HomeCar CultureMore than 53,000 Visitors Celebrated 70th Anniversary of Corvette

More than 53,000 Visitors Celebrated 70th Anniversary of Corvette

The event at Rolex Monterey Motorsports Reunion took place August 16-19, 2023


The pride of America’s race and performance car, Corvette, was celebrated in the festive, racing environment of the Rolex Monterey Motorsports Reunion held at WeatherTech Raceway Laguna Seca Aug. 16-19. The 14 race groups were full and the sound of nearly every era of race cars filled the rolling hills and enjoyed by the 53,851 visitors who came to witness history in motion.

The expansive Corvette Anniversary display impressed visitors daily with Corvettes rarely seen. The GM Heritage Museum drove in six incredible cars from its collection, including the 2023 24 Hours of Le Mans winning C8.R complete with its unwashed, untouched body direct from France, and the CERV I, II and III advanced prototypes. The stunning Corvette SS prototype from the Indianapolis Motor Speedway Museum had crowds circling it, while the three 1960 Cunningham Corvettes that included the first Corvette to win its class at the 24 Hours of Le Mans drew oohs and awes. Then there were the two of the original five Corvette Grand Sports poised next to each other, while the 1966 Daytona and Sebring class winning Roger Penske Corvette attracted abundant photo moments for the fans’ moment in time.

Corvette racing legend Ron Fellows served as Grand Marshal smiling and talking to fans as he waved the green flag, signed autographs, and entertained guests on the main stage alongside Peter Brock and hosted by MOTORTEND’s Ed Loh. Fellows also took the time to be an active participant, racing the 1987 Profab Corvette each day in the 1981-1991 GTO/Trans Am class, and earning accolades from competitors for not only his smoothness and speed, but his gentlemanly driving behavior.

“Walking throughout the paddock and Hagerty Marketplace during the week, I could see the happy families truly enjoying the activities,” said John Narigi, president and general manager of WeatherTech Raceway Laguna Seca. “It’s all possible through the visionary work of everyone behind the scenes who work tirelessly to be able to produce this renowned event for everyone to enjoy. From the race participants, guests, sponsors, volunteers, community and the Advisory Council, it’s the year’s highlight to be able to produce our Rolex Monterey Motorsports Reunion each year. And a special thank you to our partners Rolex and General Motors for making it all come together for everyone’s enjoyment.”

The second annual Corkscrew Hillclimb attracted a growing audience to watch a variety of historic race cars, specialty and exhibition cars reverse course and race against the clock up to finish at the Corkscrew. For crowds lining the pit lane, the squealing tires and high-revving engines as they launched toward the hard right-hander of Turn 11 had many guests covering their ears as they smiled at the spectacle and cheered their favorites.

The fastest lap of the day went to the former Porsche Werks driver and multiple Le Mans winner Patrick Long in the 1995 Porsche Gunther Werks Turbo. Long clocked a 34.26 run on his first attempt in a car that was rebuilt in just three weeks’ time.  

The top three drivers received custom-made Corkscrews with the inscription for second place being: “I screwed up on the famous Corkscrew and still managed 2nd in class.” The clever awards were created by Kevin Jeannette, owner of Gunnar Porsche Racing. Additionally, Christine Sloss, who finished third in her blistering quick 769 horsepower Ferrari, also received the Ladies Choice presentation and a bottle of Laurent-Perrier Rosé Champagne.


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