The 2022 Rolex Monterey Motorsports Reunion will feature cars from the 24 Hours of Le Mans
This summer, France will invade California. Rolex Monterey Motorsports Reunion recently announced that the run groups for its annual vintage racing blowout at WeatherTech Raceway Laguna Seca will showcase vehicles that were previously campaigned in the 24 Hours of Le Mans. The premier vintage motorsports gathering this side of the Atlantic, and a fixture of Monterey Car Week since 1974, will have four classes of Le Mans racers, dividing nearly a century’s worth of cars that have participated in the iconic endurance race at Circuit de la Sarthe. Vehicles will trade the Mulsanne Straight for Laguna’s Corkscrew, participating in four days of wheel-to-wheel racing, open to spectators.
Here are how the classes break down for 2022:
1923–1955 Le Mans: Considering the scope spanning prewar, full-fendered production cars to the vaunted Jaguar D-Type, this class may feature the highest speed delta between the front of the pack and the back. Whether it’s the Alfa Romeo 8C, Bentley Speed 6, Mercedes-Benz 300 SL, or Ferrari 375, we hope to see it all in this speedy class.
1956–1971 Le Mans: From race resumption (after the Le Mans massacre of 1955) to the final year for large displacement race engines, this era was largely marked Ferrari’s dominance and Ford’s revenge. Will we witness another Ford versus Ferrari tussle in Monterey? Likely.
1972–1982 Le Mans: In 1972, the FIA imposed a maximum displacement rule, limiting racing engines’ size to three liters, though, big-mil production engines could still be utilized. Plenty of Porsches (911 Carreras and 935s), Renaults, BMWs, and maybe even a few Corvettes.
1981–2005 Le Mans Prototypes: Big hairy monsters, here. The Porsche 962, Jaguar XJR-9, Sauber C9/88-Mercedes-Benz, Mazda 787, Peugot 905, McLaren F1 GTR, Audi R8–basically all the top cars in the Gran Turismo franchise. If any of the drivers truly uncork these vintage racers, look out.
In addition to the racing classes, the Reunion will also gather, according to organizers, “the largest exhibition of winning or historically significant Le Mans cars ever assembled, for display and exhibition laps.” These cars will also aide in illustrating the Reunion’s Story of Le Mans trackside exhibit, a collection of videos, images, and storyboards.
Rolex Monterey Motorsports Reunion’s perennial classes, such as Historic Trans-Am, Formula Junior, and IMSA GTO will all turn laps throughout the week. Entrants for all groups must submit their applications to the Monterey Motorsports Reunion Advisory Council, which will determine eligibility based on “provenance, mechanical- and period-correctness, and its authenticity.”
Much like the Pebble Beach Concours across town, you must make the show before you can be the show—one of the reasons why the race on the Central Coast has become such a bucket list event. Only a few other events worldwide can go toe-to-toe with the Reunion in terms of car quality and count. Mix in the iconic several-story-high corkscrew dappled in California sun, and excuses to not attend suddenly seem thin. The vintage racing kicks off August 17, 2022, and ends Saturday August 20.