A saloon brawl at Laguna Seca

Maybe you’re one of those people who likes to watch videos of motorsport history. And maybe that fascination leads you to dial up YouTube videos of 1960s action in Great Britain, where little sedans, or saloons, as they’re known locally, did battle on rainy road circuits with guys like Jim Clark and Innes Ireland running up front as Lotus Cortinas, Ford Anglias and Hillman Imps slewed over, around and into one another. Production cars, primal racing. Saloon racing is a firm stable of overseas competition, and it’s going to add a metal-wrinkling jolt to one of American vintage racing’s most prestigious happenings.

The 2022 running of the Rolex Monterey Motorsports Reunion, being held August 17th through 20th at WeatherTech Raceway Laguna Seca in California, is already one of America’s most famous and spectacular gatherings of vintage racing machinery being driven in heat. The race meet’s advisory council, led by collector and historian Bruce Canepa, has been mulling a realignment of classes for the 2022 event, and here’s the first such proposed change: A grouping of saloons, or touring cars, into a standalone competition class that will combine cars ranging from A (Alfa Romeo GTA, as above) to W (Wolseley Hornet) for a track full of throttle-on, sideways competition. If it’s anything like the Brits put on, the reunion class ought to be wild. Monterey is an unforgettable vintage happening that everybody ought to hit at least once. I’m glad I have.

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