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It Was Truly Vintage Vintage at Lime Rock Park

It Was Truly Vintage Vintage at Lime Rock Park

The fourth and final day of the 27th annual Vintage Festival at Lime Rock Park was another blockbuster of racing, 13 races in total accommodating the giant field of more than 270 historic entries. Event Organizer Murray Smith did more demonstration laps in the priceless Mercedes-Benz W154 Silver Arrow GP car, while parade laps at lunchtime for Morgans, Minis and more provided entertaining backdrops. The Go-Go Karting for kids concession was busy dawn to dusk, Vic Elford’s autograph sessions were a major hit, Lime Rock’s hillsides were dappled in color with thousands of picnic blankets, coolers and lawn chairs, and the Swap Meet in the Sunoco Paddock was alive with the ringing of registers.

“We really wanted to give the fans as much as possible during this weekend,” Skip Barber said. “The Collier Collection cars were fabulous, the Midway was a fun and busy place to be – and I really want to thank Mother Nature for her full cooperation this week!”

Murray Smith added, “Lime Rock’s vintage fans are knowledgeable and appreciative, and that’s a big part of what made this weekend so wonderful. Goodness, there were more than 700 cars entered into Sunday’s car show! That should tell you something about the fans here, wouldn’t you say?”

Remember, the VSCCA now uploads its Lime Rock Park race results on the web at www.mylaps.com. Look or search for “2009 Vintage Festival” and you can see all practice, qualifying and race results from today and Monday.

Click here for our photo montage from the weekend.

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Vintage Festival Halftime: Two More Days Left

Vintage Festival Halftime: Two More Days Left  

A beautiful Saturday at Lime Rock Park for the Vintage Festival was defined by a big, happy crowd, the history making laps at lunchtime by the Mercedes-Benz W154 Silver Arrow Grand Prix car – there was a constant five-deep crowd around the machine in its paddock compound – a Vic Elford autograph session, go-karting for the kids, jam-packed Car Corrals and Specialty Parking, a tremendous celebration of 100 years of the Morgan Motorcar Company (highlighted by a giant field of Morgans on parade around the track) and, of course, a bunch of terrific afternoon races. The Festival drew more than 270 entries, at least 100 more classic racing cars than last year.

“This is one of the best Vintage Festivals in a while, I have to say” Skip Barber said with a pretty big smile. “The fans look really happy, and that makes me happy.”

Vintage Festival Event Organizer Murray Smith was all smiles, too. Especially since it was he who was allowed the honor of driving the M-B W154 in front of the appreciative fans. Smith, a longtime racer himself, told a local TV affiliate that the W154 “...is certainly one of the most spectacular racer cars I’ve had the privilege of putting the stick to.”

Sunday’s weather is expected to be as beautiful as it’s been over the past two days, as a record-breaking number of entries is likely to show up for the “Sunday in the Park” car show. Skip’s goal is to have, for the first time in Festival history, the entire 1.53-mile circuit lined with cars. Car clubs including Rolls-Royce, Morgan, Porsche, Shelby, MG, Corvette, Austin-Healey and BMW have enlisted their forces to bring their choicest specimens, joining the hundreds of individual owners that traditionally enter the show.

On Labor Day Monday, the racing resumes with each of the nine car groups set to go for their second races of the weekend. Everything the fans got today are on hand for Monday, including more demonstration laps of the fabulous Mercedes-Benz W154 GP Silver Arrow and another Vic Elford autograph session.

One more thing, new this year: the VSCCA now uploads its Lime Rock Park race results on the web at www.mylaps.com. Look or search for “2009 Vintage Festival” and you can see all practice, qualifying and race results from the 2009 Lime Rock Park Vintage Festival!

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Here's What You Think of the Vintage Festival

Here's What You Think of the Vintage Festival

Well, we promised to put on the website the best one-sentence descriptions of what the Vintage Festival means to our fans. Here’s the problem – too many good ones!

So we’ve uploaded as many as we could in the time allowed...

Read on!

