Journal: Which Car Would You Choose For A Vintage Spec-Racing Series?

Which Car Would You Choose For A Vintage Spec-Racing Series?

By Alex Sobran
May 7, 2018

Last week, Porsche UK announced a brief, three-round, six-race series featuring the original Boxster. They say it’s a celebration of the car’s 20th anniversary—though the math seems a bit off seeing as the car was for sale in ’96 as a ’97 model-year—but whatever the impetus may be, the result looks pretty interesting. Campaigned by English Porsche dealers, each car is judged not only for its on-track performance at circuits like Silverstone and Brands Hatch, but also for the quality of the restoration carried out on each car prior to the season.

The 986 Boxster is included in the Porsche Classic parts database now, so it’s a neat little way of highlighting the potential that still lives in the egg-eyed sports car while nudging it further into classic car territory.

The restorations aren’t simply mechanical either, for the judging also takes the liveries into consideration. So rather than a pack of beat-up bodies wearing haphazard sponsor logos and rolling around on garish spray-painted wheels, you’ll see homages to the Pink Pig, the Hippie Car, the Le Mans-winning Salzburg 917, and other mainstays of the marque’s motorsport history rendered on the controversial form of the Boxster. For a car that’s been going through a renaissance of sorts in the past few years due to its measurable assets, it’s a wise move to focus on the aesthetics here.

Why limit this format to the Boxster though? There’s nothing wrong with the various Miata series that run around the world—I’d love to enter one one day—but let’s not kid ourselves and say that a silver MX-5 with an orange roll bar and orange wheels and “Stinky Steve’s Septic Services” emblazoned on its flanks is a pretty car to look at as it hustles around the track. The idea of a one-make race will always be intriguing for its democratic nature, but damn, how cool would they be if the cars had to look good too?

Imagine a pack of E30s sporting quality recreations of Procar liveries; a paddock full of 510s with modified BRE schemes and the correct bodywork to boot; or some Deltas wearing Martini and ToTip stripes. It doesn’t have to be affordable or realistic, but there are definitely some viable options out there as well. Which series would you like to see?

Image sources: 1-2, 3, 4

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DerelictJames JensenHayden punchMike MiesslerDennis Cavallino Recent comment authors
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AH Sprite Spec series. Everyone gets a ribcase and a sealed 1275.

James Jensen
James Jensen

C3 Corvettes. Mandate a 390 CFM Holley and 15×8 wheels. Cheap enough for the average bourgeoisie yet fast enough for the occasional pucker moment.

Hayden punch
Hayden punch

Simple. 1st gen mazda rx7 race series. Plenty of clean examples around for cheap, extremely rich racing pedigree, easy to build into a race car and the sound of multiple rotaries roaring around a racetrack would be incredible

Mike Miessler
Mike Miessler

a Volvo 240 series would be fun to watch. Not fast but fun.
Datsun 240/280Z spec series just makes sense
I know I’m reaching here, but a spec GTO/G8/SS/CTS-V class would feel very Trans_Am’y or Aussie Supercar’y. And that’s always fun to hear and watch

Dennis Cavallino
Dennis Cavallino

Here in Holland we already have these Cup classes. Porsche 944 (with famous Porsche liveries), but parts are getting harder to find so we’ve now started with the spec Boxster Cup. We already have the E30 325i Cup for decades and some showed cool Art Car liveries or other BMW Motorsport dresses.

We don’t call it Spec, we call it Cup racing. We also have the E36 318ti Cup, Volvo 360 Cup, Alfa Twin Spark cup (155, 75 etc.), MX5 Cup, Westfield Cup and so on.

Racing in Holland is blooming, but it’s not limited to these Cup classes.

Chad C.
Chad C.

Alfa 75/Milano.

So many historic liveries to celebrate (including that of law enforcement!), engine sizes & specs to consider, and the symphony of sound such a grid would produce…

Darin McCollum
Darin McCollum

So many choices!!!
E36 M3.
240/260/280z – while they are still cheap.
1990’s 300zx or 1990’s RX7 especially with the JDM imports making them reasonable…for now.
Austin Mini
Dodge Neon or ford zx3 escort (couldn’t be cheaper, but still can be quick).
Volkswagen Beetle.
Porsche 944.
Porsche Boxter.


Personally, I would love an all MG B series. But I’ve always been a little biased towards British cars that don’t run.