The Rolex Monterey Motorsports Reunion is one of the most amazing events, with hundreds of historic race cars spanning decades of racing history. The cars come together at the historic and technical Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca to race once again. It is a glorious sight to behold and listen to, as all the cars are from an era before noise restrictions and turbochargers.
Speaking of vehicles without turbochargers, this year a group of historic Formula 1 cars will be unleashed onto Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca. These are Formula 1 cars from when racers were burly, half-drunk men racing glorified gas tanks on wheels around some of the most insane tracks on the planet. They are in all respects pure driver’s cars. Here are five of the coolest vintage Formula 1 cars that will be thrashed at the event.
1. 1971 Tyrrell 002
In the hands of Francois Cevert, the Tyrrell 002 took the world championship in 1971 and second in 1972.
2. 1976 Lotus 77
The Lotus 77 was the car that made Mario Andretti cringe. At the start of the season, he proclaimed it to be a dog, yet piloted by Andretti and teammate Gunnar Nilsson, it finished the year strong and provided Andretti with an epic season-capping race at Fuji.
3. 1982 March 821
Using a 3.0-liter Cosworth-Ford V-8 engine, the car sounds like a holy terror. It couldn’t really keep pace in Formula 1, but it introduced the world to both Niki Lauda and James Hunt.
4. 1980 Williams FW07
Weighing practically nothing, the Williams FW07 had full ground effects allowing it to stick to the pavement like superglue. It was also powered by the ubiquitous Ford-Cosworth V-8 engine that allowed Williams to solidify their mark on the season and cause them to become the team to beat.
5. 1974 Brabham BT-44
One of the first aerodynamic Formula 1 cars, the BT-44 was a brilliant piece of engineering, allowing Carlos Reutemann to win on three separate occasions. However, after McLaren debuted the M23 and Ferrari with the 312T, it fell behind the pack.