The Staff at Lime Rock Park

1. Labor Day at Lime Rock for the Vintage Races is a tradition that can only be described as the “Tanglewood of Racing!” Joanna Aversa, Collinsville, Conn.

2. Lime Rock Park is a hidden gem. Wayne Jay Zimmerman, Cyberspace

3. The Vintage Festival at Lime Rock Park is Woodstock with bathrooms and water, a trip. Henry C. Nagel, Hulmeville, Pa.

4. Terrific old race cars on a race track – what more could you want? Anthony David, Chalfont, Pa.

5. Awesome! Phil K., New York, N.Y.

6. I love to just sit on the hillside and breathe it all in... Lorenzo Bandini, Basking Ridge, N.J.

7. Yesterday’s racing dreams and today’s motoring memories are the essence of
Lime Rock's Vintage Festival. Rob Hermann, Liverpool, N.Y.

8. Lime Rock Vintage Festival is like a transfusion of past pleasant memories and a rush of current happiness. Bob Burns, Simsbury, Conn.

9. The coolest cars and people on the planet are at the Lime Rock Park Vintage Racing and Historic Car Festival. Stephen J. L. Page, Dallas, Texas.

10. To see, to hear, once again and maybe forever, these fabulous racing machines being driven around Lime Rock is the true essence of racing history. Andy Smith, Torrington, Conn.

11. The Vintage Fall Festival epitomizes the bond that enthusiasts share of the unbridled passion for motorsport. Kevin Sweeney, Stamford, Conn.

12. Vintage racing at Lime Rock is a special chance to experience the thrilling sights and sounds of a bygone era that I wish I could have lived through, but which was sadly over before I was even born. Bradley Price, Brooklyn, N.Y.

13. Vintage cars, vintage friends; an annual tradition. Jim Garfield, Wakefield, R.I.

14. The sights, smells and sounds of auto racing's history are alive and well at the Lime Rock Vintage Festival! Pat Daly, New York, N.Y.

15. VintageFest is like going to see a Hall of Famers baseball game – only these 80-year-olds haven't aged. Brian Hanley, Cyberspace

16. We come to the Lime Rock Vintage Fall Festival to re-kindle memories from our younger years when we saw these cars race, when we surrendered our imaginations to the magazines of the day, when we dreamed of taking the wheel, when our fertile minds convinced us of our prowess as drivers if we only had the chance; for it's the stark beauty of these cars, both in their lines and their sounds that scoops us up from today and deposits us for a few wonderful moments into the nether world of these time machines. Sam Posey move over! Steve Fog (channeling William Faulkner; Ed.), New Canaan, Conn.

17. The annual Vintage Fall Festival is not only a reminder of the history of automobile racing over the years, but a great reminder of how Lime Rock Park has continued the sounds, feeling, joys and smells of racing for all of us. Peter R. Stricker, West Caldwell, N.J.

18. Great vintage race cars and a great place to see them, the Vintage Fall Festival at Lime Rock Park. Steve D'Andrea, Cranston, R.I.

19. Lime Rock Park sustains an atmosphere that represents sportsmanship at its best – friendly, accessible, highly competitive and passionate; I never miss this weekend. Vaughan Wiles, Pine Island, N.Y.

20. Years ago (probably so many now) there was a silver haired veteran who drove a Bugatti Type 35 that was very nicely not restored, and I remember him doing four wheel drifts almost all around the circuit (year after year) with the colored leaves as a background – heroic – and he may no longer be among us, I am afraid, but every time I think Fall Festival, I think of his spirited behavior at the wheel. Hillman, Cyberspace

21. I've been coming to the Festival since its first or second year and to me it’s the Pebble Beach weekend for those of us on the East Coast. Marc Mankuta, Dix Hills, N.Y.

22. The Lime Rock Vintage Festival has always been an amazing event where my father (Al Aston), brother (Bryce Aston) and I get to show off our Corvairs and meet up with special friends from years past and always make new ones. Brett Aston, Hebron, Conn.

23. England has the Goodwood Festival of Speed, the West Coast has the Monterey Historics, and the East Coast has Lime Rock's Vintage Festival; all three are “must see” events for real motoring enthusiasts (and I have been to all 3). Duane Sword, Boston, Mass.

