“Vic” for vintage nuts, karts for kids – and fun for everyoneHonest-to-Pete news from Lime Rock Park!
What’s new, different & better at this year’s Vintage Festival
Click here for the event schedule
There’s a lot to talk about, so please pardon the length of this e-mail. So we’ll get right to the point – bullet points, to be precise...
The Race Cars:
* The entry list is huge... more than 271 entries, the largest in years
* Nine different race groups (detailed below – check out the group names!)
* More racing: Saturday afternoon and all day Monday
* Sprint and Enduro races – including pit stops
* Very, very rare appearance of the 1939 Mercedes-Benz W 154 Silver Arrow – including laps
Race Group 1 is for the Motorsport Trophy (pre-war, sports cars, front-engine race cars) and includes a ’29 Bugatti 37A, a ’59 Watson Indy 500 Roadster, a ’39 Lagonda LG45 – even a ’32 Plymouth Sprinter
G2 is for the Lime Rock Cup (1950s over/under 2-litre sports cars): Look for Porsches, Aston Martins, Abarths, Jags, Lotus, Fraser Nash
G3, for the Chapman Award (1950s over/under 2-litre sports cars), includes Lotus 7s, Elvas, Lolas, Ginettas, OSCAs, the Philson Falcon and the Kurtis 500S
G4 is a terrific collection for the Lakeville Cup (sport road cars/sedans of the mid-20th century) where you’ll see Triumphs, Datsuns, Alfa Romeos, Morgans, Sunbeams, Saabs, Volvos and Minis
G5 is for the Harpoon Heaven trophy (high-performance sports race cars over/under 2-litre) and runs the gamut from Ferraris and Lotus to Allards and Ford Escorts
G6 is called “Skip’s Salver” (Formula Ford, B-, C- and Junior), a wonderful collection of open-wheelers: Venus, Zink, Crossle, McLaren, Cooper, Brabham, Tecno, Titan – the list is almost endless
G7 is for the Bennett Bowl (1970s sports race cars over/under 2-litre): Chevrons, Tigas, “Toj,” Mallocks, Matich and more
G8 is All Porsche (Klub Sport Kup), 1967 through 1974 (an IROC Porsche!). It’s a point race for a championship called the Klub Sport Challenge
And G9 is Trans-Am and production race cars: Mustangs, Corvettes, 240Zs, Porsche RSRs and 944s, Shelbys – the big bombers
And the 1939 Mercedes-Benz W 154 Silver Arrow? One of the world’s greatest race cars, this very famous machine has not been fired up and run on a race track since it last competed in 1939 – and you can be a witness to it doing just that during the Vintage Festival!
A stellar attraction of the legendary period from 1934 to 1939, the W 154 represents the apogee of the supercharger era of Mercedes-Benz's racing vehicles. Rudolf Carraciola drove a Silver Arrow to the Grand Prix world title in 1938. The car dominated again in 1939, piloted by Hermann Lang. Germany's Mercedes-Benz and Auto Union GP motor racing vehicles between 1934 and 1939 were dubbed “Silver Arrows” by the press, applying later to Mercedes-Benz F1 and sports cars from 1954 onward.
Very few of these cars were built and many were broken up or simply disappeared during the war era 1939-45 war. Audi has commissioned several replicas of their Auto Union ancestors which appear at important vintage events. But the W 154 Mercedes coming to Lime Rock is the real thing, campaigned by the likes of Lang, Carraciola and England’s Dick Seaman, who won the 1938 German Grand Prix.
VIP Fan Hospitality:
* Available Saturday and Monday
* Now in a big, cool, high-tech glass-and-steel structure that we rented just for the Vintage Festival
* A very classy roster of speakers for Q&A: Vic Elford, Sam Posey and Skip Barber
* Children in Fan Hospitality get a free round of racing with Go-Go Karting (see below), happening on the Midway
* Fan Hospitality Raffle Prizes; bigger, better, cooler
* As always, VIP Fan Hospitality gets you good food and drink, a “swag bag” of goodies, a Souvenir Program, personalized Paddock Tours, prime viewing, courtesy golf cart rides and more.
To have Vic Elford as a guest speaker is a very special deal. A wonderful guy, a great speaker, funny, smart – and one hell of a race car driver. In the odd chance that you’re not sure who he is... Vic is a former sportscar racing, rallying and Formula One driver from England. He participated in 13 World championship F1 Grands Prix, debuting in 1968. Elford scored a total of 8 championship points.
