Journal: Here's How Classic Racers Thrilled Fans At Road America

Here’s How Classic Racers Thrilled Fans At Road America

By Petrolicious Productions
August 23, 2016

Story and Photography by Kenneth Midgett

As years have gone by, my passion for historic and vintage racers has grown significantly, and I make an effort to attend at least one major historic motorsport festival each year. This year, I had the pleasure of attending the one with what must be the longest name: The Weathertech International Challenge with Brian Redman Presented by Hawk at Road America—commonly known as “The Hawk”. Here’s what makes it different from other classic car events.

While it’s labeled as a vintage gathering, my experience was more along the lines of an all-encompassing motorsports festival that happened to celebrate race cars of every genre and every era, from pre-war to modern day. It was my first visit to Road America, a 14 turn, four-mile stretch of undulating tarmac, weaving its way through rural Wisconsin farmland. Established in 1955, Road America is practically the exact same as it was on opening day, and is filled with anecdotes, memories, and results from the most significant decades in motorsports history.

Significant? Can-Am, F5000 and Trans-Am are a few of the major series that have battled for glory at one of America’s greatest tracks. This year’s Hawk featured those same series, as if time had stood still. The highlight of the weekend was an impressive field of more than 40 Can-Am machines with their utterly brutal power and thundering sound on full display. Nothing can match witnessing these race cars of the past in person and my addiction grows with each event that passes.

Here are some of the sights I was able to capture at The Hawk; now that it’s over, I wonder what event I will have the pleasure of attending next year. I heard there’s a really big one at Laguna Seca, something about a ‘car week’…

Have you been to The Hawk at Road America?

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Bryan Dickerson
Bryan Dickerson

Killer pictures!
60s-70s Can-Am, F-5000, and F-1, my cup o’ tea!


I wanted to attend this year, but couldn’t. I attended back before Hawk was a sponsor – I can’t remember the year – and thoroughly enjoyed it. Road America is one of the best race tracks in the US and the town of Elkhart Lake is a gem, with great food, a lake, and a history of motorsport.

Russ Kowalski
Russ Kowalski

I try never to miss the Hawk…….3 day fix of LOUD old race cars :):)

Christopher Gay
Christopher Gay

Very nice photos. Thanks for sharing.

It’s hard to believe that Porsche Spyder LMP car is already considered “historic”. I feel like it just made its debut a few years ago. I would love to give that one a shakedown. 🙂