24. Lime Rock is the epitome of what car racing should be; great cars, great drivers, appreciative fans and one of the world’s greatest car venues. Rob Salinger, Cyberspace

25. Historic racecars + historic racetrack = one historic weekend! Rich Chmielewski
Wilkes-Barre, Pa.

26. Because old cars are cool. Kevin Wickless, Norwich, Conn.

27. A time warp back to the '50s, where you can get up close and personal with mechanics, drivers, and cars – and I especially love being close to the cars and seeing how they are made (none of this roped-off stuff!). Duane Walzer, Medway, Mass.

28. Lime Rock Park's Fall Vintage has become a family tradition for us for the past 10 years! The McKeough's, Stanfordville, N.Y.

29. The Lime Rock Vintage Festival takes me back, now exactly 50 years, when I experienced these cars in their youth. Richard Walter, Fair Haven, N.J.

30. For the first-timer as well as the seasoned spectator, this event will surely get everyone’s heart racing! Malcolm Bell, Hampton Falls, N.H.

31. You are watching the history of the automobile, raced in front of you. Kurt A. Dolnier, Watertown, Conn.

32. It's the event near the equinox that brings me closer to my solstice. Chris Zizzo, The Zen Den

33. The ultimate race trip back in time. Kim L. Graver, Millersville, Pa.

34. Lime Rock Park is Shangri-La for the motor racing enthusiast, a portal to a place suspended in time where the sights, sounds and smells of our glorious motoring past live again. Tony Rapuano, Wallingford, Conn.

35. The Lime Rock Vintage Festival takes me back to when I was young and the sound of a race car first thrilled me. Joe Dufresne, Holden, Mass.

36. Being 90 years old (this past August 1st), I've been to Giant’s Despair, Watkins Glen, Bridgehampton, Indy, Langhorne, Pa., and Trenton, N.J., plus Thompson Speedway, but, I must say... Lime Rock is still me favorite! Bob Chamberlin, Glen Ridge, N.J.

37. Going back in time at warp speed. Tom McNemar, Milford, Conn.

38. The Vintage Festival is to a car guy what Willie Wonka’s Chocolate Factory is to a kid. Craig Barry, Uxbridge, Mass.

39. The ability to see and hear some of the great race cars, and remember their drivers; a history in full sight and smell that time has forgotten. Kevin Santana, Martinsburg, W.Va.

40. The passion for unique cars and timeless vintage racing never dies; long live LRP. Aaron Johnson, Newtown, Conn.

41. Lime Rock's Vintage Festival is history in motion, preserved for the future. Gary Smith, Oxford, Conn.

42. Four days of automotive history, endless hours of engine's deafening roars and screams echoing in the valley, flashing colors and chrome change with the light, the sun rising over Big Bend and setting past the Back Straight; the smell of hot oil, brakes and tires pungent in my nose, the perfect start of fall: Lime Rock's Vintage Festival. Dan Kunhardt, Greenfield, Mass.

43. The Vintage Festival combines historic cars that really race, an open paddock, cool automobile memorabilia, rare car parts at the swap meet, thousands of car enthusiasts, impromptu car corrals with rare drive-in beauties, camping under the stars, good friends, good food and drink... one awesome time. What else does a car nut need? Steve Kirkup, North Stonington, Conn.

44. The Lime Rock Vintage Festival means fall is here... and the fall is the very best time to be in New England! George Wright, Cyberspace

45. The Lime Rock Park Vintage Festival is a truly timeless and glorious weekend. Richard Miller, Clinton, N.J.

46. A blast from the past, sitting on the grass, watching every car trying to pass! Rick Raff, Bedford, N.H.

47. Lime Rock’s Vintage Festival provides the enthusiast with the most dynamic competition of the season while also delivering a priceless education in motor racing history. Rick Raducha, New Britain, Conn.

48. A place where I have spent a lot of time over the years. Diane, New Jersey

49. Classic cars on a classic track = a classic event. Gene Kowalski, Fairfield, N.J.

50. Your Vintage Festival mixes the cars and sounds from my youth with a modern day excitement of live races! We wouldn't miss it for the world! Kathy Rotsky, Somerset, Mass.

