Historic Stock Cars to Rev up their Engines at Rolex Monterey Motorsports Reunion
America’s most popular form of motorsports will nudge its way onto the vintage race scene this summer when 27 historic stock cars participate in the Rolex Monterey Motorsports Reunion. Scheduled for August 17-19 at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca on the beautiful Monterey Peninsula, the event will feature the Shelby Cobra as its traditionally feted annual marque, but the addition of the stock cars promises to add a new dimension to the hundreds of sports and race cars entered in the historic race.
Familiar brands such as Chevrolet Monte Carlo, Ford Thunderbird, Buick Regal, Pontiac Grand Prix, Oldsmobile Cutlass and Chevrolet Nova, among others, will recreate a rich history that was made famous by superstar drivers. Above the car doors, fans will recognize names such as Rusty Wallace, Dale Earnhardt, Darrell Waltrip, Ricky Rudd and Richard Petty.
The group is limited to 1974-1990 stock cars with disc brakes and includes the 1988 Daytona 500-winning Buick Regal that was driven by Bobby Allison; Richard Petty’s 1979 season-winning Chevrolet Monte Carlo; and the 1989 Pontiac Grand Prix road car that Rusty Wallace used to capture the 1989 Winston Cup Championship.
“This is the first year that such late-model stock cars have been invited to run at the Rolex Monterey Motorsports Reunion,” said Gill Campbell, CEO/general manager of Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca, adding that in 2010, a group of 1959-1975 stock cars ran, which was highly popular with younger guests. “Our mission is to share the wealth and breadth of motorsports history with the thousands of guests who enjoy celebrating historic race cars. The younger audiences surely will recognize these stock cars that once competed at the country’s well-known speedways like Daytona and Talladega, and watching them navigate the tricky Corkscrew will be most entertaining.”
The stock car group is one of 17 race groups at the Rolex Monterey Motorsports Reunion, which this year celebrates the 50th anniversary of the Shelby Cobra. In honor of the anniversary and the late Carroll Shelby, a group of 45 Shelby Cobras that once competed in the 1960s will line up on the grid in what will be a thunderous start to their race.
Adding to the celebration will be many former employees of Shelby American and former colleagues of Carroll Shelby who are expected to be in attendance. Already, there are more than 200 Shelby Cobras committed to the Cobra Corral to complement the 45 competition cars entered in their race.
Rolex Monterey Motorsports Reunion advance general admission tickets start at $50. A three-day ticket is only $130 and includes a complimentary souvenir magazine. Children 12 and under are free with a paying adult. Hospitality options begin at $200 per person.
PHOTO CAPTION: Rusty Wallace’s 1989 Winston Cup Champion road car will compete at the 2012 Rolex Monterey Motorsports Reunion. Photo by Allan Rosenberg at Allanrosenberg.com