More than 800 Applications Received for Rolex Monterey Motorsports Reunion
Shelby Cobra. The name evokes images of muscle, brute power and good ol’ American ingenuity. This year’s Rolex Monterey Motorsports Reunion is likely to be the largest 50th anniversary celebration of the venerable marque and, as such, auto enthusiasts and hopeful participants are gearing up for the August 17-19 event at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca.
More than 800 entry requests have been received to compete in the 17 race groups. But only 550 of these beautifully restored historic race cars will be accepted. The five-person Governing Committee has pored over each entry to ensure authenticity, provenance and history before placing potential cars into corresponding groups. Entrants are receiving the coveted acceptance letters this week.
“Selecting the cars from a list of significant entries from around the world is the toughest part of being on the Governing Committee,” comments John Lamm, committee member and noted motoring journalist. “We take this responsibility very seriously.”
Fellow committee member Bill Warner, founder of Amelia Island Concours d’Elegance, echoes Lamm, saying, “For guys who run these cars and who share them with the fans, this is the most important event of the year on their calendar.”
Upon arriving at the track, each car will undergo a technical and safety inspection to ensure its authenticity, conformity to the regulations and is period correct, both mechanically and in presentation of the day it originally ran. This is the long-time distinguishing hallmark of the renowned weekend of spirited, yet gentlemanly racing.
What surely will be one of the weekend’s highlights is the dedicated race group of authentic Shelby 289 and 427 Cobras simultaneously jockeying for position on the race grid in a fitting tribute to the time-honored marque. A maximum of 45 Shelby Cobras (from the 56 currently entered) will be accepted due to on-track safety desires and paddock size restrictions.
Additionally, Ford Motor Company is designing a dynamic history display that will trace the Shelby Cobra’s roots and importance in the motoring world. “The partnership between Ford and Shelby goes back a half-century, and has left an indelible mark on automotive history. It’s hard to imagine a better stage to pay homage to Carroll Shelby and his Cobras than at one of the world’s premier vintage racing events,” said Jim Farley, Group Vice President Marketing and Sales of Ford Motor Company.
In addition to the bustling race paddock filled with pre- and post-war cars, visitors can stroll among hundreds of classics in the Yamaha Marketplace and adjacent car corrals. While Shelby Cobras will be taking center stage in the race paddock and car corral, it is after all the most replicated car of all time, there will be car corrals for nearly every marque, including Mustang, Alfa Romeo, Corvette, Porsche, Ferrari, Mazda, Pantera and many more.
The Monterey Pre-Reunion kicks the week-long activities off with approximately 300 cars on the track August 11-12. The Pre-Reunion is a way for participants to gain more track time or shake out their car before the main event.
“The Rolex Monterey Motorsports Reunion and Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance are the cornerstones of the Monterey Classic Car Week that attract visitors from around the world,” says Gill Campbell, CEO/general manager of Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca and longtime vintage race organizer. “This major celebration of classic and vintage race cars is what makes the Monterey Peninsula come alive each year.”
Advance purchase general admission tickets start at $50 with a three day pass for $130. Children 12 and under are free with a paying adult. Hospitality options start at $200 per person. Free parking is available and VIP parking can be purchased for $75.
For more information on the Rolex Monterey Motorsports Reunion or to purchase tickets, call 800-327-7322 or visit www.MazdaRaceway.com.