The Monterey Peninsula’s love affair with world-class racing traces its beginnings to the inaugural running of the Pebble Beach Road Races in 1950. Those sports car events quickly outgrew the public roads of the Del Monte Forest and a beautiful new road racing facility was born on November 9, 1957.
In four weeks the tens of thousands of the world’s automobile community will sharpen their focus on all the activities that comprise Monterey Classic Car Week that runs from August 11-20. Since assuming control of historic racing at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca in late 2009, the Sports Car Racing Association of the Monterey Peninsula (SCRAMP) is poised to usher in its eighth edition of the Rolex Monterey Motorsports Reunion in spectacular fashion and kick-off the entire week on Friday evening, Aug. 11 with its race car show on Alvarado Street.
The race that started it all was an upset of sorts. With big-name drivers like Carroll Shelby, Richie Ginther, Fred Knoop, Jim Hall and John von Neumann in the field driving more powerful machines from the likes of Ferrari, Mercedes-Benz, Aston Martin, Maserati and Porsche, few gave Pete Lovely and his year-old 2-liter Ferrari 500 Testa Rossa much of a chance.
“Don’t try to cross the track. At least, you are exposing yourself to arrest. And you may be tempting a quick and painful and final end to your day’s spectating,” read an excerpt from the first program sold at the “Eighth Annual Pebble Beach Sports Car Road Races” November 1957. This first race nearly 60 years ago was the beginning of what is now called Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca.
There is so much to see and do when visiting Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca, whether it’s making a quick overnight stop to see a race, or if you’re making a weekend of it and checking out all the cool attractions in the Monterey County area.
Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca offers some of the coolest apparel in all of motor racing, from jackets and sweatshirts to ball caps and tees. Be sure to visit our online souvenir store to browse the exclusive merchandise.
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