Rolex Monterey Motorsports Reunion
The Rolex Monterey Motorsports Reunion is an annual event held at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca in Monterey, California. Its purpose is to provide an event in which historic racecars can compete. It takes place over the course of one weekend every mid-August. It was first established by Steve Earle in 1974 as the Monterey Historic Automobile Races. Earle organized the meeting for his friends to race their cars at Laguna Seca.
The 2014 event will take place August 15–17.
- 1 Notable participants
- 2 Sponsorship
- 3 Anniversaries
- 4 Awards
- 5 On television
- 6 In magazines
- 7 Classes
- 8 Single marque races
- 9 Featured marques
- 10 Special groups
- 11 Rules and format
- 12 Modern race cars
- 13 Sister events
- 14 Change of management
- 15 Awards
- 16 References
- 17 External links
Most of the participants are amateurs. However, the Reunion has attracted numerous professional drivers and other celebrities.
|Brian Redman||2013||IMSA GTP||World Sportscar Championship|||
|Memo Gidley||2013||1970s sports racing cars||American Le Mans Series|||
|Brian Redman||2012||United States Road Racing Championship||World Sportscar Championship|||
|Butch Leitzinger||2011||Formula One*||American Le Mans Series|||
|Stirling Moss||2010||Sports Racing Cars*||Formula One|||
|John Morton||2010||Sports Racing, GT Cars*, Trans Am 2 Liter||Various|||
|Bobby Rahal||2010||FIA Manufacturer's Championship, Sports Racing Cars*||CART|||
|Tomy Drissi||2010||Trans Am||Various|||
|Tomy Drissi||2009||IMSA GT||Various|||
|Stirling Moss||2009||Sports Racing Cars||Formula One|||
|Brian Redman||2009||FIA Manufacturer's Championship, Can Am||World Sportscar Championship|||
|David Donohue||2009||IMSA GT||Rolex Sports Car Series|||
|Patrick Dempsey||2009||IMSA GTP||Endurance Racing|||
|Derek Bell||2009||IMSA GTP||World Sportscar Championship|||
|John Morton||2009||GT Cars||Various|||
|, , , ,||Jean-Pierre Jarier, Alan Jones, Derek Bell, Eddie Cheever, Johnny Herbert, John Watson, Patrick Tambay, Timo Glock, Alain de Cadenet||2008||Exhibition||Formula One|||
|Bobby Rahal||2008||FIA Manufacturer's Championship, Can Am, IMSA GT*||CART||,|
|Tomy Drissi||2008||Trans Am||Various|
|Al Unser, Sr.||2007||Prewar||CART|||
|Bobby Rahal||2007||FIA Manufacturer's Championship, Sports Racing Cars*||CART|||
|, ,||Parnelli Jones, Bobby Unser, Johnny Rutherford, Vic Elford, Bobby Rahal, Ove Anderson, Derek Bell, Al Unser Sr., and Emerson Fittipaldi||2007||Exhibition||Various|||
|Gijs van Lennep||2006||GT Cars||Endurance Racing|||
|Ricardo Zonta||2006||Exhibition||Formula One|||
|Stirling Moss||2005||Exhibition||Formula One|||
|Jim Hall||2005||Exhibition||Can Am|||
|Andrea Bertolini||2004||Exhibition||American Le Mans Series|||
|Jackie Stewart||2003||Formula One||Formula One|||
|Parnelli Jones||2002||Trans Am||Various|||
|George Follmer||2002||Trans Am||Various|||
|Phil Hill||2002||Sports Racing Cars||Formula One|||
|John Morton||2002||Trans Am||Various|||
|Johannes van Overbeek||2001||GT Cars||American Le Mans Series|||
|George Follmer||2001||Trans Am||Various|||
|Jack Brabham||2000||Formula Cars||Formula One|||
*Scheduled, but did not start.
- Actor and comedian Jay Leno
- United States Senator Dean Heller
- Brian Johnson of AC/DC drove a Lola at the 2011 event
- Mike Joy
- Vic Elford and George Follmer attended the 2009 event.
- Jack Brabham, Stirling Moss, Vic Elford, Bobby Rahal, and Brian Redman attended the 2006 event.
- The 1997 event Carrol Shelby tribute
- The 1991 event Juan Manuel Fangio tribute
- The 2010 event Dan Gurney tribute
- Alex Gurney attended the 2010 event, which honored his father.
