Go to Ultimatecarpage.com

  Ultimatecarpage.com  > Events
2014 Monterey Motorsports Reunion
Car search:
Quick Advanced 
Cars statistics: 6151 cars, 497 makes, 41264 images; Events statistics: 289 reports, 61290 images; Forum statistics: 92,132 members, 44,172 topics; more...


Click here to save all images   Monterey Motorsports Reunion
|    2005   |    2006   |    2007   |    2008   |    2009   |    2010   |    2011   |    2012   |    2013   |    2014   |    2015   |    2016   |  

40th anniversary
Staged for the first time 40 years ago as the Historic Races, the annual Rolex Monterey Motorsports Reunion at the Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca is one of the longest running events of the classic car week on the Monterey Peninsula. Spread over four days, this year's edition welcomed around 550 historic racing cars some dating back to the dawn of motoring, while the most recent machines on track were from the early 1990s. Taking centre stage this year were the Maserati centennial celebrations, while the 50th anniversary of the Ford Mustang was also marked. Although neither was highlighted by a dedicated race, Maseratis and Mustangs were prominently represented in many of the 15 groups (seven on Saturday and eight on Sunday).
Where the week's very tight schedule permitted we were at the track and have captured each of the 15 groups and the other highlights in this 240-shot gallery. We were already on hand a week earlier for the official warm-up, the Pre-Reunion, resulting in this 200-shot gallery.

Two is a company
Early competition cars were very straightforward machines, consisting of little more than a large engine and a pair of seats strapped to a steel ladder frame. Filling the second seat was the essential riding mechanic, whose responsibility it was to maintain fuel pressure and often also to ensure crucial components were lubricated. By the early 1920s, technology had evolved to the point riding mechanics were no longer required. The brave men were called in once in a decade later as between 1930 and 1937 the riding mechanic was mandatory in the Indy 500. At the Motorsports Reunion one of the great traditions is to run these early cars with riding mechanics. This year, these included two Nationals, one of which ran in the very first Indy 500, a Packard and George Wingard's 1914 French Grand Prix winning Mercedes. Their display left us wondering how great it would look to have a full field of these early cars, potentially complemented by 1930s Indy cars, all running with a riding mechanic. This is certainly something worth considering for a future edition of the event.

Can-Am
With every aspect of today's motorsports detailed in regulations, people often reminisce of the days of the Canadian-American Challenge Cup (Can-Am). Bound by just of a handful regulations, the Can-Am cars are considered the last of the no limit racers, piloted by the all the great drivers of the late 1960s and early 1970s. Nevertheless, they do not feature every year at the Monterey Motorsports Reunion. Fortunately they did in 2014, and the field boasted quite a few championship winning cars; the ex-John Surtees Lola T70 used to win the inaugural 1966 Can-Am, the McLaren M6A used by Bruce McLaren the following year, the McLaren M8F of 1971 and a pair of DN4 Shadows as used by Jackie Oliver to win the final edition, in 1974. In addition to the well known machines, lesser known cars like the Sting and the Bill Leonhart Special were also on hand. Craig Bennett proved fastest of all on Sunday afternoon with his ex-John Follmer Shadow DN4, beating three McLarens including the often dominant ex-works M8F of Chris MacAllister.

Maserati centennial
With a special display in front of the Rolex Driver's Club, the Monterey Motorsports Reunion marked the 100th anniversary of Maserati. In addition to many classic models, the display also featured a brand new MC12 competition car with a special livery. During the breaks, the car was demonstrated by owner and hugely successful MC12 racer Michael Bartels. From his native Germany, no fewer than four beautiful Maserati racers had been shipped to compete in the races. Among them were a very rare 'Piccolo' version of the 250F and one of just a handful of mid-engined Tipo 63 Birdcages. Fittingly the Piccolo had American racing history and was driven to victory in its race by owner Jos Koster, narrowly beating Jeffrey O'Neill in a 'full size' 250F. Most of the Maseratis featured in the race for 1950s and early 1960s sports cars, which included no fewer than three Tipo 61 Birdcages, two 300Ss (one driven by Derek Bell) and one of the mighty 450S Maseratis. Although the Birdcages featured strongly, the race was ultimately won by local Don Orosco in his well-honed Lotus 15.

GTO reunion
GTO was an abbreviation on the mind of many during the Monterey Classic Car week. Although this was usually in reference to the record breaking sale of the Ferrari 250 GTO, the Rolex Monterey Motorsports Reunion also fielded a particularly strong field of 1980s GTO cars. These silhouette racers came in many different shapes and sizes, powered by engines as diverse as good-old V8s, turbocharged four and six cylinders and also a four-rotor rotary. Among the star cars was one of the ex-works 300 ZX Nissans, originally built for the factory by the very well funded Clayton Cunningham team. The car out on track was the winner of the IMSA class at Le Mans in 1994 and was reunited with original driver Steve Millen. Also on hand was one of just three GTO Toyota Celicas built by Dan Gurney's All American Racers, which was joined by one of the all-conquering Eagle-Toyota GTP cars. Race track owner Mazda was also very well represented in the joined GTO and GTP race with no fewer than three cars. All three featured in the top five, with Weldon Munsey eventually taking top honours the RX-792P Mazda from 1992.

