am races, where the final positions were decided by the average finishing places over the two events that weekend. Let’s take a look at each car:

    No.6 is the 917/30 (#003) entered by Roger Penske and driven by Mark Donohue to 2nd place. A 5.4L turbo engine powered the car that was in many ways the ultimate development of the 917 and this was one of two virtually identical cars in the Penske stable that year. This was also the car used for the successful assault on the world speed record for a closed race circuit (i.e. not in a straight line) two years later, when with some modifications it attained over 212mph.

    No.16 is the 917/10 (#005) entered by Rinzler and driven by George Follmer to 1st place. A 5.0L turbo engined car that had been supplied to Penske the previous year and it was driven in all of the other 1973 races by  Charlie Kemp.

    No.0 is the 917/10 (#018) entered by Vasek Polak and driven by Jody Scheckter to 3rd place. Another 5.0L turbo powered car, it was supplied new to Polak that year and acquired by Scheckter at auction in 1999, still in very original condition. It is currently being recommissioned.

    No.59 is the 917/10 (#007) entered by Brumos and driven by Hurley Haywood to 5th place. A further 5.0L turbo model, it was one that had been supplied to Peter Gregg the previous year and it was still in the possession of Brumos quite recently.

    Photo: Ted Walker Archive

    • This reply was modified 10 months, 3 weeks ago by  Martin.
  • #4990

    Martin
    Keymaster

    The 718 picture is said to have been taken in 1959 and while the car looks to have acquired a few panel imperfections it could only have been a few years old when the shot was taken. This model, like the 550 before it, was a popular choice for US competitors in domestic racing.

    Photo: Ted Walker Archive

  • #5017

    Martin
    Keymaster

    This picture was taken at Daytona in 1970 and shows the 24H Race winning JW 917K (#015) of Rodriguez/Kinnunen/Redman, but note the additional window in the roof above the windscreen. These were installed in the Gulf cars to allow the drivers to more easily see up the banking and as far as I am aware this car is the only one to survive with this feature.

    Note too JW Racing Manager David Yorke standing behind the car with his arms folded, keeping a watchful eye on things as ever.

    Photo: Ted Walker Archive

  • #5046

    Martin
    Keymaster

    This 550 (#unknown) was used by Charles Wallace to capture the Sports Car Club of America Class F title in 1957. Although the full extent of its body condition cannot be seen in this picture, what is visible gives a fair indication! The car was finished in a rather unusual colour scheme of white with a pink fairing and front wing flashes and was entered by Jack Pry, whose badge can be seen on its nose. While Wallace drove this and other Porsches he also raced various European cars, particularly Jaguars.

    Photo: Ted Walker Archive

  • #5131

    Martin
    Keymaster

    Running on some rather smart American alloy wheels which are unfortunately not visible from this angle, this is the 906 (#157) entered by Greg Loomis for himself and Bert Everett in the 1970 Daytona 24 Hours, hence the well-masked headlamps. Sponsored by Taurus Porsche+Audi of Atlanta, the car started 43rd but was running in 9th place by the finish, although that was 151 laps(!) behind the winning JW 917. The car seems to have spent its entire racing life in America from when it was new in 1967.

    Photo: Ted Walker Archive

  • #5135

    Martin
    Keymaster

    Two Porsches are seen braking heavily at Sebring during the 1969 Twelve Hours. The works team took five 908/2K’s (plus another as a T-car) and scored 3rd, 5th and 7th places, along with two non-finishes. This is the car (#001) of Schütz/Mitter that came home 5th from a grid 3rd in the 70 car field, Ford and Ferrari occupying the two top spots, the latter also beating the 908’s for class honours.

    Among the many and varied private Porsches was this 906E (#157) entered by the Smothers Brothers Racing Team for Dick Smothers/Fred Baker. Coming home a very respectable 8th from a grid 18th they also won their class in this ex-works 1967 car that was raced extensively by Baker, usually in green and sponsored by Quaker State oil. Baker raced widely in this and other Porsches during the 1960’s and 1970’s and seems to have almost exclusively used non-domestic (and sometimes rather obscure) cars. This 906 can also be seen in the preceding post when in different ownership the following year.