- The 2010 event featured Jay Leno, Parnelli Jones, and George Follmer
- Dennis Hulme
- Dan Marvin
- George Dyer jr.
- Steve Froines
- Danica Patrick 2004
- Jackie Stewart attended the 2013 event.
- Pete Lovely- until his passing in 2011
- Hurley Haywood
- Johnny Rutherford
- Bob Tullius
- In 2009, Bruce Canepa was appointed to the selection committee. He has also been a regular participant at the Historics, usually in the Trans Am group. He previously drove a Sam Posey Dodge Challenger, but now drives an AMC Javelin.
- John Fitzpatrick
- Vic Edelbrock, Jr. and family are regulars, especially in classes featuring Ford Mustangs.
- Jim Busby
- Gordon Johncock
- Peter Giddings- in a prewar Maserati for many years, often dominating his group. He has since sold the Maserati.
- John Morton
The first company to sponsor the event was the Chrysler Corporation. Later, the event added a sponsorship from Rolex. The Chrysler sponsorship was replaced with one from Toyota, who sponsored the event from 2006 to 2008.
Occasionally, the event committee chooses to commemorate either the Reunion's anniversary, or the anniversary of a marque or event in motorsport history.
- The event commemorated its tenth anniversary in 1983.
- The event chose Corvette as the featured marque for 2002 in commemoration of the car's fiftieth anniversary, making it the first model rather than manufacturer to be featured. However, the Corvette has often been marketed as if a separate marque from the Chevrolet brand. Also, the Corvette was first manufactured in 1953, making it 49 years old in 2002.
- The event celebrated its 25th anniversary in 1998. The event also celebrated the fiftieth anniversary of Porsche.
- The event celebrated its 35th anniversary in 2008.
- For the thirtieth anniversary of his Formula One championship, Mario Andretti performed demonstration laps in a Lotus 79 at the 2008 event.
- The 2008 event commemorated the fiftieth anniversary of Formula Jr. by dividing the race into separate periods (1959–60, 1961–62, etc.).
- The 2003 event commemorated the hundredth anniversary of Ford.
- The 2000 event commemorated the 85th anniversary of Maserati.
- The 2010 event commemorated the fiftieth anniversary of the Bugatti Club of America with a Bugatti Grand Prix.
- The 2010 event commemorated the sixtieth anniversary of Formula One by expanding the class to 38 cars.
- The 2011 event commemorated the fiftieth anniversary of the Jaguar E-Type.
- The 2012 event commemorated the fiftieth anniversary of the Shelby Cobra.
- The 2013 event commemorated the sixtieth anniversary of the Corvette, and coincided with Chevrolet releasing a 60th anniversary edition of the Corvette C6 in light of the debut of the Corvette C7. It also commemorated the fiftieth anniversary of the Corvette Grand Sport. (Coincidentally, the generation of Corvette on which the Grand Sport debuted also turned fifty that year.) The fiftieth anniversary of the Porsche 911 was also commemorated with an all-911 race.
- The 2014 event will commemorate the hundredth anniversary of Maserati.
Although celebrities and professional drivers do attend, the Reunion is not a professional event. Only trophies are awarded. Along with those who podium in each group, awards are given to owners of vehicles judged outside of competition in a contest comparable to that of car shows such as the Concours d'Elegance.
|This section does not cite any references or sources. (October 2013)|
In recent years the Monterey Reunion has been featured on television, often similarly to professional series broadcasts.
- Speed Channel occasionally broadcast highlights of previous races. They typically covered the major classes: Trans Am, Can Am, IMSA GT, Formula One, and IMSA GTP.
- In 2008 the entire durations of the IMSA, FIA, Trans Am, and Formula One races from 2007 were broadcast in separate episodes. Several Speed Channel commentators also participated in an all-Scion exhibition race.
- In 2008, HD Theater televised highlights of the 2003 event as part of its Ultimate Car Show program.
- Highlights of the event were also broadcast in 2008 on HD Theater's Monterey Week program.
- In October, 2009, Speed Channel covered the Can Am, IMSA GT, and IMSA GTP races of the 2009 event as part of a one-hour broadcast.
- In September, 2010, Speed covered the event in a "lifestyle" format, emphasizing the event as a whole rather than focusing on select classes. However, there was still some coverage of select classes, including the Bugatti Grand Prix along with the major groups.
