A rare gathering of important Corvettes
General Motors pulled together a spectacular array of vintage Corvettes at Lime Rock Park as part of the 40th Vintage Fall Festival. Three tents held the history of Corvettes that included show cars, prototypes and race cars. Some of these had not been seen for quite some time. Some like the red Corvette that looked so similar to a Ferrari were virtually unknown.
In addition, an assortment of yellow racing Corvettes from the C5 to the C7 were displayed just outside of the tents. One red, white and blue Vette stood out. It was the Corvette that Paul Newman raced in SCCA GT1 class national races. I remember seeing Mr. Newman race this same car at Lime Rock back when. I distinctly remember this bent-over old guy climbing from a very hot race car after winning yet another National race. The car was prepped by Bob Sharp Racing and looked a heck of a lot like his famous Datsun race cars.
The first Goodwrench Corvette GTP
I had a sneaking suspicion that this car might be at Lime Rock when I first entered the Lime Rock facility and saw the Hendrick Racing semi parked with so many other transporters.
So it was that my favorite racer in the bunch was this first Corvette GTP that was based on a Lola chassis. The Goodwrench sponsored car was not successful in its own right. Steady development led to small visual differences but a large difference in speed. Turbo 6 cylinder and later normally aspirated V8 engines were both tried.
The Lola chassis was also used by NIssan for their first go at a GTP car. Neither first-try GTPs based on this Lola chassis was particularly successful. Later development of both led to GTP wins. Although not much was left of the Lola chassis.
There was so much more!
Lime Rock and GM really pulled out all the stops when assembling this visual history of Corvettes. From the very first Vette to much later street and racing prototypes were all on show. Overheard were many folks commenting on the Corvettes. For some this was the first time they had seen the cars in person. Many others recounted stories of when they had seen a particular car. Or they were startled by one they had no idea existed.
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