At the upcoming 36th Rolex Monterey Historic Automobile Races, to be held at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca on August 14-16, the sound of the initial stirrings of over 450 racecars will be complimented by the official debut of the 2010 Porsche Panamera gran turismo.
“This year’s Rolex Monterey Historic Automobile Races presents the perfect opportunity to demonstrate that Porsche’s DNA, its competitive spirit and drive for perfection, runs from the very first 356, Porsche No. 1 up through today’s all-new Panamera,” said Detlev von Platen, president and CEO of Porsche Cars North America.
“We at Porsche are deeply honored to have been named the ‘featured marque’ on this, the 61st anniversary of the very first Porsche and the North American debut of the Panamera, the very latest Porsche,” added von Platen.
In addition to the 145 Porsche racers already entered by their owners, or one-third of the 450-plus field, Porsche will showcase the Panamera on the track and will also provide display vehicles on site. Along with the North American debut of the 2010 Panamera, four special cars with significant American connections will also be on site – all on loan from the new Porsche Museum in Germany:
• The 1960 Porsche Type 718 Formula 2 racing car, which gave Porsche its first Formula 2 world title and was driven in 1961 by Californian Dan Gurney, is making its North American debut.
• The 1962 Porsche Type 804 Formula 1 racer, which was the car that brought Gurney to his French Grand Prix win that year. This car has not been in North America since the 1960s.
• The 1962 Porsche Type 718 W-RS 8-cylinder Spyder, in which Gurney and Jo Bonnier finished second at the Targa Florio in 1961, has also not been in North America for more than 40 years. In the 1960s, it was raced in the U.S. by Gurney, Bonnier and Phil Hill.
• The Porsche GT1 98LM, which helped Porsche finish 1-2 at the 1998 24-hours of Le Mans event.
Porsche-sponsored activities for the fans at Laguna will include a heritage display including former and current racecars, Porsche’s current showroom product line, and experts to answer Porsche questions.
Porsche Motorsport North America, the racing arm of Porsche in the U.S., will also showcase its engine and chassis services for both professional and club/vintage racing, while the Porsche Club of America expects to have more than 400 Porsches in its club corral and will parade all its cars on the track.