    Dick Smothers was one of the eponymous comedy siblings and later raced John Greenwood’s Corvettes, including a 1972 outing at Le Mans. While the Brothers were not very well known in Britain they were early adopters of the counter-culture approach to comedy, aiming at some of the same targets as Dan Rowen and Dick Martin whose Laugh-In became familiar to British audiences during the same period. Smothers also competed in single-seaters and drag racing, so was something of a motor sport all-rounder as well as a famous entertainer. In fact, he was missing from most of their (as it turned out) final TV show due to the Sebring race.

    Photos: Ted Walker Archive

  • #5148

    Martin
    Keymaster

    Porsche sent a couple of 718RS61’s to Sebring for the 12 Hours in 1961 but to no effect, in fact both were outlasted by Paddy Hopkirk’s Sunbeam Alpine (34th overall) also seen here. Of the two works cars No. 49 (#043) of Bonnier/Gurney went out with a clutch problem while No.50 (#044) of Herrmann/Barth retired due to an engine malady. The other 718, No.39 (probably #057) with its natty spotted light covers, was the Canadian entry of Eglinton Caledonia Motors that had the all-Canadian crew of Ryan/Bradley/Heimrath. At least this one made it to the finish recording a 9th, the best Porsche being the Brumos 718 in 5th behind four Ferraris.

    Eglinton Caledonia Motors were a Toronto VW/Porsche dealer and although the name Ludwig Heimrath may not be well-known in Europe he is one of the most successful of Canadian drivers with literally many hundreds of wins over a career that stretched from 1958 to 2000. Arriving in Canada from his native Germany in 1956 he quickly found work with VW Canada and in the 1960s established his own small repair shop that eventually grew into a Porsche dealership. He began racing a VW in 1958 and after fitting it with a Porsche engine graduated to a Porsche proper -a 356 Speedster- in 1959. Racing a 718RS mainly in Canada until 1963 he also got a one-off drive for Porsche in the non-championship 1962 Pau GP, out-qualifying Siffert but crashing in the race.

    With the 718 by now outclassed he turned his racing attentions away from Porsche between 1964 and 1971, but 1972 found him behind the wheel of a 911 Carrera RSR. There followed a succession of this and other Porsche models that included the 934, 935, 924 Carrera GTR, 944 and even the 968, the latter never a popular competition choice. He even shared a Kremer 956 at the WEC Mosport 1000Km in 1985 where it finished 4th.

    One of his greatest achievements was winning the 1977 US Trans-Am Championship, beating Peter Gregg. This was one of the few instances of a non-American winning the series and it seems to have been a contentious situation. It took a long battle by the Canadian motorsport authority and ultimately the intervention of the FIA to have the Americans uphold the ruling that Gregg’s car (also a Porsche) was illegal, the matter not being resolved until the April of the following season. However, despite the outcome still being under discussion the SCCA had declared Gregg to be the champion the previous December – a week before the FIA hearing.

    Although many Europeans might never had heard about him he is really a candidate for our Porsche People thread and he still drives a Porsche on the road, his son Ludwig Jr having also raced.

    Photo: Ted Walker Archive

  • #5169

    Martin
    Keymaster

    British driver Tony Dean is seen racing a works 908/2 (#005) at Riverside during the 1969 Can-Am series. The US importer’s usual ‘Porsche+Audi’ or even ‘Porsche Audi’ is used here as ‘Porsche/Audi’ and he completed this race in 7th position out of 16 finishers and 35 starters, having qualified 17th.

    Dean raced widely -he might turn up anywhere from Croft to Kyalami!- for around thirty years in a number of different sports, saloons and single-seaters and as well as taking part in many races with a 906 and 908’s he sometimes shared Bill Bradley’s 910. He scored a notable Porsche Can-Am victory at Road Atlanta in 1970, breaking a 19 race domination by McLaren.

    Photo: Ted Walker Archive

  • #5214

    Martin
    Keymaster

    A 718 rests at a race meeting somewhere in America during the 1960’s; does anyone know more?.

    Looking to be in good order apart from a few dents, the rear wheel arches have been flared slightly to accommodate the wider tyres that have been fitted all round and the exhaust has been modified. The roll bar is a typical US addition, although not as intrusive as many that were retrospectively fitted to cars of this type.