- In September, 2011, Speed again did a behind-the-scenes show, only showing footage of select classes. This broadcast included coverage of lesser groups such as the GTs.
- In September 2012, Speed televised the event once again, with focus again on the GTs as well as on major groups such as Trans Am and the all-Cobra race.
- The 2013 event was televised on Fox Sports 1.
The Reunion has been featured in Autoweek magazine. It was featured in an online article in early August 2008 and in the September 2008 issue. The 2003 event was featured in an issue of Popular Mechanics. Popular Mechanics also documented the 2000 event. The 2009 event was also featured.
Various classes from multiple eras and types of automobile racing are featured at the Monterey Reunion.
- Prewar (sports cars, racing cars, and touring cars)
- 1947-69 grand touring and sports racing cars (divided into over and under 2000 or 2500cc classes and sometimes formatted in a combined-class style group with the GTs and prototypes racing together; often divided into forties to fifties and fifties to sixties groups)
- 1955-63 Formula Junior (occasionally features cars from other support series and F1)
- 1962-79 FIA Manufacturer's Championship cars
- 1966-74 Can Am cars
- 1966-72 Trans-Am cars (predominantly the over two liter class, but occasionally featuring a few under two liter cars)
- 1966-84 Formula One cars (the three liter era)
- 1969-82 IMSA GT Championship cars (GT, GTX, GTU, AAGT)
- 1980-91 IMSA GTO cars
- 1983-94 IMSA GT Prototype Cars
- Previously, unmodified production sports cars were allowed to race alongside the grand touring cars and sports racing cars. This was phased out in favor of the more prestigious and attractive GT cars, which were actually used in racing in their day.
- In the past, the prewar groups were divided into two types: production (sports, racing, and touring) and single-seater (Indy roadsters and grand prix). The latter has since been phased out.
Single marque races
Occasionally the event features single marque races. Over the past few years such races have been spec in order to tribute the fiftieth anniversary of the featured car.
- In 2003, they added an all-Bugatti race known as the Bugatti Grand Prix
- In 2004, an all-Ferrari race was held
- In 2008, two exhibition Ferrari races were held, the first featuring those with drum brakes and the second with those featuring disc brakes.
- The 2010, event again featured a Bugatti Grand Prix.
- For 2011, an all-Jaguar E-Type race was featured.
- Also for 2011, an all Ferrari GTO race was featured.
- For 2012, an all Shelby Cobra race was held featuring both 289 and 427 Cobras.
- For 2013, an all Porsche 911 race was held.
Each year since 1975, the Reunion has honored a specific automobile manufacturer by adding vehicles of that marque to its races. Occasionally, a special marque will be honored, often featuring limited production or purpose-built racecars.
1975- Alfa Romeo
1989- Aston Martin
1991- Juan Manuel Fangio
1999- Auto Union
2010- Dan Gurney
2014- Maserati 
Occasionally the Reunion will feature special one-time groups for that year. Some races are a part of the schedule while others are simple exhibition races, the latter often showcasing one marque (usually the featured marque).
- Bugatti Grand Prix
- 1960-1975 Grand National/Winston Cup
- Formula One 60th anniversary expanded group
- Trans Am Series 2000cc group
- 1962-1967 Shelby Cobra race
- 1974-1980 Formula Atlantic cars
- 1977-1990 Winston Cup cars with disc brakes
The Bugatti Grand Prix is held in lieu of the company being the featured marque. This is due to the fact that all vehicles entered would otherwise be placed in the prewar race groups.
Rules and format
Because of the high value of many of the cars used, the Reunion committee has established a severe punishment for avoidable contact. The driver convicted will be unable to participate in any further events, but can appeal the judgement one year after the incident.
Occasionally, cars will be put in seemingly-inappropriate classes, such as a car being out of period or a two liter car being put in the over 2500cc class. Reasons for these moves include the car's performance or a late entry. Each race usually lasts ten to twelve laps.
In order to balance out the schedule, both days typically feature some of the more popular classes such as Trans Am or Formula One.
The event sometimes attempts to emphasize the less popular groups. A usual trend is having both days feature at least one prewar group. The event once tributed Formula Junior's 50th anniversary while another event tributed the Indy roadsters as the featured marque.