51. The Lime Rock Vintage Festival is the perfect way to end the summer and start the wait for the leaves to fall! Kurt Zwick, Cyberspace

52. The ideal vantage for vintage. John Rzasa, Berlin, N.J.

53. It's the largest classroom on the historical evolution of motorsports. Gino Evangelista, Wakefield, Mass.

54. The ultimate nostalgia weekend! Wendy Jean Wilton, Rocky Hill, Conn.

55. It's even better than the first time! (This is from someone who came as a little kid when the track opened in 1957, and who has raced here many times in later years.) John Langermann, Cambridge, Mass.

56.  The perfect end to summer's delights, that is the Vintage Festival at Lime Rock Park. Phil Immohr, New Milford, Conn.

57. Celebrating incredibly comely collectible classic cars with the camaraderie and company of crusty curmudgeons. Peter Lihatsh, Sharon, Vt.

58. Racing history at a historical track, a true must for any race fan. Eric Blum, Fairfield, Conn.

59. The perfect way to end the summer. Aaron Rogers-Hancock, Valatie, N.Y.

60. A wonderful automotive culmination of the summer with a four-day celebration of racing personalities, classic cars, their capabilities and their owners at one of America's first and original road racing tracks. Jeff Burnett, Warren, Vt.

61. A blast from the past! Mike Maurice, Trumbull, Conn.

62. The humbling experience of being able to reach out and touch one of Juan Manuel Fangio's cars. Dean O'Brien, West Hartford, Conn.

63. An event that truly showcases what historical racing is all about and where the rubber really hits the road! Lisa Parker Musante, Coventry, Conn.

64. Classic. Gee Dub, Long Island, N.Y.

65. The Lime Rock Vintage festival is really cool because my Dad races in it! (And well... maybe the cars are ok, too.) Kelly Gleason, Danbury, Conn.

66. Vintage weekend at Lime Rock is like a classical ballet of beauty and grace with a roar of sweet music to the ears. Mike Salvatore, Southbury, Conn.

67. Vintage Weekend at Lime Rock: A racing time capsule of classic, memorable and priceless generations of automobiles and family fun. Kathy Shea, West Haven, Conn.

68. Lime Rock's Vintage Festival is where automotive time machines turn back the clock.

Joe Wall, Milford, Conn.

69. Beautiful cars in a beautiful setting. Scott Simchock, Cyberspace

70. My favorite place to be, I’ve been going to the Vintage Fest for more than 20 years now, and can’t wait till the next one as I drive over the bridge to leave. Jason Venne, St. Mary’s, Pa.

71. First visit, I was 4, Dad had a 1960s Triumph Spitfire; he is gone, but his memory lives on at Lime Rock – keep your eye out for his red Spitfire convertible. Dave Zucco, Canaan, Conn.

72. An event in our lives that is awaited with the same enthusiasm as the Fourth of July or Christmas Eve; a time to recall memories of days of old and make new memories as well. F.X. Mishew, Cyberspace

73. Representin’ the Big Apple... Manhattan-area MINI Motorers love Lime Rock Park! James Lamdin, New York, N.Y.

74. The Vintage Festival provides a vivid retrospective lens to view the glorious days of my youth, from Bugattis and Fiat-Abarths to Birdcage Maseratis and Porsche Spyders! Robert L. Schmidt, Cyberspace

75. It is the privilege of seeing historic race cars and to speak with legendary drivers in a setting that only nature could build. Paul D. Hmiel, East Greenbush, N.Y.

76. Bless all of you for maintaining its original beauty and purpose. Arnie Friedlander, Ridgefield, Conn.

77. I've been coming to LRP for all 35 of my years, with family, friends and PCA., and Lime Rock’s Vintage Festival is a celebration of history’s greatest offerings to the gods of speed! Peter Baldauf, Suffield, Conn.

