For Part I of this series, click here.
As the group numbers get higher, the cars get faster and more exotic. The sun also got brighter and the no doubt the track surface got stickier. Let’s jump right in with the beautiful sports cars of Group 5.
Group 5: Mid-century sports racers
U. Daniel Ghose, 1955 Jaguar D-Type
An honest-to-goodness D-Type. I never thought I’d see one in motion. It wasn’t the fastest car on the grid, but who cares! It was a dang Jaguar D-Type!
Richard Kresch, 1970 Royale RP4
Robert Bodin, 1965 Lotus 26R
This is probably the one I would want to race out of all the cars on track that day. The Lotus 26R is the archetype of the small, lightweight sports racing car.
Roger Mandeville, 1961 Porsche RS61
The Porsche RS61 is a close second for the one I would want to race, but I think the rear-engine layout would probably put me into a wall sooner or later.
Camilo Steuer, 1957 Maserati 300S
I would love to know why this Maserati sits so low at the rear end. My first guess was that there was a body in the trunk, but then I reconsidered. I did some searching but found nothing, so if you know, please leave a message in the comments.
Tony Wang, 1958 Ferrari TR 250
Bob Tkacik, 1965 Elva Mk7S
Danny Baker, 1963 Lotus 23B
Paul Stinson, 1958 Devin SS
Charles Bordin, 1959 Philson-Falcon
Group 6: Sportsman’s choice... a delightful mixed bag
Group 6 had a pretty accurate name. There’s a wide range of cars here, from Lotus 7s that will blow away in a strong breeze to a Jaguar MkI you could use to take the family to church before the race.
Paul Adams, 1956 Elva Mark II
Lulu Wang, 1959 Ferrari 250 Inter
Michael Ballo, 1963 Sabel Porsche
Simon Aldridge, 1958 Jaguar MkI
That amount of lean in a race car must take some getting used-to.
Margo Otey, 1975 BMW 2002
Rich Kuschner, 1963 Volvo 122 Amazon
Michael Kaleel, 1962 Lotus Super 7
Group 7: Big-bore production sports & GT cars
Group 7 was fast. The leaders in the E-Types put on a great show, with lots of four-wheel drifts coming out of the turns. This group also made a great noise.
Art Hebert, 1965 Jaguar E-Type
Douglas Fraser, 1966 E-Type
Joel Lipperini, 1982 Ferrari 308/288GTO
I was curious to know what a Ferrari 308/288 GTO is, since I know what a 308 and a 288 GTO are separately, so I did a little searching. Turns out that this is a 308 with a special conversion to 288 GTO spec, and this particular example is for sale if you want it. It makes sense since an original 288 GTO is probably to valuable to race.
Jim Hamblin, 1968 Porsche 911
Here we can see the evolution of the Porsche 911’s rear wings, starting with the famous “duck tail” of the 1960s...”
Richard Dobush, 1973 Porsche 911 RS
Roger Funk, 1976 Porsche 911
...to the tea tray of the mid- to late 1970s.
Frank Grimaldi, 1968 Chevrolet Camaro
Chris Homer, 1964 Chevrolet Corvette
Joseph Riolo, 1972 Datsun 240Z
Group 8: Not quite street legal... tastily modified production cars
Another highly varied group, Group 8 was also very entertaining.
Vince Vaccaro, 1972 Alfa Romeo GTV
Mike Agnifilo, 1972 Datsun 510
Theodore Goneo, 1968 Porsche 911
Olga Reindlova, 1969 Porsche 911
Mike George, 1983 BMW 325i
Jim Glabicky, 1968 Datsun Roadster
I don’t know why Jim Glabicky’s Datsun was smoking so much, but it did not seem to slow him down. Maybe it was just buring off extra oil?
Group 9: Formula Libre post-1970 sports and racing cars
Group 9 was the fastest group at Historic Festival 33. In fact, a Group 9 car holds the absolute lap record at Lime Rock Park (although the Disembodied Voice did not mention who actually holds the record). Surprisingly, the open-wheeled cars were not the fastest in the field.
Duncan Dayton, 1972 Chevron B23
That’s Duncan Dayton of Highcroft Racing. This team has raced prototypes at the top levels of sports car racing in the United States and Europe and know they are campaigning a deltawing concept similar to what I saw at the Tudor United Sports Car 6 Hours at the Glen earlier this year.
Dayton was fast. He would have won the race except for a mechanical problem on the last lap.
Howard Katz, 1975 Toj SR
James Freeman, 1967 Matich SR3
Freeman’s Matich was faster than the #272 Osella just about everywhere but this corner, so the Osella tried to make a pass here on almost every lap but could never pull it off. Because the rear wing on the Matich made it look so much bigger than the Osella, the whole situation reminded me of going to the go-kart track and being stuck by a dad and his kid in a double-kart that was too wide to pass.
Nick Grewal, 1973 Osella Abarth
Glenn Taylor, 1982 Ralt RT-5 FA
Dave Porter, 1979 March 79B
Mark Green, 1988 Ralt RT-5
Infield and Paddock
The infield and paddock area is basically a giant car show. Anytime you want to walk through you are bound to run into something on display that make your eyes come out on stalks, like this 1908 Mercedes Brooklands. Or a 1955 Mercedes W-154. Or the 1955 Mercedes Benz 300 SL Gullwing that Sir Sterling Moss drove with Denis Jenkinson to win the Mille Miglia. Or, if you are looking for a project car, there’s a completely disassembled something that you can buy and haul away.