    Photos: Ted Walker Archive

  • #5233

    Martin
    Keymaster

    Wearing something of a ‘morning after’ appearance at the Daytona 24 Hours in 1967, this is the 910 (#003) that took Herrmann/Siffert to a 4th overall plus a class win from a grid 17th. The cars starting and finishing the race respectively numbered 59 and 29 and the 910 was the only survivor of the Porsche works entries, the other two being 906’s. A private 906 and two 911’s also made it to the finish, but it was a Ferrari 1-2-3 that weekend.

    Photo: Ted Walker Archive

  • #5257

    Martin
    Keymaster

    Two 356 Speedsters are seen racing somewhere in America; car or circuit details would be welcome.

    The location may be the same and both drivers appear to be signalling their intention to leave the circuit and/or their victory.

    Photos: Ted Walker Archive

  • #5283

    Martin
    Keymaster

    This unveiling of the Porsche-powered Interscope IP-1 chassis in 1980 should have been the beginning of a new era in Porsche motor sport, but instead of it being the entrée into Indycar racing as planned the project was scuppered by the rule makers applying restrictions in respect of the power unit that would have left it totally uncompetitive.

    The one bright spot that came from this sorry escapade was that the engine was fitted into the by then retired 936 and although that car was no longer youthful it helped it to win Le Mans in 1981.

    Photo: Ted Walker Archive

  • #5441

    Martin
    Keymaster

    An atmospheric shot of Brian Redman cornering hard during the 1969 Sebring 12 Hours in the 908/2K (#005) that he was sharing with Jo Siffert. Unfortunately the car went out of the race with a cracked chassis after having qualified 4th and it was a JW-Gulf GT40 that won, the story of the event being told in this film. It contains plenty of Porsche interest and even an interview with Rico Steinmann.

     

    Photo: Ted Walker Archive

     

  • #5459

    Martin
    Keymaster

    The 1971 Watkins Glen Six Hours took place the day before a CanAm race at the same venue and so the Gulf-Porsche team took the opportunity to compete in both events. Here we see the entire 917 contingent -apart from David Piper’s (which also raced on both days)- during the CanAm race. No.92 917K (#029/014) had finished 2nd the day before in the hands of Siffert/van Lennep but could only manage 9th when driven by the latter while Siffert was having his first outing in his new No.20 917/10 (#002) and finished 3rd.  No.91 917K (#016) had not raced the previous day and was taken to 9th by Richard Attwood while the distant No.93 917K came in 11th driven by Bell, having made 3rd the day before when he shared it with Attwood. Also visible is the NART Ferrari 512S which also competed on both days.

    The JW917’s carried these rather improvised front wheelarch extensions, presumably hurriedly added to take account of the fact that during the weekend the cars were running wider than usual tyres to reduce the excessive rubber temperatures in the 30deg heat. Racing with these different Firestones reduced tread temperatures by 12deg to 120deg.

    The Siffert 917/10 was a personal Can-Am project of its driver and had been refinished (allegedly the night before!) in the red of sponsor STP after being delivered in white. This tiny team (the driver and two Swiss mechanics) surprised many of the other competitors with their performance on this initial outing and never finished lower than 5th that year. Taking in only six of the ten rounds, Siffert still managed to come 4th overall in the championship and was the best placed Porsche.

    Photos: Ted Walker Archive

  • #5472

    Martin
    Keymaster

    Elford/Larrousse qualified the sole Martini-sponsored 917 (#020) in 4th position and went on to win the 1971 Sebring 12 Hours. There was plenty of Ferrari and Alfa Romeo (eventually 2nd and 3rd) opposition on this occasion and it is seen here in the company of a Ferrari 312 running in the 3-Litre class.

    Taken at the same place in the same race we see the Rodriguez/Oliver JW 917 (#009) that started from 3rd and finished 4th. They were lapping just under a minute faster than the US-entered MGB that they are about to overhaul, their respective practice times (2:33.8/3:30.1) being a good illustration of the huge speed differential between some of the competitors in the fifty-seven starter field.

