Saturday, May 12, 2007
FIFTY NORTH AMERICANS SIGN UP!!
From the desk of Gerie Bledso, North American Director of LCP.
This may be the biggest Carrera year--at least for the norteamericanos--since the mid-1990’s. We have a healthy contingent of fifty (maybe more) coming down to celebrate the 20th Anniversary of the modern La Carrera Panamericana. We will continue to sign up participants until the organizers say “no mas.” Interest in Europe has been running high as well, but we have no information about actual entries. Almost half of the fifty entries are new guys (sorry, no women drivers). The best represented states are California, Oklahoma, Texas, Washington, and Arizona. Other states include: New York, Connecticut, Virginia, Florida, Illinois, Kansas, Colorado, Massachusetts, Iowa, Georgia, Minnesota, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Michigan, Georgia, and, of course, the U.S.V.I. Maybe two guys from Canada will join us. Six or seven Porsche 356s have signed up. A stock 356 may run in three classes: Original Pan Am (OPA), Sports Menor, or Historic A. The more heavily modified Porsches will run in Sports Menor. Cars that are mostly stock may run in Historic A or OPA.
Not counting any 356s, eleven cars have signed up for Original Pan Am. This class almost died out a few years ago. Obviously, it’s back. This should be the premier class, honored above all. Historic A and B entries are thin this year, but Historic C has nineteen so far. We have no word on the concept of a Historic D for supercars or extending the manufacturing eligibility date to 1967. In fact, the rules have not yet been promulgated for 2007.)
Historic C will be dominated by Shelby GT-350s and R code clones this year, along with their cousin the so-called Falcon Monte Carlo. Three, maybe four, of these special Falcon replicas are entered. Fifty or so were made--mostly of fiberglass-- in 1964 to rally in Europe. With their light weight and 400 horsepower 289/302 engines, they are now the car to beat in Historic C. Last year, one piloted by “los Vikings” (Sweden) finished second overall and would have probably won the whole event, if that were possible, had not the last speed stage--the track in Monterrey--been canceled “because of darkness." (Thus another Carrera legend was created.)