78. It is the most fun you can have with your pants on! Gary Mayer, Niantic, Conn.

79. Sunday in the park... with motorsports memories. George Hing, Boiling Springs, Pa.

80. Beautiful cars competing in an exciting race, all in a gorgeous setting. Nick Minglis, Cyberspace

81. History, passion and speed: meet your marque at Lime Rock Park! Chris McCormick, Cyberspace

82. The trip to the Vintage Festival at Lime Rock Park is the past that you want to remember.  Jay Kennedy, Camp Hill, Pa.

83. Lime Rock is where you get to indulge your passion for sports car and racing while passing it on to your children. John Naitove, Cyberspace

84. Old men having fun with old cars they could not afford when they where young men! Ed Musil, Cyberspace

85. The Lime Rock Vintage Festival is California “car” dreaming – Monterey within driving distance of my home. Gib Battisti, Pennsylvania

86. Whether your love of cars has been a long-term commitment or a budding love affair, Lime Rock Park is simply the best place to be on Labor Day weekend. Desiree Faulkner, New Hartford, Conn.

87. A vintage vantage to cure chronic car disorder! Brian and Nancy Forman, Philadelphia, Pa.

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Lime Rock Park Fan Alert!

Lime Rock Park Fan Alert!

In the run-up to the upcoming Sept. 4-7 Lime Rock Park Vintage Festival, there was a very rare motorsport occurrence yesterday – and it was recorded on video...

Video footage of the rare Mercedes-Benz W154 Silver Arrow lapping a race track for the first time since the start of WWII...

Thanks to SCCA driver and corner marshal John Godfrey, the historic event of the last W154 ever built being driven at Lime Rock Park – the first time it’s done so since it finished second at the Belgrade Grand Prix, virtually moments after the start of WWII – was recorded on video

Godfrey has graciously hosted the video for all to see.

Lime Rock Park Vintage Festival organizer Murray Smith was the driver.

Please click on the following link to see what few eyes have gazed upon until now... and what you can see live this weekend at Lime Rock Park.
http://www.e-survival.com/w154.mov

 

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Give us one sentence that describes, for you, Lime Rock’s Vintage Festival!

Give us one sentence that describes, for you, Lime Rock’s Vintage Festival! 

The 27th Vintage Festival at Lime Rock Park begins Friday, September 4, and we promise, it will be the biggest and best in years. If you’ve come in previous years, you know that’s one heck of a claim – the annual Vintage Festival at Lime Rock has always been one of the best, most anticipated events for car nuts and their families.

But we can back it up...

  • There are at least 100 more cars entered in the race groups than last year
  • There are more races on Saturday -- and Monday is nothing but races
  • Also for the first time, there will be some “enduro” races – look for pit stops and driver changes, really rare for vintage racing events!
  • The “Sunday in the Park” car show is huge. Just picture this: the ENTIRE track lined with show cars, which has never happened before. And… all car marques will be placed in order by year giving fans a “walk through time” feeling. And who doesn’t love a live band, food, libation and a golf cart ride back to your car in the parking lot?
  • One of the most important Grand Prix cars in history, the 1939 Mercedes-Benz W 154 Silver Arrow, will not only be here, but for the first time in 70 years, on Saturday and Monday it will be started up and run on the track!...

... and the clincher? It looks very much like the weather is going to be beautiful.

Remember, the largest Swap Meet in a long time will be filling the B Paddock, there’s Kid Karting up on the Midway, complimentary Paddock Tours, and famous racing author Burt Levy (The Last Open Road, Montezuma’s Ferrari, Toly’s Ghost and more) will be “signing-and-selling” near the Driving Impressions racing store. Lots to do when you’re not enjoying the racing.

So what’s with the headline?

Here’s the deal: e-mail back to us one sentence that, for you, best describes the Vintage Festival at Lime Rock Park. Be sure to include your name and what town you’re from.

For those that we judge the best, you will be highlighted in the Front Page story on the Lime Rock website Thursday, September 3.

Put your thinking caps on, folks!

As always, Lime Rock parking is free, camping free and kids 12-and-under are admitted free. For tickets, go to www.limerock.com, or call 1.800.RACE LRP (800.722.3577).

See you at the track!

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