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One Weekend—30 Years Of Racing

The past joins the present for a weekend in Sebring

Andrew Bolig Jul 1, 2000 0 Comment(s)

Step By Step

We live in the present, but that doesn’t mean we can’t experience Corvette racing from yesteryear. The 48th annual running of the Superflo 12 Hours at Sebring during the weekend of March 17-19 was an opportunity for Corvette fans to experience the thrill of race-prepared Corvettes battling against competition both new and old. The roar of mid-year and straight-axle Corvettes as they compete alongside Shelby Mustangs and Cobras is exhilarating. Seeing these Corvettes on the track, racing as they were designed to do, brings back memories for those who were lucky enough to enjoy them in their heyday, and gives newer fans the chance to experience legends in action. For background information and this season’s vintage racing schedule, see the story on page 75 in this issue.

If you prefer to experience racing on the cutting edge of what’s new, the C5-R or the Corvettes in the Motorola Cup should get your blood pumping. The C5-R is the newest racing machine, designed to force the competition to improve what they have or to step aside. Whether you choose to live racing, or to relive it, Sebring has what you’re looking for.

Exchanging Goodwrenches For Speedwrenches
The beginning of the 48th running of the Superflo 12 Hours at Sebring found the No. 3 Corvette C5-R sitting in the pole position for its class (where it had been at each race so far this year). It blazed through the 3.7-mile course just a half second under two minutes, faster than any of its competitors! The course at Sebring is complex, and the strain it produces on a car is phenomenal. The course took its toll on the C5-R racers—the No. 4 Corvette had to come in unexpectedly to change the nose on the car. The No. 3 Corvette was pushed behind the wall with fuel injection problems and was forced to come into the pits with a broken exhaust valve. When the No. 4 Corvette did resume racing, it had to be brought back into the pits for repair of a defective gearbox.

It’s inspiring that these technicians can put together a car that can maneuver like these C5-R Corvettes can. It’s also impressive that they can remove the front end of these cars, make repairs to correct broken valves, and rebuild gearboxes under such conditions. And it’s simply amazing that they can do all this and run a 12-hour race at the same time—and still finish in the middle of the class!

The Motorola Cup race, while not as exciting as at Daytona this year, (hard to beat a First Place finish!) still did the marque proud. Corvettes finished in Second and Third Place, behind our nemesis, the Viper.


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