It’s Pistons and Props at Sebring vintage racing weekend

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Recently restored World War II-era Mustang fighter will take part in Pistons and Props vintage racing weekend at Sebring | Historic Sportscar Racing photos
Vintage race cars and aircraft featured as Sebring celebrates its heritage

The dual history of Sebring International Raceway will be celebrated November 28 to December 2 at Historic Sportscar Racing’s third-annual Classic 12 Hour Sebring: Pistons and Props event in central Florida. 

Founded as Hendricks Field, a World War II-era military airport, the runways at Sebring also have been the site of international sports car racing for more than 65 years. 

Pistons and Props features both aspects of the facility’s history. Among the many aircraft to be featured are two making their debuts after restoration — Jim Lyons’ “Sweetie Face,” a North American P-51D “Mustang,” and Jon Rising’s T6-G “Texan,” a model that was widely used for training pilots for World War II.

Also scheduled to participate are a pair of early 1940s Vultees, another pilot-training craft, as well as a 1962 Piper U-11A Aztec, 1943 Boeing N2-S3 Stearman, 1941 Beechcraft C-45 and 1955 Beechcraft T-34B Mentor, 1956 North American T-28C Trojan and 1973 British Aviation LTD Bulldog.

Meanwhile, on the race track, the Sebring event marks the end of the vintage racing season.

Nissan celebrates 60 years of racing

Vintage Nissan racing cars take part in the annual Nismo Festival at Fuji Speedway | Nismo photos
Nissan Formula E race car will make its Japanese debut

The Nismo Festival, scheduled for December 2 at Fuji Speedway in Japan, will celebrate 60 years of Nissan motorsports and will provide the debut in Japan for the company’s Formula E electric grand prix-style racing car. 

“We don’t have a Formula E race yet in Japan, so we’re thrilled to show its exciting driving to Japanese fans at the Nismo Festival,” said Takao Katagiri, chief executive of Nismo, which is short for Nissan Motorsports.

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“This is a great opportunity for motorsports fans to observe firsthand how Nissan and Nismo’s engineers and drivers learn through racing how to build more passionate cars, featuring Nissan Intelligent Mobility technologies that offer our customers excitement and convenience.”

Meanwhile, to celebrate 60 years of Nissan racing — starting with a class victory at the 1958 Australian Rally — more than 50 historic cars will be on display, including rally cars for the 1950s and prototype racers from the 1990s, among others.

Sonoma Raceway re-brands vintage weekend

Northern California’s Sonoma Raceway will be the site of the inaugural Sonoma Speed Festival, scheduled for May 31-June 2, 2019, the track has announced. 

The track has staged historic sports car races in June for more than 30 years, but is re-branding the weekend as it celebrates its 50th anniversary.

Peter Gethin drives a McLaren in the inaugural F5000 race at Oulton Park in 1969 | Autosport photo by LAT

British event features F5000 anniversary

The annual Autosport International racing car show, scheduled for January 10-13 at Birmingham, England, will feature the 50th anniversary of Formula 5000 racing with a six-car display of Local, McLaren, Surtees, Gurney and McRae cars.

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A former daily newspaper sports editor, Larry Edsall spent a dozen years as an editor at AutoWeek magazine before making the transition to writing for the web and becoming the author of more than 15 automotive books. In addition to being founding editor at ClassicCars.com, Larry has written for The New York Times and The Detroit News and was an adjunct honors professor at the Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication at Arizona State University.

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