Tag Archives: Datsun

HMSA – 2014 Spring Club Event, Laguna Seca, CA

1954 Ferrari 750 Monza Spider

1954 Ferrari 750 Monza Spider. © 2014 Victor Varela

The sights and sounds of vintage motor racing returned to the legendary Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca on March 22-23, as the Historic Motor Sports Association (HMSA) held its 2014 Spring Club Event at this iconic race track.  The close of winter couldn’t come sooner as I anticipated the journey up north and the coverage of this event. Approximately 175 historic race cars that attended this year and made for some exciting practice, qualifying and racing at the 11 turn, 2.2 mile road course, located in the central coast area of Monterey, California.

The Monterey Peninsula in March is typically foggy and cold in the early morning hours, which usually clears to beautiful skies and a crisp, cool breeze, providing interesting lighting throughout the day. These conditions made it ideal to photograph the wide variety of historic production cars and purpose built Formula and Sports Racing cars.

1960 Porsche Abarth © 2014 Victor Varela

1960 Porsche Abarth © 2014 Victor Varela

If you are not familiar with the HMSA, they are one of the most respected historic racing organizations in the United States, producing world class spectator events across the country in addition to managing one of the largest high net worth member-based associations. Since 1977, they have served as the sanctioning body for premiere historic racing events in North America. It is the only organization in the U.S. that requires the cars to be historically correct based on the period of time that the car originally raced. Their purpose is to encourage the restoration, preservation and use of historic, sports and racing cars and their events and races are for fun with nothing to be won. HMSA members own, restore, preserve and race the most historic and valuable sports and racing cars in the world and was clearly evident by the cars that took to the track this weekend.

1962 Shelby Cobra © 2014 Victor Varela

1962 Shelby Cobra © 2014 Victor Varela

Among the entry list of the impressive cars that participated were the 1954 Ferrari 750 Monza Spider Scaglietti of Scott Drnek; the Red Lobster liveried, 1983 March 83G driven by David Andrews; 1973 BMW CSL 3.0 driven by Jeff Gerkin; the ex-Bob Sharp Racing 1972 Datsun 610 driven by TV and radio personality, Adam Carolla; 1991 Toyota IMSA GTP Eagle Mk III driven by Tom Malloy; a pair of 1972 Datsun 240Zs; the popular trio of Shelby Cobras owned and driven by Steve, Tim and Lynn Park, to name but just of a few.

1983 Red Lobster March 83G© 2014 Victor Varela

1983 Red Lobster March 83G© 2014 Victor Varela

1970 Datsun 240Z © 2014 Victor Varela

1970 Datsun 240Z © 2014 Victor Varela

Purchase Prints…
If you would like a print for your wall at home, office or race shop, I offer quality prints of the images you see here and others that were captured during this event. You can purchase them here: Photo Store

Visit my website gallery – Victor Varela Photographer.

[Source: HMSA]

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Coronado Speed Festival & Sports Car Digest

Robert Ryan's 1968 McLaren M6B.

Robert Ryan’s 1968 McLaren M6B.  (image © 2013 Victor Varela)

Phew!  It’s been a bit of a struggle to get back into the swing of things, after eight days of fun, family, exploring, eating and a little bit of work on the island of Oahu in Hawaii.  Once home and after updating client’s websites, addressing a mailbox full of e-mails and going through images in Lightroom, I gave myself some time to post something exciting here on my blog, that happened while I was away.  I had my images from the 2013 Coronado Speed Festival published on the leading international online journal for sports, racing and vintage car enthusiasts – Sports Car Digest!


Alex Curtis' 1955 Mercedes 300 SL during Sunday practice.

Alex Curtis’ 1955 Mercedes-Benz 300 SL Gullwing.  (image © 2013 Victor Varela)

Before I left for the weekend in Coronado, I received a phone call from friend and f/8 Motorsports Photography Workshops instructor, Dennis Gray, who asked for some images of the event for the HMSA annual (Historic Motor Sports Association, is the sanctioning organization for the Coronado Speed Festival).  They were requesting an assortment of track and “pit candy’ shots of the weekend to be included with the other HMSA events.  I happily agreed and before we ended the call, he also asked if I could cover the event for him as he had another event to photograph and could not make it to San Diego.   It would be for Sports Car Digest and would consist of about 120 images and a report of the weekend’s activities.  To say that I was excited and honored about covering this event for Dennis, a photographer with his experience, credentials and reputation, is, well… an understatement.  It was such a great moment for me! To have my abilities as a motorsports photographer, validated by Dennis with this request, well I can tell you I had a 48 hour grin on my face.  I greatly appreciate that he had the confidence in my abilities to ask me to cover the event for him.

Thank you, Dennis!

It was a great event and weekend of vintage racing with the various race classes that participated, as well as an open paddock where the cars and drivers prepared for their track time. With all the vendors, food stands, car club corrals and several military vehicles and aircraft on display, fans their families and friends, had a lot to see, eat and experience throughout the warm and sunny Southern California race weekend.

The track was a bit difficult to use as a back drop for all the fantastic cars that participated during the weekend, but I found several good spots around the track to capture them.  The morning light offered some beautiful lighting as is evident in the image above of the 1955 Mercedes-Benz 300 SL Gullwing.  The mid-day sun wasn’t too bad for capturing images as seen by the image below of the beautiful, young lady and Fred Lacorte’s 1950 Oldsmobile “88” Convertible.



Fred Lacorte’s 1950 Oldsmobile “88” Convertible is a girl magnet.  (image © 2013 Victor Varela)

Once I returned from San Diego, I was on a tight deadline because of the trip to Oahu at the end of the week.  I post processed, organized, captioned and sent the images and report to Dennis, Jamie Doyle – founder & editor of Sports Car Digest and Bill Wagenblatt at Track Thoughts for the HMSA annual.

I was in contact with Jamie and Dennis during that weekend, about the possibility of having the images published on SCD (although Dennis had asked me to cover the event, it was up to both Dennis and Jamie to approve them for publishing) and when they would be on the site.

On October 2nd, I woke up to another beautiful morning in Oahu and checked the Sports Car Digest website and found the image of Robert Ryan’s 1968 McLaren M6B and the following copy…

Report and photos by Victor Varela The Naval Air Station North Island in Coronado, California, played host once again to the thundering symphony of vintage race cars at the … Read Full Story

Wow!  What a great feeling it was to see one of my images on the front page of Sports Car Digest!

I have to thank Jamie for the opportunity and the prestige of having my images and report on his fantastic website.  Hopefully, I can make future contributions to Sports Car Digest and maybe other online and printed publications in the very near future.

Fell free to click the image or link below to see my image gallery & report.

Read Full Story


SCD Coronado wp



Carolla’s Datsun


Adam Carolla negotiates Turn 4 in his 1970 Bobby Allison BRE Datsun 510, during the HMSA Spring club event at Laguna Seca on March 24, 2013.
(image © 2013 Victor Varela)

Camera: Canon 40D
Lens: Canon 70 – 200mm 2.8 L
ISO: 100
Sec: 1/320
F/stop: 7.1
Lightroom: Exposure, saturation, highlights, shadows and other Lightroom 4 magic.