The Rolex Monterey Motorsports Reunion

Every summer a whole bunch of racing enthusiasts meet at Laguna Seca for one of the coolest events of the year: the Rolex Monterey Motorsports Reunion. What makes this meet so good is that these enthusiasts happen to be fairly well off so they like to bring multi-million dollar historic race cars with them. You can find everything from the earliest wagon-wheel racers to classic formula cars to 60s production Porsches to 90s LeMans prototypes and everything in between.

The event, formerly known as the Monterey Historic Motorsports Festival, brings in all kinds of spectators, from hardcore racing fans to people with nothing better to do than check out the coolest cars around. There’s no better chance to see such a wide variety of historic race cars.
The races are separated by class, of course. It might be hazardous to put the oldest and newest cars on the track at the same time! All prewar cars run together.
But oh, what a sight that would be, with LMP cars weaving around guys like this.
I could watch this stuff all day! Car design sure has diverged since this era. I can definitely see some Porsche and Cobra in this Ferrari, and I’m not just talking about the round headlights.
Purpose built race cars like Can-Am cars were just as abundant as modified production cars.
This year marks the 60th Anniversary of the Corvette, so Chevy brought out the all-new C7.R for one of its first public appearances, complete in camouflage.
Bondurant had a handful of production C7’s as well.
Of course, it wouldn’t be a proper Historics event without historic Corvettes here and there.
80s BMW’s were well represented.
Some fared better than others.
It’s also nice to hear a few rotaries mixed in with the V8’s and inline 6’s
And there were plenty of V8’s in the muscle car race.
One of the most anticipated races is the Formula 1 race.
Celebrities and professional racers are not unknown at this event. Would you rather watch Marco Andretti in Indycar or Mario in a vintage Formula 1 exhibition race?
If you’ve never heard a pack of F1 cars screaming around a track, it needs to go on your list.
The Corkscrew is not a turn for the feint of heart. It’s also a bad spot to rub wheels with another F1 car. Luckily this driver walked away.
One of my favorite cars of all time is this one, the Mazda 787B. The 787 was the only Japanese and only rotary-powered car to ever win at LeMans.
I don’t care what you think. 787’s are awesome.
Not to be outdone, Nissan competed against the 787 with their NPT-90. While not as successful as the 787, it sure helped sell a lot of 300ZX’s back in the day.
You also can’t have a prototype race without at least one car in Gulf livery. The Mirage was the first car to wear the famous livery and also the last Gulf car to win at LeMans.
Laguna Seca is one of the  strictest race tracks in the US as far as noise levels are concerned. All those people who live on the hillside hate racing apparently.
Occasionally there are single-make or single-model races, and this year the Porsche 911’s got a go at it.
There are better ways than this to get rid of vintage cars.
If Matt Powers drove a vintage Porsche, would it be this one?
Photos provided by Ken Stouffer/My Life @ Speed

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