The Trans Am at VIR  was run in conjunction with the SVRA. I always enjoy looking at the older cars, particularly those from older Pro series. There was a decent collection of older Camaros and Mustangs, even saw an Audi from the ALMS. But what really interested me was a red Ford Capri.

The car was remarkably stock looking. No big flared fenders on this car. The body,, which seemed to sit precariously high off the ground, was steel not carbon fiber.  No 800 HP V8 but rather a Weber carbed 2000cc Ford 4 cylinder. All in all the antithesis of the cars that I generally am involved with. But it was neat and clean, obviously well taken care of by the owner, a friend that I haven’t seen since, well the last time I was at a vintage race.

But this little car, had been involved in the Trans Am, indirectly at least, “back in the day” as they say. In the early 70’s the Trans Am was divided into two groups over 2.5 liters, and under 2.5 liters. Ford in an effort to promote its recently imported Capri raced a couple of cars with factory support.  Compared to the Alfa’s which were dominating the under 2.5 races the Fords were nowhere. They would move over to IMSA where while they didn’t set the world on fire they had a bit more success.

This current owner, (who like myself raced Improved Touring Capri’s many years ago) found the original race car which was for sale. Unfortunately it had deteriorated to the point that restoration, while not impossible, was more than he wanted to tackle. However the backup car wasn’t in bad shape at all. So a deal was made the car went to the metro DC  area and work began on getting it ready for the track again.

Today it races vintage races with some success. The owner is as proud of it as anyone in the paddock, and it shows in the presentation of the car. Guess that what vintage racing is all about.

I regret I didn’t get a picture, but I wonder are there any of these little gems, which never made the headlines, still out there? Maybe I need to start back to looking.

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