    Photos: Ted Walker Archive

  • #5487

    Martin
    Keymaster

    Porsche entered three 550’s in the 1956 Sebring 12 Hours and while the other two recorded a DNF and a 14th this one came in 6th overall in the hands of Herrmann/von Trips.

    As well as only being beaten by a group of cars from the 5L and 3L classes they also scored a class win, giving Porsches a 1-2-3 in the 1.5L division and outlasting other bigger-engined cars.

    Photos: Ted Walker Archive

  • #5532

    Martin
    Keymaster

    While the quality may not be the best it is nice to have this colour action shot from the 1958 Sebring 12 Hours.

    It shows the works 718RSK of Behra/Barth that went out after an oil leak finished off the transmission at just over half distance, although its teammate finished 3rd overall to two Ferraris and won its class.

    Photo: Ted Walker Archive

  • #5587

    Martin
    Keymaster

    Although rather older than the pursuing Triumphs and Datsuns this 356 seems to be showing them a clean pair of heels. Taken at an unknown location during one of countless Sports Car Club of America races during the 1970’s this was a very familiar scene played out weekend after weekend for many years, all of these cars being popular choices and the Datsuns particularly successful.

    Photo: Ted Walker Archive

  • #5664

    Martin
    Keymaster

    On the banking at the 1967 Daytona 24 Hours it’s the Swiss 906LH (#151) entered by Charles Vogel for himself and Walter Habegger that is at the head of this pack. They qualified 18th but did not finish due to an accident that also led to a fire on lap 146 of 666 and that looks to be the winning Ferrari 330 of Bandini/Amon right behind. Pedro Rodriguez, although well known for his JW917 drives, raced Ferraris throughout his career and was sharing the 412P No.26 that finished 3rd and that must be the non-finishing factory 906E (#160) of Schutz/Stommelen/van Lennep in the distance.

    Photo: Ted Walker Archive

  • #5683

    Martin
    Keymaster

    Some hard braking at the 1975 Watkins Glen Six Hours as the BMW CSL of Posey/Redman (6th) dices with the 911 Carrera RSR 3.0 (#4609057) of Hagestad/Haywood (5th). The cars had qualified next to one another too, although in reverse order and both won their classes.

    Porsche-Audi dealer Hagested raced the car widely in US endurance races and achieved some good places, no doubt assisted by being part of the dealer network and often sharing with Skip Barber.

    Photo: Ted Walker Archive

  • #5705

    Martin
    Keymaster

    I thought that we might have some more 356’s in action: Any identification of the cars, drivers or missing venues would be welcome, as always. This first shot shows a carefully modified example with extended wheelarches, an air dam and a mirror mounting echoing those found on sports prototypes. It looks to be on Minilite type wheels too and among the usual suspects pursuing it is a 914 and another 356.

    With a low screen like the car above but an even bigger and rather crude air dam incorporating equally basic brake cooling ducts, this one looks to be otherwise well-prepared..

    The helmet-less driver implies that this 356A Speedster is not being used in anger, although it looks to be fully prepared with racing mirrors, panelled headlamp apertures, an aero screen and a particularly stout and functional roll bar. Obviously a veteran of more than a few skirmishes, it might have been ten years old when this picture was taken in 1965.

    Here at Lime Rock this 356A certainly looks to be handling better than the following AC, although it may just not be travelling as quickly. There seems to be plenty of air going under the car though, so perhaps its modifications only extended to removing the bumpers, covering the lights and installing that roll hoop.

    Photos: Ted Walker Archive

  • #5745

    Martin
    Keymaster

    This is the SP Racing 911 Carrera (#2100224) of Bill Aubelen/Adrian Gang/Gary Aubelin during the latter stages of the 1988 Sebring 12 Hours. The NS of the car has been temporarily repaired due to an earlier incident with the tyre wall, the work having shades of that seen on many rallycross 911’s. The car bears the dirt of a long race -and note the track debris in the foreground-  but despite losing time due to the accident it still managed to finish 31st from a grid 48th.

    This 911 had a long competition career in the States between 1979 and 1989 and on this occasion it was 7th in class and 94 laps behind the winning 962 due to the delay caused by its accident.

    Photo: Ted Walker Archive

You must be logged in to reply to this topic.

This site is protected by wp-copyrightpro.com

Skip to toolbar