The Historic Sportscar Racing (HSR) Sebring 12 Hours Historic Races took place March 18-21, 2015 at the Sebring International Raceway in Sebring, Florida.
Held in conjunction with the 63rd annual 12 Hours of Sebring, the HSR vintage car races were staged on the same circuit that is home to the famed endurance race. A field of 60+ vintage and historic racers turned out on the hot, bumpy and challenging 3.7-miles of asphalt and cement. The oldest road racing circuit in America never fails to provide a challenge for drivers and a thrill for spectators amid a venue that fairly drips with history.
Wednesday saw the two afternoon practice and qualifying sessions run in the hot Florida sun. With a busy track hosting the Tudor United SportsCars, Continental Tire SportsCar Challenge, the Porsche GT3 Cup Challenge USA and the Cooper Tires Prototype Lites Powered by Mazda, this was the only track time the racers would get to come to grips with the punishing 17 turns of the circuit.
The two WeatherTech Sprint races were run on Thursday on an ideal track after most of the other series had laid down lots of rubber.
First up was the Historics group for their 5-lap race. A field of 28 cars roared away with the 2009 Oreca of Mirco Shultis leading the way. No one was realistically going to track down the Oreca which was lapping a good 8 seconds faster than the next quickest car. Behind the Oreca things were much tighter with 5 cars running around 2:15 laps. At the checker it was the Schultis Oreca 1st (#95), Henri Sicotte in his 2010 Chevy Camaro GT.R (#88) and third was Hamilton Harris in the 2004 Panoz Esperante GTLM (#21)
The Vintage group of 30 entries were next race at the HSR Sebring 12 Hours 2015. Unlike the Historic group which was dominated by Porsches, the Vintage field was an eclectic selection of North American, European and Asian marques including Chevrolet, Ford, Lexus, Lotus, BMW, Bailey, Datsun, Nissan, MGA, Mazda, Toyota, VRC and Triumph. After some spirited racing, Mike Banz in his 1974 Porsche 911 Carrera RSR (#13) took the checker followed by Richard Lind in the #78 1969 Chevrolet Camaro Z/28 and Ron Canty taking third in his 1973 Porsche 911 Carrera RSR IROC (#31). Jeff McKee’s Bailey GT40 had been in the hunt but stopped on lap 4 with an oil cooler leak.
The final event of the weekend was the 45-minute BRM all-comers Enduro. Normally the older cars sit out the enduros to save their machinery but the allure of the Sebring track was enough to bring out a sixty car field just after 6pm on Friday. With more than 5 laps to get it done, the drivers were able to settle in and do some solid driving, honing their lines and thinking about racecraft.
After one yellow bunched the field up, the final order was 1st, Ron Canty’s #31 1973 Porsche 911 Carrera RSR IROC, Mike Banz in the #13 1974 Porsche 911 Carrera RSR and the #40 Bailey GT40 of Jeff McKee. McKee was able to remove and bypass his leaking oil cooler that saw him drop out of the sprint race. As the sun set, an awards party at the Heritage Motorsports compound put the finishing touches on a great Sebring day.
The next HSR event will be the Mitty at Road Atlanta, April 23-26 2015.
Photographer Peter Falkner documented the HSR Sebring 12 Hours Historic Races 2015 with the following great selection of images from the famed race track in Florida. We split up Peter’s 135 pictures into two galleries. The first gallery starting below features our favorite images, all displayed in the full-width view of Sports Car Digest, while the second gallery can be found on the last page of the article and gives a comprehensive view of all the photographs.
HSR Sebring 12 Hours Historic Races 2015 – Featured Photo Gallery
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