Road America, The Hawk 2014 - Part 3

Here's batch three of photos from last weekend's vintage race event at Road America. This group of pictures is almost entirely "big cars" that raced in LeMans or the Can-Am cup. The Datsun is the lone exception to the bigness because it's hard to say "no" to a red white and blue 510. Please enjoy.

Recognize this? I didn't either, but it's a not-very-old 1996 Marcos LM600. Marcos is an English company that knows how to make a pretty thing. The LM600 is a bad mamma jamma- shut yo mouth! I'm just talkin' bout Marcos! I meant to come by later, when the car had it's nose on, but I got distracted by all the other eye candy and I forgot. Derrr.

Another beautiful Lola, this time in dreamsicle form.

Few things are cooler than a pushrod suspension with inboard dampers. Am I right, ladies???

Apparently, this car was so fast, its wheels melted into puddles, poor thing.

Underneath the orange periscope is a set of velocity stacks (metal trumpets pointing skyward). The scoop forces air directly into the stacks and into the engine. It's kind of like non-mechanical turbocharging that comes for free with increased velocity. It also looks the business.

In Days Of Yore, race cars had massive slicks in the rear that were almost as wide as they were tall, with tiny wheels in the front. Sadly this intuitively beautiful arrangement has been supplanted by more or less matched wheel sizes all the way around. Crap lousy wind tunnel data may make the car scientifically faster, but what about the heart's desires, you inhuman monsters?

A Datsun 510.

Even while racing, it's important to know when the cookies will be done.

As with every race-spec 510 I've seen, the headlights have been abandoned in favor of  intakes that feed directly into the airbox.


Road America, The Hawk 2014 - Part 2

Here's the second batch of pictures from last weekend's vintage racing event at Road America. I finally started using a proper lens, so these pictures are actually clear. You're welcome!

A Jaguar SS100. These were built between 1936 and 1940. Back then, the company name was "SS" and the specific car was "Jaguar". After World War II, there was a bit of a stink left on the letters "SS", so they just named the whole company "Jaguar". Once again, history was changed by the Nazis. Today, when you see the letters "SS" appended to a car's name, you can pretty safely assume it means the manufacturer's marketing team wants it to mean "super sport".

The "100" was meant to indicate the fact that the car could exceed 100 miles per hour, which was a big deal back then.

Hey! The Targa FLorio! "What's that?" you say? It was an annual race held in the mountains of Cicily. The course wound through villages on treacherous roads, often with sheer drop offs. Starting in 1906, the race was discontinued in 1977 due to safety concerns. The cars got too fast, the course was too dangerous, and too many people died. Coooooool!

The "SS" combined with the wing-shaped badge was an unfortunate coincidence.

It becomes clear, when looking at these old cars from the late Sixties or early Seventies, that fiberglass was the carbon fiber of the time. It was the new high tech wonder material. These days, fiberglass is pretty ordinary stuff. Will CF be as common and affordable someday as fiberglass is now? Will we see carbon fiber roller trickle down in availability to coaster cars and merry go round horses? What will be the dominant motorsport supermaterial then? 3D printed nanotubes?

A Vespa, done up in Martini livery. Just about the most Italian thing you will ever see.