Although the original Trans-Am Series from 1966 to ’72 is highly revered, we’d argue that the mid-’80s saw equally exciting racing in the Trans-Am and IMSA GT series, with a more interesting mix of race cars.
One such machine graces our Sept/Oct cover and the 7-page Salon feature, the 1986 Roush Racing Merkur XR4Ti, first campaigned in ’86 and ’87 with a 2.5-liter turbo-4. The tube-framed racer then received a 358cid V8 for endurance races at Daytona and Sebring, the former where it won its class. Six were built, this is chassis #002. Great car, great story!
With a switch over to Top Fuel Drag Racing, none other than Shirley Muldowney talks about her favorite race, the 1982 NHRA U.S. Nationals, where she beat every one of her rivals to win for the first time at Indy. And with four wins on the season, she became the first three-time Top Fuel World Champion in the history of the sport. Best of all, she’s still glamorous, scrappy and feisty at 81.
And talk about an adventure! One of only five factory commissioned low-roof Lancia Aurelia GTs for the 1951 motorsport season, chassis # B20-1300 became a bit of a celebrity in its day, only to disappear for decades in the country it struggled to reach in November 1951, on its way to the starting line of the notorious Carrera Panamericana road race. Even Road & Track magazine was involved in this wild story.
In 1959, Ferrari was an Interloper at Daytona, in a season-ending race featuring the SCCA’s fastest, most exciting sports cars for the C Modified championship. It was a battle between three of the era’s great sports car drivers—Allan Connell, Walt Hansgen and George Constantine—Hansgen in a Lister-Jaguar, Constantine in an Aston Martin DBR2 and Connell in a Ferrari 335 Sport. Who won? Read all about it here!
In Part 2 of Lee Dykstra-Speed by Design, we cover Kar-Kraft, Trans-Am, Parnelli and All That, VM’s deep look into the career of this amazing race car designer, which is where the Dekon Monza came from.
Our shop visit this issue is to Tivvy’s Autocraft in Danville, VA, where an old school Dodge dealership is home to old school craftsmanship and auto restoration, British and European sports and race cars a specialty.
Events have ramped up, and we chased the action at the WeatherTech International Challenge with Brian Redman, Goodwood’s Festival of Speed, the Pittsburgh Vintage Grand Prix, HSR/Masters at Watkins Glen and great old Indy Roadsters at Millers at Milwaukee.
And make sure to dive into columns by Burt Levy, Pete Lyons, Jeff Allison, Jochen Mass, Jim McCraw and D. Randy Riggs along with all the auction scene action by John L. Stein.
The Sept/Oct 2021 Vintage Motorsport issue is in the mail to subscribers and if you are a subscriber, thank you! It’s also on newsstands at Barnes & Noble bookstores nationwide. If you’re not a subscriber, you can go to VintageMotorsport.com/Subscribe or call 877-425-4103. Single copies can be purchased at our online store here.