Nicknamed "Quick Vic" by his peers, Elford was mainly a famous sports car competitor as well as a successful rally driver, associated often with Porsche. In 1967 Elford was European rally champion in a works Porsche 911. Among other victories, he won the 1968 Rally Monte Carlo in a Porsche 911 and only a week later the 24 Hours of Daytona in a Porsche 907, Porsche's first ever overall win in a 24 hour race.
Later that year, he also won the Targa Florio teamed with veteran Umberto Maglioli in a famous come-from-behind race after he lost 18 minutes in the first lap due to a tire failure (Elford established several lap records in this race). Elford then entered the French Grand Prix and finished fourth in his first F1 race – a wet one, too. By finishing the 1969 Monaco Grand Prix despite troubles, he became the only pilot to do well in both famous events in Monte Carlo. And if you end up buying a Fan Hospitality pass, you get to meet him. Pretty cool, huh? Ask him about his years as a Skip Barber Racing School instructor...
Sunday in the Park Car Show:
* Fantastic collection of show cars – enough to probably line the entire 1.53 miles of Lime Rock Park, which has never happened before. Shelby, Morgan (it’s the 100th anniversary of this wonderful make), Porsche (50th anniversary of the Porsche Club of America -Connecticut Valley Region), Lotus, Rolls-Royce – hundreds of examples of dozens of marques. Live music, Big Bend Tavern, Specialty car displays and more. Do not miss Sunday in the Park.
* Go-Go Karting will bring their Kid Karts and side-by-side karts. Hello, family fun!
* It’s the biggest and best in years. At least 60 different sellers will be set up in B Paddock
Other Vintage Festival highlights include 11 different Car Corrals and the ever-popular Fan Specialty Parking Area. And if you haven’t been to Lime Rock in a couple years, we now have fantastic new viewing areas, a long trackside walkway, courtesy golf cart rides, $2 “hassle-free” water stations, beautiful new landscaping – and still not a grandstand to be had. As always, parking is free, paddock access is free and children 12-and-under pay no admission.
The Vintage Festival is truly a community affair:
Many businesses, charity groups and local cultural landmarks love the spirit and fun of the Vintage Festival, taking it to heart and organizing events specifically surrounding the weekend. Look what’s on tap!
* Benefit Concert to Celebrate Music Mountain's 80th Birthday
Located in Falls Village, Music Mountain, the oldest summer chamber music festival in the U.S., is celebrating its 80th season with a special benefit concert on Sunday, Sept. 6 at 3:00 p.m. with the critically acclaimed Shanghai String Quartet and guest pianist Juana Zayas recreating the original 1930 opening concert featuring Beethoven, Ravel and Schumann.
Governor Jodi Rell has proclaimed Sept. 6 "Music Mountain Day" throughout the state. Adding to the festivities and recalling the early days of Music Mountain, Lime Rock Park has arranged for a 1936 Cord 4-door, a 1919 Ford "Woody" station wagon and a 1939 Lincoln Zephyr Coupe to be parked on the grounds. Following the concert and greeting of visiting dignitaries, there will be a champagne and birthday cake reception. Benefit tickets are $80 and can be purchased online, www.musicmountain.org or by phone, 860.824.7126.
* Darren Winston Bookseller, a new shop in Sharon, Conn. (with a special racing and automobilia section), has an open artist’s reception for noted American contemporary artist Duncan Hannah, Saturday, Sept. 5 from 6:00 to 8:00 p.m. Described by at least one critic as a master of “Tweed and Speed,” Hannah’s canvas subjects often depict mid-century British sensibilities – and race cars on the track. Want to go? The address is Darren Winston, Bookseller, 81 Main Street, Sharon, Conn. 06069, 860.364.1890
One last, cool thing... Now that you’ve taken the time to read this entire e-mail, here’s a little reward: Reply to this e-mail and your name will be entered into a Vintage Festival drawing. If you’re one of the winners, you will get to wave the green flag on the front straight for one of the vintage races! When you reply, change the subject line to read, “Vintage Green Flag Contest,” and you might get an experience of a lifetime...
To purchase tickets or directions to Lime Rock Park, go to www.limerock.com or call 1.800.RACE.LRP (1.800.722.3577).
See you at the track!