At Lime Rock Park in Lakeville, Connecticut on Saturday, 20 races of the historic car variety took place, and any rain that threatened the skies held off all day long to give participants and spectators a full morning and afternoon of action on the track.
Historic Festival 31 saw its second day of action after practice and qualifying on Friday with Saturday marking the first day of races. Ten groups ran from 8 to 15 laps a race throughout the day. One race took place right after the other with only a break for lunch and one 10-minute break in the afternoon to let the corner workers sit down and have something to drink before the last three races of the day, according to the LRP announcer.
According to LRP, participants came from all over the Northeast but also from as far away as Australia, the United Kingdom, Hawaii, California, Florida, Canada, and the Midwest to test their skills against the competition.
And their cars came, too.
The oldest car on the entry list was a 1924 Bugatti T30 driven by Peter Charlap of Stanfordville, NY competing in Group 2, for the VSCCA (Vintage Sports Car Club of America) Bowl. The newest was a 1990 Lola S2000 driven by Ben Sinnott of Fairfield, CT in Group 9, the “Sophisticated Sports Cars” group of post-1965 sports racers.
Winners of Saturday’s Race 1 for each group in the morning session were:
Group 1: Lime Rock Cup, road-going production and GT cars (11 laps) — Matt Hagopian of East Longmeadow, MA in a 1958 Austin-Healey Sprite.
Group 2: VSCCA Bowl, early sports and racing cars (10 laps) — Peter Greenfield of Freeport, NY in a 1935 Alfa Romeo 8C35.
Group 3: Bandini Trophy, Formula Junior (10 laps) — Bob Goeldner of Osprey, FL in a 1962 Brabham BT2 FJ.
Group 4: Murray’s Mug — mid-century sports racers (10 laps) — Craig Chima of Akron, OH in a 1962 Lotus Super 7.
Group 5: Posey Plate — authentic Trans-Am cars, 1966-1971 (10 laps) — Jim Hague of Gilroy, CA in a 1970 Ford Boss 302.
Group 6: Skip’s Salver — a Formula Libre group (8 laps, but checkered early due to incidents on track) — Howard Katz of New York, NY in a 1973 March-BMW Formula 2.
Group 7: Mick’s Magnum — big-bore production cars (8 laps) — Bob Hebert of Monterey, MA in a 1965 Jaguar E-Type.
Group 8: Litchfield Cup — modified production cars (8 laps) — Tom Grudovich of Palm Beach, FL in a 1966 Ginetta G4.
Group 9: Finn’s Fancy — post-1965 sports racers — Dudley Cunningham of Carlisle, MA in a TOJ 206.
Group 10: Stuttgart Silver — Porsche “against the rest” commemorating the 50th anniversary of the Porsche 911 (8 laps) — Richard Strahota of Darien, CT in a Porsche 911 RSR.
In the afternoon on Saturday, winners of Groups 1-9 were:
Group 1: Rich Maloumian, Jr. of Fort Washington, PA in a 1956 Austin-Healey 100/4.
Group 2: Peter Greenfield of Freeport, NY in a 1935 Alfa Romeo 8C35.
Group 3: Joe Calasacco of Greenwich, CT racing a 1959 Stanguellini FJ.
Group 4: Craig Chima of Akron, OH in a 1962 Lotus Super 7.
Group 5: Ken Epsman of Saratoga, CA in a 1971 AMC Javelin.
Group 6: Howard Katz of New York, NY in a 1973 March-BMW Formula 2.
Group 7: Jim Scott of Woodbury, CT in a 1973 Porsche 911 RS.
Group 8: Tom Grudovich of Palm Beach, FL in a 1966 Ginetta G4.
Group 9: Duncan Dayton of Miami, FL in a 1972 Chevron B23.
Group 10: Jim Scott of Woodbury, CT in a 1974 Porsche 911RS.
With a local ordinance forbidding racing on Sunday, the track hosts an annual “Sunday in the Park Concours and Gathering of the Marques” that day from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. local time.
Racing continues at Lime Rock Park Historic Festival 31 on Monday, Labor Day starting at 9:00 a.m. local time. Twenty races are planned again for that day, featuring the same 10 groups detailed above.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Connie Ann Kirk, Ph.D. is the author of several books and is working on a new book about motor racing with an Irish historic racer. Check out her blog at “Motor Sport Muse.”