Final thoughts
Now in its fortieth year, the Rolex Monterey Motorsports Reunion remains the finest historic race meeting in North America. Although the event still attracts a grid that is equal to none, the effects of the ever rising prices are visible as many of the most priced historic competition cars now fall in the hands of collectors who have little intention on racing them. One thing we would love to see in 2015, is the GTP/GTO race moved to Saturday afternoon for once, so one of the very best groups can be enjoyed by the biggest crowd.

Related Articles
 
Abarth-Osella PA1 59 Number of shots
Produced in: 1973
Last updated: 12 / 29 / 2014
 
 
Aston Martin DBR2 82 Number of shots
Produced in: 1957
Last updated: 08 / 05 / 2015
 
 
BMW M1 Procar 160 Number of shots
Produced in: 1979
Last updated: 08 / 07 / 2006
 
 
BMW 3.0 CSL IMSA 90 Number of shots
Produced in: 1975
Last updated: 11 / 11 / 2016
 
 
Bugatti Type 57 S Torpedo Competition 27 Number of shots
Produced in: 1935
Last updated: 10 / 24 / 2014
 
 
Devin SS Chevrolet 63 Number of shots
Produced in: 1959
Last updated: 01 / 04 / 2016
 
 
Ferrari 312 PB 106 Number of shots
Years of production: 1971 - 1973
Last updated: 06 / 19 / 2015
 
 
Ferrari 250 LM 356 Number of shots
Years of production: 1963 - 1966
Last updated: 12 / 18 / 2015
 
 
Ferrari 250 GTO 503 Number of shots
Years of production: 1962 - 1963
Last updated: 12 / 07 / 2015
 
 
Ford Roush Mustang 27 Number of shots
Produced in: 1985
Last updated: 10 / 31 / 2014
 
 
Ford Shelby Mustang GT350 R 95 Number of shots
Years of production: 1965 - 1966
Last updated: 09 / 21 / 2015
 
 
Lister Knobbly Jaguar 177 Number of shots
Years of production: 1957 - 1958
Last updated: 12 / 17 / 2014
 
 
Lola T163 Chevrolet 82 Number of shots
Produced in: 1969
Last updated: 12 / 31 / 2014
 
 
Lola T70 Spyder Chevrolet 106 Number of shots
Produced in: 1965
Last updated: 12 / 14 / 2015
 
 
Maserati Tipo 63 Birdcage 53 Number of shots
Produced in: 1961
Last updated: 10 / 19 / 2015
 
 
Maserati Tipo 60 Birdcage 77 Number of shots
Produced in: 1960
Last updated: 05 / 05 / 2016
 
 
Maserati Tipo 61 Birdcage 256 Number of shots
Years of production: 1959 - 1960
Last updated: 01 / 05 / 2015
 
 
Maserati 250F T3 'Piccolo' 85 Number of shots
Produced in: 1958
Last updated: 12 / 15 / 2014
 
 
Maserati 300S 376 Number of shots
Years of production: 1955 - 1958
Last updated: 11 / 10 / 2014
 
 
Maserati V8RI 61 Number of shots
Years of production: 1935 - 1936
Last updated: 09 / 22 / 2014
 
 
Mazda RX-792P 58 Number of shots
Produced in: 1992
Last updated: 07 / 27 / 2015
 
 
Mazda RX-7 GTO 47 Number of shots
Produced in: 1990
Last updated: 07 / 27 / 2015
 
 
Mercury Roush Capri 27 Number of shots
Produced in: 1984
Last updated: 10 / 31 / 2014
 
 
Nissan 300ZX IMSA 27 Number of shots
Years of production: 1989 - 1994
Last updated: 10 / 10 / 2014
 
 
Porsche 935 59 Number of shots
Produced in: 1979
Last updated: 07 / 21 / 2016
 
 
Porsche 935/77A 172 Number of shots
Produced in: 1978
Last updated: 12 / 19 / 2014
 
 
Porsche 934½ 83 Number of shots
Produced in: 1977
Last updated: 12 / 30 / 2015
 
 
Porsche 911 Carrera RSR 3.0 242 Number of shots
Years of production: 1974 - 1975
Last updated: 04 / 30 / 2015
 
 
Porsche 911 Carrera RS 3.0 113 Number of shots
Produced in: 1974
Last updated: 08 / 11 / 2016
 
 
Porsche 550A RS Spyder 65 Number of shots
Years of production: 1956 - 1958
Last updated: 03 / 23 / 2015
 
 
Shadow DN4 Chevrolet 74 Number of shots
Produced in: 1974
Last updated: 11 / 12 / 2014
 
 
Sting GW1 Chevrolet 20 Number of shots
Produced in: 1974
Last updated: 12 / 05 / 2014
 
 
Toyota Celica Turbo GTO 34 Number of shots
Years of production: 1986 - 1988
Last updated: 10 / 15 / 2014
 
 
Toyota Eagle GTP Mk III 63 Number of shots
Years of production: 1991 - 1993
Last updated: 10 / 15 / 2014
 

Report by Wouter Melissen and images by Wouter Melissen and Pieter Melissen for Ultimatecarpage.com