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Home Car Culture The 1963 Road America 500

The 1963 Road America 500

In the hands of Augie Pabst and Bill Bill Wuesthoff, an under-two-liter Elva Porsche beats the Shelby Cobra of Ken Miles and Bob Holbert to the checker in a 500 mile nail-biter

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To me there is no more beautiful place on earth as Road America. Call it what you will: The National Park of Speed, Four Miles of Black Lightning or just Elkhart, the four mile, undulating Kettle-Moraine circuit is essentially America”s Spa-Francorchamps. This early summer classic was a very important race on the United States Road Racing Championship (USRRC) calendar. Some 38,000 fans came to watch the heroes of the day.

Now add the cars and stars of the day: Carroll Shelby’s Cobras with Ken Miles, Bob Holbert, Dave MacDonald and Bob Bondurant; Lance Reventlow’s Scarabs with Don Devine and Don Yenko; the E-Types of Walt Hansgen, Briggs Cunninigham, Dr. Dick Thompson and John Fitch; Roger Penske driving the Ferrari 250 GTO.

This is a great period document of an era when the modern era of motorsports was still in its infancy. The video itself was posted by Rich MacDonald, son of Dave MacDonald who finished 4th overall with teammate Bob Bondurant. Sadly, less than a year later MacDonald would perish, along with Eddie Sachs in the 1964 Indianapolis 500.

Take a trip back in time. Thanks for the cool video Rich!

Tom Stahler
Tom Stahler is the Managing Editor of the ClassicCars.com Journal. Tom has a lifelong love of cars and motor racing – beginning with the 1968 USRRC race at Road America, in a stroller, at eight months of age. His words, photos and broadcasts can can be found on a myriad of media. He has won the Motor Press Guild’s Dean Batchelor Award and a Gold Medal in the International Automotive Media Awards.

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