Faster, Faster, Faster, Until the Thrill of Speed Overcomes the Fear of Death …

Speed, being relative, is a hard thing to appreciate or perceive. Speed from behind the wheel is different from speed on TV from the sofa. Sometimes, to see how fast an object is moving you need to look at it while it’s not moving at all.

On Monday, I showed you what pit lane looked like as historic Trans-Am cars gridded up in pit lane. Today, it’s a look at a series of individual scenes of dynamic motion from both days. Enjoy!

Infineon Raceway is a great place to distill singular moments out of remarkable velocity. Turns 2, 4B, and 10 all afforded some great angles to capture the Sonoma Historic cars racing past the scenery. Because many of the cars, such as the #21 1961 Ferrari 250 GT, are softly sprung by modern standards, when they hunch their outside wheels down low in a turn it helps convey the dynamic nature of racing. When it was going by at full bore, you couldn’t see that it was on the verge of lifting that front inside wheel off the tarmac, but the photograph tells the real story. When the #48 ’66 Porsche Carrera 6 came blasting out of turn 11 on its way to the start/finish line, the frozen driver and car contrasted sharply with the streaking painted asphalt background and whirling wheels against the white safety barrier, conveying the speed of the entire corner in a single frame. Or course, the photos can’t demonstrate how the Group 6A cars sounded as they roared by, like the #30 1990 Beretta Trans-Am car, but I can describe it – thunder ain’t got nothing on an unmuffled, race-tuned V8 screaming by 20 feet away from your head.
Tomorrow, we’ll look at the art of cornering, Sonoma Historic Motorsports Festival style.
All images copyright 2010 Alex Kierstein. And thanks to Hunter S. Thompson for the title of this post.

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  1. tonyola Avatar

    As for the lead picture, you never really overcome the fear of death in an older 911….

  2. dmilligan Avatar

    Those are some great pictures of some great cars. The Jagermeister RSR in particular is one of my favorites. Thanks!

    1. tiberiuswise Avatar

      Gulf livery aside, I can not think of a more awesome sponsorship than Jagermeister. 'Specially on a car so blatantly German.

  3. Balestra Avatar

    I just love those unequal lenght intake runners. Honestly, absolutely hand on herat, I'd rather have an old racing car than a modern one, just because they'd be way more raw, I believe. Slower, but more exciting. And of course the knowledge that you will, no question die if you hit the armco at full tilt on fourth adds some spice.

  4. Virus Removal jacksonville Avatar

    This is a terrific little site I can’t believe that I didn’t find it sooner!