Modern race cars
In recent years American Le Mans Series cars have been featured in the IMSA groups, despite having been manufactured far more recently than any of the other vehicles at the event. This is likely done as a way to increase representation of the featured marque. They are put into the IMSA groups as the ALMS is sanctioned by IMSA.
In 2009, the IMSA GT group featured an American Le Mans Series Porsche GT3, the first time the event has featured a modern race car among the historic cars otherwise featured. This came after the Wine Country Classic, while featuring Morgan, added an ALMS Morgan Aero 8 to their IMSA GT group. A 2003 Le Mans Corvette was used at the 2013 event as a part of the IMSA GTO group.
Prior to 2010, the event was affiliated with the Wine Country Classic at Sonoma Raceway in Sonoma, California. The event, now known as the Sonoma Historic Motorsports Festival, was unique in that (prior to 2010) it was the only event to tribute Grand National stock cars, using a 1949-1972 group until 2010 when the group was changed to 1960-1975. The event also tributed Formula 5000 in 2008. Prior to 2010 the event was organized as a doubleheader, after which the event was redone to be more like the Monterey Event. The event also features 1980s Trans Am Series cars, often racing alongside the IMSA GT Championship cars.
Change of management
After the 2009 event, General Racing Ltd. (GRL), who created and owned the event, and the Sports Car Racing Association of Monterey Peninsula (SCRAMP) announced that GRL would no longer produce the event and that a new event would be organized by SCRAMP that would be more economically viable. After the 2010 event, the new event would be called the Rolex Monterey Motorsports Reunion. The original name was still owned and copyrighted by GRL, who would retain the sister event at Sonoma Raceway. Despite the reorganization, the event's committee still observes the event in Monterey as having begun in 1974.
In 2013 the Reunion was nominated for the Motor Sports Event category at the International Historic Motoring Awards.
- "Monterey - The Auctions". ferrariownersclub.co.uk. Retrieved 2008-08-31.
- [dead link]
- "Monterey Historic Automobile Races 2005". classics.com.
- "See stock car group." (PDF). Retrieved 2013-08-18.
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- "1966 Gurney Eagle T1 G F1 Images, Information and History (T1F)". Conceptcarz.com. Retrieved 2013-08-18.
- "Toyota Announces Presenting Sponsorship For the Rolex Monterey Historic Auto Races". Tundrasolutions.com. 2006-07-22. Retrieved 2013-08-18.
- "35th Rolex Monterey Historics Feature American F1 champion Mario Andretti". AutoTrader.com. 2008-09-03. Retrieved 2009-06-14.
- "Monterey Historic Automobile Races 2003". classics.com/lagsc03. Retrieved 2009-01-31.
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- "Corvette Featured Marque at 2013 Rolex Monterey Motorsports Reunion" (Press release). Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca. August 24, 2012. Retrieved October 1, 2012.
- "EXCUSE ME You say that you chose... - Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca". Facebook. 2012-09-30. Retrieved 2013-08-18.
- "Peninsular pleasures: A weekend in Monterey". autoweek.com. Retrieved 2008-08-31.
- Popular Mechanics issue from Google Books.
- "The 2000 Monterey Historics Automobile Races". Popular Mechanics. 2004-12-07. Retrieved 2013-08-18.
- John Lamm (2010-08-05). "Rolex Monterey Motorsports Reunion - Road & Track". Roadandtrack.com. Retrieved 2013-08-18.
- Jim Hall (2004-08-19). "2004 Monterey Historics - Road & Track". Roadandtrack.com. Retrieved 2013-08-18.
- This group is nigh identical to the Sonoma event's "1980s-1990s SCCA" group
- "Monterey Historic Automobile Races at Laguna Seca". Conceptcarz.com. 1907-06-17. Retrieved 2009-06-14.
- "Featured Marque History - Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca". Mazdaraceway.com. Retrieved 2013-08-18.
- "Maserati Celebrates its 100th Anniversary as Featured Marque". Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca. Retrieved 10 December 2013.
- "2013 Race Groups - Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca". Mazdaraceway.com. Retrieved 2013-08-18.
- "Historics: SCRAMP Takes Over Event, Names 2010 Date". SpeedTV.com. Retrieved July 16, 2012. "On September 5, 2008, I [Steve Earle] was advised that the economic terms for the agreement between General Racing and SCRAMP were no longer commercially viable for SCRAMP."
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