Ever since the first event back in 1956, Corvette racing has been a staple for people throughout the United States who get thrills from big engines, mad horsepower and speed, speed, speed. Safety regulations have become a lot tighter since then, so the odds of seeing cars like those from the first annual Corvette race at Laguna Seca on the road are pretty much zero.
Cars like these 1956 Corvette C1s are strong. They’re fast and more than anything they’re dangerous; these aren’t the type of vehicles used for taking one’s family for a Sunday drive. It isn’t clear from this picture but good money says none of these cars have seatbelts, either. Not all the changes made to Corvettes throughout their racing history have been bad ones.
2002 was a big year for Corvette racers. Just have a look at this registry of vehicles which raced on Laguna Seca more than ten years ago. Some of those designs look like they could be cars from another planet but each and every one was produced right in the United States. It’s distinctly an American race starring American cars but people all over the world tune in to watch Corvettes do battle on the track.
As early as 1956 and even still, these Corvette-only affairs were sanctioned by NASCAR. That means the North American racing association keeps a close eye on the vehicles, their drivers and everything else to ensure a good, fair race. Everything has been, is now and will probably continue to be monitored closely in the name of fair competition. It’s not a bad thing; all those restrictions and regulations spell big racing events every year for eager Corvette fans.
Because of great pit crew service like this, car #4 was responsible for taking first almost every time it raced against #3, #63, #64 and other Corvettes during the 2005 race. The best crews can jack up a car, change a bad tire and get that automobile on the strip and racing again in only seconds. Without expert mechanics such as these, even the best drivers would go home empty handed from these races.
Year in and year out the Corvette races make an exciting show for car enthusiasts all over the globe. The 2012 event is still fresh in everyone’s mind and cars like these still have men slaving away, saving up and hoping to own something just as amazing.
Look at all those Corvettes and every one of them manufactured by masters. They may not be luxury cars in the sense of something like a Mercedes or Ferrari, but who wants toys that break when they’re really played with? Corvettes make some great racing cars and that tradition, that history, has been going strong for over half a century.
Bradley White is a part-time writer for Volunteer Vette, an online retailer of Corvette parts and accessories, based in Tennessee.